This sponsored post is produced in association with The TAS Group.
Traditionally, the sales process was envisioned as a funnel. Put raw leads in the top, qualify as you go, and eventually money comes out the bottom (or that’s the hope). The challenge with this approach is that it ignores the relative impact of a whole lot of things that are going on in that funnel.
Fast forward a few years and now sales is being considered in terms of the bottomless ocean of big data at the fingertips of all organizations. This is data that can be hugely valuable, and CRMs can help sort through some of the statistical stuff, but what’s lacking is any meaningful insight that can help sales managers make decisions to increase conversion rates and average value of sale — or shorten sales cycles.
That’s where the Sales Velocity Equation comes in. It’s basically a simple way to calculate the relative impact of the four key metrics of pipeline health: the total number of opportunities, the average value per, your winning percentage, and the length of your sales cycle.
The ideal Sales Velocity Equation blocks out the white noise of big data. Instead, it focuses on key metrics to uncover the truth of what’s happening in your pipeline. It then leverages practical, plain-language insights and suggestions to help sales managers and teams be more successful.
In their ebook, the TAS Group, a smart sales automation company, breaks it down this way:
Here’s how the equation works. Let’s say your # of opportunities, average $s per sale, and win % all go up by 10%, and your length of sales cycle, goes down by 10%. What’s the total impact to your sales? Well, in this case, you’ll increase how much you sell by 47 percent (go ahead use this handy calculator to run your own numbers and see).
Knowing this, it suggests sales managers should focus equally on:
- Increasing the # of sales opportunities
- Increasing the average $s per deal
- Increasing the win rate %
- Reducing the length of the sales cycle
The problem is, most sellers still give disproportionate attention to increasing the number of opportunities in the pipeline, and ignore the other three parts of the equation, leading to less than optimal results. That’s just bad math.
The X factor: Your sales team
Of course, equations don’t make sales, people do. That’s why good sales managers fight the good fight every day to find new ways to make their teams more effective. But, in many cases, managers are remote from their sales team, and have to rely on phone calls and non-descriptive reports from their CRM systems, making it tough for them to identify, interpret, and influence the data that can predict success or failure, and sales management really shouldn’t be that hard.
To let you interpret data in a meaningful way for your team, top sales performance solutions leverage the data in CRMs, like Salesforce, and use the Sales Velocity Equation to focus your attention on what really matters and offer suggestions for easy-to-implement performance improvements.
We’re not just talking about charts and graphs, but plain language and context that eliminate any possibility of misinterpretation. That’s why it’s so important to source your sales performance solution from someone with deep expertise in sales management– been there, done that, got the happy clients and metrics to prove it.
This goes back to the importance of the X factor in the Sales Velocity Equation: your sales team. Figuring out how to manage sales people to success across different industries, regions, and market conditions takes time and experience. Don’t trust your sales performance to someone who can’t demonstrate that they understand exactly how to do this. Doing so is akin to intentionally taking on more risk than you need to in your pipeline and devaluing the potential impact of each, individual sales opportunity.
Proof is in the results
So how impactful can the Sales Velocity Equation be in understanding how to drive great performance?
Well, by implementing the TAS Group solution, Autodesk was able to increase their win rate by 29 percent and average deal size by a whopping 233 percent, all while shifting from an enterprise to a SaaS sales model – typically a tumultuous time for any software vendor. This speaks to the Sales Velocity Equation’s greatest potential benefit to sales managers: The ability to analyze today and improve your sales organization tomorrow.
Success with the Sales Velocity Equation is about focusing on what matters: don’t get caught up in old sales think, or distracted by meaningless data. Consider the context of each opportunity and use the best of breed tools out there to understand the true meaning of your key metrics, and what they can tell you about how to drive your sales team to greater performance.
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