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10 Reasons your Small Business might be Struggling with Sales

Updated: Apr 14, 2022

If a small business (or any sized business for that matter) is struggling with sales it probably hasn’t got anything to do with the sales team… it’s more likely that the source of the problem lies in your marketing department.

Poor sales performance is likely to be caused by one (or a combination) of the following:

  1. The product/service is low quality

  2. The product/service is over-priced

  3. The product/service doesn’t adequately solve the problem it promises to solve

  4. The business is marketing to the wrong audience

  5. The business is marketing to the right audience in the wrong places

  6. The marketing is focused to heavily on the business and the product features, and not focused on the customer and the desired end result

  7. The sales team don’t have the skills to make consistent sales

  8. The sales process is clunky and disjointed

  9. The company is lacking sufficient payment options to facilitate an easy sale

  10. The company is attempting to break into a saturated market with a sub-par product

If a company is struggling with sales then the marketing and sales arms of the business are probably not working very well together.

The marketing team are responsible for brand awareness and for funnelling qualified leads to the sales team - it’s the sales team’s job to then turn those leads into sales revenue.

So, if the marketing function is broken then everything else will be compromised down the line. If all you’re giving the sales team is poor quality unqualified leads your results will be hit and miss at best. Just because your sales team aren’t converting leads doesn’t automatically mean they’re rubbish at converting leads - often the leads are just bad, and even the Wolf of Wall Street would have his work cut out closing the deal.

So, make sure your leads are QUALIFIED.

Then (and only then) should you turn to your sales team to make sure they’ve got a rock solid sales process, a winning sales script and have the training and support they need to excel.

So what should a solid sales process look like? Well, perhaps something like this:

  1. Qualify the lead - what pain is the prospect suffering from, and do you have a product/service to reduce their pain?

  2. Understand their pain - use quality questions and active listening techniques to make sure you understand your prospects pain better than they do. Have them describe their ‘red world’ then repeat it back to them to make sure you’re both on the same page.

  3. Understand their ideal solution - use quality questions and active listening techniques to understand what a great solution looks like for THEM. Have them describe their ‘green world’ and then repeat it back to them to make sure you’re both on the same page.

  4. Find out how urgent it is for them to solve the problem - how motivated are they as a buyer? Do they want a solution yesterday for something that’s become completely unbearable, or are they happy to wait 6 months?

  5. Find out what budget they have available to solve the problem, and how much a potential solution might be worth to them - you need to know how much money they have available to work with you or buy your product. There’s no point in chasing down a sale from someone who simply cannot afford what you have to offer.

  6. Find out who the key decision makers are - do they need to speak to a spouse, parent or business partner before a decision can be made? Find out so you can make sure they have all the information they need when they speak to them about it, and so you can make sure all the decision makers are on the next call!

  7. Follow up - did you know that 70% of people who start the checkout process when buying online will abandon their cart before completing their purchase? That’s 7 out of 10 people who fall through the cracks without an effective follow-up strategy. Don’t let that be you - the fortune is in the follow up!

How good is your sales process? Is your marketing on point or missing the mark?

Take our FREE 2-minute Business Health Check scorecard now to get your personalised Business Health Score, get tailored tips and advice on how to improve delivered straight to your inbox, and get a free 20-minute strategy session with Jamie on how to improve your score!

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