8 Tips To Design Successful Sales Online Training Courses

8 Tips To Design Successful Sales Online Training Courses
Summary: You want your distributed sales force to have all the knowledge and skills they need. After all, your company’s success hinges on their ability to close the deal and turn customers into repeat business. In this article, I’ll share 8 tips for designing successful sales online training courses for your organization.

How To Design Successful Sales Online Training Courses

Through the power of corporate eLearning, geographical limitations are no longer an issue. Your entire sales team can access online training materials on any device from anywhere in the world. From negotiation skills to product knowledge, your sales online training program can offer them a wealth of knowledge on-the-go. But giving your staff the online resources they require takes planning, organization, and research. These 8 tips can help you develop successful sales online training courses that worth the investment.

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1. It All Starts With Clear Learning Objectives

Every sales negotiation has an objective. The salesperson is trying to find the right product that addresses a customer's needs at the right price. As such, your sales online training course must also have a clear purpose and objective. Chances are, your sales staff is goal-oriented. This means you need to give them a finish to set their sights on. Identify your learning objectives by evaluating sales reports, workplace performance, and customer satisfaction ratings. All of this data can help you pinpoint gaps and fill them with meaningful goals.

2. Scaffold With Sales Skills

Charisma is part of the sales equation, but it's not the most important part. Each member of your sales team needs specific soft skills to get the job done. This includes communication, negotiation, and active listening skills. The latter is probably the most important, as it gives employees the power to pinpoint customer needs. Asking the right questions and monitoring their body language are two key aspects of active listening. All of these traits form a foundation that employees can build on. If they know the basics, then they'll be confident on the sales floor. Confidence leads to more sales and better customer service.

3. Impart Product Knowledge

Your sales staff is on the frontline every day, promoting your products and upselling services. Thus, product knowledge should be an integral part of your sales online training strategy. Highlight the features and specs of every product, as well as the benefits they can bring to the consumer. Give your employees all the tools they need to help customers make an informed decision. Ultimately, practical and personalized knowledge is what seals the deal. Salespeople must be able to match customers with products that benefit their lives.

4. Offer On-The-Job Experience With Branching Scenarios

On-the-job experience is hard to come by, especially in online training environments. Unless of course, you throw your employees into the proverbial fire and let them figure it out on their own. This approach comes with a variety of drawbacks, including customer service issues and decreased profits. Luckily, you can use branching scenarios to give them experience without the risks. Employees have the power to navigate a virtual sale, active listen to customers, and identify their pain points. Best of all, it involves virtual eLearning characters instead of real, paying customers.

5. Gamify Your Online Training

Gamification involves adding game mechanics to your online training courses. This can be anything from badges and points to unlockable objects. The goal is to boost motivation and participation so that employees get the full benefit of your sales online training. As an added bonus, you have the ability to maximize your ROI by making your online training program more efficient and effective. One of the most powerful game mechanics is leaderboards. Sales staff race to the top by completing online modules, passing exams, and outperforming their peers. It doesn't involve any tangible rewards, as status is the ultimate incentive. Reaching the highest rung of the ladder means that they gave it their all, which is an amazing intrinsic motivator.

6. Develop Real World Simulations

This is another way to provide real world experience without forcing new hires onto the sales floor. Interactive online training simulations mimic the workplace environment, which allows sales employees to explore every facet of the job, from using sales terminals to punching in every day. You can even create a "typical work day" online training simulation where they can practice every task and skill they'll need on-the-job. Incorporate workplace images and realistic challenges to help employees connect and relate to the subject matter. For example, a photo of the sales floor or equipment they'll use on a regular basis.

7. Incorporate Case Studies

Case studies are a highly underrated training tool. While stories and examples may steal the spotlight, case studies feature a practical element that's ideal for sales online training courses. They highlight key facts, statistics, and figures that tie into the subject matter. Thus, every case study is an opportunity to drive the point home and make it real for your employees. Stressing the benefits and applications of your sales online training is important. But case studies show salespeople how their performance and actions translate into profit. Just be sure to use relatable virtual characters and situations to stir employee's emotions and enhance realism.

8. Sales Online Training Is An Ongoing Process

Sales online training never truly stops. Even after your staff knows all the essentials, they still need memory refreshers from time to time. Job support aids are one of the most effective tools for ongoing online training. This includes online tutorials, videos, simulations, and step-by-step walkthroughs. Mobile microlearning resources make sales online training convenient and engaging, which enhances the benefits. You can also host weekly or monthly webinars to keep everyone in the loop and offer personalized feedback.

Sales online training is versatile, flexible, and scalable. No matter how many employees you have, every member of your sales team can focus on personal performance gaps. They also have the power to set their own online training goals and achieve success on their own terms.

Serious games are a great way to fuel friendly competition and motivate your sales staff. Read the article 6 Tips To Develop Serious Games That Enhance Product Knowledge In Online Training to discover how to add serious games to your product knowledge online training strategy.