The Sales Lifecycle 101: Essential Things You Need to Know

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sales lifecycle
sales lifecycle

Working in sales is as challenging as it is rewarding. It certainly is not for the faint of heart. Being a successful salesperson requires equal amounts of charisma, business acumen, strategy, and some luck. You also need to be well-versed in the sales lifecycle. You must know how to convert leads into actual sales.

In today’s article, we will guide you through the process of understanding the sales lifecycle, how to close sales, and everything else in between.

 

Table of Contents

 

What are the seven stages of the sales lifecycle?

One of the primary keys to a successful sales effort is having extensive knowledge of the sales lifecycle. Think of it as a step-by-step manual that guides you in every step of the sales process.

There are seven stages of the sales lifecycle. Let’s get to know each one of them:

1. Prospecting

The first stage involves getting to know your target market. Identify potential customers. Do research on what they like and what they don’t like. What are their pain points? What sort of solutions do they need? How much are they willing to spend on the product or services you offer? You can create an ICP or Ideal Customer Profile that will serve as your guide when you do your research.

Once you have gotten to know your target market, it’s time to find leads. Luckily, finding leads is a lot easier to do with social media and the internet. Take advantage of these opportunities.

2. Establishing Contact

There are plenty of ways you can approach your prospects. Some give gifts or some form of token. At the same time, others give away samples or free trials of their products and services so their leads can get a taste of what their company can offer. To determine the best approach, find out what your leads want.

3.  Qualify Your Leads

You have to sift through your list of leads to determine which ones have the potential to become successful sales. While it might be tempting to pursue each of them, you need to invest your time and energy in those with the most potential. As most people nowadays say, working smart trumps working hard.

4. Nurture Your Leads

Many salespeople do not have the patience to nurture their leads when the sales lifecycle takes longer than anticipated. You need to go the extra mile. Answer whatever queries your prospect may have and accommodate their requests. Being responsive and helpful can take you a really long way.

5. Present what you offer

The first four steps of the sales lifecycle mainly focus on your leads. At this point, you can start talking about the products or services your company offers. Talk briefly about your company, but focus most of your time and attention on what you offer. The key to a successful presentation is to address their pain points and introduce how you can help alleviate them. Instead of trying to sell, offer a solution.

6. Overcome Objections

This part of the sales lifecycle is a bit arduous. When you present your product or services to your leads, you might receive a handful of objections or outright reject your offer. It’s important that you stand firm. A good salesperson doesn’t take no for an answer. You need to be persistent. Don’t get discouraged.

7. Close the Sales

If all goes well, the last stage of the sales lifecycle is closing the sales. There are plenty of ways you can speed up this process. But one thing we highly recommend is getting an electronic signature application like Fill. Having a tool like this one can make it easier for you and your clients to sign agreements and close the deals.

Aside from having the ability to sign digitally, Fill also lets you keep track of the progress of your documents. You will receive a real-time email notification once your file is opened or signed. Moreover, Fill uses high-level encryption to keep your data safe and protected. You never have to worry about document tampering or forgery. For as low as $4.99 per month, you can enjoy all these features and many more.

How to create your own sales process?

Creating a sales process in your company is essential to ensure that you land successful deals and that when you pursue leads, you can actually close the sales.

The best way to go forward with your sales process is to put your customers above everything else.

Many make the mistake of deciding their process based on the available tools that they have. This should not be the case. Focus on your customer, on what they want, and what appeals to them. Only then can you find a way to ensure that your tools can be used in the process.

When creating your own sales process, it’s best to take into consideration the sales lifecycle as this can guide you in creating your own steps.

How to improve sales? Our Top Tips

Aside from having a clear understanding of the sales lifecycle as well as creating your own sales process, here are other ways to improve your sales:

  1. Adopt a digital approach in all your processes. In the same vein, do not be afraid to invest in modern tools that will surely help the overall performance of your company.
  2. Never neglect your sales team. Always find ways to motivate them, whether in the form of an incentive program or other ways. You check out this article to know more.
  3. Develop attention-catching marketing strategies. No matter how great your products or services are, you still need to introduce and expose them to the market.
  4. Research what your competitors are doing. Part of understanding the market involves learning about your rivals. Find out what they offer and what they don’t, and use this information to your advantage.
  5. Improve the way you generate leads. No matter how solid your marketing and sales strategy is, if you do not approach the right people, it’s always going to be difficult to close sales.

Final Thoughts

And those are just some essential things you need to know about the sales lifecycle and sales process. Hope all these tips we shared can propel your business forward and upward.

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