Sales Pipeline Management Best Practices
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Sales Pipeline Management Best PracticesCategory: Marketing
A Sales Pipeline is a visual representation of the sales process, divided into stages. It’s designed to help sales reps and teams manage the often complex processes that drive deals to close. Sales pipelines have been in use for a long time, but managing them well can be an elusive goal.
Sales Pipeline Management is: “The tracking and management of every sales opportunity through every stage to a successful close of a revenue producing contract, It’s about the task in total: finding, qualifying, and winning not just one sale, but doing the right things throughout the year to help salespeople do what they are expected to do – achieving their sales target.
A Well-Managed Sales Pipeline is about continuously improving the process itself, and honing the skills of your salespeople. Everyone’s aim should be to keep the pipeline moving as quickly as possible from one stage to the next - and of course, to close sales.
Managing your sales pipeline focuses on developing discipline around tracking multiple areas based on time and data. However, there’s also a human element that can’t be overlooked: it’s about how sales leaders relate to individual reps and how the team works together.
Here Are Some Best Practices:
1-Invest Time and Resources:
Build a habit of inspecting your funnel every 30 days, and meeting weekly with reps to talk about real opportunities moving through the pipeline, and where your process is heading.
2-Make It Easy for Reps to Do Their Jobs:
Stay in touch with reps on a weekly basis and ask not just about what is moving through the pipeline, but also about what will help them on a daily basis to be more effective and happier in their role.
Team collaboration is a given, but you also want to keep other departments in the company in the loop. Marketing, finance, manufacturing, and the C-suite all have a stake in the outcome of sales.
4-Make Sure to Measure:
The more you measure, the more effective management results you’ll achieve.
5-Spend Less Time on Administration:
Take advantage of tools that automate every non-sales process, and track your sales reps’ time to ensure they are spending time on what moves the needle.
6-Keep Sales Cycles Short:
Velocity is the name of the game. You want to keep prospects moving through the pipeline as quickly as possible. Through vigilant management, you can identify which lead sources work best, which sales techniques are successful, and which reps are achieving sales quickly versus those who are not.
What happens after you make the sale? Make sure you’re doing whatever you can to retain your customers. Existing customers are always the best way to grow your business (through additional sales and referrals). So, stay connected to your customers, confirm they are happy with what they’ve purchased, and keep them updated with customer-focused content via email or social media channels.
The best way to keep track of and control what’s going on in your pipeline is through CRM software. CRM provides clear visibility of sales cycles by tracking prospects through each of the sales pipeline stages of your selling process.