Competition for new customers is fierce in the B2B landscape. Price, quality and online convenience are common factors that can influence a sale. One commonly overlooked area is the credit process. A manual, one-size-fits-all approach to credit can turn away prospects, create inefficient sales targeting and distract your sales team from selling.
Consider these three credit platform mistakes that could be hurting your sales -- and how you can solve them.
Problem: Paper-based methods slow down credit approvals.
Solution: Adopt an online application with instant decisioning.
It's no secret: Manual credit applications take too long to complete. Filling out the form by hand, waiting for reference checks, and data from the credit bureau - it could be days or even weeks before the customer receives an answer. Most customers are long gone by then - that is, if they didn't immediately forego the process altogether.
An online, automated credit application generate instant decisions and forecasts the likelihood of delinquency, evaluating each applicants risk category and recommending an appropriate line size. With an immediate answer, customers can begin purchasing what they need in the same online session or work with your field sales rep if that's their preference. This one simple change can boost sales, while your credit and sales teams are freed up from chasing incomplete manual applications.
Problem: Lack of automated pre-screening leads to inefficient sales targeting.
Solution: Create a process that feeds credit qualified sales targets to your sales team.
Submit your target prospects to your risk decision engine, and receive instant intelligence on which ones have healthy credit and which ones will be a waste of time. Salespeople can focus on prospects that have the best credit ratings and spend the majority of their time maximizing sales with the least amount of risk exposure.
Problem: Credit-related tasks are burdening your sales team.
Solution: Adopt an internal portal with transparency for both credit and sales.
It’s common for sales to get bogged down with credit-related tasks, such as helping a prospect complete a credit application or spending time chasing down statements for current customers. Consider adopting an internal portal that gives your sales and credit teams full visibility into every customer’s credit approval process, current line, and all purchase and payment activity. Salespeople are freed up to focus on selling product and can see which customers are under-utilizing their lines.
At the end of the day, increasing sales requires simple, strategic moves that are mutually beneficial for your company and your customers. By streamlining the credit application, pre-screening customers on the front end and freeing up the sales team to focus their time and energy on selling, you’re committing to long-term efficiency and growth.
Written by Sarah Faatz, Director of Credit Risk Management
Interested in learning more?
Check out four credit risk protections you need for your B2B business