Sales is the major function of almost all businesses; oftentimes it’s the primary revenue-generating function. But yet, more and more companies outsource sales. Why? Is this a good strategy? Does it lead to an increase in sales?
Why do companies usually try sales outsourcing?
There are a few different reasons, and while it can vary by industry, some of the most common reasons for sales outsourcing are:
- Internal-External Growth: Usually, when a company does sales outsourcing, they are trying to jump-start some sales growth as they also try to build up their internal team. In this way, outsourcing sales is better than waiting for your internal team to be set — at which point you might be behind on the sales side.
- Simplification: Outsourcing sales can usually help simplify the execution of an outbound sales program. Internally, a lot of different things get in the way — competing priorities, politics, unclear direction, etc. When you outsource sales, you typically have one contact at the outsourcing company. They provide you all the metrics on how sales are going, and you can adjust strategy with them directly. It’s simpler than managing a complex pipeline internally.
- Staff Issues: Maybe you don’t have the internal people to build a great outbound sales program right now, and/or maybe you don’t know where to begin.
- Supply/demand: This is a basic reason. Oftentimes companies need more leads or manpower to keep up with sales demand.
- Priority alignment: Founders or entrepreneurs sometimes outsource sales as they try to ID product/market fit or scale up so that they can focus on other aspects of the business.
- Entering new markets: When you want to systematically enter a new country or market segment (geography, industry, company segments) sales outsourcing is the fastest and most effective way to process.
Will sales outsourcing lead to increased sales?
Again, this will vary by several factors — notably your product-market-fit and especially the outsourcing sales firm you work with.
But, in general, a great rule of business is that you should:
- Focus on your areas of strength …
- … outsource your areas of potential weakness
- Like with any other outsourcing discipline, the service provider usually has more expertise and experience in his particular domain.
Attempting to “do it all” almost never works, and leads to too much confusion and competing priorities.
If you need to sell in order to grow (which is the case for 99 percent of companies), but you’re not in the right position to sell yet based on team or market fit, then consider sales outsourcing.
If I had to summarize a few key benefits of sales outsourcing, I’d go with:
- Relief (you’re not dealing with today’s complexity of modern sales practices)
- Speed (it gets done according to your timetables because you are paying for it)
- Clarity (communicating with one outsourcing account manager)
- Confidence (you’re seeing the number of leads, prospects, opportunities, deals, etc.)
There’s no fancy acronym there — RSCC? — but still, it’s a good place to be as you build out a company, a new product, a new market, or a new service. Outsourcing sales can be of great value in those early stages.