As a sales leader, you definitely want your team to succeed. However, there are times when your reps aren’t knowledgeable enough when it comes to what they sell and how they sell the product. When there’s a gap in product knowledge, failure to reach their quotas is almost guaranteed.
This is a real struggle that a lot of sales reps face on a daily basis. But there are methods that you can adopt to improve your sales team’s product knowledge. In this blog, you’ll learn 5 best practices to improve it.
1. Schedule weekly sales product training.
Just because they’re already familiar with the product, doesn’t mean the training should end there. The customer’s preferences can change any minute. It is important that your salespeople are able to cope with the fast-paced environment, especially when it comes to market trends. New problems and solutions arise, therefore, you have to make sure that your team’s product knowledge is always current.
Set aside some time every week to train your reps about new features and reviews to improve your products. Customers are always on the lookout for the better product; that’s why making sure that your reps know if there are recent improvements to your product is very important.
2. Implement product-learning content.
Sales professionals can process and retain information in just a short span of time or even while on the go. Take this opportunity to innovate their learning process. Provide them with the appropriate product learning materials (which can be viewed online and through all types of devices) such as simplified but concise content:
- Interactive videos
- Online articles
- Product learning apps
Do this by chunking the content into bite-sized pieces to prevent information overload. Doing so could help them absorb information in a matter of seconds with less hassle and even in between activities. This training technique is very effective especially when onboarding field salespeople. Instead of inviting them to come to your office for training, you can just send them learning materials regarding product updates.
And don’t forget to integrate a way to test their product knowledge. It’s important to determine how much they have improved or if they need to undergo more training. Conduct mock product demos and throw in some trick questions as well. If they understood the product and the reason why your customers need it, they will be able to answer whatever questions you throw at them.
3. Put learning into practice with role-playing/simulation.
Conduct role-playing sessions, true-to-life simulations, and other techniques where sales reps could demonstrate their knowledge when exposed in real-life scenarios.
You can group them into two – one composed of sales reps and one being the consumers to practice common scenarios in the field.
Using these techniques not only helps them visualize how selling goes on in an actual conversation with clients, it also encourages them to be fluent speakers. Customers will be able to see through sales reps whether or not they know the product they’re selling by heart. Their understanding of the product and its features will reflect on the confidence they display during their sales pitch.
4. Perform one-on-one coaching (if necessary).
Sales training must be taken seriously and continuously. If some members of your team have a hard time learning your product, try a more personalized training approach through one-on-one coaching.
Direct input from the product expert (you) will make it easier for them to absorb all the necessary information.
This strategic training will give you insights into their progress in terms of product knowledge and provide you a helpful understanding of what aspects of learning they should focus more on.
5. Provide them incentives and rewards.
Giving your employees incentives and rewards such as allowance, bonus perks, vacation leave, free trips, or higher salary as a way of showing how you appreciate them can go a long way.
It would inspire them to learn more and perform better. It would also mean that you really appreciate their efforts and dedication to their job.
Reward giveaways are optional but are sure-fire ways to keep them determined and motivated to perform better in sales.
Integrating these practices can help you improve your team’s product knowledge. The more they understand what they’re selling and why they’re selling it, the easier it’ll be for them to build trust with your customers and close deals.
Remember, sales success is not only the result of effective selling skills but a deep understanding of what your customer needs and what your company can offer as a solution as well. Product learning transforms your team members into smarter, more confident sales reps who are not afraid to face objections and determined to close deals.