15 Sales Training Ideas That Work!

The sales function is the growth engine of any company and business. And your sales reps form the core of this function. We at Goodmeetings firmly believe that coaching insights can significantly enhance remote sales. 

Sales is an utterly competitive field and is evolving to be data-driven day by day. As it continues to become data-driven, it is no longer a ‘born with sales talent’. 

Sales is now a science that can be remembered with the right amount of coaching and training. As a growth-seeking company, investing in sales coaching can be one of the most productive things that you can do. Also, it is noteworthy to note that just setting up a coaching process isn’t enough in today’s ever-changing rapid dynamics. What you truly need is the existence of a sales coaching culture. It should be embedded so seamlessly in your overall sales strategy that it doesn’t feel like a lone fragment but a strategic piece of the overall structure. 

Why Is Sales Training Important?

In today’s business dynamics, sales training is not only important but essential and critical for your business’s success. 

Continuous sales training becomes all the more important in subscription-based businesses, especially SaaS. 

Why so?

In the world of SaaS, things change rapidly, both in terms of product and also in industry practices. Simultaneously, it is important to catch the right nerve at the right time. A moment’s delay can make you stay behind your competition. 

If SaaS sales weren’t just competitive enough, most SaaS sales turning remote has added to the competitive factor. 

It is now just a 14” inch screen between a sales rep and a prospect, therefore training becomes all the more essential for such situations. 

And if you are in the world of business, your competition will only increase with time. Also, as you expand your business offerings and conquer new markets with time, it is immensely critical to keep your sales teams up to date and equip them with the most in-demand skills. 

No doubt that the world of business changes rapidly but sales have been around ever since. A few sales practices have existed since time immemorial and continue to work. 

The best part, sales practices when clubbed with advanced technology further augment the sales rewards. 

So what can be a few basic methodologies that can you incorporate to kickstart your sales coaching culture?

Best Practices For Creating Sales Training Programs

1. Set An Objective And KPIs

Begin by establishing clear objectives for what your sales training program aims to achieve. Objectives could range from increasing closing rates to shortening sales cycles. Once objectives are set, identify Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that will be used to measure success. These could include metrics like the number of deals closed, average deal size, or customer satisfaction scores. Setting these benchmarks early helps in creating focused content and allows for the measurement of the program’s effectiveness over time.

2. Always Give Constructive Feedback

Constructive feedback is essential for growth and learning. Ensure that feedback within your sales training program is timely, specific, and actionable. Avoid generalizations that leave salespeople unsure of how to improve. Instead, highlight specific instances of what was done well and areas for improvement. This practice encourages a culture of continuous learning and growth, making the training process a positive experience for all involved.

3. Create or Implement a Knowledge Base

A comprehensive knowledge base serves as a centralized repository of information that salespeople can access anytime. This should include product details, sales processes, best practices, FAQs, and more. Having this resource available ensures that sales teams can quickly find the information they need, fostering self-sufficiency and confidence. Regular updates to the knowledge base keep the sales team informed about new products, features, or changes in sales strategy.

4. Offer a Variety of Sales Training Techniques

Different people learn in different ways, so incorporating a variety of training techniques can cater to diverse learning preferences. This could include traditional classroom training, online courses, role-playing, mentoring programs, and peer-to-peer learning. Utilizing a mix of these methods can help maintain engagement and cater to visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners.

5. Consider Device-Independent Options

In today’s mobile world, sales teams are often on the move. Providing training material that is accessible on any device, whether it’s a laptop, tablet, or smartphone, ensures that salespeople can learn whenever and wherever they are. This approach supports a flexible learning environment, allowing sales teams to engage with training materials at their own pace and on their own time.

6. Gamify Your Sales Training and Development

Gamification involves applying game-design elements in non-game contexts, like sales training, to make learning more engaging and fun. This could involve leaderboards, points, badges, or rewards for completing training modules or achieving certain KPIs. Gamification not only makes the learning experience more enjoyable but also fosters a sense of competition and achievement among the sales team. This approach can significantly increase participation rates and engagement with the training content.

Implementing these best practices in creating sales training programs can lead to a more knowledgeable, skilled, and motivated sales force. It’s important to regularly review and adjust the training program based on feedback and performance metrics to ensure it remains relevant and effective.

Here Are 15 Ideas To Train Your Sales Team

Sales processes and practices differ but here are a few ideas that never go out of fashion and can be explored irrespective of your industry. 

1.Conduct mock product demos and presentations

Practice makes a man perfect. The saying continues to hold value. The same goes for sales especially when you are doing remote sales. 

Remote sales require multitasking, relationship building, and value selling.  Conducting mock demos can help improve ramp-up time and prepare for all possible scenarios. They work best when sales reps and managers reflect back on demos to identify areas for improvement. 

It is wise to invest in a tool that helps you churn out the maximum juice out of your demo sessions. The Goodmeetings platform helps identify keyword ratio and assist in setting up a demo template. 

2. Assess reps one by one

Not all reps can perform identically. Some may be good at demoing and closing deals while others could be excellent at customer onboarding. Therefore it is important to assess all sales reps in your teams individually. It won’t only help in improving their core strengths but also in channelizing sales team resources in the correct direction. 

When you evaluate sales reps individually, you identify their core strengths, weaknesses, and areas of improvement. Having this information handy will allow sales managers and sales leaders to create a complimentary sales team. 

At this point, you should also focus on the average ramp-up time for new hires. It can be a key metric to measure overall sales productivity. 

This Hubspot blog outlines that the average ramp-up time for an SDR is around 3.2 months. 

This can be a little too much for young companies. Sales coaching and training can help reduce it significantly, and assessing reps one on one will give you a fair idea of the kind of coaching that needs to be imparted. 

Average ramp up time of new hires

 3. Practice objection-handling exercises

Objections! Many sales reps dread this word and the risks it brings. 

Objections can come in any form and unexpectedly. However, the best we can do is be prepared for handling the most frequent ones. 

Identify what kind of objections your prospects raise the most. Record them and devise accurate responses to those. Encourage your sales teams to handle these frequently raised objections. 

4. Explore and understand buyer problems and journey

Buyers of today are smart and do much of their research beforehand even before showing up at a sales meeting. As the Gartner report suggests, the buyer journey is now complex and is non-linear anymore. 

Therefore train your sales reps in this area. Help them understand the buyer mindset. Just selling won’t help anymore, value-based selling is the key to winning deals.

When considering a purchase, most buyers do their own research and spend only 17% of the time meeting salespeople.  

Build buyer personas, and chart out their journey from discovering your product to buying. Keep your competitor analysis handy so as to handle any rebuttal.


 5. Develop product expertise

As we just outlined, buyers of today are smarter than you think. Therefore value-based selling is the only way to buyers’ hearts. 

Buyers don’t care for what your product offers, they care about how the product or service solves their problem. 

So sales reps should think beyond product features and develop a deep understanding of the product and service. Understand the critical use cases, be aware of the shortcomings and develop unique value propositions. 

Courtesy of complex buyer journeys and other factors, selling has become difficult. 61% of sellers feel it. 

And the reason we all know. 

Therefore gaining inside-out product knowledge will help sales reps handle objections and sell solutions rather than just a product. 

A few ways to encourage this can be:

  • Conduct product pitching sessions
  • Ask reps to present various use cases 
  • Map product features with pain points and present them as solutions

6. Teach prospecting

Prospecting is an art. Wrong prospecting brings down the productivity of your sales team by manifolds. 

Think about it. All this while, your best sales rep is chasing the wrong lead. 

The reason?

Shortcomings while lead prospecting. 

Therefore, this stage is the first step yet a critical one towards closing a deal. Make sure you have frequent prospecting training sessions with your team and learn from past data. 

7. Live mentoring and shadowing

Training, coaching, and mentoring are used interchangeably but can have minute differentiators. Mentoring is more like a hand-holding process. 

Training and coaching can happen asynchronously. However, live mentoring can help new sales reps learn faster and better. 

Providing support and motivation during the actual sales meetings is a great way to handhold your reps. 

Goodmeetings incognito coach mode can help you do just that where mentors can secretly join in any meetings and guide the sales rep at the backend. 

8. Peer to peer learning and training

Remember your undergrad days? 

Studies and exam preparations seemed simpler whenever we studied with our fellow batchmates. 

Peer learning thus makes a difference and holds value across learning stages, even in professional lives. 

Therefore encourage team meetings, team reviews, and collective learning sessions. Methodologies like these encourage the flow and exchange of ideas. 

Statistics support this and show that 91% of sales reps feel that peer learning will help them succeed. 

peer to peer training

 9. Sales automation tools

The sales stack is a thing. In the world of technology, and if you are selling tech, having a tool for everything is no big deal. 

There are CRMs, email automation tools, and now the in-trend sales intelligence tools. Make sure your team is comfortable with using all the must-have tools or else it can lead to productivity losses. 

10. Win/loss analysis

Today’s technology has allowed us to capture and track data effortlessly. Data is the new oil, as we say. Your sales meetings hold rich data and can be used to identify wins and losses. 

  • What worked in a sales meeting?
  • What duration works best?
  • What should be an ideal talk-to-listen ratio?
  • How are reps handling objections?

All this data can be crucial to identify what makes a deal a winning deal.

Therefore, invest in a tool that can help you unearth this data. 

Analyze your sales calls and measure talk to listen ratio

11. Focus on sales process

The journey is as important as the destination. Your sales process is the journey to a closed deal. 

Therefore analyze your existing sales processes and identify the loopholes. Optimize and calibrate your processes to achieve the highest sales productivity possible. 

  • How much is the new hire ramp-up time?
  • What tools have the steepest learning curve?
  • Are all tools in your sales stack providing the ROI?
  • Have you automated the repetitive tasks?

Questions like the above and similar can help you evaluate what your present sales processes look like and if you need to implement any changes. 

12. Share success stories

Who doesn’t need a little bit of motivation?

We all do right? 

So share success stories within your sales teams. These stories can be popular case studies, thoughts from a sales influencer, and so on. 

However, your internal success stories can be the most relatable. 

For example, recently we at Goodmeetings came across a wonderful practice. The sales leader of a company shared with us how on a particular date of every month, all sales teams get together and revisit the best sales meeting of the six months. These meetings are the ones that usually convert. This practice helped many learn quite a lot and disperses motivation within the team.

13. Hire external expertise

Hiring an external expert every once in a while for a specific training program can work wonders. Biases and monotonously often prevail internally that can be easily broken when you take external help. 

External expert advice and suggestions help break the monotonicity.  Further, a third eye always sees what you can’t. 

External specific training programs also allow a change of perspective and encourage the flow of new ideas that can be super beneficial for your sales teams. 

 14. Streamline the communication among different teams

No company has a single sales team. Sales are usually divided into specific jurisdiction-specific teams or by some other criteria. 

However, communication between teams is often broken and isolated. Bridging this communication gap can help improve sales reps’ performance and help teams imbibe the strengths of each other. 

Further, sales teams often coordinate with other departments like product teams, marketing, sales enablement, etc. Hence, ensuring streamlined communication will help increase the overall productivity of your sales teams. 

 15. Use games to make sales training fun and informative

Have you ever noticed that when we learn anything in a fun way, we understand it better and remember it for a longer time? 

The same holds for sales training. So why not gamify sales training and let the team have some fun?

Identify ways in which you can gamify the whole sales training process. 

A few ideas can be:

  • Reward program for completing a certain number of mock demos
  • Secret giveaway for watching and summarizing a certain number of benchmarked meetings 
  • Small incentives for identifying frequent objections and devising objection-handling tactics

And many more. The possibilities can be endless!

Identify the best methodologies that work for you

Establishing a sales training framework is essential. It is important to identify the right tools, and correct workflows and then set a framework that works. 

GoodMeetings can be a key catalyst in assisting you in your sales coaching journey. Book a demo to learn more about how we can help you build a winning sales coaching process. 

Build a winning sales coaching process with GoodMeetings!

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