PowerTips | The Remodeler's Guide to Business

Do You Have a Good Sales System?

Do You Have a Good Sales System?

Most remodelers I talk to don’t have a sales system. They have parts of one. You might be reading this thinking, “I have a sales process. I have a system.” I encourage you to read this post and look at your own system to see where there might be some holes. The worst thing our business can have is a leaky sales funnel.

So where do we start? A good sales system starts with marketing.

Here are the components that make up a solid sales system:

1. Marketing
You may be thinking, “why is marketing part of my sales system?” Here’s why. What’s the goal of your sales system? It’s to bring in more revenue. Who and what handles new revenue? Often, we think it’s sales. But, it’s marketing and sales. The two go hand in hand. They both need each other, and they both are responsible for new revenue. I like to think of these departments as the Revenue Department. Everyone in these departments is accountable to new revenue (even if marketing and sales are the same person in your company).

2. Definition of a Sales Qualified Lead
In order for marketing to be successful in helping sales close enough deals, you need to have a clear definition of a Sales Qualified Lead (SQL). This gives marketing a clear goal. It also ensures that goal aligns with bringing in new revenue. At the end of the day, there a ton of “vanity metrics” out there:

  • Facebook Likes
  • Re-Tweets
  • Page Views
  • Clicks
  • Email Open Rates

Don’t get me wrong, lots of vanity metrics can help show you if you’re on the right track or tending one way or another. BUT, at the end of the day, as a sales person, do I care about how many people viewed my website? No, but I do care how many leads are generated that I can follow up with.

I know what you’re thinking. “What’s a good definition of a Sales Qualified Lead?” There isn’t one right answer here, but I’ll provide you with an example.

Example Sales Qualified Lead for Remodelers: a lead where we have obtained First Name, Last Name, Email, and Phone Number. The lead is in our serviceable area geographically, and the lead at least meets a minimum budget of $30,000.

Your definition could, and should, vary. And the definition should be agreed upon by both the head of marketing and the head of sales. To make this concrete, write down your definition and have the different parties sign off on it. Along with agreeing to a definition, sales needs to agree to some terms as well, which I’ll address below in point number 5.

3. A Clearly Defined Sales Process
Now that we’ve got our SQL definition, let’s talk about your sales process. Most remodelers have this established (or at least have a general idea of the process). Here’s what we find works well, but you may have some slight variations.

  • Phone Pre-Qualification
  • On Site Consultation
  • Design Agreement Sent
  • Design Phase
  • Construction Agreement Sent
  • Closed Won
  • Closed Lost

It’s imperative to have this outlined so that you can put your potential deals into each bucket and use this to forecast. Here’s an example deal pipeline.

If you want to get a visual pipeline like this, you need to get a CRM that’s easy to use and low cost. CRM isn’t only for big companies anymore. Even if you’re a one-man band, you should use a CRM to track your deals.

As a side note, my company Builder Funnel is giving back to the remodeling industry this month. If you send me an email at spowell@builderfunnel.com before July 31st, 2017, we’ll get you set up with a completely free cloud based CRM and set up deal stages to give you a pipeline like the one above.

4. Critical Follow Up Steps (these occur between each phase in your sales process)
Now this is the piece most remodelers are missing. You’ve got your process (phone pre-qualification, appointment, etc.). But you don’t have follow up steps outlined or a plan for getting people “unstuck”.

For example, let’s say you talk to someone on the phone, and they are qualified, but you aren’t able to set the on site consultation. They need to check with their spouse’s calendar first. What’s your follow up plan if they don’t reach back out in a day or so? Are you going to call every few days? Email? Who’s responsible for that follow up?

Or, let’s say you go through the on site consultation, and they want you to work up a design agreement. However, once you’re ready to set up a meeting to review the agreement, they disappear. They go completely MIA. What’s your follow up procedure? How often will you call/email and who will do that? When do you declare the deal “dead” and move it to Closed Lost?

I don’t even want to know how much revenue goes away due to poor follow up between deal stages. Yikes!

5. Sales and Marketing Communication
Ahhh, sales vs. marketing. The age-old battle. Where do we begin?

Earlier, we talked about defining an SQL, which is critical. But part of that agreement needs to be how often, when, and how sales will follow up with leads to qualify them for budget.

For example, let’s say a lead fills out a form on your website and marketing is able to capture First Name, Last Name, Email, and Phone. This is pretty common. It’s now up to sales to follow up so that we can qualify or disqualify based on budget and location. Remember our example definition?

Example Sales Qualified Lead for Remodelers: a lead where we have obtained First Name, Last Name, Email, and Phone Number. The lead is in our serviceable area geographically, and the lead at least meets a minimum budget of $30,000.

Sales needs to agree to something like this:

  • Sales will follow up with website leads within 5 minutes when possible, and no later than 30 minutes.
  • The first point of follow up will be by phone, and if no response leave a voicemail along with a follow up email.
  • If no response within 24 hours, make another follow up call, voicemail and send an email.
  • If no response, make 4 more follow up calls, voicemails and emails over the next 10 days.
  • If no response, sales notifies marketing that the lead never surfaced so they can be placed in an email nurturing campaign or marketing lead re-activation campaign.

Does this feel excessive to you? It’s not. People are lazy, and they get busy. Persistent follow up will generate you a few more Closed Won deals every year. It’s worth the effort. Need helping creating your own service level agreement (SLA)? Here’s a template that will guide you through the process.

6. Sales to Production Hand Off Process
Sales doesn’t end with the signed construction agreement. It’s important to have a documented Sales to Production Hand Off Process. This allows for a smooth transition from signed agreement into production, but it also allows for proper expectations to be set as well as introductions to the appropriate team members.

If the transition into production isn’t smooth, you may get some people feeling buyer’s remorse which is the last thing you want, especially when you know how important referrals and positive reviews are for your future marketing efforts.

The more you look at this process, the more you can see marketing, sales and service connect. Marketing generates leads, sales follows up with leads and closes deals, service creates a happy customer, and that customer will in turn be a huge marketing asset to you whether that’s a referral, an online review, or a video testimonial.

Wrapping Up
So, I started this post asking if you had a sales system? My guess is that you have part of a sales system. Working through all six of these steps isn’t easy, and it does take time. But, if you take bite sized chunks and start putting pieces in place, you’ll adding more revenue to your top line in no time!

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this post and how your sales system looks. Leave a comment below!

About Spencer Powell

Spencer is the Inbound Marketing Director at Builder Funnel. Since 2010, he’s been building out a proven model and system that has helped generate thousands of leads for his clients. He specializes in helping remodelers bring their websites up to speed – not only building traffic, but focusing on lead conversion and ROI.

In addition to helping remodelers, you can find him at a nearby Chipotle about 3 times a week.

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Posted in: Marketing, PowerTips, PowerTips Articles, Sales

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