Sales Trends: Relevance Overtaking Personalization!!!

The world of sales has been rapidly changing in the last few years as new technology evolved and became more accessible to businesses and sales teams. The question is what will future bring on to the table? What are the future trends in sales? The following are few sales trends which can impact any organization in the near future:

1.Selling to the new

A few years back the Generation “Y” was the key target group for the sales organizations. They used to be the generation that marketers and salespeople were majorly focusing on for minting profits and while Generation Y’s are increasing in terms of their buying power and income, there is a new generation emerging that both marketers and salespeople should focus on is millennials “Generation Z”. This generation is composed of those people born anywhere from the mid-1990s to the mid-2000s. So, this means the oldest of this group must be in their early 20s while the youngest is just barely teenagers right now. This set of generation is expected to be the highest spending consumers by 2020, which is right around the corner.

How can this affect sales?

This generation is quite different from previous generations, especially the environment they are living in. For example, they were born with access to advanced technology and are growing up using social media, smartphones, online shopping and all kinds of other technologies on a daily basis. This generation is more inclined towards sharing economy like Ola, Uber or Air BNB’s in the world. Surprisingly, they care a lot about worldwide issues and their own impact on the world, particularly when it comes to environmental and social issues. Also, there’s one very interesting statistic that might surprise many people: some studies show that generation Z actually prefers brick-and-mortar stores to online shopping.

How do you sell to this generation?

The secret stands in understanding who forms this generation and what they care about – the more you learn about them, the easier it will be to come up with the best approach to sell to them.

2. Sales Assistance

Nowadays, sales evolving too rapidly for individuals and organizations to work in silos, especially given the speed at which companies are growing. Also, the companies are hiring (or promoting) salespeople and leaders at record numbers into roles they’ve never actually done before; and in many cases, sales representatives are being asked to sell new innovative products within new markets with no industry or category experience. It’s creating a massive vacuum in knowledge, experience and strategy. One way or another, every sales team gets at least a little bit of sales assistance in terms of training or tools to understand the nitty-gritty of sales.

How can this affect sales?

There’s certainly been a lot of growth in the adoption of sales tools and sales training in the past couple of years, with more and more businesses and organizations focusing on the sales enablement, a trend which is very likely to continue in the coming years. More focus on new technologies can also aid the sales enablement process as well as the salespeople to sell more to reap maximum profits.

How do you stay on top of this trend?

In order to stay ahead of this trend, the organizations should devote time to plan out a sales assistance strategy, from helping recruit new salespeople to regular coaching to your existing salespeople.

3. Data Science and Sales

Data is a trending buzz-word which is being heard around quite a bit in recent few years, and in the coming future, it’s only going to get more prevalent. Data analytics and artificial intelligence have the power to disrupt entire industries and sales industry is no exception to this. There are definitely a lot of ways that Data Analytics and AI will continue to impact the world of sales in coming future.  The more the organizations can implement Data Analytics and Artificial Intelligence into the tools and techniques they use to sell, the bigger the impact they will have on productivity.

How data science can help salespeople be more productive?

The ability to analyze huge amounts of data in a very short time will help you personalize your sales strategy. Also getting the recommendations based on massive amounts of data will ultimately help to save time in following up and reaching out to the right people. Also, data science can help the organizations to predict the future- What will your next quarter look like based on your past work? What can you do to improve the results of your next quarter?

How can you leverage Data Science?

Data science is, fortunately, becoming more and more accessible by the minute. While the more complex systems might be out of range for the regular business, but there are plenty of regular sales tools implementing more AI-based features and analyzing data.

4. Customer experience: Understanding various touch points

One of the things that the younger generation expect more and more is an integrated experience across all of a business’s channels. With the advent of smart technology, the new generation uses various devices at any given moment, they search for products and services online extensively before they take the buying decision and often demand personalized but consistent experiences that flow seamlessly from channel to channel.

This trend toward creating unified customer experiences has a huge impact on sales. Most importantly, when it comes to the relationship between a sales department and a marketing department. While these departments are (theoretically) distinct, the move towards providing unified customer experience demands a much closer relationship between the two.

How do you create more unified customer experiences from a sales point of view?

There is a lot that needs to be done to develop a true customer experience for all of your customers:

  • Identifying all the platforms and channels your audience uses and leveraging them
  • Creating a seamless transition between all channels and platforms that audiences have access to (for example, if a lead starts a conversation via text messages while they’re on the bus or train but then want to change the channel once they get home, then they should be able to do as seamlessly as possible, without wasting any time)
  • Finding ways to integrate technology such as social media into bricks-and-mortar stores

How can this affect sales?

The more positive experiences organizations can create for the customer, the more customer is likely to become a promoter of the brand, thus increasing brand awareness within the community. Word of mouth marketing is, after all, a timeless strategy, and is always effective.