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3 Reasons You Should Know the Length of Your Sales Cycle

Posted on April 14, 2016 by Jim Vandanacker

Sonders' Selling Tips

Today's post is written by Nationwide Agency Advisor, Jim Vandanacker. Hope you enjoy.

How long is the sales cycle in your agency? 30-days? 60-days?

Do you even know? 

If your answer is yes, do you also know the cycle length for each insurance product and policy you offer to customers? If you don't have a full grasp of your timeline for an insurance sale, there is a good chance that a lot of opportunities to sell policies are passing you by.

The length of the insurance sales cycle will vary depending upon whom you ask. It doesn’t necessarily matter how long your sales cycle is, but rather, that you as a top-flight insurance producer know the length of time it is from start to finish. If you’ve never given it much thought, now is as great time to take a look at the reasons why knowing the length of your sales cycle can help you meet and exceed your agency’s sales goals.

Sales cycle organization

#1 Knowing When to Begin and End an Ad Campaign

Regardless of your idea of what the average length of an insurance sales cycle should be, you can use actionable information to help you determine advertising campaigns for each product line and the best times to begin and end these ad campaigns. Understanding the entire span -- from lead, to customer -- of your agencies sales cycle is vitally important. When is the ideal time to close a sale? An opportune time would be when the insurance customer is in the best position to make payment, such as tax refund season. If your typical sales cycle for a specific policy is 30 days and you want the end of the sales cycle to coincide with the time people begin receiving their tax refunds (mid-February), you would begin your advertising 30 days prior (mid-January). The math is not complicated, but you need to understand your sales cycle. The right sales automation tools can support you in this process by helping you to channel prospects for all your policy types and develop effective ad campaigns.

#2 Reducing the Time it Takes to Sell Policies

If you think about it, this is a given. You can’t reduce the time of your sales cycle if you don’t know how long it is. Once you have a time frame for the sale of each policy, beginning to end, you can work on strategies for increasing efficiency and speeding up the insurance sales cycle. Faster sales means greater profits for you and your agency. There are certain factors you won’t have any control over, such as the underwriting turnaround time of your carriers. However, many other things, such as a follow-up call, email or personal visit to a prospect are completely within your control. You’ll have a better idea when to schedule these all-important follow-ups with your prospects if you have a firm grasp on the length of your insurance sales cycle.

#3 Implementing New Policy Lines

What is the alternative to growth? It is death. If you agency stops growing, it will eventually die. Implementing new policy lines could be the shot in the arm to give your dwindling book of business a new life. Perhaps you are a personal lines agency and never thought you had the necessary resources to delve into the world of business insurance. By knowing your sales cycle timeline, you can get a better grasp on the resources you’ll need to be successful selling business insurance. If you can efficiently reduce the time it takes to close the deal, you are freeing yourself to be ready for new expansion opportunities. If you think about it, everyone you encounter is a potentially opportunity; from your neighbor, to your car dealer or your banker. Maybe people you stay in contact with through social media. They all need insurance in one form or another and there is no reason you can’t be the one to sell it to them. It all begins and ends with the insurance sales cycle.


Jim Vandanacker

Mr. Vandanacker is Nationwide Agency advisor at Vertafore. Before coming to Vertafore, where he's been for the last 4 years, Jim spent 6 years managing one of the largest independent agencies in Seattle. His experience makes him uniquely qualified to speak to technology's ability to impact an agency's bottom line. 




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