Building a sales process from scratch can seem like a daunting task. Where do you start? What are all the steps? How do you know when you’ve got it nailed down? More so, there’s even more questions to consider when you’re part of an enterprise sales team. In this blog, we’ll look at what the enterprise sales process looks like from the eyes of someone building out this process on an enterprise team. At the end, we’ll highlight what selling to an enterprise may look like as well.
What is an Enterprise Sales Process?
The enterprise sales process is made up of the typical sales process steps. As a seller, you’re often following the same flow that you would as someone working in something other than enterprise as well. However, there’s a few tweaks to every step that can be applied specifically to someone working for an enterprise organization.
What Does Enterprise Sales Look Like?
In general, enterprise sales looks similar to any other types of sales, from the eyes of the seller. One of the main differences however is the amount of people a seller works with. While in a smaller company, the seller may be on a team of only a handful of people, if not just themselves, there’s a lot more organization and bureaucracy. More people have a say in your tasks, others may compete for the same prospects and your workflow is often very similar if not identical to those you work with.
Enterprise Sales Process Steps
Below are the typical sales process steps that someone working for an enterprise organization may run into:
Enterprise sales prospecting is often very hands off for a seller at an enterprise. Marketing runs campaigns and finds leads to handoff to sales. While sales may have a little involvement in this stage, at a larger company, prospecting is mainly done through marketing efforts.
The first stage where salespeople really have an impact is when they qualify leads. This includes finding the customer pain points, seeing if they have the proper capabilities to use your product, seeing if you’re a right fit for you or finding other ways that could possibly eliminate them from a deal. But, once a seller determines they are a good fit, the prospect becomes an SQL. From here, they’ll start moving down the pipeline and the seller will focus their efforts on answering questions, keeping consistent touch points and making sure they can do whatever they can to help move the deal forward. To help with this, enterprise organizations often leverage a sales engagement platform in their efforts.
Next, once the seller has all the information about the SQL, they’ll pitch their company to the SQL. Often, there’s multiple companies all pitching themselves to a prospect, so it’s important to remember what makes your enterprise different from others. Here it’s important to have everyone potentially involved, like sales, marketing, product, technical and management teams in agreement on what the seller is saying to the SQL.
Making an Offer
After the pitch happens, and potentially some more nurturing, it’s time to make an offer. It’s important again to involve all facets of your organization when coming up with an offer that everyone in your enterprise thinks is doable.
Objections may arise in any number of areas. The benefit of working at an enterprise versus alone in a small company is there’s usually always an expert on what was asked about. The seller shouldn’t be afraid to bring in someone from IT, marketing, product development or anything else the SQL may have concerns about. Enterprise sellers have lots of resources and shouldn’t be afraid to use them.
Closing the Sale
Closing the sale is relatively the same as with other types of sales. It’s important to remember a sale isn’t officially closed until you have a signed contract. Don’t let your efforts or focus slip this close to the finish line!
Nurturing the Client
Once the deal is closed, make sure to not forget about your client. It’s important to keep a cadence going with them to make sure to keep touchpoints with them. While you won’t be reaching out every day, it’s good practice to touch base maybe once a month, or once a quarter. This helps with answering questions they may have and can even open up upselling opportunities. This function, like nurturing the prospect, can be done within a sales engagement platform. If your team is using Salesforce in its engagement efforts, we recommend Salesvue.
Optimizing the Sales Process in Salesforce
All of these steps can be performed within Salesforce. The sales process within Salesforce is a great idea for teams that want to work within a single system. Check out the link to see our thoughts on how pairing Salesforce and Salesvue can take your team to the next level.
Enterprise Sales Strategy and Fundamentals
Here are some tips for enterprise sales strategy, especially when dealing with B2B sales:
- Focus on finding solutions and helping relieve pain points
- Be ready for the process to take a long time, possibly months or a full year
- Understand all the decision maker roles within their business
- Provide options when giving proposals
Tips for Selling to Enterprises
Here’s a few tips on how to sell to enterprise organizations:
Identify Pain Points
As with all selling, identifying customer pain points is a crucial step in developing a strategy to close the deal. Without knowing what’s truly taking a toll on their team, you’ll never know how to align your product and messaging in a way that fits them. But remember, you’re not only selling to one person.
With personal selling, you can get away with asking one person what’s wrong and helping them fix that problem. With enterprise selling, you must understand that there is likely a range of pain points across the team, if not multiple teams or departments. Being able to prioritize and understand the main points to solve is a key step in the enterprise sales process.
Identify Decision Makers
Another aspect of selling to enterprises follows a similar idea. As with identifying pain points across an entire, there are multiple decision makers, not just one. It’s not good enough to just work with one person at the enterprise. You must find which person is leading the charge, who your advocates are, who controls the budget, who has the final say and any other relevant people. In enterprises, you won’t find one person who is the judge, jury and executioner of your product. You must work with their entire team to get the job done.
Align Your Messaging and Strategy
The final main point we’ll raise about selling to enterprises is about aligning your messaging and strategy. While you’ll quickly find yourself dealing with many players on their end, don’t forget about the multiple players on your end as well. When trying to seal a big deal, you can find yourself dealing with your own sales, marketing, product and management teams. Making sure that everyone that has touchpoints with the other side during the enterprise sales process is aligned in their messaging and strategy can help eliminate the risk for confusion.
Being a seller within an enterprise organization doesn’t have to be as complicated as you think. Sure, there are certain considerations that you may not have to worry about if you were the only salesperson at your company. But, there’s also lots of benefits. Leveraging the different tools and resources available to you at an enterprise can help you solve for any of the special needs of either selling as an enterprise or selling to an enterprise.
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