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Common Questions and Answers
Every sale goes through the same basic cycle, from prospecting for leads all the way through to asking for referrals from your new customer. But the length of this cycle can vary greatly depending on the product or service you’re selling, along with a few other factors.
In most cases, the more expensive a product is, the longer the average sales cycle will be. From the prospect’s point of view, expensive purchases are riskier and require more research and general decision-making time before he’ll agree to buy. And particularly in B2B sales, costly purchases will require multiple approvals before they can proceed, meaning you’ll have more meetings and more decision makers to convince.
B2B sales cycles are generally longer than B2C sales of comparable cost. With B2B, just getting to the decision maker can be a challenge because you have to first identify the person and then work your way through one or more gatekeepers. Worse, there are frequently multiple decision makers you’ll have to convince, each with their own set of objections.
All in all, the length of your sales cycle is not entirely within your control. If you are selling assembly line equipment to manufacturers, your sales cycle will be longer than if you are selling sheets and towels to walk-in consumers. But within those parameters, it is possible to affect your sales cycle’s length.
About the author
My first sales position was a summer job selling vacuum cleaners door-to-door. I continued through a variety of sales jobs ranging from retail sales for a storage company to selling bank products for a Fortune 500 financial institution.
As a small business owner, I now focuses on selling for my own company, Tailored Content, a website content provider. I write on a wide range of topics but my primary focus is sales and how to sell effectively.