Sales 101 - A quick and basic sales skills training course.
This page is for anyone that wants:
A brief one page overview of how to sell
A basic sales process to follow
To learn the important stages of a sale
The training on this page is ideal for anyone new to sales, especially if selling is only going to be part of your role.
You can use the sales techniques for face to face selling, telesales, and retail or showroom customers.
If you want to build on the basic sales training here, there are plenty of links to other pages on this site as we go through this Sales 101 page.
This first and most important lesson is to have a process, a path your sales pitch follows. This is the structure that all your other sales skills training can be added to.
Here's the simple sales process that I use in the basic sales training program for the sales teams I manage and train:
A simple sales 101 process
This is an overview of the basic sales process and a brief outline of what happens at each stage of the sale.
Start with a sales introduction
Introduce yourself, and give a reason why you are there that will benefit the buyer.
Find out what they want
Ask them questions to establish their needs.
Present what you can offer
Show them how you can give them what they want
Ask them if they want it
Close the sale, gain their agreement to buy or to move on to the next stage of their buying process.
Deal with any sales objections
Overcome sales objections and questions the buyer may have after you have asked for the sale, or at any point in the sale.
For this basic sales 101 training I’ve kept it as simple as possible. It’s a good way to start your sales skills training. You can improve your skills with more training on each stage of the above sales process.
Now you know the sales process let's look at the sales stages in a bit more detail:
Build an effective sales introduction
A great way to start your sales skills training is to build an effective sales introduction.
There’s a good reason for starting a sales training program by getting the sales introduction right. Because it doesn’t matter how good your product is, or how good your sales techniques are, if you don’t have a great sales introduction you won’t get the chance to use your sales techniques or show your product.
A key point to focus on is:
Have a really good reason for the customer to listen to you. This has to be a big possible benefit for them. If possible make it unique to your company or product. And always present what it will do for the buyer.
If your reason for being there is that you are a local business, think what this means to the customer. What are the benefits to them of you being local.
Once you have introduced yourself you want to know what it is that the buyer wants from a product or service like yours.
So the next stage in our sales 101 training is to ask questions to find the buyer’s needs, wants, and desires.
The sales techniques to use here are:
Structured questioning using a conversation style, and not firing one short question after another. Good questioning techniques also keep the incoming information in an easy to note format.
The other important sales skill to use is to look for the benefits the buyer wants, not the features.
You want to know, what is the end result the customer is looking for.
Imagine you are an accountant selling your own service to a new prospective client.
The client is not looking for an accountant they are looking for what the accountant will do for them. The end result of the service.
Don’t ask what type of accountant do you want. Ask, what would you like the accountant to do for you. You can get more information on how to ask sales questions at Sales questioning Techniques.
Basic sales training on presenting your proposal
The next stage of this sales 101 training is to present your proposal to the prospect.
You have asked the questions to find out what they want, and either remembered or noted down their needs. Now you use sales techniques and sales skills to present a sales proposal that meets their requirements.
On the sales training programs I present to my sales teams we take the needs, wants, and desires, that the prospect has given you, and present back to them the features of your product that will provide the benefits they want.
The biggest mistake inexperienced sales people make is:
Not understanding the difference between sales features and sales benefits.
The features of your product or service are just the mechanisms that provide the benefits. Buyers don’t want features, they cost money, but they want the benefits of those features.
A great sales technique for basic sales training is to only present the features and benfits that meet the needs the buyer has expressed. Make the presentation specific to those needs. Don’t bore them with other detail that they are not interested in.
No tricks or fancy sales techniques. No manipulation, bullying or high pressure sales skills.
Just ask the buyer 2 basic sales training questions in your own words:
1. Has the proposal I have just presented met your requirements.
2. Would you like to go to the next stage of the sales process.
The next stage could be signing an order form, agreeing to a trial of your product, or a further meeting with others involved in the buying decision.
The main sales skills to close the sale are used in the earlier parts of the sales process. Closing techniques can be a simple question asking for the order.
This is where sales objections normally appear. That’s a big topic and there is a complete section on objection handling that you can find by opening How to Handle Sales Objections.
Sales 101 to a Professional sales training workbook course
I’m a working sales manager for a major company. To help train my sales teams I use a sales training course with a step by step exercise program. I have now put the sales training course into a workbook format that can be downloaded.
The course shows you how to put together each stage of a sale.
Build a sales process for any product or service
Follow the exercise program and you’ll know what to say at all times because you know your sales process
Always know your next objective and how to move towards closing the sale
You can increase your sales as many others have using these sales techniques
How much will this professional sales training course cost you?