Selling is a dynamic process. That’s why what worked exceptionally well a year ago may fall short this year or the next. The best sales training courses continue to adapt and incorporate these changes in methods and consumer buying trends, which can be dizzying. There’s the added pressure that changing sales trends can cripple your business if you don’t stay on top of them.
So, to keep your head in the game and help your business thrive, it helps to keep an eye on trends. With that in mind, here are some of the prominent trends that have dominated the sales arena in 2021.
Social selling can improve conversion
Statista estimates that an additional 2% of the US population joined social media networks in 2021. That brings the total social media users to 82% of the US population. As more people are active on social media, social selling steps up its already immense opportunity to reach out to buyers.
Some social selling trends observed in 2021 include:
- Posting, observing posts by others, and engaging with customers on social media.
- Participating in groups and discussion forums on different social platforms.
- Providing maximum value to buyers and gently leading them to the website.
As opposed to aggressively pitching to customers, social selling is more subtle. It focuses on demonstrating value to attract more customers.
So, consider using this approach to pick up more buyers—leverage social profiles to create value for your customers and lead them to your site.
Collaborative selling is necessary
With the explosion in digital tools, a collaboration between departments is on the rise.
The marketing department keeps tabs on trends while the sales department guides customers along the pipeline. The IT department is also heavily involved, in monitoring the website’s performance to ensure the sales and marketing processes are able to run as smoothly as possible.
Consider providing collaboration tools and training courses to your departments to ensure that everyone is on the same page. When departments work toward a common purpose, your business has the best chance to soar.
Poor customer service can drive buyers away
Raydiant’s State of Consumer Behavior report says that 60% of people reported having ditched a brand due to poor service in 2021.
Now more than ever, customers are looking for companies that show concern and provide customers with an exceptional experience.
To get more buyers into your corner and trigger a surge in your sales, consider stepping up your customer service. For instance, you can:
- Research your buyers to fully grasp their needs.
- Ask customers for feedback to gauge how well you’re performing.
- Personalize your service to increase trust with buyers.
- Show empathy and professionalism.
- Use more demos to help your customers see how to get the most out of your product.
- Use customer service courses and training programs to keep your customer reps on point.
Hybrid shopping models
Trends show that customers have moved to online shopping. According to Statista, 75% of people shop online at least once every month.
The growth of digital trends, like artificial intelligence, augmented reality, and voice commerce, has improved the reality of online shopping to make it easier and faster.
However, in-person shopping is still also a preference for many.
According to a survey by the digital platform Raydiant, 46% of people said they prefer in-person shopping over online. The Raydiant report says this preference is driven by:
- The desire to touch or feel what they’re buying.
- Receiving their goods immediately as opposed to waiting for delivery.
To thrive in business, train yourself to use a mix of online and in-person channels for selling. Customers will likely keep using both methods, so avoid losing out on customers and leaving money on the table. You could also consider investing in courses that help you balance both distribution channels.
Flexible approaches can help you hit more targets
According to Statista, 62% of people use Google to research products they intend to buy. As a result, a significant part of the buyer’s journey takes place independently. By the time some customers approach you, they’ll be ready to buy. On the other hand, others will just be becoming aware of what you have to offer.
Being flexible with how you approach customers and personalizing each interaction may be more beneficial in 2021. Consider using a customer relationship management (CRM) tool to manage all your customer interactions.
All in all, keeping your eyes on the trends can help you refine your sales and marketing processes to rise above competitors. It also helps to invest in adaptable training to keep your sales team’s heads in the game.