Why Lost Deals Aren’t the End of the Road for Your Sales Team
Learn how to analyze a lost deal—a sale that goes sour. It’s an important part of the customer relationship management (CRM) process. For most, a lost sale is discouraging at best. At worst, a lost sale can lead some salespeople to question their skills and career choice.
It’s easy to get stuck in a spiral of self-doubt whenever a deal doesn’t lead to conversion. It’s less easy to reframe an unsuccessful sale into a positive experience.
That’s what you need to do as a sales leader: Understand that a lost deal isn’t the end of the road. In fact, lost sales can enlighten the sales leader about how to sharpen the company’s CRM tactics.
View lost deals as opportunities. In this article you’ll learn how to reframe a negative experience and maximize future potential.
Track Sales Losses to Optimize Future Performance
It’s far too easy to chalk up a lost sale to inconsistent data or unqualified sales staff. The worst thing is to write it off as an outlier.
Ask yourself the following questions before you move on:
Do you reach out for feedback from prospects who chose some other vendor?
Constructive feedback is the easiest way to understand what went wrong with a potential client. Be open to retrospection. This can lead to all kinds of positives when a sale goes sideways.
Sure, the lost prospect can refuse to respond, but when they do respond, that feedback is gold. It’s your direct line to diagnose which piece of your CRM strategy doesn’t work.
Do you track competitors and the deals lost to them?
This one’s a little trickier. It’s not always easy to get competitor data. But when you can, it is invaluable.
If you and your competitors have similar business models, and you both employ the same CRM tactics, it’s helpful to know in which situations neither of you is securing clients.
Make it your goal to track competitor successes and failures. Know what doesn’t work—for you and them. This is just as crucial as knowing what does work.
Does your team consider lost deals the same as dead deals?
There’s a difference. Lost deals often mean you aren’t doing something, right now, to lead to conversion. These kinds of fall-through deals can usually be salvaged with the right kind of finesse.
Do recognize a lost deal because it can sharpen your processes for the future.
Dead deals (ones that go to a competitor or flounder somewhere in your sales pipeline) will go nowhere. Don’t waste time on them. Abandon them because they just didn’t connect and were going nowhere. The benefit is that you can now focus your efforts elsewhere.
How much time does your sales team spend on reviewing lost deals?
Take the time to understand what could have been done to salvage a lost deal. Assess what a competitor either did right or did just as poorly as you. Spend the time to review lost deals because they’re an important piece of the CRM puzzle.
Learn from Your Failures to Fuel Future Success
It’s true that we often learn more from our failures than our successes. With success, it’s easy to move from sale to sale and not analyze what is working and what isn’t.
It’s more important to understand why a sale went sour than it is to get comfortable in your success. To do this, record your lost deals (and dead deals) in detail. Then, you can go back time and time again to reassess a situation and learn from a lost opportunity.
Even your competitors can teach you a great deal about what it takes to secure a client. Failures can be discouraging, so it’s easy to want to move past them. Make it your mission to analyze as much data as you can gather, from clients and competitors, so you don’t miss ways to improve your CRM strategy.
The best way to learn from your failures is to schedule regular retrospective sessions during which you reframe a “No” into a “How can we learn from this?” This approach will drive change and improve your overall sales process.
That’s what the customer relationship management experts at Empellor CRM are all about: to improve your strategy. We know what it takes to succeed—from first contact to finalizing the sale—and we help you make the most of your CRM platform.
Contact our CRM professionals today to maximize your sales strategy and improve your CRM tactics.