If you had to guess, how many sales reps missed their quotas last year? The answer may surprise you. According to CSO Insights’ annual study, nearly half (46%) of salespeople fell short of their goal in 2018. Small Business Trends highlights these findings in a recent article in which they speak with CSO Insights Chief Research Officer Seleste Lunford. She points out that while the economy is doing well overall, reps are struggling. This suggests that for many, ineffective selling is the reason.
One of the more common reflections of this was teams’ inability to nurture new business. “Many organizations told us they were still making their numbers based on renewing existing business and that they weren’t doing a very good job with new contracts,” she explained. To avoid this pitfall, make sure that you are prioritizing your leads effectively. Plan for opportunities to make sure that you aren’t letting anything slip through the cracks.
Another way to avoid missing quota is to make sure that you are getting the most out of your current clients. Small Business Trends reports that “expanding existing business was another touch point where 54.9% of respondents saw a gap between renewals and expansion.” According to the report, you can avoid this gap by focusing on account management. In fact, customer churn can be improved by one-third with improved management. Think about how you handle your own current clients and brainstorm potential improvements.
Finally, the report also revealed that only 47.3% of forecasted deals actually closed. “The thing that stymies smaller organizations is the lack of a formal sales process,” Lunsford says. “The problem here is that the whole process is somewhat ad hoc. It’s that lack of consistency that can create issues.” What can you do if this is a weakness for you? She suggests using a template to research each prospect and his or her company.
Were you one of the 53% of reps who made quota? Even if you were, it’s worth looking at these suggestions and finding ways you can improve and meet this year’s goals!