Sales management is the process that entails developing selling strategies, gathering and training sales teams, and coordinating the processes aimed at pursuing the company's sales goals. It helps businesses create excellent sales teams, develop good relationships with consumers, reduce costs, and reach sales targets.
In the video below, Brian Tracy unveils 3 key skills for sales management to be successful and effective.
In this article, we’ll explain why sales management is important, its objectives, functions, and key principles. In addition, we’ll walk you through 5 sales management strategies.
Why is sales management important?
An effective sales management process is a must-have for each company. It helps reach sales objectives, control sales processes, close deals faster, boost sales performance, and thrive in an extremely competitive environment. It also plays a great role in the optimization of lead qualification. With planning, coordination, and control, salespeople can ensure the quality of the selling process and make the company scale.
With sales management, businesses reduce costs on the distribution of their products and receive great profits. The process enables business owners to improve communication among team members, build relationships with prospects and customers, effectively introduce new products, and increase the production of goods that are in great demand among consumers.
Now that you know why sales management is important, let’s proceed to the next section with sales management objectives.
Sales Management Objectives
Each company sets goals it wants to achieve within a certain time. Although businesses develop in their own way and, in theory, set different goals, most of them are often very similar.
The objectives can be divided into short and long-term. In the group of short-term goals, we can single out retaining and capturing the market share, and defining sales volume to make a business profitable. Objectives that need to be implemented over a long time include retention of a certain percentage of customers, assisting in the training of sales representatives, supporting sales teams with technical advice, tracking, collecting, and analyzing information on sales.
The sales objectives of all businesses are very similar and now you are acquainted with them. So let’s walk you through the functions.
Functions of Sales Management
Sales management isn’t only about managing sales and ensuring that customers are satisfied with the process. In general, it implies ensuring that sales reps do a great job, planning and setting targets, and monitoring the efficiency of the sales process. Let’s take a look at its functions in more detail.
- Setting targets. Defining unrealistic goals can have a negative influence on a company. That’s why to reap benefits from your business, you need to set the right and real targets to reach. Use the reports of your sales team to identify the target it’s possible to achieve. However, remember that the previous performance doesn’t necessarily predict the present actions of customers.
- Identifying quality leads. At any time, there might be many potential customers who need information about your product. Your task is to make sure that salespeople can find a special approach to each of them and to act quick and correct. Make sure that your sales team can identify quality leads and make them convert.
- Improving the efficiency of the sales process. Identifying good leads is one of the ways to optimize your sales process. However, you should also be ready to improve the efficiency and speed of the sales process. For this purpose, use a software solution. With a special service, you’ll be able to assign tasks to people who better understand one or the other process. Say, if users land on your site and show interest in your product, it’s better to assign them to a sales representative who has a profound knowledge of a product starting from the most basic information. By sending email campaigns to your leads and clients, you can build trusting relationships with them. You can consider using SendPulse to automate your email send-out.
- Monitoring the performance of salespeople. To see the progress in your team’s work, you need to track the performance of salespeople and the value they bring. It’s a good idea to encourage your team members with rewards for a well-done job. For underperformers, you can prepare some additional training to master their skills.
- Analyzing the reports. Reports are necessary to collect information and make decisions. Consider the received data when assigning tasks and defining short-term objectives for sales teams. Moreover, look for things that hinder attaining your company’s goals.
Now that you are aware of the functions, we need to explore the fundamentals.
Key Principles of Sales Management
Sales managers act according to the targets entrepreneurs set. To achieve the goals, the sales team should comply with the following principles.
- Consistency. The success of the sales process relies on several factors and one of the most important is consistency. Although it’s difficult to achieve, it’s worth your time and effort. Consistency allows you to close the deals faster, build better relationships with customers, and improve sales. Make sure to provide your salespeople with clear instructions about each stage of the sales funnel, teach them how to behave with consumers, and ask for reports to monitor the progress.
- A degree of independence. For sure, a sales manager can’t do everything alone. Give your team a chance to do some tasks independently and track the results. As an option, consider giving some extra tasks to your top performers and reward them for closing the deals. This way, you will show trust in their work and encourage your team to bring good results.
- Equality among members of the team. Remember to treat every member of your team equally and show respect. There is no need to put some salespeople above others or give preferential treatment. You rather adjust the sales targets and the expected standards.
- Conviction. The most important principle is conviction. Being a sales representative isn't easy. It implies understanding people from the way they communicate and finding arguments to make people buy products. Salespeople often face criticism, counterarguments, and some negative feedback. To better handle objections, improve communication skills and customer retention as well as be confident, they need to have good product knowledge.
The principles are clear, so let’s jump into strategies.
5 Sales Management Strategies
- Set realistic targets
- Find the right people for your team
- Educate your salespeople and give feedback
- Reward your top performers
- Measure the progress of your team
An effective strategy that implies modern techniques and a professional sales team can do wonders with your company’s ROI. Read on if you are interested in making your business grow and prosper.
- Set realistic targets. Sometimes sales managers focus on the numbers a company strives to achieve without considering the capabilities of salespeople. After trying to reach the goal, sales teams fail because of unrealistic objectives. As a result, you run the risk of demotivating salespeople and missing your projections. Use average sales reps’ performance to set achievable goals.
- Find the right people for your team. To continue to scale, you need to attract the right talents to join your sales team. With the right candidates, you can build a successful sales team that will support your company’s growth. First of all, before creating a job description and interviewing your candidates, define the specific needs of your company. Different categories of salespeople are needed for different purposes. Explore the reasons behind your new hire. Secondly, create a step-by-step interview process to see the appropriate applicants. Thirdly, consider involving your colleagues in the process to identify the kind of person they need.
- Educate your salespeople and give feedback. As a sales manager, you need to always be in touch with your sales team. Your new hire should work under your guidance to absorb the sales process, learn how to handle objections, and where to find prospective customers. With time, new employees will be able to handle the necessary tools, obtain experience and knowledge in sales, sales tricks, and strategies. Ensure to provide an effective training process to turn people with potential into top performers. Remember to give feedback after your salespeople complete certain tasks.
- Reward your top performers. Salespeople who do their job perfectly, want to receive cash incentives from the company and get praise. That’s why it’s worth creating a plan that involves targets and monetary compensations for them. Make sure that you, as a sales manager, do everything possible to retain customers and lure new ones.
- Measure the progress of your team. It’s critical to monitor and evaluate the progress of your team. You need to find whether a company succeeds in growing or there is something that slows down this process. Identify the reasons and try to eliminate them by reviewing the work of your sales team and improving your strategies. Besides, you should ask your sales representatives to create manual lists and reports. Design a reporting process in your CRM to simplify your work. With SendPulse, you can guide your sales process in one CRM.
Congrats, now you’ve acquired knowledge of the objectives, functions, and principles of sales management. With all this comprehensive information, you can develop an effective strategy for your business.
- This article defines the term, uncovers the three main aspects, and the process in general.
- In this article, you’ll find the definition, basic objectives, and functions.
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Last Updated: 09.07.2021