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How to increase your win rate and sales velocity

August 13, 2021
What if every account executive scored one more win every quarter? What would that do for your bottom line?

When qualifying leads, an SDR often considers potential revenue and the size of their pipeline. 

After all, the larger the pipeline, and the bigger the deals, the more revenue you’ll earn, right? 

Yes. But also no. 

After all, winning more, easier, smaller deals faster can expand your customer base and allows your business to grow while you’re waiting for the “whales.”

But that’s why you’re here, isn’t it? To increase win rate and sales velocity?

What do win rate and sales velocity mean?

Quite simply, "win rate" is how many deals you've closed out of the total deals made.

Win Rate = Closed-Won Deals / Total Number of Deals (Closed-Won Deals + Non-Closed-Won Deals)

While "sales velocity" is how long it takes to win those deals, and the revenue generated over any given time period.

Sales Velocity = Number of Opportunities x Average Deal Value x Win Rate / Length of Average Sales Cycle 

Read on as we walk you through the above pointers in more detail to help drive your win rate and sales velocity.

6 excellent tactics to drive your win rate and sales velocity

Let’s review some of the most effective strategies to set yourself up for sales success.

#1 Create valuable content to support your internal champions

Steer clear of deals that have a lower possibility of converting. When you take on quality and qualified leads, you're more likely to speed up your sales cycle.

You can’t do much if a deal is already at the point of being forecast. Precisely why you need a disciplined inspection and coaching process higher up in the funnel to improve your sales velocity and win rates.

Make sure the deals your teams are working on are qualified. Here are a few questions to help you identify them:

  • Are you engaging with people who have the authority to make decisions regarding your product or service?
  • Do the decision-makers of this opportunity understand they have a problem? Are they ready to spend money to fix it?
  • Do the decision-makers of the opportunity know your value proposition? Are they accommodating towards your vision for success?
  • Does the organization behind this opportunity have the political will to change from the status quo? If they decide to remain in their current state, how would you consider the impact?

Ask the above questions early on in the sales process. It’ll save you from having uncomfortable conversations concerning why the revenue was one-fourth of the initial sales forecast with your boss later.

The idea is to inspect what you expect and coach effectively at the start of the sales process.  

#2 Step up your lead generation efforts

Your lead generation and management approach is the main reason behind a perceived sales problem.

We’re wired to channel most of our focus on the bottom of our sales funnel, so much so, we end up neglecting the top of the funnel. What we fail to understand is the only way to accelerate revenue and sales is to do the exact opposite.

When you increase the number of qualified opportunities entering your sales process, you get far more chances to increase your win rate and sales velocity. 

To do this, you have to become more collaborative with your marketing team. Help them understand your target audience and business objectives. Align your vision with their marketing ideas and tactics. 

Once your marketing team understands your vision and approach, they can brainstorm effective ideas to enhance your marketing efforts. In turn, this will pave the way for more high-quality leads.

Plus, being focused on the top of the funnel gives you access to a larger portion of your target market, considering most of your competitors will be over-focused on the bottom of their funnels.

Our tip? Change your questions. Ask “Why should a prospect want to talk to you” rather than “Why would a prospect want to buy from you.”

#3 Increase your average deal size

Driving your average deal size can be challenging as there are many related factors to consider.

You have to decide the right product mix and pricing structure. Then determine whether you can sell your prospect on more use cases and more products. 

Let’s not forget the public pricing for products or services similar to yours, and your relationship with decision-makers is equally influential.

Luckily, you can set yourself up for success by knowing how to connect price to value. 

SDRs can design highly customized demos using the insights they learned in the discovery phase of the deal, positioning your solution as the best authority to solve the pain points of the person on the other end of the call.

#4 Optimize your sales conversion points

There are a number of reasons why your prospects aren't buying your product or service.

Some are on you; maybe your SDRs or BDs didn’t qualify leads properly. Maybe your offer doesn’t meet their requirements. 

Some are on the market; maybe your primary competitor offers a better deal. 

And some have nothing to do with you; maybe your champion is mixed up in company politics.

Document why people are exiting (and entering) your pipeline.   

By documenting as much of the process as possible—from the source of the deal to why the deal was lost—you can, over time, build a library of reasons for deals won and lost.

These insights into what your customer wants, and needs, not only help you tailor your conversations better, but can also prove invaluable to your marketing team who can better position your offering, setting you up for easier conversations further down-funnel. 

Prospects should understand how your solution will help them solve the problem. But before that, you’ll need clearly defined buyer personas.

Here is a list of pointers to define your buyer personas:

  • Outline the types of companies and individuals in your pipeline
  • Document and define the problems these companies or individuals face. Then answer how your company can help solve these problems for them.
  • Think about what will happen if the companies or individuals don’t address these problems immediately. What opportunities would be missed? What issues would come up?

Remember, your sales journey and buyer journey are closely related. So remain patient with prospects as they make their way through the funnel.

#5 Nurture your leads throughout the sales funnel

Having quality leads is half the battle. You have to continuously nurture them into becoming informed buyers of your product or service to increase your win rate and sales velocity.

You don't have to take our word for it; we have numbers to prove it.

Years ago, Jim Obermayer wrote a piece titled The Rule of 45: Predicting Sales Results From Inquiries, which did an excellent job at explaining how you can measure the effectiveness of virtually all your lead generation programs.

According to him, "The Rule of 45 is a steady, reliable rule which simply says that 45% of all inquiries (not just qualified sales leads), will buy from someone." 

Every product has a typical average time frame for the majority of the interested parties to make a decision. But while this could be a few months for consumer products, the Rule of 45 is completed within 12 months for B2B products. 

For context, Jim claims that the percentage of people who will buy in three months is usually between 10%-15%, while the percentage of people who buy in the next six months is 26%. Whereas, the remaining 4%-9% will buy within the remaining 6 months.

#6 Make everything about your prospects

As mentioned, tap into pain points from discovery and drive that home with your solution. 

This also means you should focus on solving your prospect’s problem instead of selling your product. In other words, swap a commodity selling ideology with solution selling.

Stimulate your prospect’s thinking. Focus your message deeply on their world and the challenges they face. Make everything about them and NOT about you, your features, or even your benefits.
“Approach each customer with the approach of helping him or her solve a problem or achieve a goal, not of selling a product or service.” - Brian Tracy

Trust us, a powerful message that provokes prospects can seriously boost your win rate and accelerate sales velocity.