You have probably heard about the sales cycle or sales process but you don't really know what it is, what the steps are or how you could speed up your own sales cycle. If you are one of them, but you would like to improve yours and speed it up, read on!
what is the sales cycle?
The sales cycle can be summarised as the process a company goes through from the moment it captures the attention of a user (lead) until it closes the sale. The sales cycle also includes the after-sales phase in which we must follow up with the user to help them feel satisfied with us and thus achieve loyalty.
The term is defined as a cycle because it never ends, as the moment we reach the end, the post-sales phase, we start a new sale again. The process is cyclical and therefore we must be permanently involved in it with our company.
This process, when we represent it graphically, has the shape of a funnel, since not all potential customers become real buyers as we go along. Once we make our sales funnel, we will obtain many advantages for our brand, such as:
- We will obtain a highly qualified lead: this means that once we have gone through the whole process of our sales funnel, the final customer we will obtain will be one who is very convinced of our brand and the services and products we can offer, so it will be very easy for us to get a purchase from them.
- The effectiveness of our sales will increase: although you have to have an initial marketing cost that you did not count on when creating the funnel, later it will be easier to get sales, so the costs will be reduced since there will be many more purchases.
- The process of obtaining customers is streamlined: this means that for each sale you will not have to follow up the customer manually, but by creating the funnel marketing (sales funnel) this whole process will be automated and there will be no process of attrition in the sales of our brand.
- What you also get with this type of funnel is that although at the beginning there may be an economic effort to carry it out, from a more global point of viewyou get to lower costs at the level of customer acquisition. What you end up getting is a constant source of new customers and in a much simpler way.
In order to establish our sales cycle, it is important to first have a certain base of other knowledge, namely TOFU, MOFU and BOFU.
Each of these concepts will correspond to one of the phases of the sales cycle. They are English terms that refer to what would be at the top of the funnel (TOFU), in the middle (MOFU) and at the end (BOFU). In English they would refer to the stages of attraction, decision and purchase.
- TOFU: will be the highest part of our sales cycle. It refers to the first stage of the sale, the attraction stage. When users start to consider that they need to find a solution to their problem or need and start looking for brands, this is where the work of the first stage comes into play as the user does not yet know anything about our products or services.
- MOFU: in this second stage, the decision stage, the user has already decided what type of product or service they need to solve the problem for which they have been looking for help in the first stage of our sales funnel. However, they still need to evaluate various options before making a decision: take into account the prices offered for the same services by our competitors, for example. This stage is key to determining whether our user will finally become a lead, i.e. it is the first business opportunity we will have.
- BOFU: this period corresponds to the end of the cycle, where the user has already become a lead and will make a purchase of our products or services. It is at this moment when commercial strategies come into action and we will have to offer the best of our brand to achieve a highly satisfactory sale.
After these three phases, the post-sales phase arrives, in which we must ensure the satisfaction of our customers so that they become loyal to our brand. We can achieve this by doing a post-purchase follow-up and sending satisfaction surveys: in this way we will be able to know in which aspects the customer is happy with us and in which ones we can help them to feel better.
how do I accelerate my sales cycle?
Because of the use of this sales cycle, especially in strategies such as digital marketing, software processes have been created that streamline the process to make it easier for companies to make sales.
To speed up the sales cycle, marketing automation softwarehas started to be implemented. What this type of software does is to implement automatic marketing processes on the large volume of leads captured, in order to identify which of them are qualified and which are not. That is, thanks to this software we can start to speed up the cycle from the beginning and discard those users with whom we have tried to contact but who, on the contrary, have not interacted with our brand. In this way we will know the truly interested leads, that is, our buyer personas, and we can focus our commercial action on them. This innovation in marketing/commercial solved the problem mentioned above about an excess volume of very high volume of leads.
An example of software that can help us with this process is the one developed by Hubspot .
Once the lead has been captured, the marketing automation software sets in motion a series of strategic commercial actions that end up determining whether that commercial opportunity is worth following up, or whether we should let it go.
The direct effect of this new methodology is to reduce the number of leads that the marketing department has to deal with, so they will get fewer leads, but they will be qualified users and potential buyers of our products or services. The second consequence, and the most remarkable, is that due to thehigher quality of business opportunities, the sales cycle of companies begins to reduce in time (sales are closed earlier), and thereforethe benefits of our brand are significantly increased .
Other software that also carry out these processes and can be of help to speed up our sales process are:
We hope that all these tips have helped your company to have an optimal sales cycle and to obtain more qualified leads. Remember that if you have any questions, Occam Digital Agency is always ready to help you. Write to us!