How to structure and incentivize your sales team to maximize quality deals
The fate of your deals program falls in the hands of the sales reps who are signing the merchants to participate in your program. When a sales rep has no motivation to push deals, or isn’t focused on selling for your program, the quality of your deals falls – along with your revenue!
The best sellers are highly motivated by what earns them the biggest commissions, so just like selling traditional or online advertising, you need to reward your reps for closing top deals. Below, you’ll find recommended commission and bonus plans to help keep reps engaged and selling deals. You might be interested in reading the takeaways from “The Art of Selling Deals: Strategies for Securing the Best Offers” for more tips.
Assign a Dedicated Rep
Adjust who’s selling deals. Make sure you have a dedicated sales rep that is focused on selling deals only. Not only will this make them the deals expert, it will sharpen their pitch and in turn increase the amount of quality deals sold. Dedicated reps will learn exactly what makes a deal sell and how to counter advertiser objections to deals.
Understand What Incentives Work
Reward the deals sales rep just as you would reward your traditional rep and keep the incentive structure simple. Allow deals revenue to count towards their online sales goals. When a rep signs a tremendous deal, reward them. Positive reinforcements makes reps strive to gain another deal of that magnitude.
The most effective approach to paying reps is to have a monthly goal for your program and pay reps according to how close they come to that goal – and hopefully exceed it! By knowing they have a monthly number to hit, reps will focus on getting the best deals that get them to their number the quickest and will leave bad deals behind. Most plans like this only pay out after a certain percentage is reached. Sweeten the opportunity even more with occasional bonus and extra incentives for things like top deals, specific targeted categories or referrals.
When a deal really takes off and is a hot seller, it is exciting for everyone involved – especially for the rep who closed it. Having sales contests for top revenue generating deals and those with the highest sales volume will help ensure reps are focused on the best merchants with the greatest revenue potential as well as those with wide audience appeal. This bonus might be a gift card, cash or even an entry into a larger, more lucrative prize giveaway.
A successful deals program focuses on categories that perform the best for their market. In other words, if Beauty deals outperform Service deals in your market, the advice would be to focus more on Beauty. Sales reps and managers should create monthly targeted lists that start by focusing on a category that is seasonally appropriate or is a top performer. From there, the rep can pinpoint the exact businesses to after.
You should always encourage and embrace synergies between reps – especially if you have a dedicated deals team working separately from your core team. This encourages teamwork and collaboration. Often, core reps will have the ear of your company’s top advertisers and will be able to get you in the door. Leverage the expertise of your deals expert to ensure you get the best deal possible and reward the core rep for helping make it happen. A bonus should require that a deal runs and hits a specific revenue threshold.
By rewarding your sales reps and offering the right incentives will not only push them to become better, but will also increase revenue for your deals program.