Client Retention is Key in The World of Sales

Retentiion is criticalWhile much of the world of sales is focused on bringing in new clients, it is just as important for salespeople to retain their customers.

Retention was the focus of a recent article in Entrepreneur Magazine, which pointed out that it can be up to 10 times as hard to find a new client as it is to keep a current one. The article offered a number of tips to help salespeople accomplish this.

The first tip is to tie one’s service or product to a customer’s bottom line. By demonstrating the immediate impact one provides to a company’s revenue and gross profits, a salesperson will be in a strong position to retain their clients. A key to demonstrating this connection is to find out about how a company operates, which can clue sales reps in to critical information, according to the article.

Another piece of advice in the article is to foster relationships with multiple people in a client organization. In addition, the article also says to get rid of accounts that waste a salesperson’s time or money.

Barrett Riddleberger, the chief executive officer (CEO) of Resolution Systems, Inc., a sales training and consulting firm, agrees that retention is essential in the world of sales.

“Retaining customers is the key to long term growth,” the executive said. “They pay the bills while you go get more. You always take care of your customer base. They provide the revenue for R&D, marketing, fixed costs, etc. Keeping that cash flow going is the basis of good business.”

Riddleberger explained that some salespeople are better suited for retention than others and it is up to a sales manager to make sure that the appropriate people are working in the spheres that maximize their abilities.

“Some salespeople are better at hunting and don’t do as well ‘farming’ existing accounts. Others are great at cultivating customer relationships, but don’t do well prospecting,” the CEO said. “Never make the mistake of taking a good farmer and forcing them to hunt for new business.”

Determining who is equipped for each role is an essential part of a sales manger’s job as such decisions can make or break a sales staff.

“As a leader, you must put the best people who have a desire to help their customers succeed in those critical customer retention roles,” said Riddleberger.