Sales 2012: tried-and-true tips
How many of these have you heard?
“Our cost of sales is too high!” 
“We don’t convert enough leads into sales.” 
“Our average deal size is too small.” 
Sound familiar? It’s no secret businesses are continually looking for new ways to cut costs and streamline their business processes. Last week Peter Ostrow of Aberdeen Group and Lise Neely of Revitas hosted a discussion on how sales organizations within best-in-class companies are meeting and surpassing the most common challenges facing them today. If you missed it, you can listen to a replay of the webinar, but here are some important takeaways.

Peter shared his insight into what sales professionals see as their biggest pressures and obstacles and what they’re doing to overcome them. According to research conducted by Aberdeen, organizations are facing many similar challenges. Topping the list are complications in contract negotiations, fizzling sales leads, lost efficiency in project proposals, and escalating sales costs.

The following strategies capture some of the processes best-in-class companies are implementing to overcome these pressures in order to streamline business processes and ultimately cut costs.

Automate reminders of critical customer expiration or renewal dates. A lot of opportunities slip through the cracks because sales teams are not in tune to key dates and milestones. By implementing a system with automated reminders for key events, companies report a 29 percent increase in the number of proposals, quotes, or RFP responses. Not only that, but average deal size is 6 percent larger when equipped with automated reminders!

Preapprove quotes, NDAs, proposals, and contracts for legal compliance. Companies that establish preapproval processes perform considerably better across the board when it comes to annual revenue, customer renewal rates, proposal volume, lead conversion rates, and attainment of quotas. Preapproval cuts out unnecessary steps to improve the efficiency of business operations.

Shorten sales cycles with executive-level sponsorship of initiatives. Companies using sales contract management systems are seeing increases in lead conversion rate, average deal size, and quota attainment year-over-year. On the flip side, companies not using contract management are seeing losses in these areas.

So, what does all this mean? Some simple actions can not only make the signing of contracts easier, but make the entire sales process easier for all. There are still a lot of companies that aren’t doing anything to overcome challenges to their sales organizations. Is yours one of them? Lise discusses how this lack of action can hurt a business through lost revenues, margin erosion, missed opportunities, and increased legal risk. An Enterprise Revenue Dynamics solution will help companies close more deals, streamline sales processes, and improve their bottom line. But why now? Well, is there a better time to start making more money?

Want to know more? Listen to the full webcast: Sales 2012: How Best-in-Class Companies are Closing Deals Faster, More Profitably, and with Less Risk.