Sales Cycle

To take advantage of online marketing you must first understand the Sales Cycle for your business niche. Without understanding that Sales Cycle you could be wasting time or even worse, losing customers because you’re being too pushy, or not pushy enough at the appropriate time.

Until you can move people through your Sales Cycle and turn your customers needs into wants, you may be losing customers.

Here’s the thinking behind this…

Anytime someone buys a product or service they go through a decision making process. You can think of this process as the Sales Cycle.

People move from…

buying online

  • a general awareness of a problem
  • to a desire to solve that problem
  • to research and evaluation of the best solution to that problem
  • to a decision to buy a solution

Unless your online marketing helps move people through this process, and gives them the answers they need, you’re going to lose your prospects as they move through the cycle and before they make a decision.

Some of the questions they have include…

“What is my problem and why do I need to solve it?”

“What solutions are available?”

“How will I feel once I solve this problem?”

“Is this solution the best of all available solutions?”

“How do I learn more about this problem and the solutions?”

“Why should I buy now?”

“How do I buy?”

Here’s a great video from Marketing Experiments that talks about what having the right content on your site can mean to your conversion rates. These folks spend all their time testing various Online Marketing tactics to “determine what really works.” The one-paragraph change they made to this particular page increased conversions by 36%. And yes, every page on your site must move someone through the entire Sales Cycle to work well.

One of the techniques we use to move people through the Sales Cycle is to get them into our Sales Funnel. To have an effective sales funnel you must be prepared to answer these questions.

online sales cycle

What’s YOUR Sales Cycle?

Of course each type of business may have a different sales cycle. Some sales cycles may be long and prospects take months to decide.

Some may be short and people decide quickly, sometimes within minutes.

Some cycles may be more educational where your prospect needs to learn about their problem and the solution before they can decide.

And some may just be “I know what I need now, just give it to me.”

So understanding your particular sales cycle is important too.

And once you understand your Sales Cycle you must develop tactics to move people through that Cycle. That’s where your Sales Funnel comes in. Learn more about that here.

And as an exercise to help you think through your particular Sales Cycle, you can download my Sales Cycle Worksheet here.

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