Transitioning Your B2B Sales Culture from Offline to Online
Ecommerce is a fairly new industry and has disrupted many of the traditional sales processes people have come to get used to over the past few decades. B2B sales companies have been impacted greatly by the onset of eCommerce businesses. The new frontier of eCommerce has created a need for businesses to reinvent their sales models and processes to cater to the changing market. At Trellis, we have recognized that eCommerce is the way of the future and the time is now to hop on board and update your business operations accordingly. We continue today with the Trellis video series as CEO Isaiah Bollinger touches upon the B2B sales process and how to improve it. Manual offline processes can be updated to automatic online sales opening up unparalleled growth opportunities for your brand.
Redesign Commission Structure
One of the benefits of being a sales representative for a brand is that you make a commission on each of your sales. The commission is the driving factor for many reps to keep selling. With the onset of eCommerce, many sales representatives have become fearful of losing their jobs as more and more eCommerce websites are being introduced to take online orders where sales reps previously roamed free. However, introducing an eCommerce website to receive more orders does not mean your sales reps should be forced out of a job. In fact, the opposite is true.
Your website and sales reps should work hand in hand to create a full-service business experience. Sales reps should still receive a commission on online orders by allocating certain clients to certain employees so that each online order/reorder counts for commission. Introducing a fair and newly designed commission structure will ensure your trusted sales reps stick around and remain happy as your business becomes more online-based. Scratch the backs of your sales reps by providing a fair commission structure and in return, they will scratch yours by bringing in sales.
Change the Sales Rep Culture
In many sales-oriented businesses, the sales team should be one of the most critical and talented groups of the organization. They should have great people skills and should feel comfortable managing relationships. Your top salespeople should not be order takers. Transitioning your sales team away from taking orders over the phone or in-person will save your business lots of time and money as it looks to grow. Implementing a website to take orders instead is a much more efficient means to achieve the same goal of order taking. Streamlining the process will bring in more revenue for the business while simultaneously allowing the sales reps to spend their time on bringing in new business. The sales talent should not be wasting their time on simple order taking or reorders. Instead, they should be looking to bring in new customers and clientele.
As your business evolves and scales over time, it will become necessary to separate your new business from existing bsuiness because each customer type should be treated differently as they have varying requirements to remain happy. Creating segments between new and old customers is easier than you may think. The sales team should be focused on bringing in new customers. They onboard new clients, help them get up and running and get them up to speed with your organization. After onboarding, the existing clients should move to the other type of sales reps more similar to an account manager. Having account managers in charge of the existing clientele can help maintain those existing customer relationships, take reorders, and upsell them on more products over time. The needs of an existing customer are much different than those of a new prospect. Creating two types of sales teams that cater to each market will yield optimal results.
Lose the eCommerce Fear
eCommerce is not coming. It is here. The world of business is quickly evolving and if you are afraid of eCommerce your business will rapidly go bankrupt. Sales reps should not fear to lose their jobs to a website. Instead, transition your sales team into new roles that build around eCommerce. There is no reason to panic and assume the worst. Do your due diligence and prepare for change. Either your business morphs to capacitate eCommerce sales or your business will not be around much longer. Protect your business and employees by investing in eCommerce today. Take advantage of the opportunity online sales presents by retooling your sales team and integrating an eCommerce site to provide full-service solutions for clients.
Feel free to contact the experts at Trellis with any additional questions or concerns.