You want you sales pipeline to flow like water through a—well, a pipe. As we near the end of 2018, perhaps you’re feeling like your pipeline is full of molasses instead. It might not be that your water has turned into molasses; there could be a few roadblocks holding up the flow, however. Keep reading to see how you can remove these roadblocks and get back to smooth selling!
Three Obstacles in Your Sales Pipeline and How to Address Them
1. Cluttered Sales Pipeline
Problem: Your pipeline may have accumulated a lot of deals that appear stalled, which is causing your sales forecast to be inaccurate. Multiple deals have been sitting in the same stage for longer than usual, and you’re beginning to wonder if they’ll ever move.
Solution: Take a look at each of your stalled deals and assess why they’re stuck. Is there an explanation for why a deal has been in a stage for much longer than normal, or has the contact just stopped answering you? Evaluate whether or not these stalled deals are in the right stage, what’s causing the holdup, and if a deal is still an open opportunity. If the contact has ghosted you, don’t shy away from removing the deal. It’ll improve the accuracy of your sales forecast, and keep the team focused on opportunities they can win.
2. Disconnected Sales Processes
Problem: You’ve recently updated your sales process to better reflect you and your contacts’ needs, but these changes weren’t completely put into the sales platform your team uses. By not reflecting these changes, there’s a chance some of the team is still using the older process, while others are trying to fit the new process into the old system. In either case, it’ll be impossible to achieve all the goals from updating your process.
Solution: Take a look at your sales pipeline management platform and double check everything has been updated to match the new process. If there was a halt in updating the platform, hold a refresh meeting with your sales team to briefly review the new process with the updated system. You might also find that your new process isn’t fully supported by your current pipeline management platform. If this is the case, you should consider supporting applications that will integrate with your CRM platform.
3. Incorrect Number of Steps in Sales Process
Problem: While there are plenty of general guidelines for how many steps should be in your sales process, each product and industry has their own unique needs. Some may need a lot of stages, while others only a few. Too many, and leads may get frustrated with the waiting game. Too few, and your sales team might be rushing leads to a decision. And if they’re not ready to buy, they’ll decide to leave.
Solution: Take a look at your process and product, as well as feedback from your team. There could be gaps where leads don’t get information they need to evaluate what their next step should be, or there’s information overload when a lead is ready to buy. Add or delete deal stages to better reflect your customers’ buying process (and, as mentioned previously, update your system with the changes!).
Interested in how ManoByte can help recharge your sales pipeline? Click below to schedule a free growth assessment!