Stephen mccomb Sales challanges northern ireland



Traditional sales models in 2020 will come under immense pressure to change and will see new competitors enter their sector using smart technology, algorithms and multi-platform social media to attract prospects. The need to reduce costs and move field sales inside or even remove them altogether and replace them with e-commerce.


  • You must know how your customer wants to buy, do they really want to see a rep for an hour each month or do they want to go online and place their order in the evening when they have time?

  • What content and information are you regularly supply your customers and prospects with? Is that content inward focused about you, or informative about a product or service?


  • What social media platforms does your customer use, and is your company from CEO to R&D actively involved in pushing content?

  •  Are you really willing to embrace change,  if your not, how do you know your competitor is not ready to roll out a new sales strategy – stay ahead.

Stephen McComb Sales Challenges Ireland
stephen mccomb sales challenges

Qualify a Prospect


Do you know the percentage of time and financial cost spent chasing leads? Leads today can come in from across the globe, but the ability to differentiate; a non-buyer, information gathers, or a buyer is essential. Company’s need to have a system in place to define from the start of the process what is the value of the order and how much resources can be spent on selling.  


  • Sellers need to map out the buyer’s journey and can differentiate between a brochure request and your main rival’s customer asking for an urgent quote.

  • Not all processes in sales need to be done by the salesperson. They need to focus on the High Pay-Off Activities.

  • Drop off rates need to be analysed, reasoning applied above price and delivery.

  • The broad brush of applying Y factor for administration costs is gone. A salesperson on salary + commission could cost £7 to send a brochure request and waste up to 15 minutes of time.

Customer Relations


Customers are willing to move from long term suppliers siting ease of purchase, buying experience, social interaction and individual connection as just some of the many reasons.  As new competitors enter a market space, existing suppliers need to have a better value proposition to retain and grow their customers and clients.


  • Listen to what the customer wants

  • Build customer relationships where you are a trusted advisor, where you will send a customer to a rival if you don’t have the product or service they need.

  • Develop relationships deeper than seller / buyer, go deep inside the company knowing the senior management, operations, R&D and finance people.

  • Create a touch-system -value of the customer, repeat order potential / contract, how many times a year do you need to engage with that customer. Rate all your customers. Have not only sales touch the customer but as with the previous point your entire organisation.

  • Have customers be dependent on you, create such value that for them to move it would take serious consideration on their part and in turn you would be alert of such a thought from the outset.

stephen mccomb sales challenges
stephen mccomb sales challenges

Increase Profit


Increasing profits in 2020 is not only about a better margin, up selling and cross selling or attracting the more customers. Its about doing more with less


  • Know the Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC) and what is the Lifetime Vale (LTV).


  • Software as a Service (SaaS) companies offer different levels of a package for a reason. What level of support does your customer need? If the resources were not scheduled in at the start its time to rethink your costing model.


  • If your product or service is a commodity, implement minimum order quantity, elevate your brand, streamline your operation.


  • How much of the sales process can be automated? Leverage email systems, productivity platforms, Customer Relationship Systems (CRM).


  • Focus on High Pay-Off Activities (HPA)

Efficiency Tools


Data, Algorithms, Analytics, Cookies, Trends, Spending, KPI, CRM, Productivity tools, automated sales processes, spreadsheets – where do you start in 2020?


  • It’s not about which is the best software in the market, its about using systems and processes that your people will understand and will want to use. There is no point in having tools that you are only leveraging a small part of the overall software package.


  • Think of the sales process like manufacturing, machines are scheduled for their workload, output efficiency is monitored constantly. If your sales process is not like your manufacturing or service offering you need to adopt evaluating in 2020.


  • Entering data into a CRM, analysing where prospects are coming from, completing expense reports is not a High Pay-Off Activity for a salesperson regardless of position. Their job is to sell. An administration person can do those tasks.

Stephen McComb Sales Tools