No business can survive without the sales process: whether we are talking about offering consumer products or services. It would not be an exaggeration to say that sales and salespeople themselves are the… oxygen of a company. If you look at its sales department, you will immediately discover how a successful business differs from an unsuccessful one.
The market today, with very high levels of oversupply, is highly complex and competitive making the role of the salesperson even more challenging and critical to completing sales and ensuring the overall success of a business.
To understand even better the important power of the salesperson’s role, we will first look at the salesperson in relation to the customer and then also in relation to the company of which he or she is a member.
#1 Salesperson & Customer:
The buying experience itself that the customer experiences in the first (and every) contact he has with the salesperson is crucial so that a long-term relationship of trust with the customer and the company the salesperson represents can be built, established and continued.
- The successful completion of a sale is judged on the details and first impressions. It starts with the appearance of the salesperson: dress, hair, personal hygiene and decency are the catalyst for the customer to want to approach the salesperson.
- Also, the personality of the salesperson has the greatest influence on the customer. Speaking of personality refers, of course, to the characteristics – smile, attitude, body kinesthetics, style, vocabulary, voice volume – but also to his or her skills, such as perseverance, patience, patience, composure, imagination, confidence, creativity, initiative, knowledge, self-discipline and optimism. The latter comes out to the customer and helps the salesperson (in combination with self-discipline) not only in not being distracted by personal issues/problems during work but also in creating a friendly and safe environment for the customer.
- Of course, no salesperson can sell a product to a customer unless they have studied about it or have gained knowledge of the culture and policies of the company they work for as well as knowledge of competing companies that exist. Here, the role that knowledge plays in the seller-customer relationship is underlined: detailed information about the product, about the production process and about the part that the customer may be involved in (e.g. to choose the model bag, as in the case of our company, Xenos Packaging) and information about the company itself determine the relationship of trust that will develop between the customer-seller-company. The salesman, being well aware of the product he is promoting and the company of which he is a member, is in the advantageous position of being able to answer all the customer’s questions.
- The customer tends to buy ’emotionally’, so he wants to work with someone who understands him, someone to whom he can tell his ‘story’ in order to help him. The sale will depend on whether the salesperson simply explains the features of the product to him or whether he explains to him exactly how buying the latter will benefit him. A successful salesman empathises with the customer, tries to see things from his point of view and treats him as a human being with specific needs without any pretentious lobbying techniques.
- The professional salesperson is, first and foremost, honest, helpful and direct (both before and after the sale), takes care not to be slimy in his speech and clearly sets the professional boundaries of the relationship between himself and the customer.
- He never belittles the client, respects him even if he is wrong, lets him express himself about his wishes and does not interrupt him. In fact, the sale will be facilitated if the salesman identifies or even creates a strong need in the customer by asking questions to the latter so that he can ascertain his need on his own and express it to the salesman.
- It is important that the salesman praises his company and, of course, his colleagues, does not badmouth competitors and is succinct and concise in his words. Besides, he must always remember that at the time of the sale he reflects the company and is the company itself, therefore he ceases to function as an individual.
#2 Seller & Company:
Company means people, communication, interaction. The salespeople of a company are very important as they play a crucial role in its profits and future and in establishing interpersonal relationships within its core. A satisfied and happy salesperson should be set as a goal for all businesses because, literally, they are there, in the role of a colleague, every day and, perhaps, forever.
- Interdependence: both the company and the salesperson have success as their main goal from which they both benefit, since success for the company equals success for the salesperson-employee. He is the link between customer and company, so he must make this relationship as lively and transparent as possible.
- Information exchange: the salesperson is responsible for correct and accurate data transfer, without falsifying information and data.
- Customer support: profiling the customer and fully supporting him/her through the CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system with a sincere interest in recording all the information that the customer transfers in order to build strong customer relationships.
- Trust: fulfilling promises, not taking advantage of situations, acting for the benefit of the business, himself and his colleagues and seeking honesty and transparency of relationships and expecting the same from them.
- Training: the company must provide the necessary means to support the salesperson in the difficult task he or she has to perform. This is achieved not only by understanding and appropriate guidance but also by providing services/infrastructure, such as, for example, continuous training to improve skills necessary for him/her to respond to selling as a process on the one hand and to manage himself/herself under demanding conditions on the other hand, with the aim of being a correct and appropriate representative of the company.
Selling is one of the oldest professions in the world and all of us make a living selling something: goods, services or ideas. We cannot, therefore, overlook how important the role and how great the value of the salesperson is – both in relation to the customer and in relation to the company of which he or she is a member.
Without salespeople there are, after all, no customers and, by extension, no businesses. Today’s market, however, demands salespeople with an honest and professional attitude and a thorough training in the art of selling, since they are key players in the game of economics.