In today’s competitive market place, it is important to be a step ahead of the competition always. You can be the best sales person in the world, but as soon as you let yourself become complacent, you will start to lose sales. The best sales people know that they must be always working to increase sales knowledge. The ability to increase sales knowledge is increasing you sales competence.
One major aspect of better performance that comes as you increase sales knowledge is an increase in product knowledge. The old saying that “knowledge is power” is very true. There are a few things that you need to make sure you remain on top of. Some good ways to increase sales knowledge:
- Know your products or services inside and out. As you learn more about your product or service, you will begin to increase sales knowledge. You need to know how to use the product or service and be good at it. If you have the opportunity to have a hands-on approach to using the product, you must do that. Nothing can increase sales knowledge the way that personal experience does. Being very familiar with the use of the product helps you to help your customer. The more you know the more you will be able to help them find what will work to fulfill their needs. In addition, you need to know how the product is typically being used and, how it is being used in unexpected ways. Obviously, you do not want to sell your product for purposes other than what it was intended for. However, someone may be using your product in a way that is fresh, legal and applicable in ways other than the original intention. As you gain this increase sales knowledge about alternate uses, it could easily allow you to expand your customer base.
- Find out what people are saying about your product. With the internet, all companies and consumers have a plethora of knowledge readily available. Anyone can learn just about anything online. The information may be misleading or false, but it’s always available. As a professional sales person, part of your ability to increase sales knowledge is to find out what the buzz is regarding your product or services. There is a lot of misinformation on the web and you need to find out what is being said about your product or service: what’s true and what isn’t true. Being fully aware is being fully armed should a customer ask you about something that they saw on the web regarding your company or your product.
- You should also increase your sales knowledge by learning about your competitors. Again, much of this information will be available on the web. You learn the advantages and disadvantages of the competitor’s product or service, especially as it relates to your product. You can also search to find out what consumers are saying about your competitor. You should also explore how your competition is selling their product. This information is probably available on their web site and knowing how they sell will increase sales knowledge. Find out if they offer something that you don’t currently offer, but could…like discounted shipping. Maybe the competition has discovered products that complement their main product and are offering that for sales as well. For example, if you sell electronic devices, maybe they offer cases or screen protectors for free or low cost. For you to increase sales knowledge, you need to know exactly what your competition is up to.
As you increase sales knowledge, you should remember that the more you know the more prepared you are. If you work to increase sales knowledge about your own product and how it is used, and you look to see what your competitors are doing, you will find it reflects in your sales success.