1. Invest in remote selling skills.
Sales is a role rooted in traditional practices. While it usually involves a certain timeline of events and follow-ups, this new environment means that education is key. There is a multitude of resources available for sales individuals on how to embrace this new way of selling and the best practices that come with it.
A huge advantage of remote selling is that it can make sellers more productive as long as they know how to manage and maneuver the challenges. Take some time to read and dig into related resources to learn how to adapt to remote selling and how to build on the skills needed to be successful.
2. Discover ways to transition from in-person sales to remote selling.
The in-person sales process of the past limits the number of interactions you can have in a day, including research, travel to and from meetings, and other activities that steal precious minutes in the day. Remote selling helps to expand your reach, increase deal closings and profits, and simplify the process through a digital platform.
Make note of ways you can update and transition your process to help you move toward a virtual selling space. These can include tactics like:
- Do your buyer research ahead of time to give yourself ample preparation.
- Prepare interactive content and presentations to keep buyers engaged.
- Amplify your selling personality to ensure your genuine self comes through.
- Always have your video on to establish a connection.
- Actively listen and take notes to avoid distractions that inevitably pop up during your meeting.
- Invest in the right digital technology to increase your comfort levels.
Virtual selling doesn’t have to make sellers (or buyers) uncomfortable. Jot down your own list of items that you want to adapt and finesse as you grow into this new selling landscape.
3. Build rapport with your buyers through virtual selling.
Some sellers may think that not being “face-to-face” in the traditional, more physical sense can be a downfall to selling. However, that’s not the case. According to Zoom, a survey of over 700 users of the video collaboration platform shows that video can improve communication.
A few key points to keep in mind:
- Clear and engaging communication is key. This is true with any relationship-building, but increasingly important when you have a plethora of distractions all around you—and your buyer—that you can avoid in-person (i.e. children or other family member disruptions, notifications on your computer and phone, etc.).
- Active listening throughout your conversation or meeting allows you to gather bits of information to help make thoughtful and strategic recommendations. It also helps fuel personal conversations at the beginning and/or end of your calls when you want to chat about other things outside of the selling process.
- Follow up via different lines of communication to stay top-of-mind. If you read an article or see a post on LinkedIn that reminds you of one of your buyers, send it to them and let them know you’re thinking of them. Drop them a note to say hello, happy birthday, or congratulations. These small sentiments help to build rapport and trust versus being just another salesperson.
4. Find new ways to reach buyers virtually.
Virtual selling has offered many salespeople the gift of time to invest in deepening their relationships with prospects and customers. Without in-person interactions, virtual sellers can continue to strengthen relationships with those that they’re connected with already—but what about reaching new prospects?
Networking has always been a tried-and-true practice for expanding networks. Those natural conversations at happy hours, industry conferences or trade shows haven’t happened the way they used to. While these types of events are making a comeback, they still aren’t in full force. Instead, consider:
- Using social networks as a way to stay in touch. Just as you would reconnect with a prospect at an event, for example, you can still catch up via LinkedIn or other professional ways of communication.
Focusing on being found. Instead of putting 100% of your effort into reaching out and networking virtually, take some of that time to invest in yourself. Make your professional presence known by sharing articles, news or industry updates, or draft a thought-provoking piece yourself. Not only will you stay top-of-mind for those that know you, but you’re also bound to start a conversation or make your way into a new prospect’s feed.
5. Establish remote selling KPIs.
Gone are the days of a typical 40-hour workweek. Now that work-from-anywhere is permeating more workplaces, organizations are adopting new work processes and standards. While this may be true, salespeople have always operated a little differently—working around their prospects’ and customers’ schedules to accommodate meetings and conversations.
Almost every action a sales team member makes can be tracked and optimized. This isn’t news, but as more and more interactions become remote, digital selling KPIs should be adjusted to account for the changes. HubSpot suggests eight metrics that remote salespeople should be measuring per rep, including KPIs like:
- Call volume.
- Closed-won deals.
- Revenue generated.
- Outreach activities.
- Sales tools used.
- Leads generated from various channels.
- Percentage of time spent on sales activities.