60% of B2B sales organizations will transform from intuition-based selling to data-driven selling by 2025.
The prediction indicates a strong trend across business functions: the revolutionary impact of digitalization and, for sales teams, the move to digital sales.
In the last ten years, sales cycles have become shorter, remote interactions have gained pace, and customers are more likely than ever to switch suppliers if their needs are unmet.
Buyers no longer want to travel to and from sales pitches or on lengthy phone calls. They want to use their laptops, phones, and tablets to discover and order the solutions they want when they want them. More than 70% of B2B buyers prefer to place their orders online through self-service portals.
As customers increasingly embrace digital purchasing methods, they leave behind digital footprints rich with sales data. Organizations can analyze this information to improve sales outcomes, produce highly-accurate forecasts, and enhance cross-functional success.
However, many companies need help developing the digital prowess required to analyze sales data effectively. Just 17% of sales departments have successfully implemented AI and automated analytics across sales and marketing functions.
The main challenge to overcome? Effectively integrating and leveraging siloed streams of customer sales data.
What is sales data?
Sales data is the wealth of valuable information that empowers your sales team and, ultimately, boosts revenue.
There are several sales data types, all of which can help your sales team supercharge the selling cycle, including:
- Demographic, firmographic, and technographic data
- Intent data
- Sales content tracking
- Sentiment data
- Qualitative and quantitative feedback
Your organization is already sitting on a vast amount of untapped sales data. You're undoubtedly familiar with metrics like customer acquisition costs, average contract values, and pipeline velocity, which can all be analyzed to improve sales outcomes.
While each of these metrics is valuable, they’re even more powerful when combined for holistic analysis. This is the process of using automation to integrate disparate data points and systems into a single centralized point of truth.
Your team can move from measuring to predicting future sales outcomes by combining separate data streams and insights.
Holistic sales data: Building the data-driven dream team
Having sales data isn’t enough to meet customer demands in a fast-moving, omnichannel world. It’s integrating your data sources that makes all the difference.
Research shows data-driven organizations are 8.5 times more likely than others to report 20% year-over-year growth. At the same time, 90% of sales reps in these companies achieve their quotas, rather than 50% or less.
You need the right analytics tools to move from measuring metrics to data-driven strategies. This is where a sales enablement solution comes in: an all-in-one platform that equips your sales team with the insights, content, and training they need to reach sales excellence.
Here’s how a sales enablement solution can enable your team to succeed.
Target the right customer at the right time
Holistic data-driven insights empower your sales team with invaluable information about your ideal customers.
Your team can prioritize their time and focus on customers likely to spur growth – instead of chasing leads that won't convert.
Beyond uncovering the right customer, intelligent analytics helps sales teams approach prospects at the best time for maximum conversation rates.
By collecting information relating to a customer's behavior and online activity, the best sales enablement tools deliver timely insights about where prospects are in the sales funnel.
Using this data, your sales team can hone in on the perfect time to get in touch with a potential prospect, increasing their chances of success.
Transform the rhythm of sales
Disparate data sources, internal silos, and pipeline bottlenecks can slow down your sales team's cadence. Sales enablement tools tackle these challenges directly, transforming the rhythm of sales, so it's fit for the digital landscape.
You'll receive highly-accurate insights about your sales team's performance, enabling you to deliver personalized coaching that improves your team's capabilities.
Sales data analytics also provides your sales team with a valuable understanding of their sales cycle, uncovering areas for optimization and improvement.
Short of having a crystal ball, sales forecasting is the next best thing for leaders looking to discern future sales performance.
Instead of relying on clunky excel spreadsheets, sales enablement solutions equip your team with advanced, accurate, real-time sales predictions. In turn, this helps your team to:
- Better allocate resources
- Optimize the prospecting process based on accurate targets
- Identify potential issues and implement tangible improvements
- Enhance strategic business decision-making
Unlocking sales data potential: The key metrics
Knowing what to tap into – and what to leave out – can be challenging given the volume of information companies interact with daily.
You might think focusing on several metrics at once is best, but you risk overwhelming your sales team instead of helping them.
You need to strike a balance between too many and too few insights to turn your data into intelligence. With that in mind, here are the metrics to track.
Sales growth is synchronous with business prosperity. Each month's sales, compared against previous months, create a clear picture of your sales team's overall performance and contribution to the business.
Most organizations measure sales growth in several ways to build as accurate a picture as possible. You can analyze your growth (or loss) from month-to-month, quarter-to-quarter, and year-to-year.
Sales growth is most valuable when analyzed alongside customer lifetime value (CLV) and customer acquisition cost (CAC). Combined, these two metrics create a ratio.
With this ratio, your CAC should be lower than your CLV, indicating that your acquisitions drive long-term, sustainable value.
By diligently tracking these growth metrics, you'll be able to spot economic trends better, overcome periods of stagnation, and achieve sales excellence.
You need sales targets to motivate your reps to reach quota and revenue goals. However, manually-calculated targets are often either too ambitious or too pessimistic – not to mention challenging to update consistently.
By contrast, sales targets enhanced by data analytics are fantastic for boosting performance.
The best sales and performance enablement tools enable you to set meaningful targets that motivate your sales team. At the same time, these solutions give you and your team real-time visibility into each rep's performance.
Through the power of sales funnel analytics, your team can move from reactive to proactive. Funnel insights give your team unparalleled knowledge about where buyers are in their sales journey and the actions needed to move opportunities forward.
Analytics tools that blend insight with content automation enable your reps to seamlessly engage with prospects, delivering a more personalized, relevant experience that boosts conversions.
Lead generation and conversion
Poorly managed leads cost companies over $1 billion each year.
You can help your team cut through the noise and generate quality leads by embedding your sales enablement tool into the lead generation process. Using an array of internal and external data points, these tools build a contextual picture of your ideal customer, identifying qualified leads more likely to bring in sales.
Beyond generating leads, sales enablement tools also improve sales outcomes. Throughout the sales cycle, these solutions gather timely insights about your prospects – such as their preferred medium of communication and the type of content they prefer – so your sales team can maximize their chances of success.
Visibility into team performance gives sales managers a deeper understanding of their team's strengths and areas for improvement. Based on these insights, you can put tailored coaching programs in place that expand your team's skill sets, boost their confidence, and empower them to achieve more for your business.
Note we've emphasized coaching and not training here. B2B sales reps "forget 70% of the information they learn within a week of training."
Coaching, however, is consistent, ongoing, and highly personalized to each individual, making it more effective for improving long-term performance. The best analytics tools even offer in-app coaching, analyzing performance data to deliver timely, relevant coaching sessions.
Unlock the power of your sales data with Pitcher
Ready to unleash your sales team's potential? Try Pitcher: a flexible, intuitive, and compliant sales enablement solution that empowers your sales reps to be their best.
Harnessing the power of automation and intelligent data analytics, Pitcher equips your sales reps with the holistic insights they need to improve productivity, surpass their quotas, and stimulate long-term business growth. Talk to us today to discover how Pitcher can turn your sales reps into a data-driven team.
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