Sales statistics: A complete lexicon of sales metrics, KPIs and how to measure sales performance

Sales statistics: A complete lexicon of sales metrics, KPIs and how to measure sales performance

Why are sales statistics important?

The benefit of measuring sales performance with data

By analysing your sales statistics, you get a crisp overview of your entire business. This gives you an understanding of where you are succeeding and helps you identify areas that need a little more work. By analysing your sales performance data, you have the power to take action, using insight from sales data to expand your capabilities.

Driving growth with sales analytics

Whether you’re an international company with a huge team of sales professionals or a start-up with only one person on your staff, sales analytics tools can help your business grow by helping you identify opportunities to increase sales conversions. Many sales analytics tools are low cost or even free, so there is nothing stopping you from improving your sales opportunities today!  

Test how small changes to your website can improve sales performance. The easiest way of thinking about this is to split it into three tasks:

  • Test small changes to your site.
  • Measure the results to see if those changes drive an improvement in sales.
  • Make the changes permanent to your website based on your findings.

Ask yourself ‘what encourages a customer to make a purchase’? To answer this, make a slight alteration to your site and test the changes compared to the current version. Don’t assume you know the answer before the testing is complete. Often, you’ll find yourself quite surprised by the results, people are complex and difficult to predict. 

Don’t be blinded by the results of the test. If your test results give you an insight into something you weren’t expecting, take note, even basic statistics can give you huge insight into how to improve the performance of your site.

Periodic table of inside sales statistics
Periodic table of inside sales statistics. A periodic table of all the key sales metrics you need to know. This strategy snack covers sales development, management and the top challenges your business will face. Learn how to make more informed decisions about your sales strategy. For example, the average percentage of a sales pipeline sourced by marketing.

Where should you run split A/B tests?

An A/B test is when you create two or more versions of a webpage or specific page element and show them to customers at random to compare the performance of the two versions. We recommend that you run split A/B tests for the following.

  • Content and layout of the Homepage.
  • Key pages within the checkout journey.
  • Places where customers regularly drop off the site. This could be sign-up pages, account registration pages or even the homepage.
  • The keywords and copy on the page. (For example the headlines and key selling points).

Choosing the right sales metrics to measure for your business

If you only ever focus on business performance data once a month, you cannot identify opportunities to capitalise on short-term opportunities. Depending on your target market and business goals, the type of data points you will want to focus on for your business will vary. Below are some metrics worth considering for measurement:

  • AOV – Average order value
  • Gross revenue and net profitability
  • Customer lifetime value
  • Product and service categories
  • Traffic sources
  • Seasonality

The ultimate sales metric of them all: Customers!

Getting access to all of that actionable data and knowing how to use it is one thing, but sometimes sales organisations forget what their most important source of information really is. Their customers. 

Listening to the customer is the ultimate data source. It will show you how your products/services are being received so that you can understand the wants and needs of your current customers as well as how to target future prospects.

How to measure sales productivity with metrics and reporting?

What are sales productivity metrics?

A good measure of sales productivity is the time it takes your sales representatives to reach their sales targets. Successful sales teams reach their targets quickly, leading to a higher level of sales productivity.

The aim of measuring sales productivity metrics is to understand the factors that result in the best sales performance. Measuring and modelling sales performance in this way can help you refine your sales strategy and perform more accurate sales forecasts. 

Sales productivity metrics include the percentage of…

  • Marketing collateral for use by sales representatives
  • Time spent selling
  • Time spent in content creation
  • Time spent on high-quality lead follow-up
  • Time spent on data entry
  • The number of sales tools used and their cost

How to Report and Measure Sales Productivity in a CRM system

A quick look at 4 key ways in which CRM systems can help you drive sales growth. This video delves into how CRM systems can help improve your sales process, track the lifetime value of your customers, implement automated marketing process and identify opportunities for growth. Source: Marketing360.

Measuring sales productivity

Understanding how sales representatives use their time will show you how effective their activities are at increasing your business’s revenue. To do this, consider the three categories of sales metrics that affect productivity: efficiency, effectiveness and performance.

4 steps to examining the productivity of your sales managers and teams

To make sure you are getting optimal productivity, benchmark the current performance of your sales reps to find out where they are succeeding and areas for improvement.

1. Inspect current sales activity

To begin, list all the activities your sales representatives might do during the sales cycle. For example:

  • Inviting customers to meetings.
  • Writing sales emails.
  • Creating proposals.
  • Preparing for sales calls.
  • CRM administration.
  • Creating content.
  • Looking at expense reports.

2. Measure the impact of key sales tasks.

Check how effective each of these activities is. The more impactful the activity, the easier it will be for your sales representatives to close deals.

A good way of doing this is to make sure your team is organising their activities by how impactful they will be.

Activities with a higher impact will push buyers forward. For example, sales training and call preparation are both forms of high-impact activities. 

Whereas low-impact activity (such as content creation or expense reports) are important, it doesn’t directly encourage buyers to move forward.

When you have ranked the activities of your sales representatives’ by high or low impact, you will know where they should be spending the most of their efforts to drive sales performance.

3. Use urgency to prioritise sales tasks

Urgency can be used to prioritise tasks based on how close you are to closing a sale and whether the sales representatives can outsource the task. 

It is a good idea to know exactly how urgent each high or low-impact task is so that you can prioritise effectively.

For example:

  • High Impact/Urgent: Account research directly pushes buyers towards you so it is high impact and urgent.
  • High Impact/Not Urgent: Creating content is still high impact but not as urgent. This is because it can be outsourced to a marketing team, so the sales reps shouldn’t have to worry about it as much.
  • Low Impact/Urgent: Updating your CRM is low impact because it is not directly encouraging sales however it should still be considered urgent as it can negatively affect other teams.
  • Low Impact/Not Urgent: Weekly sales all-hands meetings are both low impact and not urgent because you’re far from gaining any sort of revenue.

4. Measure the time is spent on each task

Finally, calculate how much time each task takes on average. You could get this information through your CRM if it has time-tracking or alternatively, a simple survey or interview with your sales reps can give you the insight you need. 

By following these steps, you will have a high-performing sales team and a more accurate sales forecasting to plan for future growth initiatives.

Optimising Sales Performance and Sales Conversion Statistics

5 key Sales Conversion Metrics to Monitor

  1. Sales conversion rate

Measuring sales conversion as a metric helps you identify exactly what is working and what is not working in your sales closure process. Sales conversion metrics show you how many leads in your sales pipeline versus how many have converted into paying customers.

The formula for sales conversion is:

Sales conversion rate = (number of sales / total number of visitors ) * 100

  1. Desktop vs. Mobile Conversion

Simply put, mobile conversions are lower performance than desktop devices. Customers that use a mobile device have different user intent than desktop users who are a lot more likely to make a purchase than someone on a phone.

However, if you provide enough motivation and decrease the amount of friction points in the customer’s journey, more mobile users will convert.

But don’t just take our word for it. If you check out desktop vs mobile conversion in your sales funnel on Google Analytics, you will see how many of your visitors are converting on mobile versus desktop. 

  1. Sales Velocity

Something to remember about sales velocity is that despite what the name suggests it is not about measuring the speed of a sale. No, it’s actually the measurement of how fast you are making money. Take a brief look at the formula below:

Sales velocity = (number of opportunities * Average Deal Size ($)* Conversion Rate) / Sales Cycle Length

  1. The Source of your website visitors

It does not matter how many visitors you are getting on your website, if they are not interested in what you are selling, visits won’t translate into purchases. 

Because of this, you can see why it is crucial that you know your site’s traffic sources. It’s also good to look at how each visitor is interacting within your sales pipeline.

Start by looking at your sales statistics for each source of traffic and see how each source is converting. You should also find out at what stage traffic is dropping off to identify any issues with your sales funnel.

When you go through this process, you might find that different traffic sources are converting at different rates. This is when you should think about next steps. For example, ask questions like:

  • Is it worth optimising your site for the visitors coming from traffic sources with a disappointing performance?
  • If a source of traffic already converts well, should you spend time optimising the site to get more traffic from it?
  • If you can see visitors from one traffic source are mostly dropping off on a specific page, why do you think this is? What could you do to optimise that page and keep them moving further down the sales funnel?
  1. Cost Per Acquisition

Keeping track of the CPA, or cost per acquisition metric is important if you want to make sure that you’re bringing in more money than is being spent on acquiring new leads. 

The formula to measure CPA is:

CPA = total spend / total number of sales

Leading indicators for interpreting data
Leading indicators for interpreting data. These leading indicators give you an insight into your data and what this says about your business future. Learn how to identify when you are behind on hiring, or when your data shows that your sales pipeline is in need of attention. Use this strategy snack to make informed sales decisions and optimise your follow ups.

5 Key tips to maximise sales conversion rates.

82% of B2B decision makers believe sales representatives are unprepared. That is a big number, so how do you make your team in the top 8% that are prepared? Have a look at our tips below to answer that very question:

  1. Keep the waffle to a minimum. What I mean by that is to make sure that your meetings are engaging and filled with the latest market intelligence. This will encourage people to listen and interact rather than zoning out. Sales representatives with a strong understanding are more reliable and customers will trust them. 
  1. Give your customers what they want. Provide your customers with content that will solve their problems while letting them know all about your wonderful services. You could even include testimonials from like-minded buyers to encourage conversation and make your business more relatable.
  1. Do your research before the call. Plan how you want the sales interaction to unfurl, watch a video or review a white paper. All of this preparation will increase your closing rate. With a clear understanding of the position your customer and their company are in, you will identify their needs in record time and provide the most fitting solution.
  1. Find out who the top 6-10 decision makers are within a deal and get in touch with each of them individually. Nothing says unprepared like trying to contact the wrong person or just waiting for a reply. Do your research, ensure you know who the key players are and build a relationship with them. They will appreciate a helpful pitch much more than a sales rep just trying to push a contract.
  1. Look at the sales script you are currently using and see if there are any glaring red flags. For example, talking only about yourself or making promises that are just not realistic are both going to drive a wedge between you and your potential customer. Try writing a variety of scripts to see how the changes affect your closing percentage. When you know what works and what doesn’t, compose all the best bits into one fantastic script.

How to successfully forecast sales within the CRM 

CRM terminology

  • Closed-lost or ghosted leads = Previous opportunities or customers or opportunities that have been unsuccessful.
  • Event leads = Someone interested in your product that you meet during an industry event or trade show.
  • Friends and family leads = Someone interested in your product that you encounter from within your network.
  • Inbound leads = A lead that has come in via your website.
  • Lead = Someone that has taken an action that shows some level of interest in your product. 
  • Marketing Qualified Leads (MQL) = A lead that has been obtained via a targeted marketing campaign. 
  • Sales Qualified Leads (SQL) = a lead that has been identified as ‘ready to buy’ by the sales team.
  • Prospect = A contact at a suspect company who has a need and may search for a solution in the next 12-24 months.
  • Referral leads = Leads from current customers.
  • Suspect = A company in your database that fits your ideal customer profile and has the potential to buy your product or service.
  • Target account leads = Leads in specific targeted accounts.

How to achieve accurate sales forecasting 

CRM is the simplest way of accurately forecasting sales. Look at the following strategies to guide you.

  1. Keep an Accurate Record of Sales Data 

Businesses create sales forecasts based on past data found in the CRM system. Because of this, it is crucial that your sales management and their team provides accurate and up-to-date sales data on all deals and opportunities for the CRM system. Anything incorrect or outdated could change the forecast predictions and impact your future planning.

  1. Business Planning

Within the CRM, the sales forecasting summary gives you valuable insight into both future projected sales, deals currently available in the sales pipeline and your team’s overall performance. This data will not only help you focus your sales reps on the most profitable sales campaigns but also show you the top sources for lead generation.

Using current sales forecast data, you can focus on producing a top-quality business plan, all based on reliable statistics.

Likewise, always make sure that you note your sales representatives’ performance and compare it to a previous period. By doing this, you can discover reasons behind lost sales and start increasing your team’s overall productivity.

  1. Making it Simple

To make things simple, start by choosing a time for your sales forecast that will not distract your sales representatives from their primary aim, sales. This will help keep everything running smoothly.

Sales forecasting has many uses within resource management, budgeting and even hiring. You can utilise it to discover issues in marketing campaigns or in your business plan. 

Overall, as sales forecasting is so intertwined throughout your business, it is crucial that you keep all your data as accurate as possible to make the process as simple as can be. 

  1. Take Advantage

Are you using the CRM to your advantage?

The Customer Relationship Management system has a lot of incredible uses within your business, including:

  • The ability to perform accurate sales forecasting based on a complete analysis of a company’s history and data processes.
  • Finding out how many deals there are in the sales pipeline, look at how much profit you are bringing in and get information about the freshest business leads.
  • Identify the top performers within your sales team. Using this information, you can set higher and more realistic targets to improve your productivity.

These advantages should be encouragement enough to get your sales managers and their teams trained on the CRM system. Making sure they know how to leverage the insights available in the CRM system as accurately as possible is crucial to your future growth.

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