There are a few aspects of running a small business are as intimidating as actually making sales calls. Nevertheless, making sales is a vital part of any business.
Regardless of whether or not a business has a salesperson or sales team it is important for the business owner, to make sales from time to time — not just to make money, but to learn from customers and prospects. Sales calls keep you close to the market and give you a reality check.
Here are seven tips on keys to successful small business sales:
Know what is being sold: What differentiates you from your competition? What are its features and benefits? A good salesperson has to be able to present their product/service clearly and concisely.
Make a sales plan: Determine who the key prospects are, identify decision makers, and come up with a six-month or annual plan of action.
Set a quota: Set a goal of how many key customers you’re going to call on in a day, week, month.
Create a database: A record of who is being called is critical.
Listen: Once the prospect has been reached, spend most of the time listening. Customers have to tell you what they want and need.
Build relationships: People buy from other people. Develop relationships with your customers, don’t just make a one-time sale.
Be persistent rather than insistent: Most people think you have to be “pushy” to be a successful salesperson. That is not the case.