How to continue selling in uncertain times, by Lisa Larter

Selling in Uncertain Times

With the unprecedented economy we’re currently in, the thought of selling and continuing “business as usual” may be nerve-wracking and next to impossible for some business owners. It’s not business as usual.

However, there are things most business owners can do to adjust their business and continue selling.

Even though it feels like everything is changing – with news coming out about new measures and restrictions on businesses in an effort to flatten the COVID-19 curve – there are two crucial elements you can take into consideration.

These two things have to do with your sales process. Although the products and or services you offer and the way you serve might look different right now, you can still sell in uncertain times if you’re willing to adjust and be flexible.

Are you clear on how your sales process works?

There are two constants in every sales process that will never change: understanding lead generation and conversion.

Selling 101: two crucial elements in your sales process:

  1. How to attract and qualify leads.
  2. How to close the sale by converting those leads into customers.

Let me give you a simple example of how these two elements play out in business:

  1. You receive an email from someone who says they either follow your blog or heard about you from someone and they want to know if you can help them. This is a lead.
  2. You respond by asking a couple of questions to qualify the lead – and based on those responses, you agree upon a mutual time to talk.
  3. Then, you ask questions about this person’s goals and or objectives to determine needs and then inquire about their current state to identify the gap.How to continue selling in uncertain times, by Lisa Larter

This is the essence of how I converse with and attract quality leads. My sales process is a bit more complex than this, and the types of conversations may be different in times like these, but this is an example of what takes place.

The next step is simple: you close the sale. 

Selling is serving. If you’re a leader, people will look to you for advice and help. Now is not the time to shrink back and freeze, it’s time to adjust your sales and marketing approach and provide value to your existing and future clients.

#Selling is serving. If you’re a leader, people will look to you for advice and help. Now is not the time to shrink back and freeze, it’s time to adjust your sales and #marketing approach and provide value. Click To Tweet

Regardless of the season or uncertainty in the economy, selling doesn’t change.

Here’s how you can do it:

  1. Explain how you might help them (so as to close the gap between their goals and reality).
  2. Then, ask them what they’d like to do. This is called closing the sale and it’s a key part of your conversion rate.

A note about conversion rate:

There are things within your control, and other things out of your control. Some people will say yes, and others will say no. That’s just the way it goes in sales.

You can’t take that personally, but you need to learn from it:

The % of “yes”-es is your conversion rate.

  • If you speak to 10 people and 1 says yes, you closed 1 sale and have a 10% conversion rate.
  • If you speak to 5 people and 4 say yes, you have an 80% conversion rate.

This number is critically important because it tells you exactly how many leads you need to generate a sale. Armed with this knowledge, you can determine exactly how many sales you need to reach your goals.

Super simple – now you can track your own conversion rate and look for ways to improve it.

#ClosingTheSale: there are things within your control, and other things out of your control. Some people will say yes, and others will say no. That’s just the way it goes in #sales. Click To Tweet

How good are you at selling? This is your metric:

Your conversion rate tells you how good you are at selling.

Selling is a skill. It’s not a naturally-born talent – you have to work at it. The good news is that you can improve your conversions in two ways:

  • Getting better at the sales process.
  • Qualifying your leads better before you have a sales conversation.

Selling is serving, and you should never sell without integrity. Remember: if you can solve a problem for a buyer, it’s a disservice to them if you’re afraid to do that. This is especially true given what is going on in the world right now.

You have an opportunity to be more responsive now than ever before.

Your buyers want you to #solve problems, and they want you to be responsive, now more than ever. Click To Tweet

Learn how to sell well.

This is a fast-paced changing and challenging time for many business owners. Spend some time thinking about your sales process, and how you can better serve your clients and adapt to what is happening. Together, we will get through this storm.

One last thought: be careful what you look for. If you look for roadblocks, you will find them. If you look for opportunities, you’ll find those too.

Tell me below – how are you adapting your business in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic?

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