Sales principles are the foundation of any good sales strategy. Without them, you’re just winging it and hoping for the best. I should know – I used to be a sales manager myself. It wasn’t until I learned these three key principles that my team started hitting our targets consistently. If you want to take your sales career to the next level, then read on. In this blog post, we’ll cover:
1) The 3 most important sales principles;
2) The key to successful selling; and
3) What every salesperson needs to know to be successful.
Sales principles outline what is needed to be successful in sales. They cover building relationships, understanding customer needs, and closing sales.
By following these authority principles, salespeople can increase their chances of success and improve their performance.
Best Practices of a World-Class Sales Organization
In the world of business, especially business-to-business, your sales team is the face of your company. The actions of your salespeople, not your solutions, are what set you apart from your competition.
While knowledge and skills are important, your attitude and values ultimately determine your sales success.
In our own experience, these are the factors that separate the good from the great.
There’s never been a worse time to trust anyone. Whether it’s media, politicians, or businesses, there’s no trust left.
As Edelman pointed out, a recent 2021 trust barometer pointed out that people no longer know whom to trust.
Unfortunately, most people do not trust salespeople.
A study by CSO Insights (a research firm) showed that 44% of customers feel that most salespeople are only interested in their agendas. Additionally, only 18% of clients would describe their salesperson as a trusted adviser they respected. This lack of trust in the sales industry indicates that building a relationship based on Integrity and honesty is essential.
You can train your sales team on all the best techniques and knowledge, but that won’t make them trustworthy. Buyers need to trust their salesperson, and that starts with having Integrity and being transparent.
Ethical, value-based behaviors are the key to maximizing your sales team’s potential, creating a customer-focused culture, and meeting your revenue targets.
The traits that make a great salesperson are the foundation of everything they do.
Let’s examine these sales principles and how they can help you build strong customer relationships.
Selling Principle 1: The selling process is a two-way street.
The belief that sales professionals are heroes who help other people is the underlying premise of the sales cycle.
A positive attitude about sales and believing that what you’re doing is meaningful and beneficial are keys to success.
They feel rewarded when they create value for other people, which motivates them.
Selling Principle 2: Selling With Integrity
The underlying belief of selling with Integrity is identifying and meeting customers’ needs, not selling them anything.
This concept is important for customer-centric sales reps because it aligns perfectly with their values. Following this guideline can increase their motivation and achieve more success.
It gives customers the power to say no to sales pitches if what they are offering doesn’t meet their requirements.
Always put your customer’s needs before your own. By doing so, you increase their loyalty to you, but you also increase the likelihood of them being loyal to you.
Selling Principle 3: Developing Trust and Rapport
Your very first sales is you!
Your customers need to know that you care about them before buying from you. Even when you work remotely, you should tailor how you communicate with your customers based on their personal preferences.
When you focus on understanding your potential customer’s wants and needs, you break through their natural psychological barriers. At that point, you will begin to establish trust in the relationship. By doing so, you increase the chances that they will do business with you.
Selling Principle 4 – Before offering a solution to someone, you must understand their wants and needs.
Asking the right questions is the most important sales skill because it allows you to determine what the customer wants or needs. By understanding the customer’s needs, you can then offer a solution that meets those needs. This is how you create a successful sale.
Many sales professionals mistakenly believe that the most important thing is to show excitement about what they’re selling and think their “infectious enthusiasm” will result in a sale.
If salespeople don’t ask the right questions at the beginning of the sales journey, they’re less likely to make a sale.
The “Master Skill” of Relationship Sales is the ability to ask the right questions to uncover what’s most important to your customer.
The ability to consult with a customer and uncover their specific needs is the most important sales skill. By identifying what the customer wants, you can then sell them the products or services that will fulfill those desires. This trait is essential for any great salesperson because it allows them to focus on the customer’s needs instead of their assumptions.
Selling Principle 5: Values-Driven Selling
The underlying belief here is that people don’t want to feel pressured into buying something, but they do want to purchase.
Salespeople who focus on developing relationships and selling based on shared values tend to attract more customers. Adopting a sales philosophy and process that considers these things can help you build deeper, more meaningful connections with potential buyers.
Salespeople who focus on creating value for their customers rather than persuading them to buy something are more likely to establish loyal relationships.
Selling Principle 6: Honesty, respect, and truth are the foundations of any successful sales profession.
The belief is that people don’t care about you until they know you care for them.
Customer-centric relationships are about more than just exchanging goods and services. It’s about building a mutual relationship where both parties benefit.
Salespeople who deliver on their promises and create more value than expected are the foundation of customer-centric relationships. These salespeople can build strong, lasting relationships with their clients by engaging in customer-focused behaviors.
Selling Principle 7: Your values and morals have more to do with your success in sales than techniques and strategies.
Do right by your customers because that’s the ethical thing to do!
Since customers dislike manipulation, they will be less likely to buy if they feel they are being sold to.
If customers perceive that salespeople communicate with them only for their benefit, they will refuse to move forward.
Selling Principle 8: Selling Pressure
If you want to succeed in sales, it’s important to understand the persuasion paradox. The more you try to convince someone of something, the more they’ll pull away from you. However, if you focus on understanding their wants or needs, they’ll be more attracted to buying from you. Keep this in mind as you build trust and rapport with potential customers.
A great salesperson always keeps the customer’s best interests in mind and works to build trust and rapport throughout the entire sales process. By doing so, they create a strong relationship of mutual respect that leads to satisfied customers.
When customers see that a salesperson can effectively communicate how their wants and needs will be satisfied by a specific solution, they naturally become excited about doing business with them. This is because they trust that the salesperson will be able to deliver on their promises.
Selling Principle 9: Negotiation is Never Manipulation
Negotiation is not a battle to be won or lost. It’s an opportunity to find common ground and work out a solution that benefits everyone involved.
Sales training programs that focus on negotiation skills often teach techniques that can feel unnatural to salespeople. These same techniques may be perceived as manipulative by customers, leading to tension and a lack of trust in the relationship.
When salespeople are ethical, they can build trust with their customers by negotiating problems instead of creating them.
Selling Principle 10: Closing is a victory for both the salesperson and the customer.
Asking for a customer’s business is the natural outcome when you have a product or service that can satisfy their needs.
The “sell” phase in selling often focuses on getting the prospect to say yes. This dynamic creates tension in the relationship and undermines trust.
When salespeople understand all of the guiding principles of successful selling and know how to focus on their customers’ needs and address them, they will know when it is the right time to ask for the sale. This comes from knowing your customers’ specific needs and how your product/service addresses them. When you ask with this information, you are more likely to close the deal and satisfy customers.
If you want to succeed in sales, you need to know and follow the three most important sales principles. These principles are 1) understanding your customer, 2) having strong product knowledge, and 3) building rapport with your prospect. By following these key guiding principles, you’ll be well on your way to closing more deals and hitting your targets.
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