3 Must-have Solution Sales Skills To Win

Solution Sales Skills

Some Solution Sales Skills Are More Important than Others
So much more is being asked of sales teams these days. We know from decades of designing and delivering customized solution selling training programs that it is no longer enough to be a product expert or a skilled persuader.

While those solution sales skills are helpful, they are just a ticket to play the game.

Customers Are Smarter and Have Higher Expectations
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.
  • Be thoroughly trained in proven solution sales skills and techniques.
  • Deeply understand their customer’s business
  • Act as customer-centric problem solvers

In short, high performing sales teams need the solution sales skills to consistently be really good at consultative and value-added selling.

Three Must-have Solution Sales Skills To Win

1.  Knowing the Customer’s Buying Process

  • Meet Your Customer Where They Are. 
    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.
  • Align Your Sales Process to the Client’s Buying Process. 
    To be successful, solution sellers need to adapt to the way customers want to buy. Today’s successful salespeople have the solution sales skills to qualify their customers in terms of if, how and when they will buy.
  • Add Value. 
    High performing sellers 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.

2.  Playing Multiple Roles

  • Customer Matter Expert and Strategic Partner.
    Successful sellers have the solution sales skills to work with customers as both a consultant who is a “customer-matter” expert and as a strategic partner who is able to integrate and align the business needs of both the selling and buying companies.
  • Work at Multiple Levels. 
    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.
  • Solve Problems. 
    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.
  • Prioritize Opportunities and Accounts. 
    With the right solution sales skills, top sales reps are able to prioritize opportunities and manage accounts to the benefit of both parties. This is their competitive edge.

3.  Leading and Managing the Sales Team Performance

  • Sales Leadership. 
    To have a truly effective sales team, you need a truly effective sales leader. This should be someone with both solution sales skills 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.
  • Sales Performance Coaching. 
    Effective sales managers need to be able to coach throughout the sales 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.

The Bottom Line
If you are looking to build a high performance sales team, you need to transform your sellers from transactional order-takers into the high performing, customer-oriented, value-added sellers who will win.  Invest in the solution sales skills required to make it happen.

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

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