3 ways to build solution selling strength to win

Picture of a businessman with cartoon strong arms showing selling potential

So much more is being asked of solution sellers these days. We know from decades of designing and delivering customized solution selling training that it is no longer enough to be a product expert or a skilled persuader.

With today’s technology, customers are able to do research on their own and compare products before the salesperson even knows there is a need. To succeed, sales teams need to think less about their own sales process and products and more about their customer’s buying process and most pressing challenges. They need to be thoroughly trained in proven solution selling techniques, versed in their customer’s business, and need to act as customer-centric problem solvers. In short, they need to be really good at consultative and value-added selling.

  1. Knowing the Customer’s Buying Process
    The internet allows customers to find sellers before sellers find customers. This requires a major change in the way salespeople operate. Rather than the sellers driving the sale through identifying new customers, discovering their needs and then proposing a solution, customers now drive the process.To be successful, solution sellers need to adapt to the way customers want to buy. Today’s successful salespeople know how to qualify their customers in terms of if, how and when they will buy. They have established themselves, in anticipation of a sale, as trusted resources to be contacted for expert advice. They know how to add value to each interaction and how to link what they have to sell to the customer’s need and overall business strategy. And then they follow up and stay connected to the customer so they are ready for the next buying cycle. This should be a foundation of any solutions selling training program.
  2. Playing a Dual Role
    The successful solution seller today knows how to work with customers as both a consultant who is a “customer-matter” expert and as a strategic planner who is able to integrate and align the business needs of both the selling and buying companies. Top sellers are able to work at multiple levels within the customer organization to satisfy the needs of the buying team from the technology guru to the senior executive. Effective consultative sellers have a special kind of finesse that persuades their customers that they are truly dedicated to solving their problems…and this is not fake…it is genuine. They are able to prioritize opportunities and manage accounts to the benefit of both parties. This is their competitive edge.
  3. Managing the Team for Success
    To have a truly effective sales team, you need a truly effective sales manager. This should be someone with both sales and management skills. They need to understand what it takes to build long-term, mutually profitable relationships with customers. And they need to know how to manage a team for peak performance. Establishing a sales process that team members follow is only one piece of the puzzle. Effective sales managers need to be able to coach throughout the process as they aim for continuous improvement. It is their job to see that the sales teams have both the training and the resources they need to succeed.

If you are looking to transform your solution selling organization into one that can succeed in today’s competitive marketplace, you need to transform your sellers from ordinary vendors into the high performing, customer-oriented, value-added sellers who will win strong-arm contests every time.

To learn more about creating a high performance sales team, download How Much Pressure Should a Sales Leader Apply to Get Higher Performance

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