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Complex
sales Sales are activities related to selling or the number of goods sold in a given targeted time period. The delivery of a service for a cost is also considered a sale. The seller, or the provider of the goods or services, completes a sale in ...

sales
, also known as Enterprise sales, can refer to a method of trading sometimes used by organizations when procuring large contracts for goods and/or services where the customer takes control of the selling process by issuing a
Request for Proposal A request for proposal (RFP) is a document that solicits proposal, often made through a bidding Bidding is an offer (often competitive) to set a price tag by an individual or business for a product or service ''or'' a demand that something b ...
(RFP) and requiring a
proposal Proposal(s) or The Proposal may refer to: * Proposal (business) * Research proposal * Proposal (marriage) * Proposition, a proposal in logic and philosophy Arts, entertainment, and media * The Proposal (album), ''The Proposal'' (album) Films * ...
response from previously identified or interested suppliers. Complex sales involve long sales cycles with multiple decision makers. Multiple stakeholders and stakeholder groups contribute to every complex sale.


Description

Any product or service may become a complex sale. In some instances, a complex sale occurs when the market is mature and the stakes are high enough to warrant attention from a variety of stakeholders in the buying organization. In other instances a complex sales process is needed when the buyer has never had experience with the
vendor In a supply chain In commerce, a supply chain is a system of organizations, people, activities, information, and resources involved in supplying a product (business), product or service (business), service to a consumer. Supply chain activities ...

vendor
,
technology Technology ("science of craft", from Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. I ...

technology
being sold, or if the solution is business critical or impacts the buying organization on a strategic level. The series of filters, purchasing steps, and stakeholders involved are designed to reduce the risks associated with making the wrong buying decision. Often the need to have multiple stakeholders or buyers involved relates to the level of risk that is involved in the purchase or sale of goods and/or services. As the buyer or buying organization if the purchase only impacts a small group of people or component of the buying organization then often the decision is made by one buyer and the process tends to be quite transactional. If the purchase impacts the entire organization, affects the company strategically, or can change the buyer business process then often the sales person is required to have a set of skills that are more in line with a subject matter expert or consultant than a traditional sales person. This type of sales person can often be referred to as a Key Account Executive or Complex Sales Executive. Large or complex sales opportunities that are international in nature require an additional set of personal and sales skills. The need for cross-cultural awareness may add an additional layer of complexity in the sales process. The larger the purchase and the buyer risk the more trust and credibility required from the Vendor. As a ''Key Account Executive'' or ''Complex Sales Executive'' in addition to product knowledge and consultative selling skills top producing sales executives also have the ability to build strong client relationships and navigate and avoid the political pitfalls within client organizations.


Forms of complex sales

* Selling consulting engineering services * Facility Management bids including provision of soft and hard FM services * Enterprise technology sales such as CRM or POS solutions * Private data networks such as
MPLS Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) is a routing technique in telecommunications network A telecommunications network is a group of nodes In general, a node is a localized swelling (a "knot") or a point of intersection (a Vertex (graph theory ...

MPLS
* Commercial insurance sales *
Real Estate Real estate is property consisting of land and the buildings on it, along with its natural resources such as crops, minerals or water; immovable property of this nature; an interest vested in this (also) an item of real property, (more genera ...

Real Estate
development * Large fleet vehicle sales * Mining equipment sales (e.g. Caterpillar tractors and large
tunnel boring machine A tunnel boring machine (TBM), also known as a "mole", is a machine used to excavate tunnel A tunnel is an underground passageway, dug through the surrounding soil/earth/rock and enclosed except for entrance and exit, commonly at eac ...
s) * Scientific Solution Sales (Data analysis and management) * Government acquisition such as for military hardware and services * Building management systems * Security systems


Sales controlling

Due to the high costs of proposals in complex sales the
hit rate Hit rate is a metric or measure of business performance traditionally associated with sales. It is defined as the number of sales of a product divided by the number of customers who go online, planned call, or visit a company to find out about the p ...
i.e. the percentage of successful offers is a valuable indicator of the performance of the sales force.


Limitation of complex sales

By analysing the characteristics of 'stellar performers', Dixon and Adamson argued that building strong personal and professional relationships and advocates among customers was no longer the most important success factor for selling. On the contrary, nearly 40% of 'stellar performer's were sellers who pushed their thinking and were not afraid to share even controversial views with both their customers and bosses.Dixon, M and Adamson, B. (2011). Selling Is Not About Relationships. Harvard Business Review. nlineAvailable at: https://hbr.org/2011/09/selling-is-not-about-relatio ccessed 1 May 2017


See also

*AIDA (marketing), AIDA *Contract of sale *Industrial marketing *List of marketing topics *Marketing *Promotion (marketing), Promotion *Tendering


References

{{reflist Sales