IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

MSPs Aren't Bad at Sales, So What's the Problem?

IT business owners must focus on the sales pipeline, which requires improving the consultative sales process. By Ted Roller

Managed service providers (MSPs) and IT partners think they're bad at selling, but in fact, they're quite good at it, because they are inherently problem solvers. What you do every day is a very evolved, consultative, value-laden, detailed sales methodology. You evaluate, assess, identify issues, recommend solutions, and implement them. That's selling.

The problem is, there's more to growing a profitable business than keeping current customers happy. As a business owner, you have to focus on your sales pipeline, which means honing your consultative sales process.

Here are three key steps to improve that process:

1. Rethink Your Idea of Sales

The vast majority of MSPs are technicians, which means they probably aren't extroverts and might find "sales-y" behavior out of their comfort zone. MSPs often hesitate to focus on selling because they feel like convincing someone to trust them is disingenuous—or dishonest.

Most MSPs haven't studied sales, so they don't understand the fundamentals.

Selling is not:

  • Convincing people to buy something they don't need.
  • Pleading or telling tall tales to get customers to part with their money.

Selling is:

  • Delivering value and explaining that value to people who need it.
  • Convincing people of the value of something they need to keep them safe, productive, or competitive. 
  • Helping customers understand that the value of your solution is more important than the value of the dollar that they're spending on it.
  • Educating buyers on solutions to their business and IT challenges.

Good salespeople are confident in one thing—whatever they're selling will be of value to their customers.

Read that again. That’s the secret to sales.

Being highly confident in the solutions you provide and communicating that confidence to prospects isn't aggressive, it's advantageous. Looking out for your customer is what it takes to be good at sales.

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