Using third-party software is the easiest, fastest and most affordable way for any company to quickly capitalize on the latest advances in any technology; such as data analysis, artificial intelligence or registered electronic delivery services.
Although it may seem obvious that software products offer significant competitive advantages to companies, and also facilitate their transition to digital; all companies that sell software know that the SaaS sales process is a long-distance race. And it is not without its obstacles.
Therefore, in this post we want to offer you seven recommendations to ensure the success of your SaaS product sales strategy.
This post is also available in Spanish.
Why is it harder to sell software than any other product or service?
The sales processes for SaaS solutions are different from physical or consumer products sales processes. This is because selling software entails a number of additional difficulties.
On the one hand, the main problem for SaaS companies, such as Signaturit, is that our customers have pre-existing computer systems, often very ingrained in their corporate culture.
For this reason, and because of the cost involved in implementing these systems - even if it is a sunk cost - it is practically impossible to replace them completely at first.
On the other hand, it is also necessary to take into account the reluctance of many employees to change the tools they use, since this involves redesigning processes and having to learn how to use that new tool. And not everyone is equally skilled with learning new technologies.
To overcome these and many other obstacles when it comes to selling software, we want to share with you the following recommendations. They work for Signaturit ;)
7 recommendations to sell software that work
1. Don't start by picking up the phone . Research your potential customer first
In the B2B sales field, there has traditionally been a certain inclination to immediately contact any prospect, to quickly identify whether he/she can become a lead or not.
However, today B2B sales processes are as we said, a long-distance race. Therefore, it is advisable to research before establishing a first contact with a potential customer. You should avoid at all costs to ask obvious questions, or that do not match with the type of customer.
2. The conversation needs to be two-directional
Having previously researched on your lead, many salespeople believe they already know everything about their prospect or lead. And that's why they unintentionally show their impatience when the potential clients asks a question or wants to point out something. That’s a big mistake.
Active listening is key to a successful sale, because it creates a climate of trust and allows you to obtain key information about the prospects' previous experiences and expectations.
3. Stop selling, start educating
The most modern and disruptive sales strategies are pivoting from convincing to educating. If your sales pitch conveys the feeling that you want to teach your prospect to be better at what he does, instead of sounding like an attempt to sell him something no matter what, you will have made a lot of progress
Again, active listening can help you give that pedagogical approach to the conversation, and you should answer your prospect’s questions , even when they are not directly related to the service you are selling.
“Sales needs to shift from “trust me, this is in your best interest”
4. Get over the obsession with closing all sales
Many sales people face every conversation with a prospect with the attitude of wanting to close the sale as soon as possible, and at any price. When this attitude leads them to impose on their counterpart what their needs are, there is a risk of losing an opportunity, in addition to eroding one's reputation, (or the product´s or company´s reputation).
That’s why it’s important to discover, in the course of the conversation, what are your prospect's objectives and motivations, instead of imposing what you believe.
5. Find and show your product’s competitive advantages
Practically in any sector the different solutions available in the market share about 70% of the same characteristics. However, many companies' sales speeches continue to focus on those common characteristics, rather than highlighting what sets them apart from the competition.
It is very important to identify and exploit those differences during the sale. At the end of the day, those different features are our competitive advantage and we must be able to make them valuable and help the customer to perceive them as important.
6. Tell stories with knowledge and results
Which is called storytelling: using real stories as an effective way to convey value in a sales process.
It is important that these stories make the situation before and after the adoption of a particular service clear. Our story should reflect why our service improved the life of that customer. In this way, we will help the prospect to feel identified with that same problem, and thus he will easily see the value that our service can provide.
7. Understand what it is success or failure in sales
The success of a sales strategy should be based on whether customers have renewed their subscriptions, whether they have contracted upgrades, and so on. That vision of a sales campaign is key to fairly weighing its effectiveness, and to improving successive campaigns.
In addition to these seven tips, it is important to constantly improve sales processes based on a trial and error methodology; also collecting the largest possible volume of metrics based on market research and surveys, and above all, making the customer into the main character of your sales pitch.
This post is also available in Spanish.