Sales Training for Home Improvement Products: Importance of a Sales Process for Successful In-Home Demonstration

“Sales is easy, salespeople make it hard,” is Mike Biunno’s motto. Mr. Biunno has been selling home improvement products for over 30 years. He created a 10-step sales process, and in just over a year, he has led Crystal Canyon’s sales team to be the number one dealer in the U.S. for selling Ecowater’s factory-direct water conditioning equipment.

Creating a sales process makes it easier for the salesperson. Understanding why each step is important, and going through each step at a time, in order, the salesperson can plug into the system regardless of experience level, personal feelings, prejudices or attitude.

Sales Process

A sales process includes creating a system, usually a tightly defined number of action steps. Using a sales process is critical for consistent success. A process gives the salesperson a precise set of steps to follow. Following the process decreases the learning curve for an in-home salesperson, and increases self-confidence in the field. A process can also be looked at to find the weak or missing link when a salesperson is not succeeding.

The sales process becomes the standard for the in-home demonstration. It is a yardstick by which to measure whether or not the salesperson in the field is doing his/her job. Every step in the process leads to writing a contract, every step in the process is important.

Sales Force Automation

Sales force automation is facilitated with the establishment of a sales process because it provides quicker, more efficient training classes. Training classes can revolve around role-playing each step of the process instead of learning product knowledge. Product knowledge can be researched at home, and comes with time and experience in the field.

A sales process can give consistency in the field as the sales force grows, by ensuring that each in-home presentation is the same. Thus, the company can have a consistent quality of consultative in-home demonstrations, as well as ensure integrity of its sales force.

Sales Results

Sales results are not just measured by the number of contracts written. Closing percent and contract dollar amount vary from salesperson to salesperson. These can all be addressed in the sales process.

Here are some examples:

  1. Refining the step that deals with presentation of the retail price of the product and transitioning to the discount can result in higher contract amounts.
  2. Simply addressing the step of the process that gets the salesperson in the door can increase the salesperson’s opportunities. This, in turn, increases the number of contracts written.
  3. If the “urgency to buy” step is skipped altogether, then the salesperson may not be creating a buying environment. This affects closing percentage results.

Consultative Sales

A sales process reinforces the consultative sales concept. Instead of barging into a home and trying to sell equipment to the homeowner, the sales process establishes an investigative environment.

The step that involves inspection of the current situation not only builds credibility, but also lets the homeowners feel like their situation is unique. The step that involves testing/demonstrating the problems gives groundwork for the salesperson to make recommendations to solve the problems. Thus the salesperson is acting in the role of a consultant.

In addition to establishing a consultative environment, the sales process is a critical component to automating the sales force, training, consistency in the field, and evaluating where performance can be improved.

Creating a sales process for home improvement companies helps sales people by giving a framework of steps by which to measure individual progress, and helps improve self-confidence during the in-home demonstration. Having a process makes closing in-home sales easier.

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