In Part 1 of this two-part series, I discussed some of the reasons why the sales cycle is getting longer for many deals (sales cycle is the term that describes the time that elapses from the first contact between salesperson and prospect to a done deal). These longer cycle times are gumming up the sales pipeline for many companies, postponing revenue, adding expense, increasing uncertainty, and making life miserable for a lot of sales executives.
Some of this slowdown in the sales cycle is unpreventable. But that’s no reason to overlook the many things salespeople can do to counter the trend and speed things up. Here are some ways that smart salespeople keep opportunities moving: