Outside Sales vs. Inside Sales

Before we begin, here’s a brief recap of two terms that are important for this article. Outside sales is the form of sales that does not take place in the office. Salespeople travel by car, or other transportation methods directly to their prospects to perform in-person sales discussions. Inside sales is the term for sales that takes place over the phone, via email or other online platforms, and does not entail personal contact.

There’s a lot of debate these days about the direction sales is taking. For years, the personal visits of sales reps to their prospect’s businesses has been what we have grown accustomed to as “sales”. Recently, though, as sales has been evolving and becoming more modern accompanied by a wave of new technology and modernization, we have come to see a lot more of inside sales.

We’ve done some investigating for you and came up with 3 difference between outside and inside sales.

Reason number 1:

Increased convenience.

Look around, it seems as though everywhere, people are putting a larger focus on convenience - you’ll see - it’s all about getting things done faster and easier these days. Although personal sales visits used to be seen as more effective and a better way to create a customer relationship, more and more reasons are popping up to suggest that inside sales is becoming a strong competitor. Watch out outside sales - the future predicts that 85% of buyer/seller transactions will happen online, through video, or through calls by 2020. It might be a good idea to jump on that bandwagon before it takes off without you!

Let’s think about this for a moment, you have all the information in front of you- your research, your prospect profile, your sales templates. You’re good to go and your prospect never has to know that you have all your tips and tricks right in front of you. Another huge aspect of convenience is that it covers today’s flexible working hours. You’ll see in today’s business world, that the typical 9-5 jobs aren’t as rigid as they used to be. You could even be on the way to your child’s soccer game, pick up the phone, and close a deal.

Reason number 2:

Decreased costs.

And sometimes, it’s all about the numbers… Inside sales are the days of saying goodbye to fancy Cadillacs and designer clothes just to ensure a good impression with one’s prospects. You’re perfect the way you are. In your office. At your desk. With a coffee in your hand. Sounds great, doesn’t it?

The cost of transportation and primping to look “oh-so-personable” is more than one would think. You’re spending more time focusing on what you look like than you are prospecting, creating profiles, researching your leads, etc. With inside sales, you not only eliminate the costs of building an image, but think about how any more calls a day you can complete if you’re not driving to each customer’s company. More calls = more prospects = more customers.

Reason number 3:

Better customer relationships.

We know - many outside sales advocates will insist that personal visits are the key ingredient to a smooth and harmonic relationship with a customer. On the other hand, consider this for a moment - your customer has just as busy of a schedule as you do. They have a packed schedule all day with a meeting before and after yours. So what makes you think that they will have the time to sit down, offer you a coffee, begin a nice conversation, etc. For your customer, it is just as convenient as it is for you to just pick up the phone, and get right down to business. Chances are, your prospect already did their research and knows what he/she wants. You don’t need to waste your time, and you certainly don’t need to waste your customer’s time. In addition, you have the ability to customize each customer conversation better since there is so much more information available online these days.

In conclusion, it’s important to realize where the times are headed. Inside sales encompasses so many different tools including video, email, phone, etc. The flexibility and abundance of innovations behind inside sales are pushing it to become so prevalent in today’s business world, and not without reason.

If you agree with the movement sales is making towards inside sales, head over to Ciara and get selling. Get with the times. Get ahead. Get Ciara.

Published 4 months ago.

4 minute read.

Sarah Evans

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