B2B SaaS Sales Strategy: The Ultimate Guide

The sales process for B2B SaaS products is significantly different from selling any other product. How do you sell something in a market where the consumer is highly informed and the competition is increasingly fierce? This is where a well-defined sales strategy can help, as it ensures that your sales process remains as smooth and intuitive for the client as possible.

Devoid of a well-rounded sales strategy, you cannot predict how your revenue and the organization will scale. In this post, we’ll provide a guide to B2B SaaS sales strategy to help your team strive for success.

Want to speak to a SaaS sales recruiting and training expert directly? Set up a consultation with HireDNA today. Contact Us

Beginning Your SaaS Sales Journey

Most SaaS startups are small, product-centric companies that do not have expert sales representatives. The CEO often has to multi-task, operating as the de facto Heads of Sales.

However, this is the stage where you need to begin organizing and formulating a sales strategy that will guide you through the initial phase, toward sustainable growth. The emphasis should be on closing deals that ensure the future profitability of your startup.

In this scenario, your sales process will likely be prone to errors—and chances are that the cost of acquiring customers will exceed the customer lifetime value. But this is may be imperative for bagging the first batch of clients who can keep your revenue cycle functional.

Establishing Goals & Metrics

Identifying key sales goals and defining quotas can help to ensure progress is on track for the company. But applying goals in B2B sales can be difficult. Here are a few tips to help you define achievable goals for your reps and metrics that can help you ensure your reps stay on track.

Defining Goals

When defining goals, it’s important to be specific. Pursue actionable steps at each stage of the sales process, like the following funnel from GrasshopperHerder:

  • Lead -> Start Conversation
  • Qualifying -> Discover Economic Buyer or Budget
  • Qualified -> Set up appointment
  • Discovery -> Identify Situation, Pain, & Impact
  • Conceptual Agreement -> Send proposal
  • Proposal Sent -> Follow up
  • Invoice Sent -> Track Payment
  • Lost -> Weep
  • Paid -> Celebrate

Keeping Track With Metrics

Here are some key metrics to help you and your team stay on track:

  • Leads. Define a lead quota and pursue it. Pursue qualified leads that your organization defines based on targeted budget, authority, needs, and timeline to buy.
  • Scheduled & Completed Demos. How many demos are your reps scheduling, and how many are actually being completed? From there, what is the ration of completed demos to closes? These questions can help you determine if a change to your demo is needed.
  • Revenue Booked. Subscription-based SaaS businesses typically keep track of both monthly and annual recurring revenue. The goal of any sales team is to elevate this metric.
  • Churn. How often are you losing customers? This is usually recorded on an annual basis as a percentage.
  • Acquisition Cost. How much are you spending on marketing and sales in proportion to the number of deals?

With key sales goals and metrics defined ahead of time, you’re armed for growth and have the means to ensure your team is meeting expectations.

Understanding The B2B Landscape

Your sales strategy is heavily influenced by the target audience you’re catering to. Establishing an ideal buyer profile can help you determine your price point and can serve as a good indicator of what your sales processes should look like.

It’s worth noting that a B2B SaaS offering typically matures over the years, segmenting into different hybrid versions of the product to cater to multiple audiences. This allows companies to apply different SaaS sales models over time. Still, the starting point usually orbits around a specific target audience. Here are some tips to help you define your strategy based on your product model:

Entry Level Product

For companies with an average order value (AOV) of less than $500/month, the sales strategy should be focused on a self-service model. A less complex product coupled with a lower price point is bound to attract leads through simple inbound marketing channels.

Following a low acquisition cost, zero-touch policy, this model requires minimal interference. Any educational material required can be easily disseminated, without the explicit need for a complex sales process.

Mid-Level Products

This segment covers an extensive range—from $500/month to $10,000/month price points. With the increased cost of your services, customers expect efficient support from the SaaS provider. The product is inherently more complex, which requires SaaS companies to include dedicated sales representatives.

Check out our blog post on the Building A SaaS Sales Team That Gets Results.

This model may require face-to-face meetings, and it generally includes a longer sales cycle that requires human touch points throughout the process. Your sales representatives deliver value by effectively communicating the benefits and value proposition of the product.

Enterprise Level Product

The sales model for such highly complex and high-value products requires constant communication between sales representatives and clients. SaaS organizations that create or scale to such products need the assistance of an entire sales and support team to solve specific and personalized issues for their customers.

Veteran sales experts at HireDNA offer complete sales cycle evaluations to help you identify your target audience, assess your team, and recruit and train top talent for success. Learn More.

A Comprehensive Sales Strategy Is A Must

For B2B companies in the SaaS industry, the customer pool often defines their sales strategy. However, every lead has distinct problems, objections, and questions that must be answered before they convert.

A comprehensive B2B SaaS sales strategy ensures that you are not just communicating features but also solving your client’s key problems. From startups to large enterprises, having a sales strategy and a dedicated sales team can prove to be the difference between a high churn rate and satisfied customers.

Build A Successful Sales Team

A well-constructed and detailed strategy requires optimal execution to be truly successful. Sales representatives are at the very core of any successful B2B SaaS company. HireDNA is proud to offer comprehensive sales rep assessment, training and recruiting services to help you grow your organization.

Why Choose Us?

  • 33% boost in sales productivity
  • 80% of our sales talent search ends in a successful hire
  • Training time decreased by 50%
  • 92% of our recommended candidates reach the top half of the sales force within 12 months
  • Eliminate 96% of hiring mistakes
  • Our partners experience 25% top-line revenue growth

Are your sales representatives ready to accelerate growth? Get in touch today.

Contact Us

Building A SaaS Sales Team That Gets Results

Cloud computing is the future. There’s no denying the efficiency it has introduced in key industries across the globe. Particularly, the software as a service (SaaS) industry has been instrumental in driving this global change, with 83% of the enterprise workload expected to be in the cloud by 2020.

However, as any SaaS company would likely tell you—selling their product isn’t easy. Increasing competition in this space means SaaS providers need more than just a good product to be considered successful. They need an effective sales team. In this post, we’ll provide tips on building a SaaS sales team that gets results.

If you prefer to speak directly with a SaaS sales recruiting and training expert, set up a consultation with HireDNA today. Contact Us

Define A Sales Strategy

If you believe a leader in SaaS like Slack, achieved a multi-billion-dollar valuation based solely on their product, then you are wrong. According to a Harvard Business Review study, about 50 percent of high-performing sales teams have proper sales processes in place for their teams to follow.

In the cut-throat SaaS industry, it’s important to have the right direction when hiring sales reps. A plan that provides direction and facilitates growth is necessary. A functioning sales team requires adequate policies and procedures in place to run like a well-oiled machine.

Understand Your Sales Cycle

From attracting prospects to closing deals, the sales cycle is unique for every industry. Sales teams need to acquaint themselves with the customer journey as well as the organizational sales cycle to be able to sell more efficiently.

Part of this process is to understand whether you’re selling a high touch product or a low touch product. The type of product has a definite impact on your sales cycle, subsequently altering your sales technique.

For example, a low touch SaaS product is more or less of a self-service. Prospects typically sign up for products through the website, and your sales department does the rest.

In stark contrast, high touch SaaS products require dedicated pursuit of high-quality prospects, and a unique sales approach.

HireDNA offers comprehensive sales cycle evaluations and assessments to help you identify opportunities for growth and train your sales reps to meet your goals. Learn More.

Identify Your Target Audience

Sales is all about understanding the needs of your customers, and the value you bring to them. You should diligently research the market and conduct competitor research to ascertain your target audience and determine the demographic that best suits your product.

Here are some questions to ask when identifying your target audience:

  • What are the problems that your SaaS product aims to solve?
  • Have you determined the group that actively seeks the solution to these problems?
  • Have you identified the main platforms where you expect to drive the majority of your leads?

Extensive audience research provides SaaS companies the data they require to equip their salespeople with the right information to sell more efficiently. 

Bridge The Sales And Marketing Gap

SaaS consumers are generally well-informed and enter the conversion funnel with a predefined intent in mind. When dealing with such a sophisticated product and customer, marketing and sales teams need to function as a cohesive unit.

In essence, marketing drives your sales team. They are responsible for capturing leads and are also responsible for helping to nurture them before they are passed forward as SQLs (sales qualified leads) to the sales team.

Inefficient communication between the two departments inevitably hinders the potential of the sales team. If the two departments are misaligned, sales representatives will have difficulty convincing prospects to buy your SaaS solution.

Aligning the objectives of the departments before beginning on prospect outreach efforts can have long-lasting benefits for the future of your SaaS sales team.

Hiring The Right SaaS Sales Reps

In this highly competitive space, you need to find sales rock stars with the right set of skills. Your reps should have exceptional product knowledge and the ability to connect the product as a solution to a prospect’s problems / goals. Here are a few things to look for in the best SaaS sales reps:

  • Tech-Savvy. While your reps don’t need have support-level technical skills, they should be fluent in the tech space. They should have the proficiency to understand your product and speak about its features knowledgably.
  • Long-Term Client Relationships. Many SaaS companies operate on a subscription basis. To that end, it’s important that your reps understand the nature of long-term B2B relationships. They should be able to identify the potential for long-term relationships in a given lead and should have the ability to nurture those relationships.
  • Solid Track Record.Nothing speaks louder about a rep’s ability to sell than a proven record of success. While startups often seek out younger talent as a way to save on costs, it’s still important to look for some kind of experience.
  • Strong Profiling Ability. A strong SaaS sales rep will be able to adequately profile the targeted customer and adjust their strategy to improve the sales process. If your rep chases undesirable leads, this wastes the company’s time and money.

HireDNA provides comprehensive candidate assessments that assess 21 core selling competencies. We have a successful placement rate of 80%! Learn more.

Build Your Winning Sales Team

Building a successful SaaS sales team on your own can be a challenge. HireDNA is here to help, offering leading technical sales recruiting and training services to build and improve your sales force. From screening, recruiting, and hiring top sales candidates to training and equipping your team for success, we are your partner throughout the sales development process.

Why Choose Us?

  • 20 years of invaluable experience
  • 80% of our sales talent search ends in a successful hire
  • 79% candidate retention
  • 50% faster new hire ramp-up
  • 92% of our recommended and hired candidates reach the top half of the sales force within 12 months
  • Our partners have experienced 25% top-line revenue growth

Ready to equip your SaaS sales team with industry-leading expertise? Get in touch today.

Contact Us

Assess Sales Training Needs: Find & Resolve Performance Gaps

In a demanding sales environment, identifying the real problem behind low productivity is crucial. Uncovering performance gaps is often the first step to assess sales training needs. This process can help decision-makers to identify real factors that influence the performance of their sales team and fix them through high-quality training. In this article, we’ll help you understand how to identify and resolve performance gaps through training.

If you prefer to speak directly with a sales training expert, set up a consultation with HireDNA today. Contact Us

Why Perform An Assessment?

A sales training assessment is a crucial step to improving the performance of any sales team. The Objective Management Group (OMG) provides some promising statistics on the use of assessments vs the lack of assessment:

Use Assessments

  • 61% Quota Attainment
  • 14% Attrition

Don’t Use Assessments

  • 49% Quota Attainment
  • 19% Attrition

The comprehensive, science-based OMG assessment, which HireDNA uses in our evaluations, has proven to be even more successful. With the OMB assessment, organizations have achieved 88% Quota Attainment and only 8% Attrition. Learn more about HireDNA sales staff evaluations.

How To Find Performance Gaps In Your Sales Team

When laying the groundwork for your training program, there are several questions that need to be answered:

  • Does it do a satisfactory job of highlighting areas that need improvement?
  • Does it sufficiently address the performance issues that hinder employee productivity?

Proper analysis of training needs can unravel such answers, leaving you with precise data on how to proceed with your sales department. Here’s how to perform a sales training assessment to uncover these gaps and create a plan of action.

Conduct A Preliminary Analysis

Before you identify the barriers to your sales rep potential, you need to assess their current standing. You can then use that information to establish the desired outcomes of a sales training program.

In order to meet the organizational objectives, managers and supervisors must have a clear understanding of the current level of knowledge and skills their sales team possesses. The initial analysis also sheds light on the existing barriers to growth, which can be used to ascertain a realistic set of desired outcomes.

Determine Your Organizational Priorities

In order to come up with effective performance drivers, organizations need to prioritize their learning objectives. This provides insight into what actually matters for the organization and allows experts to prioritize goals/learning outcomes when designing the training regimen. For instance, if your priority is to improve your customer satisfaction scores, your training procedure should specifically include ways to deliver a better customer experience.

This step particularly requires the input of senior management and top-level executives, as they are typically responsible for determining the company’s priorities.

Identify Your Sales Growth Bottlenecks

Once you’ve laid the foundation for a sales training needs assessment, the next step is to identify key factors that are hindering your sales team’s performance. In order to bridge performance gaps, you first have to identify them.

HireDNA offers comprehensive sales staff evaluations and assessments to help you identify KPIs, uncover skill gaps, and discover opportunities for growth. Learn more.

Here are some ways you can assess and pinpoint areas that need improvement:

Analyze Periodic Reports

As far as your sales team is concerned, a glimpse of the monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, and annual managerial evaluations can lend important insights into the performance of the sales department.

  • Was the team able to meet their monthly targets?
  • What was the most commonly cited problem among sales representatives?

Following up with team leaders can offer up a different perspective, while allowing you to understand performance issues from an inside perspective.

Closely Monitor Sales Representatives

One of the most effective methods of identifying performance gaps is by observing employees during their on-job hours. You can even go as far as formulating a task-based scenario or simulation and carve out the areas that exhibit inefficiency.

Live observations can reveal some real barriers faced by your sales representatives:

  • Is their unfamiliarity with the technology you are using leading to extended call times, and subsequently increasing call-drop rates?
  • Does conflict resolution continue to present an unsurmountable barrier to your sales department?

Observation is one of the most effective ways to extract actionable data that can help you to create a plan of action. The direct exposure to the problem helps experts create a sales training solution tailored to the exact scenario.

Conduct Employee Surveys

Surveys provide an excellent platform for employees to reveal performance issues that are hidden from management. From ineffective online training forums to company policies that are proving to be an obstacle, surveys can reveal what otherwise would not make it to the surface. There are several methods to try, including surveys, polls, focus groups, and live webinars.

This feedback is highly valuable, as it comes directly from the sales representatives that you’re trying to train to be more productive and efficient.

Tailor Your Training Strategy

Having assessed sales training needs, including current capabilities and the blockages that have hindered your sales potential, it’s time to formulate a training plan that can increase the performance of your sales team.

An effective training strategy revolves around the needs and performance issues of every individual sales representative, while also catering to the organization’s macro-goals. The key takeaway is for organizations to understand that every individual represents a different knowledge-base, a different skillset, and therefore, a unique challenge when required to train and improve.

Build Your Winning Sales Team

Time is money. Businesses cannot afford to train their salespeople for weeks. This is where the sales recruiting and training experts at HireDNA step in. Whether you need to assess and train an existing team or quickly ramp up a new hire, we offer a suite of innovative sales training tools and strategies to help turn your staff into a winning sales force.

Why Choose Us?

  • 20 years of invaluable experience
  • Training time decreased by 50%
  • Our training enables organizations to leverage 33% more sales opportunities
  • Our partners experience 25% top-line revenue growth

Ready to train your sales team to be the best? Get in touch today.

Contact Us