Why a Cloud-Based Phone Solution Will Improve Your B2B Sales Strategy

Why a Cloud-Based Phone Solution Will Improve Your B2B Sales Strategy

Today's B2B customers have far more information at their fingertips. The internet plays an important role in educating B2B customers. In fact, customers have such easy access to information that it can leave them feeling confused and overwhelmed.

The challenge for B2B sellers is to make the sales process as simple as possible. B2B businesses can achieve a streamlined, effective sales cycle by adopting a customer-centric mindset and leveraging the benefits of a cloud-based phone system.

How to Evaluate your B2B Sales Strategy

Salespeople face the risk of losing leads at any point during the sales cycle. Well-trained salespeople understand how to use sales tools to get to know their B2B customers and apply that knowledge to shorten the sales cycle.

Because the B2B sales cycle is complex, many things can go wrong, and they frequently do. Nobody wants to lose a sale near the finish line because they used the wrong strategy.

Let's look at the eight steps that comprise the B2B sales cycle:

Lead generation involves identifying potential customers who are interested in your product and are qualified.
Discovery is the research stage where you identify a lead's pain points and determine how your product can solve their problems.
Qualifying leads involves determining if your product meets their specific needs.
Making a sales pitch involves telling a compelling story about why your product is the best fit for their needs.
During the objection handling stage, customers will ask questions and raise any barriers or objections.
During the closing process, salespeople can overcome objections and convert leads into customers by asking for a commitment to the sale.
After a sale, good salespeople follow up with customers to inquire about any additional questions, provide assistance, and assess their satisfaction with the product.
During the final stage of checking in, it's a great opportunity to foster loyalty and ask for referrals.

You'll avoid customer regret if you hit all of the right sales cycle touch points and appeal to all parties involved in a B2B transaction.

According to a CEB study (a Gartner subsidiary), approximately 40% of businesses second-guess their B2B transactions. B2B clients frequently describe the sales process as frustrating and painful. That does not bode well for either the salesperson or the company for which they work.

If it sounds like it's time to evaluate your B2B sales strategy, a good place to begin is by asking yourself the following questions:

Do you use automation to generate leads?
Do you have a streamlined process for qualifying leads?
Are you implementing your strategy through a sales call center?
Is your B2B strategy mobile friendly?
Do you know how long customers spend at each stage of the sales cycle?
Are you leveraging B2B sales and marketing alignment?

Finally, nearly all parties to the transaction want to simplify the process and avoid costly mistakes.

As a B2B salesperson, your job is to instill trust in your brand and simplify the sales process as much as possible, from the first stage to the last.

Defining the Key Elements of a B2B Sales Strategy

B2B sales strategies today differ dramatically from those of the past. It's hard to deny that the B2B sales process is extremely complex. When evaluating your B2B sales strategy, you must consider the key components of your strategy and devise a plan to incorporate efficiency into each step.

In a B2B sales cycle, multiple parties make decisions. To be successful in B2B sales, you must consider the inputs your customer receives from others at the company at each stage of the cycle.

Consider the following six types of people who may be involved in a B2B transaction:

The individual who will use your product.
The person who can connect you with other decision-makers at the company.
The final decision-maker.
People who may impede the sale, such as IT or attorneys.
Opponents are strong.
Advisers or consultants.

Forbes reports that 44% of companies have formal buying committees.

Be aware that B2B sales cycles differ from B2C sales cycles. They are generally longer than B2C sales. That means you should expect the process to take longer.

Another difference between B2B and B2C sales is that pricing is not always fixed. B2B companies typically leave some room for negotiation. Regular customers frequently expect a larger discount on pricing, and B2B sellers are usually willing to work with them to find a reasonable price point.

In B2B sales, companies frequently give salespeople guidelines on how far they can go with pricing. On the customer end, it is common for companies to provide decision-makers with broad guidelines such as cost savings or risk avoidance.

Even after a B2B sale has been completed, salespeople must deal with the payment process. Large sales often involve numerous details regarding payment. According to the Harvard Business Review article, one CMO described it as "lowest common denominator purchasing."

Consider a few more important aspects of a B2B sales strategy:

Plan the entire customer journey from beginning to end.
Discover any barriers or obstacles. Their impression may be influenced by previous interactions with other B2B sellers.
Set the appropriate course of action for each customer and personalize it.
Track the customer's progress throughout the sales process.

Having the right people and systems in place is crucial for executing a successful B2B sales strategy. Because your salespeople spend so much of their time on the phone, a cloud-based phone system is an excellent place to begin.

Why Are Cloud-Based Phone Systems Important for Sales Teams?

A B2B sales strategy may involve a single salesperson guiding a customer through the entire sales cycle from start to finish. Other businesses discover that they can shorten the sales cycle more easily by forming call teams in which different individuals focus on specific aspects of the customer journey, such as lead generation, closing sales, or following up.

The primary advantage of assigning call agents to various stages of the sales cycle is that they quickly become proficient in their assigned role. They frequently identify barriers in their leg of the customer journey and make recommendations for how to overcome them.

According to an article in the Harvard Business Review, B2B customers struggle greatly with purchasing decisions. Overall, they are stressed and uncertain. When customers are overwhelmed by too much information, the article cites one of their own studies of over 600 B2B buyers, which found an 18% decrease in the ease of a purchase. On the other hand, sellers who aimed to simplify the B2B sales process were 62% more likely to close a high-quality sale.

Successful salespeople must be more responsive than ever. Customers expect quick responses, often in real time. The customer takes the initiative, and the salesperson must consistently follow up to keep them moving through the sales funnel.

A cloud-based phone system provides numerous features that help call agents at every stage of the sales process.

Automatic call tags notify salespeople about where leads are in the sales cycle, allowing them to take the necessary steps to keep sales on track.
An IVR (interactive voice response) system or call routing feature directs customers to the appropriate call agent for the stage of the sales cycle without requiring a transfer.
With a cloud-based phone system, you can set up toll-free or international numbers instantly for the ease of doing business with customers outside your local area.
The call queue feature ensures that customers contact their sales representative as soon as possible.
Power dialing and click-to-dial features enable salespeople to place calls in quick succession, increasing efficiency.
Insight cards collect data from your CRM or other business software solutions, providing a single source of information right on the caller's screen.

To complete a sale, salespeople must be patient and flexible. A cloud-based phone system offers features that will help them streamline their process and close faster. Customers appreciate a simplified B2B sales strategy.

The Advantages of a Cloud-Based Phone Solution for B2B Sales.

To reach the final stage of the sale, B2B customers require their salespeople to be adaptable. A cloud-based phone system is the solution for a fully customized sales process.

Many B2B sales companies are discovering that using a call center is the most efficient way to provide a personalized customer experience and shorten the sales cycle.

As long as you have a VoIP phone, you can easily set up a cloud-based phone system.

Your call agents only need access to the internet and your login credentials. Cloud-based phone systems have a low cost because they are subscription-based.

Your cloud-based phone system connects your salespeople to all of their tools, including CRM, sales software solutions, helpdesk software, chat software, and more. Salespeople can find all of the information they need on their dashboard. Call teams can use their phone systems to collaborate in real time.

A cloud-based call center is a sales manager's dream. The live feed feature allows managers to see what's going on in the call center, even if they have remote or distributed teams. They can view call activity on their dashboard virtually.

If there is an unexpected increase or decrease in call volume, supervisors can easily increase or decrease the number of call agents without losing time or money.

Salespeople, sales managers, and customers are constantly "on the go," and cloud-based phone systems offer the added benefit of being mobile-friendly. With a cloud-based phone system, you never have to worry about missing an important call.

Reliability is rarely an issue with cloud-based phone systems. Many carriers claim uptimes of around 99.9%. Overall, a cloud-based phone system benefits B2B sales companies, salespeople, and customers.

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