Interprofessional Group of Manufacturers for Marketing Study
26/10/2021 | The digital transformation of companies

Remote selling is booming and B2B sales techniques have a lot to gain by incorporating remote selling into their strategy.


Remote selling literally translates into "distance selling," but the term tends to refer more broadly to a new model based on virtual selling. This is a definite efficiency gain for BtoB companies, but it requires some adaptations. 

What is remote selling?

La vente à distance, déjà en plein essor, a été propulsée par les épisodes de confinement et les restrictions de déplacement liées à la crise sanitaire. Ces pratiques couvrent plusieurs aspects parmi lesquels le processus du remote selling qui intéresse plus particulièrement les acteurs de la vente BtoB.

Si la méthode s’est imposée afin de répondre à l'impossibilité pour les commerciaux d’aller à la rencontre de leurs prospects, son déploiement s'inscrit dans la suite logique de la dématérialisation des échanges. Le terrain de la vente à distance a depuis longtemps été exploré au moyen de la prospection téléphonique. Mais le remote selling va plus loin en proposant aux commerciaux tout un attirail d’outils de vente à distance avec, à la clé, des opportunités de développement concrètes pour l'entreprise.


How does this differ from traditional sales methods?

The power of the remote selling process is that it encompasses all commercial activities from prospecting to closing the sale. It is no longer just a matter of preparing the ground, but of taking the project through to the transaction.

Sales strategies most often combine the power of the digital tool with the conversion power of the sales approach in the field. Here, the digital medium goes hand in hand with the sale. With remote selling, the entire sales process is digitalised until it is completed. This includes the meeting between the salesperson and the prospect, a crucial step in initiating a buying dynamic. Digitalising this all-important exchange could frighten many people. The  reliability of the medium is a major concern: the quality of the sound, the image and the direct environment of each of the participants are all parameters that can affect the fluidity of interactions if they are not controlled. This is why it is essential to equip your company accordingly and to develop a suitable strategy before making the transition to remote selling.


Why switch to remote selling? 

Telephone prospecting is declining. Often poorly perceived by prospects, it does not offer optimal conditions for building trust, an essential step in the distance selling process.

At the same time, prospecting strategies on the main digital channels (websites, social networks, email campaigns, etc.), although effective, cannot entirely replace a sales pitch deployed in real-time and, consequently, flexible and adaptable to the exchange with a single contact.

Remote selling makes it possible to create this essential link between the stakeholders while retaining all the advantages of the digital medium. If the practice is on the rise, its success depends on the ability of sales teams to fully appropriate the videoconferencing tool by reorienting the content and form of the traditional meeting to make it a real conversion lever.


How to orchestrate the transition to remote selling for B2B sales?


  • Leading change

This means that salespeople must be able to communicate as effectively as they do when they are out in the field. This implies some prior checks, especially when it comes to teleworking. The aim is to ensure that the employee has a working environment that is capable of conveying the company's image. On the more technical aspects, the quality of the connection must allow the videoconferencing tool to be used optimally. Some software offers features that are particularly relevant to the deployment of remote selling, with the ability to follow a pre-defined strategic process that allows teams to bounce back easily at each key stage of the exchange.

  •  Energising the exchange

And to avoid falling back into the classic pattern of a videoconference with two interlocutors facing the camera, the new virtual sales methods take advantage of the now ubiquitous screen to create an environment conducive to co-construction. The aim is to direct attention to a digital medium that illustrates and supports the sales pitch... without replacing it, at the risk of losing the caller. The virtual sales journey must remain dynamic and evolving.

Once mastered, remote selling is far more flexible than traditional sales methods. The constraints associated with making appointments are considerably reduced, allowing the salesperson to broaden his or her prospecting in terms of time availability and geographical area. With content and discourse designed for virtual sales, the sales pitch becomes more powerful, while covering a wider area. This will give a new lease of life to B2B sales.