The term “outsourcing” often has a negative connotation, conjuring up images of American workers laid off in favor of cheaper labor overseas and poorer customer service. Fortunately, this doesn’t have to be the case. Because so many North American-based options for outsourcing exist, you can take advantage of the benefits of outsourcing without putting your brand at risk.
Outsourcing B2B sales improves your customer experience thanks to the shift to remote work and the development of more advanced software. By outsourcing the upfront work involved with the sales process, your expert in-house team can focus on the more advanced aspects of selling, like discovery calls and sales closing calls. When you partner with the right sales outsourcing team, your customers won’t even know they aren’t talking to someone in your office.
Through effective outreach campaigns, superior virtual receptionist services, and unsurpassed live chat services, Smith.ai provides high-quality and dependable outsourcing solutions for any company, no matter its industry, size, budget, or objectives. We know how to automate the sales process where possible and how to engage effectively with leads to maximize profit.
We’ve gathered everything you need to know to make the leap and catapult your sales to the next level by outsourcing some or all of the sales cycle. Read on and view the infographic below to find out what we’ve learned from working with clients from various industries.
B2B sales outsourcing is the practice of hiring a third party to handle any part of a business’s sales cycle. Some companies may opt to skip the overhead involved with an in-house sales team and outsource the entire process, while others may only outsource one part of the process.
B2B sales outsourcing might look like any or all of the following:
What companies can benefit from outsourcing their B2B sales? The short answer is, well, any business! In particular, businesses who:
We know that you’ve worked hard to get to where you are, and it might be hard to let someone else handle any part of your company, especially sales. But the benefits of outsourcing your B2B sales are worth the risk, especially if you pick the right sales partner.
Consider that the average sales representative earns $65,420 a year. Add benefits, commission, and bonuses, and you’re looking at significantly more than that. If you have a sales team, you’ll also need to compensate a department manager or director.
If you’re currently handling all the sales for your own business, you may be losing money by missing calls from potential clients or valuable billing hours.
Outsourcing your B2B sales makes financial sense. Outsourcing sales doesn’t mean outsourcing the entire process, either, so you can outsource where you’ll get the most significant return on investment (ROI).
In-house teams may be used to one way of doing things, so transitioning to a new system or process requires time and guidance. Because an outsourced team is highly trained, those transitions are relatively pain-free and immediate. Plus, an outsourced team only focuses on sales, so there are no complicated structural shifts like there might be with in-house teams.
As an added bonus, you won’t be responsible for hiring or training additional sales representatives, so you can easily increase or decrease the scope of a project. Plus, sales partners are better positioned to attract top-notch talent since they are active participants in the sales industry, which you may not be as a small business focused on a different industry.
Thanks to recent software developments, there’s a wide variety of sales technology on the market. Unfortunately, the variety can lead to decision paralysis: Will this program work for your business? Is it worth the cost? Will it integrate with your existing software?
When you outsource your B2B sales, you have access to the software they know intimately without paying for it out of your pocket. The team is already trained and knows all the bells and whistles of the software, which means they can get right to work with exactly the right program that works with your existing software.
When you outsource your B2B sales, not only will you save money, but you’ll also likely make more money by achieving more sales conversions than you did before. In fact, investing in outsourced B2B sales is one of the fastest ways to increase your revenue.
When you aren’t answering sales calls, you can focus on your business and its needs. Your quality of work will increase from fewer disruptions, and you’ll be able to increase your billable hours and take on more clients. You’ll also be able to focus on big-picture elements of sales, like market research and trend data.
If you are exploring a new market, outsourcing your B2B sales can help. An in-house team may lack the expertise in a new market, but your sales partner won’t, opening up new avenues of revenue quickly.
Let’s face it: If you were a sales expert, you would have started a sales business in the first place. Outsourced sales teams are sales experts, which means they know how to relate to your client. They dig into what your customers are looking for and their pain points to know how your product or service can help them.
The fact that you’ll gain access to all these sales experts without all the potential HR headaches (hiring, training, firing, etc.) is just icing on the cake.
Customer experience is key to growing your business. It’s no secret that excellent customer service leads to increased brand loyalty.
A potential client’s judgment of your customer service starts as soon as they dial the phone. How fast you answer the phone, your tone of voice, and the quality of your answers give them an immediate first impression. When they follow up, whether through phone, live chat, or email, they expect that same (or better) level of service.
Working with an outsourced sales partner improves omnichannel customer experience by streamlining the process and ensuring there’s always someone available to offer support and answer questions.
Many business owners worry they’ll lose control if they outsource sales, but the opposite is true. When you outsource, your partner will send you data analytics related to both customer experience and sales as part of their reporting.
You can use those reports to judge their performance, but they’ll also help you see customer and sales trends to refine your processes and improve your ROI.
Any part of your business can stagnate without innovation, and sales is no exception. If you have an existing in-house sales team that needs a boost, outsourcing a part of the sales process or a specific project can shake things up enough to inspire your existing team and boost morale.
A sales department requires more than just a sales representative. They need technology, processes, tools, and more. If you’re starting out or only have one sales representative, it can take time to establish a sales infrastructure. But when you work with an outsourced sales partner, the infrastructure is already in place.
The success of outsourcing your B2B sales depends on how engaged you are with the process and the quality of your sales partner. Here are a few tips we’ve picked up over our time in the business to help you make the transition as painless as possible.
Before you start looking for outsourced sales partners, it’s best to internally audit your sales process. The results will help you make the best decisions for your company’s needs, and it will help your sales partners understand exactly what you need.
Identifying your reasons for outsourcing, your goals, and the metrics you will use to measure success (key performance indicators, or KPIs) are also helpful. Just like your mission statement guides everything your business does, this list will guide your decision-making. Share your reasons, goals, and metrics with your sales partner so everyone is on the same page.
If you have an existing sales and marketing team, make sure they are on board with the transition. In most cases, they will be working with your outsourced sales partner closely, so you want to make sure their goals are aligned.
Be strategic about the outsourcing process. Consider what your goals are and determine a budget to reach them. This is where you’ll lean heavily on your sales audit and your goals, reasons for outsourcing, and KPIs to determine which features you’ll need to reach your goals.
There are a lot of sales partners out there, but the one that’s best for you already operates within your industry. They’ll have all the expertise you need not just in sales but in the needs of the market. This familiarity means you’ll decrease your time to ROI.
Opt for a partner that offers what you need based on your sales audit and goals. Don’t be tempted to outsource the entire process if that’s not what’s best for your business.
Some bumps in the road to outsourcing will happen, just as they do in any new venture, so don’t be afraid to pivot strategies as your goals and needs change. You may find that starting with an outreach campaign leads to more incoming calls and you’ll need to add a virtual receptionist team to handle it all. It’s also possible that your clients surprise you by seeking online support via live chat rather than phone calls.
Like every other component of your business, keep your focus on your customers’ needs and keep communication open between you and your sales partner.
In nearly all cases, the answer is yes. There’s so much flexibility in how you can choose to outsource, so no matter your goals, outsourcing can work for you as long as you choose the right sales partner.
At Smith.ai, we offer various sales outsourcing services to help you maximize your B2B sales potential. Whether you’re looking for a live chat option to help your clients who are more comfortable interacting online, a virtual receptionist to help you answer calls and qualify leads, or an outreach campaign to help you launch a new product or enter a new market, we can help.