What are Outside Sales?
Outside sales mean the sale of goods or services by a company with the help of sales representatives engaged by the company, who visit the potential customers and enter into sale transactions with them. Thus, instead of reaching out to customers from the front office, they move out of the office and meet the prospective customers.
An outside sales process follows the following steps:
#1 – Find Target Audience
Research is carried out and based on market needs, a list of potential customers is prepared. To reach a correct target audience, it is important to understand the market conditions and factors affecting the same.
#2 – Approach the Customers
After the list is ready, it is finally time to start communicating with them and understand their needs and requirements by asking them questions.
#3 – Arrange Meeting
If the representative feels that they can meet the requirement of the potential customer, they connect with them and arrange for a meeting.
#4 – Meet the Customers
Sales representatives meet the customers and discuss the company’s products and services with them. They pitch potential clients about the products and services and encourage them to buy the same.
#5 – Enter into Transaction
The last step is to finalize the terms and conditions and enter the deal.
What Do Outside Sales Representatives Do?
Sales representatives arrange to meet potential customers in order to have face-to-face discussions with them. Explain to them the benefits and features of the goods and services of the company. They try to sell the company’s products and services to prospective buyers. Also, they keep in touch with the existing customers to maintain good relations with them and cater to their needs.
Similarities between Inside Sales and Outside Sales
While the outside sales involve representatives meeting the prospective customers and entering into deals with them, inside sales representatives involve representatives reaching out to prospective customers from the office itself by way of telecommunication medias such as phone calls, emails, skype, etc. Both involve sales representatives reaching out to potential customers to bring in clientele rather than clients approaching them. Both arrange to approach the customers for the sale of products and services of the company.
Inside Sales vs Outside Sales
- Customer Reach: Inside sales representatives can reach out to a larger number of clients through different media types such as email, phone calls, etc. Thus, they have access to larger clientage. On the other hand, outside sales representatives have to meet the potential customers in person and thus due to the limitation of time in a day, they have access to less clientage.
- Cost Involved: Outside sales involve more cost due to traveling and expenses incurred on clients, as compared to inside sales, wherein the cost is limited to internet and communication expenses.
- Geographical Coverage: Outside sales limit the geographical coverage since the representatives need to visit the customers. However, there are no geographical barriers in case of inside sales as clients can be reached out in any part of the globe that too easily.
- Sales Cycle: The sales cycle is shorter in case of inside sales due to the fact that lesser communication is involved. While the sales cycle tends to be longer in case of outside sales since a lot of communication and other ancillary work is involved.
- Skills Required: In outside sales, the representatives are required to possess good people skills. They should be able to deal with different kinds of people and be able to present the company in a good manner. In the case of inside sales, the representatives need to have good communication skills and prompt replies.
- In this, the representatives are in a better position to explain the goods and services and can also provide a demo.
- When the customer feels excited about the goods or services, he may involve other persons also such as his friends or neighbors and thus clientage may increase.
- The customer relationships that develop during outside sales are stronger and better.
- It is easier to understand the customer requirement face-to-face.
- The higher cost is involved as compared to internal sales.
- The coverage of clients is limited due to time limitations and geographical limitations.
- It is difficult to get the customers to meet these days.
- Nowadays companies tend to advertise their products and services through online platforms and the need for outside sales is reduced.
A company shall plan outside sales after carrying out research and understanding the specific needs of the potential customers. In this, the representatives have better opportunities for pitching the customers about the company’s products and services.
This has been a guide to what are Outside Sales and its definition. Here we discuss what does outside sales representatives do along with components and differences. You can learn more about financing from the following articles –