Alexa Inside Sales Process

What is Inside Sales?

Sales | by Patricia Jones
What is Inside Sales

For SaaS, B2B, tech, and various B2C industries- inside sales is a dominant business model for sales team representatives. Unlike outside sales via field representatives, inside sales rely on managing the entire sales process from inside the organization. In short, it runs remotely. The inside sales rep takes care of selling the organization’s products and services via text message, email, phone, and various online channels. Let’s explore what is inside sales and how it impacts a business.

How Inside Sales Works

As inside sales representatives work internally from the office, they share the office space with other inside sales team members. It draws a difference from the outside sales representatives who have to face their client’s business locations.

The inside sales department has two divisions- Business Development Representatives (BDRs) and Sales Development Representatives (SDRs). Inbound sales (like the warm leads from prospects) are the main focus of SDRs. These potential customers or clients take action on a website- request a demo, download content, attend a webinar, or utilize live chat.

All these warm leads come mainly from enterprises as well as SMEs. SDRs contact these leads and use a CRM platform to log all information. As soon as the information comes to a senior salesperson or Account Executive- he/she will nurture the opportunities into the sales pipeline.

The Business Development Representatives are usually cold callers. These inbound sales reps put their focus on enterprise opportunities and higher-end commercials. After qualifying the lead, they sent it to an Account Executive.

In the inside sales process, SDRs and BDRs focus on the constant influx of leads from two types of markets: small businesses and large enterprises. As these reps qualify the leads- Account Executives follow the opportunities through the sales pipeline.

Inside Vs. Outside Sales

Modern salespeople understand the growing need for a well-connected customer experience- as it can transition into the first personal contact. That’s why many organizations are re-evaluating the advantages and disadvantages of their traditional sales. These organizations are also exploring how well it serves the needs of a customer today.

Previously, the inside sales reps were playing as a backup to outside sales reps who were paid higher. But with the arrival of the internet, there has been a major shift in the way buyers interact with sellers. Now over a decade, most organizations have shifted their focus to keep up with inside sales.

Of course, outside sales are still advantageous. Some organizations have stated that if there’s an imbalance in inside sales- it becomes difficult to leverage the value of the face-to-face conversation. However, an in-person conversation adds more value to any transaction. When an outside sales rep visits a client at their premises, it becomes easier to build trust and articulate the product or service with clarity.

For most organizations- outside sales form the core segment of the strategy. As businesses want to grow conversations in their sales funnel, a skilled inside sales team plays a key role to nurture the attention of buyers.

Benefits of Inside Sales

Companies are leaning towards inside sales because of all the benefits it brings to the business. Therefore, like the outside sales reps, the demand for quality inside sales reps has also increased.

  • Cost Efficiency Leveraging Technical Opportunities
    With the presence of marketing automation, CRM systems, social selling tools along with social analytics software- inside sales reps can contact potential prospects quickly. As a result, it shortens the sales cycle and reduces the cost per acquisition.
  • More Time For Ancillary Tasks
    Selling consists of an innumerable number of administrative and prospecting tasks. As inside sales reps stay more time at the office (unlike the field reps)- they can take care of the other crucial tasks more efficiently.
  • Revenue Predictability
    Thanks to CRM systems like ConvergeHub which helps companies to predetermine the amount of revenue each of the salespersons can produce- along with the ROI details. With predictable revenue, sales reps have to take the lead-focused approach. As there’s a close integration between marketing and inside sales- they should work together and fill the sales pipeline.
  • Improved Scalability
    Companies can scale up their inbound sales teams with ease- they won’t have to face the inconvenience of relocating and expenses. It will allow them to take measured steps when it comes to scaling the business.
  • Opportunity For Specialized Roles
    Without a quality segmented sales force- it is not possible to engage with all levels of prospects in the sales funnel. As the usual field reps work on quotas- they mostly have to deal with less profitable opportunities which take a long time to close or are impossible to close. Now, these prospects may become valuable for the organization in the long run. Therefore, it is essential to map roles and responsibilities for every member of the inside sales team. You will be able to cater to all customers at all stages of their buyer’s journey.
  • Better Coaching And Collaboration Opportunities
    Inside sales reps need to stay close to their managers. That’s why the team presents better team unity with better opportunities for professional training, collaboration, and coaching. With the training and coaching, new employees can be onboard in no time at all.
  • Adaptability To Changing Buyer Demographic
    A target buyer can be influenced by interesting digital funnel campaigns. When your business has a powerful inside sales team- you can invest in popular trends to lower the cost while taking advantage of upselling and cross-selling opportunities.

5 Moves To Successful Inside Sales

When you are dealing with a variety of customers- the inside sales team should be properly nurtured and have well-honed skills. Here are some successful moves you can take while drafting your plan together:

  • Right Software
    Excellent inside sales capitalize on the potential of effective lead management. Targeting the right prospects requires a research-driven or data-driven approach. That’s why SaaS tools like web conferencing platforms, CRM databases, and social analytics are vital for inside sales success.
  • Alignment Between Sales And Marketing Teams
    The conflict between the sales and marketing teams is age-old. The sales team complains that the marketing team doesn’t bring in enough authentic leads- the marketing team complains about the sales team’s inability to use the leads. When you have an inside sales team- it is time to optimize the structure of the inside sales and marketing departments. The sales department must inform their needs while the marketing team runs transparent campaigns. If the marketing team is flexible about the assets they provide and the sales team works on those assets- the alignment will help with the business growth.
  • Well Thought-out Inside Sales
    The inside sales team members must be assigned clearly defined roles and responsibilities. You may wish to segment the team based on stages of the customer journey, product and services, geography, and other reasons. You can take a look at the available data and then decide what is working for your brand and what’s not.
  • A Motivated Team
    When sales reps deal with difficult clients and face obstacles in sales- it takes a toll on their motivation. It is life. It is your job to motivate the team by encouraging them to make the best out of these rejections. Encourage them to celebrate small wins, and ask them to visualize their sales performance. It will give motivation to the team in real-time to improve their approach as they get continuous feedback.
  • A Skilled Team With Ongoing Training
    With sales enablement technologies, inside sales teams can sell various complex products/ services without seeing or interacting with the buyers. However, for the long-term success of the sales team- the team members must nurture their sales skills to skillfully handle complex transactions.

Essential Inside Sales Skills

Irrespective of where the sales reps are closing their sales- all salespeople need a great range of skills and knowledge to succeed. Salespeople must become good administrators, prospectors, and closers. But some more skills differentiate a successful brand from the crowd.

  • Listening
    Inside sales reps deal with their customers from remote locations without having the aid of understanding the body language of the customers. It prevents them from knowing what these customers are not. Therefore, these sales reps must master strong listening skills and focus on how a customer articulates answers to their questions.
  • Building A Rapport
    As it is trickier to make friends over email or phone, it is tricker to connect with a customer. Customers can sense the lack of authenticity. Sales reps must present their authentic selves and reveal that they have done their research well. If the reps pitch in general terms and make unrealistic promises- it will turn off a prospect immediately.
  • Sticking To a well-planned strategy
    Inside sales reps deal with various accounts and must know vital information about each account at hand. It is fine to optimize a well-planned strategy- but it is detrimental to switch over strategies. Other than becoming a test run- the switching wastes an extreme amount of time.
  • Reliability
    Building trust is the hardest part of your job. That’s why, the inside sales reps must manage their time so well that they can deliver on all the promises on time- be it a small or big matter. If a customer informs them to call at 1 pm, for example, the reps team needs to maintain it. It creates reliability.

The outcome of Inside Sales

Sales representatives need to take care of their ever-increasing workload in a short time. So, leveraging efficiency-enhancing innovations like CRM databases adds a clear advantage. Some research shows that effective use of inside sales can save over 40-90% cost of sales- increasing or maintaining the revenue.

However, without investing in inside sales skills along with the right training and use of the right software- a good outcome is far ahead. It means, companies must know how to exploit various roles of the inside sales team. When you are capable of using the team members at the intersections of sales and marketing- you can align two departments with effectiveness.

As you take the right measures, you will reap its rewards- fast response to customers, more contacts at the same rate, better scalability, etc. The benefits of inside sales are vast- it will only increase your online B2B customer count. Therefore, it is essential to put focus on inside sales besides outside sales.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Want to grow?
Join our weekly newsletter packed with sales tips.

Enjoy this article? Don't forget to share.