Master sales goals with four proven strategies
Reaching and surpassing sales goals are the foundation of success for nearly every small business.
5 MINUTE READ
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August 29, 2018

Reaching and surpassing sales goals are the foundation of success for nearly every small business. A sales organization's bottom line is the fuel that feeds hiring the right talent, providing the best services and creating the best products for long-term growth.  

How do sales teams turn big, lofty ideas and goals into manageable sales targets? Your business plan must include setting smart sales goals. It is crucial for keeping your sales reps happy and motivated while challenging them with stretch goals. Read on to learn more about how sales organisations can develop the most effective goal setting strategies.

Establish Your Annual and Monthly Sales Target

Once you've learned how long your average sales cycle takes from qualified lead to close and the average price of each sale, you can effectively estimate your annual revenue target. Calculate the average price of each sale and average number of sales per month. Build on this number by developing realistic goals for month over month growth.

When you've established your revenue target, leave room to adapt to market fluctuations, changes in the industry and competitors. While the best small businesses monitor their direct competitors and aim to stay one step ahead, make sure your yearly goal accounts for less than stellar months.

Be sure to research if the demand for your product or service is growing and track the economic trends that affect your customer base. If the economy is suffering, fuel prices rise or unemployment is high, people scale back on non-necessary products and services. When this happens, an e-commerce meal delivery company or beauty salon should plan to see a dip in sales and adjust their budget and monthly sales goals.

Empower Your Sales Team Members

Sales leaders have a big job. They are responsible for coaching, training, hiring and evaluating the sales force of the organisation. Determining the sales process and setting sales goals that are feasible yet ambitious can be a slippery slope. Individual sales reps may need to have different sales goals than others. Don't forget to take the specific strengths and weaknesses of each team member into account.

For instance, if one employee is great at lead generation and another excels in closing complex deals, separate their roles into distinct positions. Leverage your sales reps' unique skill sets to improve your overall close rate. Consider creating customized sales goals for each sales professional. You might be surprised how much it increases a steady stream of new business.

Within the right culture, friendly competition and incentives are great tools that can help boost sales performance and motivate sales reps. It is common knowledge that sales reps will normally work harder to close deals or acquire new customers if they know their efforts will be rewarded or recognised.

Reward your sales team with both financial prizes and social recognition. For example, if a sales rep exceeds their monthly goal by 20% a financial prize could be:

  • Additional cash bonuses
  • Gift cards
  • Increased commission percentage
  • Employee stock options
  • Profit-sharing plans
  • Paid time off
  • Raises and promotions

Social recognition is a non-monetary award that uses the (free) power of public praise to reward employees for high sales performance. Social recognition is a powerful psychological concept which gives employees a feeling of high status and likability among their peers. For instance, if a sales rep converts 15 new leads per week when they when they had a target of 10, reward this small win with a social reward, such as:

  • Performance trophies
  • Flexible working hours or work-from-home opportunities
  • Acquiring new skills via professional development opportunities
  • Designated, prime parking spaces
  • Social outings with the leadership team

Be creative! Additional incentive opportunities include retention bonuses. Consider rewarding your sales team on each customer's annual anniversary. Retaining customers equals recurring revenue — generating sustainable long-term success.

Make Sales Goals Manageable

Being a sales professional is not an easy job. It can be a roller coaster that comes with highs and lows which can be incredibly stressful for sales professionals. Set goals that are manageable over time.

For example, if you want to build your sales funnel, you need more new leads. If you want to increase the number of cold calls your sales reps make per week from 65 to 120, stagger the bigger goal into more realistic goals on a weekly basis for several weeks. Add 15 more calls per week until the sales team hits the goal.

Sales leaders should communicate any small wins you see only a regular basis by sharing increased numbers of qualified leads to help motivate the team. This boosts employee engagement and helps ensure your sales team stays motivated. Furthermore, communicating progress encourages teams to produce more quality work rather than burning out quickly.

Foster Personal Responsibility and Accountability

When sales team members are held accountable for their goals, they are more likely to keep them. Companies have an array of tools at their disposal to increase personal responsibility and commitment to reaching goals.

The theory of Promise-Based Management hinges on the concept of transparent accountability to goals. Promises are a major component of our daily lives and people that keep their promises in the workplace earn good reputations, status and the trust of their colleagues. A major component of making promises effective in a business environment is making sure they are tracked in a public space, measurable and specific.

Sales teams can employ software programs to track, measure and collaborate on their sales goals. For example, a sales rep can set a monthly goal to close 10 deals. Using the right technology, they can measure progress towards their goal and view the entire sales teams' progress towards their individual goals. This encourages and gamifies friendly competition in a team environment.

Setting sales goals and tracking their progress shouldn't be complicated. Use programs that simplify goal-setting so your team can get back to what they do best — closing deals and generating new business.

Samewave is social performance management software that uses social technology to help sales organisations develop, track and measure sales goals in one transparent place. Discover how your sales team can communicate about sales goals to reach them faster and boost sales performance.

Goal-setting and tracking can be simple while holding sales reps accountable to their commitments. Sign up for Samewave (for free!) this week and watch your sales program flourish with the power of promises.

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