Washington, D.C., May 15, 2018 – Asher Strategies identifies 15 trends influencing sales people in 2018. “We want sales teams to be successful and Close Deals Faster,” John Asher, CEO for Asher Strategies said. “With effective sales teams, companies can increase their revenue. They need to understand how trends impact them to help both be successful.”
Top 2018 Sales Trends
- Salespeople selling undifferentiated commodities that mainly take orders continue to be replaced by online sales.
- Buyers are attempting to treat more and more products as commodities. Using the “Why” techniques by Simon Sinek is increasingly important.
- Buyers want relative and experienced salespeople with good quality products. Because of this, salespeople must use the consultative approach to win sales. These sales skills training have become more important.
- Sales aptitude of people doing the selling has increased in importance. Getting the right people in the right seat on the sales bus is more important than ever.
- Subject matter experts have become the rainmakers in highly-technical sales. Executives would rather deal with someone with deep technical experience than someone with shallow knowledge.
- Salespeople schooled in a challenger sales technique are using technology offerings and are winning business from traditional salespeople who depend on relationships to win business.
- Sales cycle times are getting longer due to growing complexity and size of the product and service offerings. There is a need for more customized sales solutions because there many more decision makers involved in the decision process.
- With sales cycle times being longer, sellers can no longer spend time on leads that are not highly qualified, therefore a robust qualification process has become more important.
- Marketing has taken over the first third of the sales cycle–using the 6 integrated marketing techniques to qualify leads for salespeople is increasingly important. Companies are using in-and outbound digital marketing, blogs, social media campaigns, content-rich websites, marketing automation and CRM to give qualified leads to sales teams.
- Content marketing and information on marketing websites are becoming increasingly important. Content needs to be robust to keep the customer engaged and educated so they actually want to talk to one of our salespeople.
- In 2017, 9 out of 10 salespeople were inside salespeople, only 1 a hunter salesperson.
- Sales compensation programs are shifting to a percent of gross margin as opposed to percent of revenue. This shift means salespeople must learn how to sell on value or they lose a significant portion of their commission.
- Sales compensation plans are also moving toward 50 percent of base salary and 50 percent commission.
- The sales compensation programs are now including provisions for accelerated commissions.
- The use of artificial intelligence is increasingly being used in customer service centers. At the end of 2017, 30 percent of Fortune 500 companies were using it in their call centers.
“The landscape has changed and is constantly evolving–and teaching our sales teams how to evolve with it will be imperative to grow the company and the person,” continued Asher.
About John Asher
John Asher is an experienced international speaker and author on sales, sales management, and marketing for Vistage, a worldwide network of CEOs. In his recent book, Close Deals Faster, Asher articulates 15 shortcuts from major sales institutes and award-winning books. He co-founded Asher Strategies in 1998 and has grown it into a global leader in sales strategies over the last 20 years. He is a former U.S. Navy nuclear submarine captain and has degrees in mathematics and nuclear engineering from the United States Naval Academy. John also graduated from George Washington University with an MBA and has authored numerous sales training manuals on “Doing Business with the West,” published in China in 2012.
About Asher Strategies
Asher Strategies is a full-service firm based in Washington, DC with global reach, focused on improving sales for business-to-business companies. The company was built upon the vision of John Asher to train salespeople in sales and marketing education, strategic planning facilitation and business development process workshops. Asher has assessed the aptitude of over 50,000 salespeople and trained over 35,000 salespeople and facilitated hundreds of strategic planning sessions. For more information visit asherstrategies.com