Door to door sales are one of the toughest sales jobs out there. It’s a thankless task, knocking on doors day after day, only to have them closed in your face. If you want to improve door to door sales, you need to find ways to improve the process. The easiest way of doing that is to ask the people on the front line—your sales reps.

These tips don’t just apply to your business as a whole. You can also use the technique to focus on very specific areas where changes will make the biggest impact.

Door to door salesman gives feedbackIn this article, we’ll explore the type of questions you can ask your door to door salespeople, and what you can do with the feedback. The aim is to create an effective door to door sales training process to make life easier for you and your sales reps and to get you more sales.

As you’ve read, the best way to get feedback is to ask the right questions in a structured way, whether that’s through an online survey, a one to one interview, or a group discussion.

Questions you can ask your door to door sales reps

First, try limiting the number of feedback questions you ask to around seven. This is the right length for average attention spans. Ask fewer than this, and you might not get all the data you need. Ask more than this and people are less likely to complete the survey.

You might want to focus your questions around specific areas of your door to door sales, or pick and mix to get a general overview. Here are a selection of questions you can choose from.

If you think there’s a particular area of weakness in your canvassing sales, you might want to focus all your questions around that. Otherwise, pick the seven most interesting questions you think will give you most insight into the sales process.

Training for your sales reps

  • What’s the one thing you’ve found most helpful about our door to door sales training?
  • How could we improve on that one thing?
  • Is there an area of your door to door sales training you think we could have covered better?
  • If there was one improvement you could make to our door to door sales training, what would it be?
  • What did our door to door sales training teach you that you didn’t know before?
  • How do you think door to door sales training will make you a better salesperson?

Previous experience and best practices

  • What did your old employer do better that you’d like us to adopt here (please provide an example)?
  • What is it about your previous door to door experience you’ve found easiest to use here?
  • What is it about your previous door to door experience you’ve found hardest to use here?
  • Please share any personal anecdotes, examples, or stories for when a door to door sale went very well for you.
  • What good door to door sales techniques have you read about or learned that would be good for the rest of our sales team?
  • How could we make the sales process more effective and efficient for you?

Pitching to and negotiating with clients

  • What could we do to better prepare you for negotiating with canvassing leads?
  • How could we make it easier for you to get better responses from a sales lead?
  • Which of these areas do you feel are most important to “getting to yes?” — Training in pitching, training in negotiation, your natural skills, sending you the right tips, or something else?
  • How can we improve the quality of the canvassing leads we send you?

General door to door sales process

  • What area of your canvassing sales do you consider most difficult (please provide an example)?
  • If you could fix that difficult area, how would you do it?
  • Do we provide the right type of administrative and other support to help you close cavassing sales?
  • If you could make one change to how we support you when you’re out selling, what would it be?
  • Please provide any other feedback and comments

Of course these are just examples of questions you can ask your canvassing sales reps, but they provide a good starting point.

Acting on the information

Once you’ve had responses back from your survey, you’ll want to find any common themes running through them. The common themes will be your first place to focus change. After that, read through each survey response, one by one, and make a note of responses you’re surprised by, or where fixes could be fairly easy. Once you’ve done that, create actions that will make improvements to the training process. Pay particular attention to common themes, surprises, and “quick tips.” Taken together, these will give you the best return on the time and money you spend fixing the sales process.

It’s vital you turn feedback into action. That’s the purpose of this exercise, and it shows your sales people you take their concerns seriously. This will help them feel more engaged.

Finally, get a project in place to make the changes. Let your sales reps know what you’ve learned and what you’re doing to fix it. Give regular updates on progress and establish measures so you can see the impact you’re having.

Once you’ve made the changes, you should see your sales increasing — You’ll have happier sales reps and higher profits.

We recommend carrying out surveys like this on a yearly basis. This is all about continual improvement, and you’ll see things keep getting better the more attention you pay to them.