Last week I described how your website can breathe new life into your offline telephone sales and I promised you 8 techniques to help you maximise the enquiries you get.
But just by way of a quick recap: In Part 1 I mentioned a company who, even though I was trying to press money into their hands, wanted me to call back when they had the item in stock and then only use their website to pay for the goods. Naturally any customer focused business would simply take down the number of the prospect and give them a call when the items become available. Equally, if a customer wants to pay over the phone it makes sense to let them do so. If you don’t have ‘virtual terminal’ facilities then the easiest thing to do is to process the order using your website as your customer would have but doing it for them over the phone. This also gives you a fantastic opportunity to offer an upsell or cross-sell to them!
These are things which I’m sure that you would instinctively do. However, would everyone in your business do them? Interestingly, in my story I suspect that I was talking to a sales representative and not the Managing Director (I certainly hope not anyway!).
The issue then becomes one of training. Ensuring that your staff are fully trained not just in the art of selling your products and services but also how that relates to your website is critical. It’s especially vital if your sales are not made directly on your website as they would be on an ecommerce website. So, here are a few things to consider when it comes to helping your staff maximise the potential of telephone contacts:
- Take down every prospect’s details, including their telephone number, email address and anything else that is relevant to helping you sell to them in the future.
- Don’t use the website as a barrier. If you can help them make a purchase there and then, do so. Ideally, don’t refer them back to the website and leave the conversation there. If they need to find something on your website make sure they’re doing it whilst you are on the telephone to them. Then, once they’ve found the right information, you can close the sale.
- Offer to show them around the website directing them to any key parts of interest.
- Ask them if they wouldn’t mind joining your email marketing list and get them to do that whilst they’re on the telephone.
- Upsells, cross sells and recommendations all present great opportunities to increase the overall value of the sale so if a customer is about a buy a product or service then why not mention other products or services that might be of benefit to them.
- Another very effective means of increasing your customers’ ‘feelgood factor’ about your business is to point them towards any special offers or discounts you currently have available. Not only can this close the deal but your customer will feel as though you have given them special treatment.
- If you have any free stuff you can give away (white papers, downloads, free trials, CD-ROMs or DVDs, etc.) then use a telephone conversation to offer them to your prospect. Again, this technique creates a stronger bond between your customer and your business. It also gives the strong impression that you are there to help them and not just to make a sale. This works especially well with lead-generating websites.
- Finally, if you are serving your prospect/customer well then why not ask them if they could refer you to their friends, colleagues, family and just about anybody they know. This is one of the simplest and yet most effective ways of generating new business. You should also ask them if they can give you the names of anyone who would benefit from your company.
For many businesses a website is simply a means to start a telephone conversation and so linking your website in with the last part of the sales process can make all the difference to the close ratio of your sales staff as well as the size of your bank account!