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Sales vs. Business Development: What's the Difference?

Asked 13 Dec 2022 11:18:07
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13 Dec 2022 11:18:07 timmy 7 posted:
Sales development and business development are different functions within a company that both work to increase awareness and sales. Sales development focuses on identifying leads, researching and developing them and moving them along the sales cycle toward a closing. Business development involves finding new growth opportunities for the company and forming strategic partnerships that open up new markets. In this article, we discuss the differences between sales and business development within a business.
Differences between sales and business development
Here is a list of differences between sales or business development to help you understand each department's unique place in a company's operations:

Impact on the company's profits
Both business and sales development contribute to a company's success by bringing in more revenue, but they do so in different ways and within different time frames. The sales development function involves reviewing leads, researching them, determining which ones are most likely to convert and sending those on to a salesperson to close. In the business development department, staff members look for new avenues to grow through partnerships with other entities.

Focus on the present vs. the future
In sales development, the focus is on what the customer or client can buy from the company immediately and what the company can deliver immediately. With business development, professionals develop relationships to give the company new audiences to sell to in the future.

For example, a sales development team for a company that makes household tools, such as hammers and screwdrivers, might respond to an inquiry from a hardware store about putting products on the shelves in the store for direct sales to consumers. The company's business development department might work on a 10-year contract to sell tools to the state for the maintenance staff members who upkeep government buildings.

Customer's perspective
Customers working with the sales division are likely at one of three stages in the buying process:

Awareness: They may be looking for a solution to a problem that the company can solve. Using the example of the tool company, a customer at this stage knows they need a new hammer and is looking at what the company offers.
Consideration: They may have already identified several solutions and are evaluating all the options. At this stage, the customer has looked at six different hammers and is deciding which one they want.
Decision: They may have selected the solution they want and decided what they are willing to pay for it. At this stage, the customer knows which of the six hammers they want and are comparing prices at various retailers.
The business development team might work on new products to offer to customers who are in the first stage of looking for solutions. In that sense, business development is sales. However, the main purpose of this department is not sales transactions. It is to work with the research and development team to develop a new tool design for the customer to evaluate in the first stage of buying while they are considering all the possible solutions.


Replied 13 Dec 2022 11:46:47
13 Dec 2022 11:46:47 Jessica z replied:
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Replied 13 Dec 2022 13:49:11
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