3 Steps for Predicting your Sales by Elizabeth Gillam is a great article on MYOB Pulse. It covers the need to predict future sales, the benefits of setting up a sales budget and helpfully includes suggestions on how to go about it.
‘once you have your budget, you have targets for your team’
The first challenge to implementing the suggestions is it’s often not that easy to collect this type of data. Next challenge is how do you measure future performance against the new goals on a regular basis.
Our Business Intelligence for Cloud service is all about simplifying this stuff so we challenged ourselves to implementing these suggestions using BI4Cloud.
1. Review Sales History
To understand the breakdown of your sales history it is important to understand the many elements that go to make it up – we chose the following measures
- Transactions or Number of Invoices – per day, per week, per month
- Customers served – per day, per week per month
- Total Sales Value – per day, per week per month
- Average spend – per customer, per invoice
- Sales $ and Qty – by Brand, Product Group, Distribution channel, Customer group, Sales rep
Finding the data
Using BI4Cloud it’s a press of a button to get these measures. We’ve included both charts and tabular reports.
‘This gives you a starting place from which to predict sales’
2. Identify your KPIs
The above measures define your starting point. Choose which will be useful KPIs and set these as targets for your team to improve.
The ultimate KPI is Profit but it is too broad to take specific action on. Break it down into the KPIs that make up that profit, KPIs that you can measure and manage. Decide on a KPI and considers ways to improve it.
- Gross margins
- Do you have higher margin product customer will buy ?
- More Customers
- Have promotions and measure effectiveness with the KPI
- More Sales Volume
- Upsell customers to larger size and better unit value to them.
‘ Each call centre member has access to BI4Cloud, can see customer history, can engage in the upsize conversation’
3. Measuring Performance Against KPIs
As Elizabeth put it so well:
“It is one thing to predict sales and yet another to make that prediction a reality. The only way to make it a reality is to share it with your team and encourage them to meet the daily target.”
As the Deming Cycle describes once you set things loose you need to check the result ‘for signs of progress and success, or problems and areas for improvement’.
BI4Cloud lets you track actual performance daily, weekly monthly and communicate it to your team automatically via email so everyone has their KPI’s at hand.
Setting and monitoring KPIs will improve your sales and that’s a great start.
You can go a step further and set Monthly Sales Targets for your SalesRep, Products and Customer.
Comparing your the Actual Sales to Budget will provide a macro view of the sales achievement and and will help know when to dive into the detail. Bi4Cloud provides a Sales Budgets system included in the Cool Stuff pack.
Great ideas stay ideas until implemented. Knowing your existing measures will help understand the status quo and these can be readily viewed using our BI4Cloud service by signing up for a free trial . . . and no credit card is required 🙂