||It has been suggested that this article be merged into Sales process engineering. (Discuss) Proposed since September 2012.|
In business science a sales process describes an approach to selling a product or service. The sales process has been approached from the point of view of an engineering discipline (see sales process engineering).
Reasons for having a well-thought-out sales process include seller and buyer risk management, standardized customer interaction during sales, and scalable revenue generation. Approaching the subject from a "process" point of view offers an opportunity to use design and improvement tools from other disciplines and process-oriented industries. Joseph Juran observed that "there should be no reason our familiar principles of quality and process engineering would not work in the sales process".
In Management of a Sales Force (12th Ed. p. 66) by Rich, Spiro and Stanton a "sales process" is presented as consisting of eight steps. These are:
- Prospecting / initial contact
- Preapproach - planning the sale
- Need assessment
- Meeting objections
- Gaining commitment
From a seller's point of view, analysis of a sales process can reveal steps in a sale that are problematic, and may allow the prediction of numbers of sales based on initial interest. The interface between the selling and buying process has also been diagrammed.
- Paul H. Selden (1997). Sales Process Engineering: A Personal Workshop. Milwaukee, WI: ASQ Quality Press. p. 23. ISBN 0-87389-418-9.
- William H. McNeese and Robert A. Klein (1991). Statistical Methods For The Process Industries. Milwaukee, WI: ASQC Quality Press. ISBN 0-8247-8524-X.
- Selden (1997). p. xxii. Missing or empty
- "The Sales Funnel", www.mindtools.com
- Paul H. Selden (November 2000). "The Power of Quality Thinking In Sales and Management". Quality Progress: 58–64.