More women than ever are running businesses from home, thanks to opportunities created by the internet and mobile technology. As of 2015, there were an estimated 9.4 million women-owned businesses in the United States, reflecting an increase of 74 percent since 1997, according to American Express.
But for many work-at-home moms, running a home business means being responsible for handling sales, a skill that doesn't always come naturally. Here are some steps you can take to build confidence in your sales skills, so your home-based business can earn more cash.
Understand the Process
Sales teachers use different names to count the steps, but Pipeliner's five-step sales model is relatively representative of what others follow. It begins with lead generation, which is a marketing activity designed to find prospective buyers and capture their contact information.
The next step is qualifying these leads to determine whether they meet criteria to define them as a good fit for your product or service, including their budget, willingness to spend time with you, and desire to consider a trial offer. The third step is demonstrating how your product or service offers a value that meets their needs. Next is closing the sale, which usually involves handling objections.
Finally, following up by delivering excellent service and support is key to generating satisfied customers and repeat business. Understanding each step and knowing how to follow through goes a long way toward boosting your sales confidence. Reading training books and taking training courses can also help you master these steps.
Use Successful Scripts
Likewise, successful companies like Amway have spent years developing proven selling approaches. Studying proven scripts and using them to build your own can help you feel more prepared when it comes time to sell to a prospect. Datanyze offers some customizable scripts for handling objections over the phone.
Plan a Sales Schedule
Sales is a numbers game, and top sales executives keep track of critical numbers that determine their success. These include:
- The number of prospects you contact any given week
- Percentage of these result in contact with a decision-maker
- What percent result in an appointment
- What percent translate into sales
- How many meetings it takes to close a sale
- Your closing average per prospect and appointment
Understanding these numbers will tell you how much sales weekly activity you need to undertake to reach your target revenue. You can then plan a daily sales calendar for each week to ensure you get in enough selling activity to reach your goals.