Salesforce: A Complete Guide for Successful Companies
The salesforce is the backbone of any company.
Responsible for attracting, persuading and retaining people interested in buying your products or services, the sales force is the one who ensures your competitiveness in the market.
And this is becoming more and more important. Each company has won 4 competitors and the ones they already had last year.
So that you have all the necessary knowledge for commercial success, we have prepared this practical and complete guide on the sales force. Look what you will find here:
Table of Contents
- What is the salesforce?
- Why is it essential to have a salesforce?
- What are the objectives of a commercial force?
- What’s the sales force process?
- What is the structure of the sales force?
- What are salesforce control systems?
- How to motivate the salesforce team?
- How to improve the performance of the salesforce?
What is the SalesForce?
The salesforce is the set of people, strategies, tools and processes that a company uses to market its products and services.
The objective of the commercial force is to sell more and better without wasting time, money and other resources.
The role of the salesforce team is to recognize consumer needs and satisfy them whenever possible.
If you want to go beyond the question “what is the salesforce”, read: Organization of the sales force: 3 good management practices.
Why is it Essential to Have a SalesForce?
Once you know the salesforce, you may wonder: how important is it to have a team dedicated to commercial activities? Here are four data-driven reasons.
Because it Attracts New Customers
According to a recent study, 5 out of 10 leaders say that customer acquisition is essential for their spending. This means that companies are spending money to reach the right people and convince them that their brand is the best fit.
Having a salesforce allows you to qualify leads, identify potential customers and verify their compatibility with your company.
More than finding out if people can pay for what you sell, the salesforce discovers if you are capable of solving the problem presented.
Do you know how much you devote to obtaining a customer? Read: What is CAC, and what is its importance?
Because it Satisfies Those who Buy From you
Worldwide, 96% of consumers say that customer service is an essential factor in their choice of brand loyalty. This means that when people have their needs met and expectations exceeded, they tend to do business with you.
In this context, the salesforce allows you to triage potential buyers who approach you and set realistic expectations about the products you sell. After all, one of the primary sources of dissatisfaction in personal and business relationships is the feeling that a promise has not been kept.
Are you curious about the role of the sales and marketing force in meeting expectations? Read: Customer expectations before, during and after the sale
Because it Retains Loyal Buyers
According to a study published in the Harvard Business Review, acquiring a new customer can be up to 25 times more expensive than retaining people who already buy from you.
Since not all companies have robust budgets that allow them to invest in both areas, the sales force can help identify loyal buyers and develop customer retention strategies.
Also read: How to retain a client who wants to leave? Three tips to generate loyalty
Because it Turns Customers into Promoters of your Brand
A customer who loves your brand and promotes it to others is between 600% and 1,400% more valuable to your company than those who don’t.
With a sales force team on your side, you can expand your customer satisfaction efforts and turn them into an evangelist for your brand — that is, a person who talks about your products and services to other people whenever they get the chance.
It’s almost like word of mouth advertising, only more reliable (because it comes from someone who consumes what you sell) and more persuasive (because it comes to you through the voice of friends and family).
Do you want to know if your sales force is successfully converting customers into brand promoters? Read: What is NPS?
What are the objectives of a Commercial force?
You already know what the sales force is and why it is essential to have it in your company, but do you know everything a sales team can do for you?
- Meet customer needs
According to Zendesk’s 2021 CX Trends Report, 65% of people want to buy from companies that make online transactions easy and fast. It’s also reasonable to assume that people want more payment options and secure trades, right?
The commercial force can evaluate aspects such as:
- the responsiveness of the website on different devices;
- the volume of orders per day, month, and year;
- the primary forms of payment used by customers (debit card, credit, transfer);
- identify the main complaints in the purchase process ;
- and much more.
Ultimately, the sales force team can identify customer needs before, during, and after the purchase and take concrete steps to meet them.
Learn how to anticipate customer needs in 5 steps!
Complement Marketing Activities
The sales force and marketing work hand in hand.
If the marketing team is testing a new customer acquisition strategy, its success will depend on the sales force’s ability to persuade interested people.
In turn, sellers will only have a real chance of generating the expected result if the campaign was well designed to attract the ideal profiles.
Also read: Strategic and operational marketing: a guide to applying them in your company
Generate Income for your Company
Another objective of the commercial force is to generate income for your company constantly and legally. Although it seems like a simple activity, studies show that less than 25% of salespeople reach their yearly sales quota.
But don’t despair: Closing deals are complicated. The best companies in the market only convert 30% of the opportunities they generate. The solution is to hire a talented, dedicated, and willing sales force team to learn new techniques.
Take a look — Guide: What is euro selling, and how can it help you sell more?
Increase Sales Volume
In addition to generating money for your company, the sales force must also be able to do it repeatedly. Of course, the purchase frequency depends on the products and services you sell and will vary across industries.
A company that sells rice and beans will likely have more repeat purchases than a company that sells nuclear reactors. While this example may sound absurd, it serves to illustrate two things:
- the goal of the sales force team is the same in any company;
- You must set realistic expectations for sales volume.
Do you want to know more or less how much you will earn in the coming months? Read Sales Forecasting: 3 Essential Methods for Your Business.
Increase the Average Ticket
The average ticket is calculated by adding the total sales during a specific period and dividing by the number of customers.
For example, if you had 500 customers in three months and sold the equivalent of $5,000, your average ticket is $10. However, if in the same period you had 500 clients and earned $500,000, the average ticket goes up to $1,000. The difference is very relevant.
Therefore, one of the objectives of the sales force is to increase the average ticket: make you earn more money in the same period, either by increasing the number of customers or the amount they spend.
The average ticket is just one of the performance indicators of the sales force. Get to know the others in: What are KPIs in sales: 5 indicators to measure your business.
The sixth goal of the sales force is to convert more customers. This is a priority for 71% of companies, rightly so, since half of the customer loyalty comes from their experience with the sales team.
To achieve this goal, the sales force team must promptly handle objections and make a relevant offer.
Also read: What is conversion rate, and how does it relate to the sales funnel?
According to a recent study, 61% of SMEs report that more than half of their revenue comes from repeat customers rather than new business.
This means that one of the objectives of the sales force must be to maintain profits, at least the minimum amount so that operating expenses are covered.
This is especially true for small and medium-sized businesses, which often lack investors and lines of credit to invest in their business.
Put your sales force team to work: How to conquer customers in 2021? 12 tips for SMEs
Promote Company Growth
The eighth objective of the sales force is to subsidize the company’s growth. In other words, it’s about making enough money for an organization to expand its operations to new locations, hire more employees, and perhaps create new products.
This can be done in various ways, but we want to highlight one in particular: digital transformation. It’s about using technology to your advantage to improve processes, avoid wasting resources, and increase business agility.
We recommend you read: Market development: has the time to expand come?
Reduce Customer Churn Rate
Also known as customer churn, customer churn rate refers to the percentage of a company’s total customers who stop doing business during a specified period. It is calculated like this:
Number of lost customers ÷ Initial number of customers x 100 = your customer churn
A high bounce rate means people aren’t happy with your brand, and a low bounce rate means you’re pandering to your customers. In short, the goal of the sales force should always be to reduce this figure.
Learn more about the topic: What is the churn rate? Learn how to measure attrition and how to reduce it
Transform Data into Valuable Knowledge
According to a KPMG study, 70% of organizations believe that data is critical to understanding how customers use their products. However, only 10% of companies excel at managing and analyzing the information they collect.
In this context, the goal of the sales force is to transform figures and metrics into helpful knowledge for the team. Only in this way can companies develop a competitive advantage in the market and make the right decisions for the future of their business.
If you want to improve the sales force process, read: What information should I know about my client? 4 essential facts.