In this digital world, customers are more informative.They are digitally connected with all related websites. So they can easily gather the complete information they are looking for.They are always in search of answers which are not available easily on Internet. It may be possible that your sales staff may face some unexpected questions while illustrating the product.
If the sales personnel have enough product knowledge, then they will have enough confidence which leads to improved sales.
You may observe that for a certain type of product,your competitors are able to sell more than you. It’s not because their product is superior than yours. It’s just bcause your sales staff may not be able to handle product queries of consumers. It is very essential for sales personnel to have comprehensive product knowledge. Knowledge of the products helps them not just to win over the customers but retain them as well. Hence every company require to invest their time and money to conduct product trainings on regular interval of time.
A survey on sales states that “if continuous training is given to the employees, about 50% growth in net sales is noticed” (http://www.thebrevetgroup.com/21-mind-blowing-sales-stats/).
Providing classroom trainings to sales staff is not a easy job as it includes a lot of challenges.
- Sales people have very busy schedules. They need to cover their given target area in a very limited time frame. Hence, they don’t want to participate in any training activities conducted in the classroom.
- For a multinational organization, it is very difficult to train their sales staff, as it involves lots of logistics and other expenses.
- It is well known that people learn better in their native languages. Providing training in various languages in very difficult.
- During training, it is possible that learners may skip some important point which can not be covered
- It is very difficult to keep a record of training and evaluation manually for a large number of learners.
E-learning is the only way out
E-learning is the solution for all these challenges. Now–a-days most of the successful organizations are investing heavily in e-learning-based product training.
Want to know more? Let’s see.
- Flexible: E-learning courses are flexible in nature. Learners have the freedom to learn at their convenience,place and time.
- Lower cost : E-learning courses are cheaper than classroom training. The reason behind is that you develop an e-learning course one time and it can be used multiple times. E-learning helps to avoid logistics and other cost.
- Just-in-time support: E-learning provides just-in-time support for sales people who have to travel a lot and don’t find time for classroom training. Learning on various devices such as mobiles,i-phones, is very helpful. A sales personnel can easily go through all the important information on these devices once, before meeting with customer.
- Reach global audience: There are times when organizations launch a new product and need to disseminate information about the product to their employees in multi-locations and multi-language simultaneously. E-learning courseware comes handy in such a scenario.
- Repetitive: In a classroom session there is a possibility of learners skippng some important point. E-learning courses are unique in nature. Learners can go through the same content multiple times.
- Easy to Track: E-learning courses can be tracked very easily. LMSs can be used to track learners’
- Scalable: E-learning courses can be updated very easily for new policies, ideas and concepts.
- Higher learning retention: E-learning courses can be developed according to the target audience. It can be customized based on various learning styles.
The best part of e-learning is that it can also be used as a powerful way to prepare a learner for hands- on sessions. You can use e-learning as a pre-requisite to the hands-on session. When participants attend hands-on training session, they already have some basic knowledge which can be further developed during the face-to-face interaction with experts. Thus, the time of the experts can be qualitatively used to address more complex issues.
Do share your thoughts.
Editor’s note: This post was originally published in December 2011 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.