The sales pipeline is at the core of all things related to company revenue.
The sales pipeline is a visual representation of your team’s opportunities and is the process of taking strangers, nurturing them, and turning them into buying customers.
To maximize your conversions, it’s imperative you learn how to manage your leads.
While it would be nice if a prospect approached your company and made a purchase immediately, the process isn’t usually that easy.
Take a look at these five ways you can manage increases in deal flow and generate more revenue.
Focus on Improvements at Each Stage
As you’ve heard time and time again, sales is a numbers game.
This statement is true, but the quality of your leads matters greatly when determining close rates. Make sure your sales representatives focus on quality opportunities when they have high volumes of leads.
Determine what sources are generating the best conversion rates. For instance, Jennifer Fremont-Smith, CEO of consulting firm HighStart, measures the cost vs. quality of leads.
“You might have one source where a lead costs you $500, but closes at a higher rate than the ones that cost you $100,” she says. “You want to know that so that your salespeople spend more time with high-quality leads.”
Limited focus on quality opportunities can negatively impact pipeline conversions.
Once you’ve identified the quality of your leads, you can make improvements at each stage of the pipeline. You will speed up the process and effectively manage increases in deal flow.
Find ways to improve your email open rates and ensure you are communicating with potential leads appropriately. What you say should be based on where they are in the sales cycle and what channel you are using to communicate.
Never Stop Communicating
One of the most effective ways to keep your pipeline moving is to understand time scale. [clickToTweet tweet=”You need to have good conversations with your prospects. Always focus on communication.” quote=”You need to have good conversations with your prospects. Always focus on communication.”]
Suppose someone tells you they’re interested in your product or service, but not until a later date.
It’s time to re-categorize the prospect into a section that is more appropriate. Keep prospects in your active pipeline only if they are likely to close within your normal sales cycle.
Utilize Sales Automation
When done correctly, sales automation is a beautiful thing.
It can provide your sales reps with the ability to forge lasting relationships with prospects and customers, stay organized, keep track of leads, and save loads of time.
This improved efficiency will also improve customer retention. Automation allows your team to feel less overwhelmed and gives them the flexibility to spend more time listening to each customer.
As prospects move from one stage to the next, software streamlines the process by proposing “next best action” sequences and triggering automated communication.
These communications ensure representatives put the right collateral in front of each prospect based on where they are in the sales cycle.
Automation is helpful because it means sales reps don’t have to remember to send each communication to each prospect.
By streamlining sales processes, brands can reduce wasted time and inconsistency. Automation also prevents sales reps from losing leads and keeps reps from having to dig through piles of notes to recall the status of each prospect.
It shouldn’t be a surprise that you can use sales automation to increase revenue, yet some businesses still fail to take advantage of what automation can do.
Keep the Pipes Clean
When you have lots of sales in the pipeline, it’s important to ensure you can manage your prospects to effectively complete the sales process.
Each lead needs to be managed, organized, and developed to bring it to fruition. You can do this through effective and regular customer follow-up.
Once a week, go through and ensure you have a cleaned up pipeline and that no potential customers are falling through the cracks or clogging it.
Keep your goal in the forefront of your mind: to move customers to the next stage. If you fail to contact people, you will probably never get the sale.
You know who will? Your competitors who make it a point to stay in touch with prospects.
Make Your Pipeline a Habit
Cleaning your pipeline should be just like cleaning your kitchen. It’s best to tend to it regularly instead of letting things get put on the back burner and neglected.
Set up productive habits so you can stay ahead of the game. Use your pipeline to keep yourself organized. Once you make it a ritual to log your notes and mark the net steps in your calendar, you will find that you keep your pipeline clean and that is when it’s the most effective.
A pipeline that fails to move is nothing more than a list of leads. When businesses master the art of the pipeline, they see significant growth over those with stagnant pipelines.
Keep your pipeline clean with the help of automation and hone in on communication. Once you focus on these areas, you can ensure your leads are not only satisfied but that they also keep moving.
The result is a faster flow of more closings and increased revenue.
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