Customer Buying Cycle

July 5th, 2010 by

By Pat Hinds

When I work with inside sales people that have had experience in selling products on the phone I am surprised by the lack of training they have received. The majority of the sales people think if they keep the prospect on the phone for a long period of time and recite as many feature benefits as possible, they will make them want to buy the product.

One of the benefits of sales 2.0 is the increased role that inside sales plays within sales organizations, but if inside sales are to be successful they will have to adapt a solution selling approach. The first step to a solution selling approach is to realize that the sale is about the customer and the customer is going through a “buying process”.

There are many definitions of a buying process, listed below is an example of a buying process and a definition of the terms:

Plan – is typically any procedure used to achieve an objective. It is a set of intended actions, through which one expects to achieve a goal.

Search – the activity of looking thoroughly in order to find something or someone.

Evaluate – is systematic determination of merit, worth, and significance of something or someone using criteria against a set of standards.

Select – choose: pick out, select, or choose from a number of alternatives.

Once you have established that the sales process starts with the customer and acknowledge the customer buying process you can modify your approach to the customer. This approach is based on identifying customers needs and building of the plan to provide solutions. This type of selling has traditionally been used by outside sales teams; the objective is introduce this type of selling to your inside sales team.

Topics: Sales Consulting