What is commercial productivity?
We can all agree that commercial productivity is something difficult to reach for many companies, and that’s what we’ll discuss in today’s article. However, to better understand how can we reach a higher level of productivity, let’s start from the beginning; what is commercial efficiency?
This concept can sometimes be mistaken for efficacy or even with efficiency, but they are certainly different concepts; let’s recap for a moment.
Today’s topic, commercial productivity, refers to the amount of resources used in order to reach a goal, that is, how is this goal obtained; it is an indicator of efficiency, and being efficient means optimizing the usage of resources and commercial processes. Efficacy simply refers to the fact of reaching a goal. A worker can be effective, because he reaches all his goals, but inefficient, because he uses way too many resources when doing so.
Commercial effectiveness would be the combination of both, that is, reaching all our goals and actually achieving results, but using the least possible amount of resources, and this is when we reach commercial productivity.
Commercial efficiency in retail
Let’s get back to our main topic; you count on a good sales team that does a great job when closing sales, but uses way too many resources when doing so; you definitely have an effective but inefficient team.
It’s important that, before your team starts their visits, you take a minute and think if your commercial processes are well defined and optimized. Is your team working in the most efficient way? Are they using the least amount of time and resources to successfully carry out their activities? Let’s see!
Define the most efficient route
By carefully planning your route you’ll become more productive; select your clients depending on their purchasing propensity, those who score higher according to your data, and identify the best route to visit them throughout your working day. You’ll save economic resources, as you will be saving fuel by not wandering meaninglessly around the city, and you won’t waste time in order to offer a higher performance. A tool that includes a geo locator and your clients’ scoring can help us plan the most efficient route.
You probably wonder which criteria should you use to achieve a good client scoring; every company can use different variables, but some of the most popular ones are the last visit, the client’s last order or their average purchasing value, among others. Once you have your scoring system ready according to the client’s purchasing propensity, you can start performing your commercial visits taking these criteria into account, what will help us improve our productivity.
Prepare your visit
Once you get to the point of sales, you have no time to waste; we recommend you to prepare the visit in advance, and that you have any document you may need in hand. Remember that our goal is to be as productive as possible, and we only have a stop per client to carry out all the activities.
What could help us become more productive when visiting our clients? A key factor is having a historic with all our interactions with our client. This way, we’ll be able to offer him a more customized service, which doesn’t only affect the sales volume, but also the client’s engagement. We’ll be able to offer him the products he is usually interested in and he actually needs, so it’s more likely that he purchases them.
A great idea to introduce new products in our client’s shelves is having the necessary documents to show him our promotions, special offers or multimedia materials on hand; we’ll save our time and also our client’s time, skipping unclear explanations. To do so, trust tools that allow you to manage documents and access real-time updated information; it will for sure have a positive impact on your business.
Provide added value
Let’s be honest; technology is a potential catalyst to improve commercial productivity, and we cannot keep denying this any longer. Even if it does imply a great expense sometimes, and it is definitely an economic resource, technology affects positively and directly our productivity and profitability, so we’ll consider it an investment and never a simple expense.
This way, we shouldn’t waste our time in the point of sales with tasks that a machine can do for us. Can a tool collect the data from our shelves for us? Yes. Can it negotiate with the retailer and, let’s say, close a deal or a new promotion? Not now. What should we focus on then to optimize the productivity of our visit?
Let’s provide our added value by focusing on tasks that only we can do, and leave the rest for technology.
New technologies to achieve commercial efficiency
We’ve given you three examples on how to achieve commercial productivity. However, more help is always welcome, right?
There are many solutions in the market that can help you improve every aspect we have mentioned, either with tools that cover one of the points or with one that covers the three of them; we are talking about software built specially to reach commercial excellence that, you might have guessed, has a lot to do with efficiently mastering commercial processes and achieving the maximum productivity.
A CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is a very good option if we need help with managing and engaging our client list, but if we were to recommend you a tool, it would definitely be an SFA or Sales Force Automation software. If you wish to know more about their differences, read here!
An SFA will optimize your whole commercial process, including the three points we’ve mentioned today among many more that also affect your commercial productivity. You won’t have any excuse anymore: commercial efficiency is right in front of you.