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If you feel bogged down by an inefficient B2B sales process, you’re far from alone. In a survey by CSO Insights, seven in ten sales leaders said the effectiveness of their sales cycle needed improvement. Poor processes kill sales velocity, lose customers, and ultimately impact your bottom line – not to mention they’re just plain frustrating to deal with on a day-to-day basis.
There isn’t any one quick-fix solution to a broken sales cycle. You may be battling challenges on multiple fronts, unsure of which to tackle first.
But many sales inefficiencies can ultimately be traced back to an unlikely source: contracts. If you’re facing any of these three common problems, it’s a sign you need to abandon outdated agreement methods in favor of self-service contracts.
In the world of sales, time is a form of currency. The number of days, weeks, or months it takes to close a deal can either make or break your bottom line. If your sales process is taking longer than it should, you’re probably missing out on revenue.
The exact length of the sales cycle depends on the industry, size of the company, and other factors. However, research from CSO Insights has found that roughly 75% of new business deals and 40% of ones with existing customers take longer than three months to close. For new business, nearly half take longer than six months and one in five passes the one-year mark.
There are many reasons the sales process can take longer than it should, including roadblocks in getting approval from key stakeholders on the client’s side. But once a lead is prepared to sign, it’s the sales team’s job to be ready and waiting for them. An inefficient contracting process that tacks additional days or weeks onto the process can cause the deal to lose momentum and fall apart.
All too often, the legal department becomes roped into the sales cycle despite not having a role in sales. With outdated agreement methods, sales professionals are forced to depend on the legal team’s efficiency to get contracts turned around quickly. This overcomplicates the sales process and creates extra unnecessary steps for everyone.
The Harvard Business Review found that the number of people involved in a single B2B sale actually increased from 5.4 to 6.8 between 2015 and 2017. While the involvement of cross-functional departments may sound like a good thing for collaboration, it puts a major throttle on the sales process. With so many stakeholders involved, decisions take longer and require multiple sign offs before things can move forward.
See How PactSafe Can Streamline Sales Contracts: Get an Instant Demo
Unlike transactions with consumers that are often standardized by nature, B2B sales are more likely to require custom terms and contract language. The process of revising and negotiating these contracts demands heavy manual labor and is extremely expensive; contracts with a medium level of complexity cost $21,300 on average.
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The issue at hand is that companies apply the same model to all types of contracts within the organization. There is certainly a time and place for lengthy contract reviews, typically when the financial stakes are extremely high – when entering a long-term partnership or partaking in a merger or acquisition, for example. However, there’s no reason to use this same process with lower-value agreements like sales contracts. It’s basically like trying to reinvent the wheel every time you make a sale.
If one or more of these pain points sounds familiar, you’re in the right place. PactSafe’s self-service contracting platform is designed to eliminate common problems in the sales cycle, reducing overhead costs and speeding up sales velocity.
With self-service contracts, you can expect to:
Related: Self-Service Contracts for Sales
Self-service contracts from PactSafe are easy to set up and deploy using an intuitive, no-code interface – and native integration is available with CRM tools like Salesforce. Explore the platform here.
Download our eBook, A Salesperson's Guide to Beating Growth Goals: Contracts that Close Faster.