Have you ever wondered what separates the top salespeople from the underperformers? If so, you are not alone. Every sales manager likes their team to be target-driven and firmly focused on results. But managing the sales pipeline is not merely number crunching. Every company – and every salesperson – is different. Staying on top of sales goals and keeping every sales team member engaged to hit their targets is no small feat.
However, a recent study undertaken by Harvard Business Review found evidence that over half of high performers in the world’s best companies credit their success to full use of CRM technology.
What you will learn in this article
- The top 3 CRM methods to create a high-performance sales team
- How to manage your sales pipeline better
- How to create a formal sales process
- Why you should connect up your sales funnel
- How to use CRM to leverage the best results
3 ways to supercharge your sales team
CRM opens the door to new ways to motivate your sales team and hit targets. Here are three great ways to do just that.
Formalize your sales process
There’s little doubt that effective management of your sales pipeline is directly linked to revenue growth. Harvard Business Review has found that companies describing themselves as having an efficient sales process also reported 15% more revenue growth than those who didn’t. Furthermore, companies enjoying almost 30% more growth in revenue had implemented the following:
- A sharply defined sales process
- At least three hours per month dedicated to pipeline management
- Training in pipeline management for sales managers
The smart way to manage your sales pipeline effectively is by using a CRM system. The first step is to clearly define the stages and milestones that match your customer buying journey. Be sure to involve your sales team in this process to ensure they fully understand the process and are signed up for it.
Each stage needs to be mapped out with a step-by-step outline of what must happen. You should back this up with all the required protocols and documentation your sales team will need at each phase. Draft a best practice sales guide to ensure every sales team member uses the same structure and methods. The guide will provide your salespeople with instructions to follow and the support they need for each stage.
Without a formal sales process, you will need to track every sale and supervise every sales rep. This hand-holding consumes heaps of time and energy. And it also creates bottlenecks that slow down the entire process.
A single truth
Accurate sales forecasting is crucial to any company’s success. It will not only show if you are on course to meet sales targets, but it will also provide insights into other business areas such as resource management, hiring, and budgeting, etc.
Despite the fundamental nature of sales forecasting, many sales managers struggle to arrive at a realistic outlook of their sales pipeline. What is required is a single truth point. And that somewhere is a CRM system. The data you input into your CRM system records and tracks all your vital sales metrics, including targets, deal status, deal value, customer profiles, and so on.
But it is not just about storage; CRM has a lot of tricks up its digital sleeve. The killer functionality is the ability to generate a raft of pipeline and forecast reports. With this data, you can see the big picture and make better informed evidence-backed business decisions. This data mining will not only improve your sales team’s performance but will also enhance the productivity of your entire company.
It’s easy to generate insightful real-time information from your CRM’s dashboard, making it simpler to see progress and adjust course when necessary. In addition to helping you identify and resolve issues with your sales process, the data will also flag up new opportunities. With CRM, you can forget:
- Manually updating dozens of spreadsheets
- Working in the dark with no overview
- Losing critical customer and sales info because a member of your team has decided to move on.
Connecting up your sales funnel
To have your sales team close more deals, you need every phase of the sales funnel to be:
- Transparent and accessible
With a CRM system, you can ensure a high level of joined-up thinking from prospecting to closing the deal and customer support. It kicks in from the moment a visitor lands on your website. Research demonstrates that a slick customer experience and personalization make customers more likely to buy.
Today, the very last chore you want to do is chase around to confirm prices and get orders placed. As CRM solutions hook up with your ERP software, you can be sure quotes are up to date and calculated correctly. This integration speeds up sealing the deal and will also report back to your ERP system for invoicing. And you will also be pleased to hear the CRM system will automatically update once the quote has been sent. This will increase forecast accuracy at the same time.
Leveraging the best results
With a CRM system in place, your various departments are no longer working in silos. You can connect the CRM to all your departments. For instance, you could connect the last step in the sales guide to the team delivering the product or service. This gives end-to-end visibility to all your teams and ensures smooth handovers and improved customer service.
It is this A-to-Z approach that makes CRM such a boon for businesses, regardless of their size. Small businesses can benefit from the 360-degree helicopter view to:
- Better coordinate sales activities
- Improve the performance of marketing and service-related teams
- Seamlessly exchange valuable customer information across your organization
- Bring personalized service to every customer and strengthen relationships
CRM is what drives sales in today’s modern business world. It’s possible to transform your sales team’s performance by bossing your sales pipeline properly. Find out more about implementing a cloud-based CRM solution for your sales team on our website!