SOURCE: SAVO Group

SAVO Group

October 30, 2012 10:01 ET

SAVO Survey Finds Changes in Buyer Dynamics Requires Companies to Rethink Static Sales Process

CHICAGO, IL--(Marketwire - Oct 30, 2012) - According to a recent poll by the SAVO Group, 78 percent of participants reported that change in buyer dynamics has negatively impacted consistent sales execution and, as a result, revenue growth. Despite the acknowledged change, only seven percent of those polled said their sales organization consistently adheres to a sales process, causing a failure to stay on message or deliver the right information at the right stage in the sales cycle. These numbers are from a live poll of 115 participants during one of SAVO's Mission: Possible educational webinars, "Mission Possible Lessons Learned: The Welch Allyn Story." 

A recent study by Corporate Executive Board, surveying more than 1400 business-to-business customers from a variety of industries, found that 57 percent of the time purchase decisions are being made before engaging the vendor.1 As buyers are making decisions prior to meeting with a vendor, implementing a prescriptive, yet adaptive sales process that aligns selling activities with buyers' objectives can help drive a stronger sales cycle.

"Today's customer is informed, and knows how to solve their problem or knows the solutions that will help them," said Kurt Andersen, executive vice president of sales enablement at SAVO Group. "Successful sales reps have to support the customer's decision-making journey, understand that process and then adaptively align sales process to ensure they're delivering the right message, at the right time, ultimately accelerating the sales cycle." 

The poll also found that one quarter of sellers are more than 50 percent below quota, while only 10 percent were at 90 percent of quota, or more. With the changing buyer dynamic, it's clear that the only way to succeed is to change from a static sales process based on assumptions about the buyer, to a dynamic process. Organizations are encouraged to review their sales process to gauge its effect and make changes based on that analysis to elevate seller performance.

In addition to a dynamic sales process, businesses need to further support their sellers with tools, training and information to ensure consistent, up-to-date and accurate sales messaging -- but most importantly, they need to provide guidance on when and how to use these tools. During the webinar, participants identified the biggest challenges to improving seller performance. The results are below:

  • 28% expressed challenges with consistent messaging 
  • 24% said sales process was a challenge
  • 20% said general sales skills/competencies needed improvement
  • 15% noted account planning was a challenge
  • 13% thought a lack of training hurt sellers

Driving and reinforcing sales process with the right tools and technology helps sellers deliver the right message at the right time, and brings a strong return on investment. "Everyone recognizes that the buyer's process is changing -- we finally have the technology to help our sales people adapt, driving better sales performance," said Andersen. 

About SAVO
Founded in 1999, SAVO is a leading provider of sales enablement solutions. SAVO's on-demand sales enablement platform maximizes the sales team's ability to communicate value and differentiation in clear, consistent and compelling ways. Combining proven sales and marketing best practices with award-winning technology, SAVO addresses all aspects of the sales enablement challenge -- spanning people, process, insight and technology. For more information, visit www.savogroup.com or follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter.

1. The Corporate Executive Board Website, www.executiveboard.com/exbd/sales-service/the-end-of-solution-sales/index.page.

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