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Transformation Of Sales Techniques In This Decade
The sales techniques have evolved with the evolution of the new age customer and this is the scenario across the globe. Several factors responsible for such phenomenon are internet penetration, digitization, gig economy explosion, neck-to-neck competition, smartphone penetration, prospective macroeconomics and reformative monetary policies. The sales team is the most important part of any organization as it helps in making a profit by reaching directly to the clients. In the previous era, the traditional approaches like cold calling, scripted pitching and direct selling were dominant. But with the rising tide of Digitization, the consumer pattern has witnessed drastic shifts, which is prominent especially in this decade. During the dawn of the decade, the retail and eCommerce sector started a metamorphosis and by the closing of the decade, it has reached the climax. Now, in the age of the Internet, the picture has changed quite a bit.
The strategy of multilevel marketing (MLM) or pyramid selling is gaining momentum, word of mouth and customer reviews being the primary driving force to augment the profit of any business, be it selling a product or any service. Global brands like Amway, Oriflame, Avon and Tupperware are being sold to the consumers by direct sales and network marketing, rather than in offline retail stores. These direct selling companies earn profit by reaching consumers directly. But the availability of these products at a much cheaper rate on the eCommerce platforms has caused great trouble for many distributors across the country. The explosion of Large Format Stores (LFS) is changing the face of the retail sector, FMCG sector (add the links of posts here) and Consumer Durables sector; it gives the consumers to purchase from various merchandise categories under one roof and promotes umbrella shopping. The modern trade (MT) in India is greatly affected by the flourishing of LFS, hypermarkets, supermarkets and large retail stores. As compared to the previous years, modern trade is growing at a faster rate than the traditional trade models, especially in the urban areas of the country.
These ten years have been pivotal in shaping the Sales structure, which in turn contribute to building the Future of Work. Let us look at some of the prominent changes in Sales of this decade.
• Changing Sales Strategies: The role of the Key account manager is pivotal here; his main function is to develop a trusting relationship between the clients and the company. Heavy amount of strategic planning goes into improving the clientele, reaching the sales target, solving client needs and issues, boosting up-selling and cross-selling by collaboration with the sales team and also bringing new business from the new or existing clients. Until the bygone decade, the outside sales were dominant, but this decade has seen a shift. More and more organizations are emphasizing on the development of Inside Sales Teams that are well equipped with advanced video-conferencing and communication tools. Most of the functions can be done successfully from the office itself, be it cold calling, pitching, generating new leads or gaining new business. Software is developed for managing customer relationship and also increasing sales in a business. Salesforce is a cloud-based software which is highly used by the sales teams for ensuring better customer service and marketing automation.
The Customer Relationship Management is an approach that is developed for managing the interaction of the business with both existing and prospective customers, customer retention and thus boosting the sales growth, and all these are done by Data Analysis. The customer reviews updated on social media platforms affect Sales to a great extent. The key account manager not only concentrates on sales but also works with digital marketing, advertising and logistics for reaching monthly targets or benchmarks. The automated inside sales approach, solution selling, conceptual selling help the sales representatives to close higher deals in the modern product target market.
• Technological Advances and Digitization: Until the past few decades, the lead generations were mostly done by the sales team from the newspapers, magazines etc, but now several tools are available for a prospective sales networking and reaching a higher number of clients. LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Pitchbook help the sales team to form a curated list of target customers and reach them for successful deal closure. SalesStack represents all the tools that are available to the Salespersons, like Customer Relationship Management (CRM) and other data scraping tools, software for recording the tone of the sales calls for predictive analysis about the prospective lead conversions. Many online CRM platforms like ZOHO have come up to help the organizations monitor their sales pipeline, and thus convert the cold calls into warm conversations and work more productively towards closing a deal.
According to a report published by PwC in 2016, the wave of Digitization will be profitable for all the industrial sectors in India. https://www.pwc.in/press-releases/2016/digitisation-in-industrial-sector-in-india-to-grow-to-65-percent-in-next-five-years.html The government’s initiatives like “Make in India”, “Make India Digital” and “Smart Cities” and “Jan Dhan Yojna” (zero balance account) have influenced the mass from all the sectors of India to contribute in the nation’s business profit. The digital payment models, eCommerce platforms, high percentage of the young population of the nation, infrastructural developments, urbanization and the increasing per capita income trigger the methodologies of sales. The online platforms and digital marketing strategies are affecting the sales of the products as well as the services. Opening various accounts in Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram won't reap much, unless and until the salesperson knows how to communicate via these mediums. Writing proper Bio, posting regularly about important updates and live events, giving various offers and discounts will ultimately boost the sales growth. Though the Internet came into existence in the 1990s, Digital Marketing has not gained prominence in India until this decade. The on-page SEO (Search Engine Optimization through the website) and the off-page SEO (outside the official website) has been the most successful sales techniques in recent years. For boosting the sales growth, the marketing techniques must be on point. The social media platforms and the apt application of email marketing, the conversation sales techniques can be applied for lead conversions.
• New age consumer pattern: In the last decade, the insurance sector was dominated by this one name, and no one could think of any other investment beside this one giant. But times changed, now there is Bankbaazar.com and Policybaazar.com where one could compare the rates and make a correct decision after much research. Now, there are several insurance companies like Max Life, HDFC Life, ICICI Prudential, Bajaj Allianz etc who are giving a tough competition to the giant LIC. As mentioned in the post about the changing Insurance sector in India (Add the link of the post here), there is steep competition all around, and the consumers have several options to choose from. Given the present scenario, LIC is changing its selling techniques, bringing in new policies, new offers etc to attract the attention and to retain the past glory.
With age, the requirements of the consumers are changing, and in order to meet their demands, businesses are modifying their selling techniques for optimum benefit, both of the company and the consumers. The users are well educated and well researched due to the convenient availability and accessibility of the information online, so trying to fool them to reach targets will be detrimental to the company’s reputation and expansion. The macroeconomic picture of the nation is conducive for sustainable business growth and controlled rates of inflation. The inflow of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) triggered by the Government’s initiatives positively affects the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of India. The foreign companies investing in the Indian market lead to a surge of the competition, and to survive amidst this competition, strategic sales techniques are an absolute necessity.
The gig economy is flourishing, breaching the gap of unemployment in the country. Talented minds and experts are working in short term projects on demand, availing flexible working modes. Many organizations are working hard to reach sales targets and sustain themselves in this highly competitive market landscape.
They are hiring experienced sales and marketing professionals who can give them expert advice regarding the same. Do you want to talk to one such expert? One post cannot cover all the points about the changing picture of the sales domain. You will get all your questions answered by an expert himself. How? Talk to our niche skilled experts now to know the diverse competitive market in greater detail! We at Vedak have an exclusive pool of experienced industry professionals and veterans who have in-depth knowledge in Sales and other industrial sectors. Contact us to know more.
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