Speed is one of the biggest pressures companies face today – Sandra Bullock, don’t let the bus go below 60 mph, type pressure.
Business is nearly immediate, and the ability to adjust to market changes, interact with customers, and close deals more quickly is forcing businesses and industries alike to rethink the way they operate and put more emphasis on sales velocity.
Just look at the breakneck growth of Uber. In a blink, it established an effective coup over Taxi Cabs, a service that has been around for centuries. Users flock to the app and VC’s flock to its potential. Tech Crunch reports, Uber “moved from $17 billion to $40 billion between the two funding rounds within six months.” The reason why is surprisingly simple. People can get a ride to anywhere at any time without the hassle of cash, tips, and hailing a cab. The time saved per trip is miniscule, but the appreciation for convenience is immeasurable.
Consumers want what they want, and they want it right away. It’s a concept that has echoed throughout America for many decades, from fast food to microwaves to buying on credit. But it’s a concept that is just now rearing its head in the business world. Previously, deals were dictated by sales reps, and customers were courted along, terms heavily negotiated, and the sales cycle fairly drawn out. Now, customers are in the driver’s seat; they know who they want to work with long before a rep is contacted, and if a company can’t match their needs or time table, they will look elsewhere.
But improving your sales velocity isn’t an equation of disruptive innovation, nor is it a matter of unlimited resources. What companies often fail to realize, is that external speed begins with internal efficiency.
Tricks to Improving Sales Velocity
Here is a look at three easy ways you can improve sales velocity and internal efficiency. Good news, none of these tricks require Keanu Reeves saving the day!
1. Understand your common bottlenecks and how you can remove them.
Think like a 3 year old. Constantly ask why, constantly challenge the status quo of your processes. Where do deals commonly stall, or slow down? How can we improve our efficiency? Is this really the best way to do this?
2. Trust in automation.
You can buy virtually anything from your phone, cars are now driving themselves, you can turn TVs on with your voice, yet businesses are still laden with manual processes. Drop the administrative tasks like imputing data and writing deal proposals, so you can spend more time doing what matters.
3. Lead with speed – beat competition to the punch by providing quotes first.
Just like in a sprint, deals are often won and lost out of the blocks. Sometimes your best ability is availability, and being able to provide a full proposal in hours as opposed to days or weeks will not only get your foot in the door, but will give the impression that you are responsive and efficient in all aspects of your business.