After exploring how your sales team can improve your content, today we’ll take a look at how quality content can help improve your sales.
It’s no secret that great content can bring in more web traffic and drive sales. That is, after all, why most of us are doing it. But I’d like to argue that great content can also make your sales team’s job easier along the way.
First, we need to think about the “sales funnel,” the process by which a curious prospect becomes a money-generating buyer. Sales funnels vary from company to company. An online shoe retailer, for example, might have a funnel that looks like this:
Prospect visits website to search for boots. > Prospect returns to read boot reviews. > Prospect buys boots.
This funnel identifies three touch points, or visits. And, as you can see, touch points aren’t always with the sales team itself, which highlights our main point…
Great content makes the sales job easier.
Imagine that this online shoe retailer doesn’t actually sell online, but instead offers its products exclusively in a handful of stores around the country. How much more work would the sales team face without digital content?
The salespeople would have to answer calls about whether they carry boots, and if so, what kind. They would have to answer questions about customer satisfaction with those boots, how often the boots are returned, how popular they are this season, etc.. And they’d have to handle all boot sales directly at the register. Each question or task requires a time commitment from the sales team. Collectively, that time starts piling up—meaning more work for the sales team and less sales to show for it.
But by producing useful content on its website (a working search function, pictures of boots, boot reviews, and an easy online checkout), my imaginary online shoe retailer reduces its sales work to almost nothing. Sure, the company would still require that a sales person or two be available by phone, contact form, or online chat. But the sales team employed by a company with great content has a very different job than the content-less one.
Apply these ideas to your projects.
This, my savvy content friends, is how you get buy-in on your content projects from your sales team and executives. Show them how content strategy and quality content can shorten the sales funnel, free up the teams, and make the business more money.
Of course, first you’ll have to interview the sales team and find out what the sales funnel looks like. Then, take that sales funnel and find the gaps: Where might a website, a newsletter, a presence on Yelp.com, or a blog take over a step in the process?
And, finally, take your stakeholders through the process. Show them how their jobs will become easier and how they’ll make more money. Trust me, you’ll have a rapt audience.