Not all sales transactions start with a listed price for goods and services, instead, a sales quote may be used. Sales quoting allows a business to establish a price based on individual consumer requests for the provision of goods and services.
Sales quoting explained
A sales quote is used in sales transactions for services, or high-end products that do not have identifiable price tags. The consumer will express interest in a product or service and request a quote on the price for it. Quotes for service may also include labour and material costs.
Often consumers will ask for sales quotes from competing businesses to get the best price on the item or service they are looking to purchase. They may also attempt to negotiate a new price quote with you.
Quotes can be either firm or flexible depending on the business and may or may not be accepted by the customer. When a sales quote is accepted, it indicates that the customer understands the price quoted and that they are agreeing to pay that amount in exchange for the product or service described.
Price quotes can have variations as more information is gained. For example, if you provide a price for building materials to then discover the customer needs more than originally estimated, the price of the sales quote is likely to increase. Additionally, sales quotes can offer a reduced price for items bought in bulk.
Sales quoting processes
The sales quoting process will be different depending on the business, but you should start by looking at how prospective customers are attracted to your business and identify ways for you to establish rapport.
- Obtain as much information as you can from potential customers to identify their wants, needs and pain points. This way you can make the best recommendation for a product or service to meet these needs.
- All prospective customers should be treated the same regardless of whether you think they will make a purchase or not. Making a good impression encourages good word-of-mouth and can mean that the customer returns at another time to make a purchase.
- Remember when recommending your product or service, it is about how you can help them. Demonstrate the benefits and value your business can provide and try to avoid technical jargon.
- When presenting a sales quote, always ensure that it itemises exactly what has been quoted and the timeframe for which the quote is valid.
- Have a clear follow-up plan to encourage a sales conversion based on value to the client. This helps to establish a good relationship with the customer and potentially retain them for future opportunities and referrals.
- When a sales quote is accepted make onboarding process for the client as simple as possible.
Efficient accurate sales quoting and inventory control
One way to improve the speed and accuracy of sales quoting is to reduce administration tasks so that sales reps can move leads more quickly through the sales pipeline.
Cloud-based inventory control solutions provide valuable, transparent, real-time inventory data at a glance so that sales reps can see what stock is available, where it is and in what quantities. As sales are made, inventory stock levels are adjusted accordingly.
Efficient inventory control reduces manual sales processes and eliminates the need for double handling of inventory data and cloud-based inventory control means that all your sales data is in one place and can be accessed by any one of the team, from anywhere.
Cloud-based inventory control also improves the flow of documents because when changes are made at any stage in the sales process, each subsequent document is automatically updated. For example, if the sales quote changes, the sales order and invoice will reflect this, and there will be a record to show what changes were made.Topics: inventory control, inventory management software, sales orders