Sales Strategy Plan: Steps to Build a Successful Sales Strategy

Learn what a sales strategy is all about. Explore its various dimensions to elevate your sales game and push your business towards unparalleled success.

December 10, 2023


7 minutes

Shara Zareen

Shara Zareen

Sales Strategy Plan: Steps to Build a Successful Sales Strategy


Imagine a sales team so skilled that they fix things even before anyone notices– more like problem-solving experts who are always one step ahead. This is no longer wishful thinking in today’s world of limitless possibilities where every conversation is a potential deal, all thanks to a meticulously crafted sales strategy.

A sales strategy is a detailed plan outlining how a business intends to sell its products or services. It helps in converting leads into loyal and lifelong customers. The right strategy is not just a road map; it is a secret weapon that can make or break the business’s success. So buckle up as we unravel the mysteries of strategic selling, starting from understanding your audience to the final handshake that seals the deal.

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What is a Sales Strategy?

A sales strategy is a comprehensive plan that guides an individual or a business in reaching its revenue aspirations via effective selling techniques. It is a systematic approach to understanding the market, identifying target customers, and crafting compelling narratives around the product or service. Creating a successful sales strategy means carefully planning, forming a strong sales team, using technology smartly, and creating sales pitches that connect with customers. It's an ongoing process that adapts based on performance metrics that ensure the growth and competitiveness of the business.

Image: What is a Sales Strategy?

5 Steps to Build a Successful Sales Strategy

A well-crafted strategy not only helps in achieving short-term sales targets but also lays the foundation for sustainable growth. Here is a step-by-step comprehensive guide to building an effective sales strategy.

Define B2B Sales Objectives & Understand Your Targeted Customers

The foundational steps when crafting a sales strategy are clearly outlining what your business aims to achieve and staying attuned to your audience's needs and preferences.

  • Ensure that your sales objectives directly contribute to broader business goals.
  • Use the S.M.A.R.T. model– a goal-setting approach. This framework ensures clarity, quantifiability, attainability, relevance, and a defined timeframe for goals, enhancing the likelihood of success in various personal and professional endeavours.

Specific: precise and unambiguous objectives

Measurable: metrics to track progress and success

Achievable: realistic and achievable goals

Relevant: goals must align with the overall objective of the business

Time-bound: set a timeframe for each goal

  • Differentiate short-term and long-term objectives and prioritize them based on their impact and importance.
  • Conduct comprehensive market research to gather data and examine buying patterns, preferences, and decision-making processes.
  • Create detailed customer personas and keep updating them.
  • Collect feedback through surveys and interviews to understand your customers’ perception of your brand and address their pain points.

Conduct a SWOT Analysis

Conducting a SWOT analysis helps you gain a comprehensive understanding of both internal and external factors that may affect your sales strategy. This analysis assists you in leveraging your strengths, addressing weaknesses, exploiting opportunities and mitigating threats.

  • Identify the internal strengths by accessing the stability of your brand in the market and evaluating the expertise of your sales team. Determine the strength of your existing customer relationships and obtain the frequency of repeat business. Leverage technologies for enhanced sales operations.
  • Recognize your organisation's internal weaknesses by identifying gaps in your product or service offerings and areas where internal processes may be lacking. Address any recurring negative feedback and factors contributing to low customer retention.
  • Explore opportunities in targeting new customer segments. Identify potential growth areas or untapped markets. Stay abreast of trends and leverage technological tools to enhance sales processes.
  • Identify threats related to data security and privacy. Be aware of competitors entering the market and monitor industry regulations that may affect sales.
Image: SWOT Analysis

Establish KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) & Implement CRM Software

Establishing KPIs and implementing CRM software equips your sales team with the appropriate tools and metrics necessary for success. These components help measure performance, optimize processes, and enhance customer relationships.

  • Align KPIs directly with your business goals to measure progress effectively.
  • Calculate the cost of acquiring (CAC) each new customer, access customer lifetime value (CLV) to your business, measure customer satisfaction score (CSAT) through surveys, and evaluate net promoter score (NPS).
  • Ensure accurate and up-to-date customer data.
  • Regularly review and adjust KPIs.
  • Select the right CRM software, opt for a user-friendly platform and ensure its compatibility with the existing systems and tools.
  • Conduct training sessions for all users to familiarize them with the CRM. Try keeping the software updated with the latest features and security patches.

Train and Develop Your Sales Team

Training and developing your sales team ensures the successful implementation of your sales strategy. Here’s how you can do it.

  • Identify the current skill set of each team member and then create a training program. You can also offer training for specific roles within the sales team.
  • Train your team on each stage of the sales funnel. Equip them with an in-depth knowledge of the product or service they are selling.
  • Equip them with effective objection-handling techniques. Ensure that your team is proficient in using CRM tools.
  • Track and measure training feedback with the help of feedback and performance metrics.
  • Regularly review and update training programs to align with the changing market dynamics.

Develop a Sales Funnel

Developing a sales funnel is a critical aspect of crafting a sales strategy. It represents the journey of a customer's awareness to purchase and beyond.

  • Define the stages of the sales funnel and map the customer journey.
  • Utilize paid channels like PPC advertising to generate leads.
  • Train your sales team to negotiate and close strategies effectively.
  • Ensure a smooth transition for new customers and get involved in post-purchase engagements like gathering feedback to improve customer experience.
The ToFu, MoFu, and BoFu is a method used by sales professionals to help them match their strategies with the customer’s current phase in the buying process. Each stage focuses on a specific type of content to address the needs of potential customers at different stages of the buying process.

A PDF of the Sales Strategy Template will be inserted here.

Importance of a Well-Crafted Strategy

A well-crafted sales strategy has become a necessity for all, be it a startup or a seasoned business. Let’s understand the reasons for its importance.

  • Guiding the Business: A sales strategy serves as the North Star to a business. It guides a company through the vast and unpredictable sales landscape, turning abstract goals into clear plans. This strategy unifies the entire organization, without which businesses are at the risk of meandering without purpose.
  • Target the Right Audience: It enables organizations to identify and understand their ideal audience by incorporating comprehensive market research. A deep understanding of the intended audience’s preferences, needs, and pain points empowers businesses to tailor marketing efforts in a way that resonates. It helps capture the attention and loyalty of the right audience and fosters long-term customer relationships.
  • Effective Resource Utilization: It helps businesses identify and invest in the most lucrative opportunities and prevent unnecessary expenditure on non-essential tasks. The sales strategy encourages ongoing evaluation and adjustments, allowing organizations to reallocate resources based on performance metrics and market dynamics.
  • Risk Mitigation: It is an effective tool for resource management. Businesses can set clear goals and priorities, while the sales strategy will guide them in maximizing their potential and minimizing waste. It ensures that the resources are directed towards suitable activities and helps achieve the organization's objectives.
  • Consistent Growth: It ensures that each sales initiative contributes to the overall growth of the enterprise. Businesses can seize new opportunities and achieve sustainable growth by adequately crafting and executing a sales strategy.
Image: Importance of a Well-Crafted Strategy

10 Types of Customer Sales Strategies For Businesses

Different businesses require different sales strategies based on their business goals. Choosing the right strategy depends on various factors, such as the target market, overall objective, and nature of the products and services. Here are 10 different types of commonly employed strategies.

 Sr. No




Inbound Sales Strategy

Focuses on attracting potential clients through content marketing, SEO, or social media and guiding them through the buying process.


Outbound Sales Strategy

Proactively outreach potential customers through cold calling, e-mail campaigns, or direct mail to generate and convert leads.


Consultative Strategy

To understand customers’ needs and offer custom-made solutions through personalized consultations.


Value-Based Selling 

Demonstrating the long-term value and benefits the customer will gain from the purchase. 


Solution Selling

It is focused on selling solutions to specific problems.


Social Selling

Utilizing social media to drive sales by sharing relevant content and engaging in conversations with potential customers.


Cross-Selling & Upselling

To increase the transactional value and enhance customer experience by offering additional or upgraded products to existing customers.


Direct Sales Strategy

Commonly used by retailers and e-commerce businesses to sell directly to end customers without intermediaries. 


Relationship Selling

Focused on building long-term relationships by understanding the customer’s needs over time.


Channel Sales Strategy

Uses third-party channels or partners to sell; it focuses on leveraging the strengths of the partner organization. 

Best Practices to Have a Winning Sales Strategy

It requires a combination of thoughtful planning, effective execution, and continuous improvement to draft a winning strategy. Listed below are a few best practices tried and tested by experienced professionals.

  • Focus on relationship building through transparent communication and delivering on promises.
  • Don’t stick to a specific sales process, as it doesn’t guarantee 100% conversion. Explore and experiment with your process.
  • For a broader audience outreach, try implementing a multi-channel approach.
  • Align your sales and marketing teams to beat your targets easily.
  • Shorten your TAT (turnaround time) with the help of CRM technology.
  • Don’t ignore your existing customers, as they tend to spend 67% more than the new ones.

From the initial stages of prospecting to the final steps of post-purchase engagement, sales strategy is a dynamic force to drive success and growth. Use our guide to start your journey of creating an effective strategy for your business. Don’t forget to keep in mind the above-mentioned best practices.

What Is Lead Management? Definition, Benefits, and Processes

Improve Sales Strategy

What is a sales strategy?


A sales strategy is a plan that outlines the approach, tactics, and activities a business intends to employ to achieve its sales objectives.

How to build a sales strategy?


For building a sales strategy, you must identify target customers, understand market trends, set clear objectives, establish a unique value proposition, and create effective sales tactics. You must continuously analyze results, adapt strategies, and foster strong customer relationships to drive sustainable growth and success.

What are the different types of sales strategies?


The 4 most effective sales strategies are: Canned Selling Needs-Satisfaction Consultative Selling Strategic Partner Selling

Why is sales strategy important?


It is crucial for guiding a company's efforts to achieve its revenue goals. It provides a roadmap for targeting the right customers, leveraging competitive advantages, and aligning resources effectively. A well-defined sales strategy ensures focus, adaptability, and the optimization of sales processes, ultimately contributing to sustainable business growth.

What are the common challenges in implementing a sales strategy?


Resistance to change, inadequate training, misalignment between sales and marketing, insufficient data quality, and the inability to adapt to evolving market dynamics are the common challenges while implementing a sales strategy.

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