6 steps to closing more sales leads

Getty Images: Chainarong Prasertthai/iStock / Getty Images Plus

Are your employees equipped with the right training to close the sale? Getty Images: Chainarong Prasertthai/iStock / Getty Images Plus

Every phone call is an opportunity to grow your business; every missed call can mean lost revenue. Are you 100 percent confident every inbound call is treated as a revenue opportunity?

Do you have a dedicated sales team, or are customer service representatives (CSRs) answering the phones while also performing critical tasks like scheduling, deposits and billing? Who’s responsible for turning leads into company revenue?

If you already have an inside sales team, are they properly trained? Can they:

  • Engage potential customers and build rapport?
  • Ask the right questions to understand customers’ needs?
  • Present pest control services?
  • Overcome objections?
  • Manage their day effectively and achieve their goals?

Are you tracking sales? Do you know what each sale costs? What does each lead cost?

These are a lot of questions, but they’re the ones you should be asking yourself as a business owner.

Too many companies overspend on marketing, thinking it will generate more sales. It doesn’t always work and can be very expensive. Is your marketing even working? Is your sales team selling the leads they are getting?

To answer these questions, you need to:

  • Calculate your cost per lead (CPL): marketing spend ÷ number of leads = CPL
    If you received 100 leads and spent $5,000 in marketing, the cost per lead is $50.
  • Calculate your cost per sale (CPS): marketing spend ÷ total number of agreements sold = average CPS
    If you sold 30 agreements from 100 leads, the CPS is $167.
Sheri Spencer Bachman

Sheri Spencer Bachman

Now, if the average sale is $600 and you have a gross profit (cost of service) of 50 percent (or $300 + CPS), the annual profit on this account in the first year is $134, not including office overhead. But if 60 agreements
are sold from 100 leads, the CPS becomes $83, increasing profit to $217. Therefore, you need to close more leads to reduce your CPS.

Take action

To close more leads, you need to:

  1. Hire a dedicated salesperson. Converting leads into sales takes a sales-focused person, not an added task and distraction for your office staff.
  2. Train your salesperson to handle sales calls and ask for business. Roleplay!
  3. Sell over the phone. You can reach more people via phone than in person. The average phone sale takes five to eight minutes. The average in-person sale, adding in windshield and appointment time, takes well over an hour.
  4. Use a proven sales process. Not to toot my horn too much, but if you need a sales process, visit me online at PestControlBusinessCoach.com and I can help.
  5. Check in with the sales staff regularly. Listen to their phone calls for training. Measure their success (see “The Game Plan,” below).
  6. Cross-sell existing customers. Landing new accounts is great, but remember there are free leads for new services right in your database already.

The Game Plan

Perhaps most important of all, you must track the numbers. What gets measured gets done. Per person, track:

  • Sales goal.
  • Number of leads received.
  • Number of proposals given.
  • Number of agreements sold.
  • Dollar amount sold per day.
  • Dollar amount sold vs. sales goal.
  • Closing rate percentage.

About the Author

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Spencer Bachman is a second-generation pest management professional, and owner of the Pest Control Business Coach consulting firm based in Canton, Ga. You can reach her at Sheri@PestControlBusinessCoach.com.

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