Sales productivity strategies

Sales Productivity: Strategies and Tips to Increase Sales

Last updated on June 12, 2023
13 min

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Sales productivity can either make or break the success of any business. It is the measure of how efficiently and effectively the sales teams generate revenue for your business.

Sales productivity can also be defined as the amount of revenue a sales team generates relative to the amount of time and resources invested. It is the yardstick for measuring your organization's ability to achieve critical business objectives while minimizing costs and time spent acquiring new business.

What are the best strategies for sales productivity?

Every business should understand what sales productivity is and how it impacts your business before you can consider tracking sales productivity. This is crucial to maintain a competitive edge in today's fast-paced business environment. 

Tracking sales productivity enables you to identify inefficiencies and develop a sales strategy that maximizes your team's potential, allowing you to stay ahead of the curve. Close monitoring of sales productivity pinpoints areas that need improvement and helps you find ways to boost your team's performance. Discussed below are the best strategies for sales productivity:

Set clear goals and objectives

Setting clear goals and objectives is the first and most crucial strategy any business can employ to increase sales productivity. Clear goals will give sales teams a sense of direction and motivation. Clear sales goals and metrics also open the eyes of your team to understand what they need to do to achieve success and track their progress. Without developing clear goals, your team might not know what they're working towards, leading to a lack of motivation and direction.

To set clear sales goals, you should define what success looks like for your team. This could be a certain number of closed deals, a specific revenue target, or a particular number of new customers. 

Once you've established your sales goals, you must measure your progress in terms of goals set for the sales team. Track metrics such as:

  • lead generation

  • pipeline size

  • conversion rates

  • revenue generated. 

These metrics can help you identify which areas of your sales process need improvement and where to focus your efforts. 

Your goals and metrics to track should be Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound (SMART). These five criteria will help your team understand exactly what they need to do and when they need to take specific actions.

Develop a sales process

Apart from setting SMART goals, we advise you to develop a sales process for your business products and services. You may wonder what exactly is a sales process. A sales process is a set of steps your sales team follow to convert leads into customers. A clearly defined sales process helps your team stay organized, ensure everyone is on the same page and improves sales productivity. Your sales process should include the following steps:

  • Prospecting: This is the process of identifying potential customers and reaching out to them.

  • Qualifying: This is the process of determining whether a lead is a good fit for your product or service.

  • Presenting: This is the presentation of your product or service to the qualified lead.

  • Handling objections: Potential customers always have reasons and objections to delay the buying process. You must devise ways to identify and address any concerns or objections your prospects might have.

  • Closing: This is the process of finalizing the sale and getting the customer to sign a contract. The goal of every business is to close deals and record purchases from time to time. 

When a clear sales process is in place, your team will focus on the most important steps for closing deals and avoid wasting time on activities that don't contribute to your sales goals.

Prioritize tasks

Every business owner should prioritize tasks to increase sales productivity. Your sales team should focus only on tasks that will generate the most revenue for the company. This also helps your sales team stay organized on tasks that increase revenue and maximize efficiency.

Use the best tools

Leveraging the right tools is crucial to increase your sales productivity. The right tools can help sales teams streamline their work, making them more productive. Some tools that can improve sales productivity include CRM software, sales engagement platforms, and sales enablement tools. Each tool plays a different role at each stage of the buyer's journey. 

  • Customer relationship management (CRM) tools help to track and analyze data, such as lead scores, engagement rates, and purchase history. This data provides insights into high-value prospects and how to prioritize these prospects accordingly.

  • Sales engagement platforms help to identify the most promising platforms and prospects for your business. By analyzing data from various sales engagement platforms, you can know which platforms are most likely to convert, how much revenue they can generate, and which sales tactics are most effective with them.

  • Sales enablement tools can help your team streamline their sales process, improve customer communication, and close deals faster. These tools include sales content management systems, sales analytics software, and communication platforms. One example of a sales enablement tool is SalesLoft, which provides sales engagement, analytics, and coaching solutions. Another example is HubSpot Sales Hub, which offers a suite of tools for managing leads, automating tasks, and tracking performance. 

  • Business phone system with advanced Sales features that help you unleash the full potential of your sales reps. Your phone solution should integrate with the leading CRM platforms, providing you with real-time access to valuable customer data at your fingertips. Effortlessly track your sales team's performance, monitor key metrics, and stay on top of your revenue targets with powerful analytics and reporting features. Onboard new teammates with lightning speed, equipping them with the tools and resources they need to hit the ground running. Elevate your sales game and maximize your success with this game-changing phone solution.

Provide ongoing training and development

Sales teams need continuous learning and development of their skills. Providing ongoing training and development helps them stay up-to-date with the latest trends and techniques in the industry. It also helps the sales team improve their skills, knowledge, and confidence, leading to higher productivity, better customer relationships, and more closed deals. 

Your sales training program should cover product knowledge, sales techniques, objection handling, and customer relationship management. It should be tailored to your team's needs and experience level.

Consider offering sales training programs through in-person workshops, online courses, or coaching sessions for improvement and better performance. Ensure the sales team has opportunities to practice what they learn and provide feedback to help them improve.

Take your team's performance to new heights with Aircall sales-focused features like with Power Dialer that helps you seamlessly make calls from any webpage, and CRM integrations to keep all conversations connected. Call Whispering provides real-time guidance to teammates during live calls. You cal also leverage call recordings for insights and training. All these will help you elevate your sales game and provide feedback to help sales team improve and hone their skills.

Develop a strong sales culture

Creating a strong sales culture can have a positive impact on sales productivity. A strong sales culture can encourage reps to work harder and motivate them to achieve their goals, whether they are in face-to-face or in remote work.

Encourage collaboration between teams

Collaboration between sales and other departments, such as marketing and customer support, can help improve sales productivity. By working together, teams can share information and insights, identify new opportunities, and provide a better customer experience. To foster collaboration, you can use tools such as Slack or Microsoft Teams to facilitate communication between teams. You can also hold regular meetings or workshops to share updates and discuss new ideas.

Align sales and marketing efforts

Aligning sales and marketing efforts is another critical strategy for sales productivity. Sales and marketing teams need to work together to achieve common goals. When a team collaborates to set up an effective sales strategy, the result would be improved productivity. By aligning both teams, sales reps can receive more qualified leads, making them more productive and efficient.

Why should you measure sales productivity?

Measuring sales productivity and continuous evaluation will help you improve your sales process and provide your sales team with the tools and resources they need to succeed. It helps you identify bottlenecks in your sales process, remove them, and increase your team's productivity and success. Here are a few more reasons why you should consider measuring the sale productivity of your business:

Performance evaluation: Measuring sales productivity is an essential part of evaluating the performance of your sales team. Without defining KPIs and measuring productivity, you won't be able to identify the areas that need improvement.

Identifying improvement areas: Measuring sales productivity can help identify areas where reps can improve. Identifying improvement areas can help sales reps work on their weaknesses and become more productive.

Resource allocation: Measuring sales productivity can help with resource allocation. By knowing which reps are performing well, you can allocate resources more effectively.

Demonstrating return on investment: Measuring sales productivity shows your sales team's return on investment. A positive return on investment can help justify the resources allocated to the sales team.

Which commercial productivity indicators should be measured?

Here are a few important sales productivity indicators you should measure to see how your business revenue is performing:

  • Revenue per sales rep: Revenue per sales rep: Revenue per sales rep measures the revenue generated by each sales representative. It is usually calculated by dividing the total team revenue generated during a specific period by the number of sales reps on your team during that same period. This will give you a rough estimate of the amount of revenue each rep is generating on average. For instance, if your sales team generated $250,000 in revenue during the last quarter and you had five sales reps on your team during that period, your team's sales productivity calculation would work out to $50,000 per sales rep. This metric helps in assessing the effectiveness and productivity of individual sales team members.

  • Sales cycle length: The sales cycle length represents the time it takes for a lead to go through the entire sales process and become a paying customer. It starts from the initial contact with the lead and ends with the closing of the deal. Understanding the average sales cycle length helps manage sales forecasting, resource allocation, and identifying areas for process improvement.

  • Lead conversion rate: Lead conversion rate measures the percentage of leads that successfully convert into paying customers. It is calculated by dividing the number of converted leads by the total number of leads. A higher conversion rate indicates the effectiveness of lead nurturing, qualification, and sales strategies.

  • Average deal size: Average deal size refers to the average value or monetary amount of each closed deal. It provides insights into the typical revenue generated from individual sales transactions and helps identify trends or patterns in customer purchasing behavior. Measuring sales productivity at the individual level involves calculating the amount of revenue a sales rep generates per hour of work. This can be done by dividing an individual rep's revenue by the number of hours worked during a specific period. For example, if sales rep James brought in $50,000 in revenue during Q2 and worked an average of 40 hours per week over the 13-week period, his sales productivity would be $96.15 per hour. It is important to note that this calculation doesn't take into account any sales incentives that might be offered.

  • Customer acquisition cost (CAC): Customer acquisition cost represents the total cost incurred to acquire a new customer. It includes various expenses such as marketing, sales team salaries, advertising, and lead generation expenses. Calculating CAC helps businesses assess the efficiency and profitability of their customer acquisition efforts.

  • Customer lifetime value (CLTV): Customer lifetime value measures the total value a customer brings to a business over the entire duration of their relationship. It takes into account the revenue generated from repeat purchases, upsells, and cross-sells. Calculating CLTV helps to understand the long-term profitability of customer relationships and guides strategic decision-making.

  • Quota attainment rate: The quota attainment rate measures the percentage of sales representatives who successfully achieve their assigned sales quota or target. It reflects the performance and effectiveness of the sales team in meeting their goals. Monitoring quota attainment helps identify high-performing individuals and areas where additional support or resources may be needed.

  • Win rate: Win rate is the percentage of deals or opportunities the sales team wins. It is calculated by dividing the number of won deals by the total number of deals. A higher win rate indicates the sales team's ability to close deals successfully and win over competitors.

  • Churn rate: The churn rate measures the percentage of customers who cancel or do not renew their contracts over a specific period. It helps evaluate customer satisfaction, product/service quality, and overall customer retention efforts. Lower churn rates indicate stronger customer loyalty and long-term business sustainability.

  • Upsell and cross-sell rates: Upsell and cross-sell rates represent the percentages of existing customers who make additional purchases or upgrade to higher-value products or services. Every business depends on continuous patronage from customers to keep business moving. Monitoring these rates helps identify revenue growth opportunities, customer expansion, and maximizing customer lifetime value.

  • Sales activity metrics (calls, meetings, emails): Sales activity metrics track the number of calls made, meetings scheduled, and emails sent by the sales team. These metrics provide insights into the level of sales team engagement, prospecting efforts, and overall sales activity levels. Analyzing activity metrics helps identify patterns and optimize sales strategies.

  • Sales team attrition rate: Sales team attrition rate measures the percentage of sales representatives who leave the company over a specific period. High attrition rates can indicate issues with team morale, training and development, compensation, or management. Monitoring attrition rates helps identify areas for improvement and employee retention strategies.

In addition to measuring sales productivity, other sales KPIs and performance metrics are worth tracking at the organizational and individual levels. These include the number of phone calls, emails, and meetings scheduled and the number of sales representations and proposals generated. Tracking these metrics and analyzing the data regularly will help you identify areas where your sales team excels and areas where there's room for improvement. These can also help you fine-tune your sales process and provide targeted training to help each salesperson improve their performance.

Tips to improve sales productivity

Sales productivity can be improved through various strategies. Some of these include:

Audit your processes and challenge yourself

One of the best ways to improve sales productivity is by taking the time to audit your processes regularly. This means reviewing your current practices and strategies to identify areas that could be improved. Challenging yourself during this process and being open to making changes that could increase your sales productivity is essential.

Rely on Sales automation

Automation can be a game-changer when it comes to improving sales productivity. By automating repetitive tasks like data entry, follow-up emails, and social media updates, you can free up more time to focus on high-priority tasks like lead generation and closing deals. Look for opportunities to automate your sales processes and invest in the right tools that can help you streamline your workflows.

Listen to the problems on the field

Another way to improve sales productivity is by listening to your team members and customers. Your sales team is on the front lines every day, and they have valuable insights into your customers' challenges and opportunities. When you actively listen to their feedback, you can identify areas to improve your sales processes and implement changes that could increase productivity.

Adapt your practices to your sector

No two industries are the same, and what works in one sector may not be effective in another. Adapting your sales practices to your sector is crucial, considering your industry's unique challenges and opportunities. This could mean investing in specific tools or software, changing your sales approach, or focusing on different metrics to measure success.

Listen to post-sale customer feedback

Don't forget about the importance of post-sale customer feedback. Your customers are your best source of information about how your sales team is performing, and their feedback can help you identify areas where your team could improve. You can improve customer satisfaction and increase sales productivity over time by actively seeking feedback and addressing any issues.

Conclusion

Sales productivity is essential to any business's success, and you can use many strategies and tips to improve it. You can set clear goals and align your sales and marketing with right tools. With features like call recording, CRM integration, and real-time analytics, Aircall’s outbound calling software will help you streamline your sales processes and close more deals.


Published on June 12, 2023.

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