Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Sales, or the activity of selling, forms an integral part of commercial activity. Mastering sales is considered by many as some sort of persuading "art". On the contrary, the methodological approach of selling, refers to it as a systematic process of repetitive and measurable milestones, by which a salesperson relate his offering enabling the buyer to visualize how to achieve his goal in an economic way. Selling is a practical implementation of marketing, it often forms a separate grouping in a corporate structure, employing separate specialist operatives known as salesmen (singular: salesman or salesperson).
The successful questioning to understand a customers goal, the further creation of a valuable solution by communicating the necessary information that encourages a buyer to achieve his goal at an economic cost is the responsibility of the sales person or the sales engine (e.g. internet, vending machine etc). Because of the natural reluctance of human beings to part company with something they currently own in exchange for something that MIGHT make their life better, the role of the salesman is often linked with excessive behavior and overstatement of product characteristics.
The primary function of sales is to find and close leads, turning prospective customers into actual ones.
Moral strictures applied to marketeers often apply even more vigorously to those in sales. People selling second-hand cars, real estate or encyclopedias (of the non-Wikipedia variety) often come in for particular disdain. Sellers of snake oil have become stock figures for mirth at their quackery: they merge with the category of the confidence trickster or the carny.
The propensity of certain types of salespeople to treat customers badly can be attributed to greed, ignorance and game theory. Game theory says that if you play a zero-sum interaction only once without iteration, treating your customer as an adversary is the optimal strategy for your success. However a cooperative strategy such as tit-for-tat is best if ongoing dealings and interactions are expected. This insight is behind so-called consultative sales techniques which are used by Saturn to sell cars, as well as for most direct Business-to-Business sales.
Forms of selling include:
- Direct Sales - involving face-to-face contact
- Indirect - human-mediated but with direct contact
- web B2B, B2C
- multi-level marketing
- sales agents (real estate, manufacturing)
- SearchCRM.com Original daily news, webcasts, expert advice, white papers and more resources on sales effectiveness.
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