Traditionally, summer is a slow season for new sales in the business-to-business world, and this particular slowdown is usually worse in July. Many factors contribute to this gloomy season. Most Americans travel with their children, while others go on quiet vacations with their spouses. And some are only busy at work because summer is their busy season. Whatever the reason, it`s difficult for most B2B companies to generate new leads using the same practices that worked months ago when the business was constantly growing. So if business is slow, don`t panic. Instead, think of off-peak periods as an opportunity to refine the business, take a step back, and find ways to cut costs. These elements will help you overcome downturns, but also position your business for greater long-term profitability and efficiency. Here`s how to not only survive slack periods, but also make the most of them: By focusing on inside prospects, we have a much better chance of closing a sale because these potential customers know us, love us, and trust us. Theoretically, they also have some interest in our products and services.
And because of this drop in new lead generation, we have the resources and focus to keep up with leads that remain in limbo. While this is a growing interest, for most people, the term “slow business” refers to the idea we discussed earlier. The problem is that we tend to be so busy with the day-to-day operations of our businesses that we don`t have room to work on systems and procedures. Every year, my goal is for new sales to be at least 70% of a normal month in July and August 100% at the level of a normal month. If that happens – or even if we get closer – I think it will be a great victory. If it`s a slow season, it`s easy to find an excuse to be late, leave early, or let a lack of momentum slow you down. There is a second definition of the term “slow business”, which refers to a slower and much more conscious approach to business operations. If the business is running slowly, now is a good time to take a look at your sales strategies to plan for conscious growth. Often, the factors that influence activity (not business) are within your control, but this is not always the case. I know that quite a few sales training companies have gone bankrupt in recent months.
When I look at their websites and product offerings, they`re all outdated, boring, and clearly haven`t been developed in years. Many initiatives during downturns should focus on immediate revenue generation. However, (assuming you can form a cash flow perspective), you shouldn`t lose sight of the long-term perspective. Spend the slow retail season getting to know your customers. Conduct focus groups to ask shoppers why they choose your products over those of a competitor. Send prototypes of new products to get your feedback. Ask for ideas about events you could organize in the store. As stressful as the off-peak periods can be, what`s scarier is not taking full advantage of the gift of extra time and attention to move from defending to attacking your business strategy to make it stronger for the next busy season. Maybe you`re not meeting your sales forecasts or you`re struggling with cash flow.
Secretly, you worry that business will slow down. However, these things alone may not be enough to indicate that your organization is not buzzing as usual. In most cases, the latter will be more accurate (no one has the perfect sales team), and periods of slowness can be a good time to explore new sales methods and engage in sales training and coaching sessions. To solve this problem, you should have someone in the sales team who is responsible for pipeline generation throughout the month. Therefore, the goal should not be to grow quickly, but to grow better. So, if you encounter slow activity, remember that slow and steady growth wins the race. How can you know if the business is naturally ebbing or if internal factors play a role in influencing your results? The answer: eliminate variables while resolving your bank account errors backwards. If the first quarter of the year is slower for your business, it`s time to research relevant events you want to attend in the coming year.
Just like your marketing materials, take a close look at your website. Is it obsolete or on an older platform? Is it fully mobile responsive? Is the content optimized for the keywords you want to target? Does it show your business in the best possible light? If not, fix it and make sure your website looks as good as possible when new potential visitors land there. Despite the best intentions and execution, we probably won`t make up for a slow month with a ton of new major promotions.