Effective sales forecasting enables companies to go beyond just reaching their numbers. Yet in a recent survey, 66 percent of companies reported that they are not satisfied with their current sales forecasting processes (Ventana Benchmark Research: The State of Sales Forecasting). Sales teams are falling behind due to ineffective planning when they should be focused on closing. Companies need to run their businesses rather than letting the market run them. Building a strong sales forecast empowers sales managers to track sales rep and team performance, follow trends, measure deal velocity, identify known risks, respond with agility to avoid pitfalls, and plan for high levels of success. This level of transparency enables teams to consistently beat the standards. Four reasons why you should care about improving your sales forecasting process:
- Stop wasting your sales reps’ time. Manage performance throughout the quarter to mitigate risk and optimize where reps choose to dedicate their time and energy. Push your reps to consistently achieve higher quotas based on deal analysis.
- Accurately predict which deals will close. Follow trends that are common in successful deals to increase sales velocity and decrease low-performance activities. Stop lingering on deal cycles that guarantee little to no return. Ensure that your reps are focused on executing the right deal tactics.
- Gain greater insight into product performance. Identify your top-performing products to influence the product roadmap and go-to-market plan. Engage with your top sellers for each product to understand the relevant use cases and market needs.
- Provide your leadership team with clear insights into the state of the business. Share analytical insights with executives to highlight successful deals and team members. Present supporting data to impact high-level decisions. Model how various changes will impact the company’s success.