A sales methodology defines how organizations plan and execute their sales process at each stage, from generating leads to the final sale and onboarding of customers. It includes a set of principles, methods, and techniques to be followed by the sales teams. The right sales methodology will guide sales teams on how to contact customers, understand their requirements and pain points, offer solutions, and close the deal.
A well-structured sales methodology underlines the sales philosophy of the organization. The choice of a sales methodology will depend on factors such as the product being sold, customer profile, the budget available, the size of the sales team, etc.
Let’s take a closer look at some of the more popular sales methodologies applied by SaaS companies and why it could be the right approach for you.
What is the MEDDIC sales methodology?
Created by Dick Dunkel inside of PTC in 1996, the MEDDIC sales methodology was born when he was helping sales teams to be more effective and began evaluating why they won/lost deals.
This sales methodology is popular for complex sales, especially when buyers are large enterprises. The MEDDIC sales methodology requires sales reps to find answers to the following questions.
By asking and answering the above questions, the rep will gain insight into the customer’s requirements and offer the product as a solution to address their pain points.
Why choose MEDDIC sales methodology?
MEDDIC helps sales teams qualify their sales opportunities by focusing on value selling in an outcome-focused manner that supports the customer journey. The MEDDIC method requires sales teams to work closely with the customer teams, understand how they operate, and make decisions to provide the desired solutions to them.
With its hierarchy of decision-makers and multiple vendors vying for a spot, enterprise selling is challenging. MEDDIC can be highly effective, especially for SaaS products, as most enterprises have an established way of working and choosing a vendor.
By using the MEDDIC sales methodology, reps will know they’re selling to the right people in the right way, making it easier to close deals.
What is MEDDPICC sales methodology?
The MEDDIPCC sales methodology is an improvement on the MEDDIC method. It also involves answering the questions and getting the answers from the customers by interacting with them. This method will give the salesperson an excellent picture of what customers need and how to present the products to convince them to purchase.
In addition to the six areas mentioned above (Metrics, Economic Buyer, Decision criteria, Decision process, Identify pain, and Champion), two other areas are added when applying this method.
- Paper process
This step involves understanding the legal formalities that customers need to do. This could include getting information on who is responsible for the documentation and giving the green signal.
In this step, the sales team gets a good picture of the competition, understands their product, and presents it accordingly. While discussing competitors, reps must always maintain honesty and never resort to false claims.
Why choose MEDDPICC sales methodology?
As an improvement to the MEDDIC methodology, it considers the practical aspects of closing deals by integrating the legal intricacies, other necessary formalities, and the competition, taking a comprehensive approach to the sales process.
MEDDPICC is an excellent B2B sales qualification methodology that helps reps narrow down the leads with the highest chance of becoming paying customers. This methodology is ideal when the buyer is a large enterprise, and your product has a lot of competition. MEDDPICC can help reps pinpoint strengths and USPs and uncover blind spots and weaknesses.
Sandler Selling System
What is the Sandler Selling System?
This sales methodology, created by David Sandler in 1967, requires sales personnel to build a strong rapport with the customers and earn their trust. Instead of reps pushing the products, they become consultants who understand customer’s problems by asking relevant questions.
This sales method works well when reps must establish a close relationship to sell products. Deploying the Sandler Selling System allows customers to see reps as people who are there to solve their problems instead of someone forcing a product on them.
Why choose Sandler sales methodology?
The Sandler Selling System is a consultative approach that puts the seller in charge of the discovery process. It encourages open, honest communication and establishes ground rules to create a suitable environment to do business.
The Sandler Selling System requires building mutual trust between the seller and the buyer. This may be the best sales method for your sales teams if you have high-end, large-scale products in your portfolio.
It allows the rep to be in a great position to make the sale as they would have gained a thorough understanding of customer pain points. Though a lengthy process, the Sandler Selling System can provide excellent results by cultivating leadership instead of just emphasizing technique.
Challenger Sales Model
What is the Challenger Sales Model?
Created by Matthew Dixon and Brent Adamson, the Challenger sales model is built around reps taking control of a sale. Dixon and Adamson believe reps who teach their prospects how to solve their problem are more successful than reps who spend time building a relationship with their lead.
The sales rep's role in this method becomes that of a guide or a counselor who helps the customers by questioning their current practices and nudging them to try something new. The Challenger Sales methodology is more of an educational selling where sales reps understand the customer’s situation, analyze it, and present a solution they would not have envisaged.
Why choose Challenger sales methodology?
Research shows that B2B buyers spend 17% of their time meeting with potential suppliers when considering a purchase and 27% of their time researching independently online. This means prospects come into a selling environment with preconceived ideas about the features they need and how much they are willing to pay.
In such cases, the challenger sales model ensures reps are responsible for the conversations. This methodology is appropriate in cases where the sales team needs to be in the driver's seat and dominate the discussion. Suppose the newest offerings haven’t been widely adopted yet. In that case, the Challenger sales model is a great option, as customers won’t have the necessary information or awareness of what is being offered.
Dixon and Adamson believe that with the right sales training and tools, reps can take control of any customer conversation.
What is the SPIN selling methodology?
Proposed in 1988 by Neil Rackham, the SPIN selling sales methodology is based on his lifelong scientific research. In the SPIN Selling method, instead of promoting and presenting the products to the customers, the sales personnel ask them strategic, essential questions.
SPIN stands for Situation, Problem, Implication, and Need-payoff.
Why choose SPIN sales methodology?
By leveraging SPIN selling, sales reps can eliminate some of the ambiguity and challenges in closing a sale by identifying common themes to establish authentic connections with a customer.
With a customer-centric approach, reps can detect customer pain points and suggest personalized solutions to meet their needs. Further, reps engage with prospects through SPIN selling by not following a one-size-fits-all script. It also forces reps to research their prospects and create unique questions across the various selling stages.
This, in turn, allows reps to learn much more about their prospects, improving the sales process to be mutually beneficial. The benefits of Spin Selling include a more agile sales process, stronger customer relationships, and improved sales revenue.
Miller Heiman/Conceptual Selling
What is the Miller Heiman sales methodology?
Also known as conceptual selling, it was developed by Robert Miller and Stephen Heiman. The central tenet to the Miller Heiman/Conceptual Selling methodology is that the customer is not buying a product but a concept of a solution offered in the form of a product. What the customers believe to be the solution should be the driving force of the sales process and conversations.
This method requires the salesperson to ask pertinent questions, which are divided into the following five categories:
The Conceptual Selling technique is a customer-centric, listen-first approach.
Why choose Miller Heiman/conceptual selling methodology?
The Miller-Heiman framework offers sellers an effective way to clinch enterprise deals with large decision-making groups and extended sales cycles. This sales methodology helps reps recognize critical decision-makers and understand their attitudes to customize their messages.
The Miller Heiman sales methodology starts with reps getting all the details from the customer, giving them information through product offerings, gaining their commitment, and closing the sale. Applying this method requires patience and time, as sales teams must formulate the appropriate questions and understand the customer’s perspective. This method benefits tailored products where sales teams and customers work closely to reach potential solutions.
What is the SNAP sales methodology?
Jill Konrath, a sales strategist, author, and speaker, created the SNAP selling method. It is designed for overwhelmed, distracted, or busy customers with limited time. These buyers are typically more demanding and require more interaction and hand-holding in their customer journey.
The SNAP selling methodology is structured from the perspective of a buyer instead of a seller. The SNAP acronym suggests four directions for the sales teams:
By using this method, the sales team will be able to deliver their message more effectively and make customers more responsive to the products.
Why choose SNAP selling methodology?
While more choices aren’t always bad, it can lead to analysis paralysis. In such cases, buyers often maintain the status quo or avoid making a decision. The SNAP selling methodology is ideal for such customers with busy schedules. This sales methodology will work in such cases by helping customers break down the purchasing decision into three smaller decisions.
The SNAP framework simplifies the process and ensures sales teams present their solutions best, increasing the chances of clinching the deal. This method should be applied for B2B selling SaaS products that are not complex or high-value.
What is the GAP selling methodology?
Customers want new products/solutions to improve their operations and achieve better results. Gap selling considers this basic need while approaching them and offering the products to reach a desired outcome.
Customers know the gap they want to fill when seeking solutions for their needs. In Gap selling, the rep understands this void and convinces the customer their product serves it or helps them reach a particular stage in their business journey.
Gap selling differs from product-centric selling and is considered a very effective sales methodology. When Gap selling is applied, the customer has higher motivation to implement the solution to reach their goal.
Why choose GAP selling methodology?
Gap Selling makes everything a collaborative effort to move the prospect toward their desired future goal. Typically, transactional and retail sales are not a great fit for applying the Gap selling approach. Gap selling works best for the B2B field with long or complex sales cycles. Reps adopt a problem-centric approach, examine the complete scope of the customer’s problem, and identify their gap.
This method yields high results as customers are more willing to buy the product once they are convinced it is what they need to reach their goal. This method requires the rep to understand the needs and pain points of the customers and interact frequently to find the answers through product offerings.
What is the ‘Solution Selling’ sales methodology?
Mike Bosworth founded the ‘Solution Selling’ sales methodology based on his experiences working at the Xerox Corporation. Solution Selling became popular in the 1980s. This time-consuming method involves multiple rounds of questioning by sales reps to understand customer’s challenges.
Instead of promoting the product, sales teams try to understand the customer’s pain points and act as counselors instead of product pushers. If your product is typically sold over the phone with minimal discussion with customers, this is not the right fit for your product. Solution Selling involves frequent interactions to provide customized solutions to the customers’ problems.
When applying this method, it is essential to identify the decision-makers as this process involves considerable time and effort, and the sales team needs to have those decision-makers in their conversational loop.
Why choose solution selling methodology?
Solution Selling is ideal for SaaS companies with highly customized products and/or packages. Leveraging Solution Selling will help reps if your customers’ needs are unique, complex, and sophisticated. It requires a high level of patience from the buyer and is applied in complex cases where understanding problems and suggesting a solution requires considerable time.
This method is the right choice for highly personalized and technical products and services. For instance, the rep can figure out how much storage their prospect requires, the number of devices, the extra features and support needed, etc. Instead of feeling like they are being sold features, customers feel like they’re getting answers to their larger business issues.
What is inbound selling?
Amidst the digital landscape today, customers engage with the content created by marketing teams across platforms. These prospects have a basic knowledge of the products or solutions before the sales team contacts them.
Inbound Selling allows sales teams to contact and interact with these prospects across platforms, for instance, on the website or social media accounts. This framework analyzes data such as page visits, conversations, and interactions over various platforms to offer personalized buying experiences.
The sales teams in Inbound Selling will be required to take the following actions:
leads who have visited the company website, started a chat, filled out a form, or reached out on any social media platform. Knowing what to look for helps reps build a predictable, scalable sales funnel.
to leads with personalized messages by analyzing their profile, interests, and connections.
their pain points and introduce the products as a solution by understanding their timelines and budgets. Understand the other solutions the prospect seeks to offer a better value proposition.
the prospect based on their present situation and how the product is uniquely positioned to address their needs and solve their pain points.
Why choose inbound sales methodology?
Today, innumerable interactions happen over social media. With marketing teams constantly creating content, inbound selling is a very effective way of being where the action is. It is also less expensive than other outbound selling methods, such as cold calling, email campaigns, etc.
Aligning sales and marketing teams is a critical aspect of inbound selling. By working together, sales and marketing teams can guide prospects with relevant content and support at each stage to help them make informed decisions.
If used effectively, inbound selling will lead to higher conversion rates. Inbound selling is highly popular with the expanding reach of social media.
What is the N.E.A.T sales methodology?
The Harris Consulting Group and Sales Hacker developed the N.E.A.T sales methodology to replace existing models. N.E.A.T stands for:
Sales reps need to dig deep rather than focus on surface-level problems to understand customer challenges, core customer needs, and what the products mean to them.
Sales reps need to make customers understand how implementing the proposed solution will help them achieve better economic results, including higher ROI.
Access to Authority
Sales reps need to ensure that the people they interact with will represent the product and talk on their behalf with decision-makers.
If there is a specific time limit within which the customers will have to decide or implement the solution, it will force them to make a choice or decision. If such an event or timeline exists, it will work in the rep’s favor.
Why choose N.E.A.T sales methodology?
By understanding N.E.A.T, reps can formulate suitable questions for their prospect and needs. This also helps create a long-term customer relationship and better understand their problems and potential solutions.
As a customer-centric method, N.E.A.T helps sales teams develop solutions after an in-depth understanding of customer needs. This allows customers to be more accepting of the solutions offered, giving it a high probability of success.
Target Account Selling
What is the target account selling methodology?
Target Account Selling (TAS) focuses on the right prospects from the available leads. It requires organizations to filter their leads and pursue only those that have the potential to get converted into customers.
For this to work, organizations need a robust system for selecting and vetting leads after thorough research and analysis. With digital tools and technology, organizations can easily automate this analysis, generating a pool of suitable leads.
Analyzing leads will identify prospects who are more receptive to the solutions offered by your reps. This method gives importance to quality over quantity and can lead to better conversion rates and efficient use of resources.
Why choose target account selling methodology?
This methodology is best suited for organizations with limited resources in the form of sales teams. By applying this method, the sales teams can focus only on those leads that have potential.
This focuses on high-value accounts that are more likely to close and lets reps develop messages that resonate with your target accounts’ specific pain points. This enables reps to build relationships with key decision-makers at their target accounts.
Companies can significantly reduce customer acquisition costs by only going after specific leads. With data analysis tools at their disposal, filtering and targeting suitable leads has become more effective, making it popular among SaaS companies. This makes it cost-effective and utilizes all resources effectively.
What is value-based selling?
Value-based selling requires reps to be consultative and guide the customers at every stage of the sales process. This method emphasizes communicating the solution's value and how it will help customers.
Rather than looking at the short-term cost of implementing the solution, the focus is shifted to the long-term value it will create, assisting customers to make faster purchase decisions.
This method requires understanding customer needs in detail, gaining their trust, and developing a solution that customers believe will add value to their operations or business. Once the solution's value is established, it will be easier for the rep to close the deal.
Why choose value-based selling methodology?
Customers always want value for their money. If the product's value is not communicated or established correctly, reps won’t be able to sell their products. Value-based selling begins with in-depth research to develop a personalized approach based on your prospects’ needs.
When customers value the products, companies can even get better prices for their products. This method can help companies get better prices compared to their competition.
Choosing the right sales methodology
Considering the unique characteristics of SaaS products, selecting and applying an efficient sales methodology is critical for getting higher sales at optimum costs. Developing a rapport with customers and helping them become comfortable and confident about the product will lead to actual sales. This is achieved by understanding their needs, pain points, and how their product(s) can resolve those problems. Based on the nature of the SaaS product and the customer profile, sales teams must select a methodology that best suits their needs.
Based on the results of the implementation, the company will know whether the methodology is right for it or whether it should be refined or replaced.