7 Metrics to Help Guide Your Sales Pipeline
The sales pipeline is an essential tool small business owners use to amplify visibility and increase company growth. Using the pipeline can help you organize your sale processes, turning them into an efficient machine leading to conversions.
Typically, an upside-down pyramid represents the sales pipeline and the journey from a new prospect to a customer. In this article, we’ll outline seven important metrics that are present in a healthy sales funnel.
1. Qualified Leads
A qualified lead is a sales-ready lead who wants to find out more about your product. While every company will have a different definition of what constitutes a qualified lead, it’s important that the sales and marketing teams agree on what it means. In the best-case scenario, qualified leads are those who already have an intent to buy, not those who randomly came across your website.
When searching for sales funnel software, consider using a marketing automation program. This type of pipeline sales tool can help you define your leads, Additionally, it can analyze how quickly leads are being assisted once they enter the sales pipeline. Reaching out to leads within the first five minutes of their expressing interest can make them nine times more likely to convert. Automating your processes allows you to communicate with these customers as soon as they appear on your radar.
2. Win Rates
Simply put, the win rate is the percentage of sales pitches that were successful. You can calculate this rate by dividing the closed-won interactions by total interactions that were closed-on plus closed-lost. When you track this number, then you’ll be able to see how effective your sales team and funnel are, thus allowing you to make adjustments and analyze performance.
3. Average Size of Deals
All your closed-won deals can calculate the average deal size. This can help you estimate how much revenue you should be bringing in and how much work should be done to meet that goal. Calculating the average deal size allows you to determine whether a sales team needs more resources to close a larger-than-usual deal. If your deal sizes are trending upward, it may be time to reexamine your sales strategy.
4. Sales Pipeline Leakage
If you’ve ever found a leak somewhere in your home, you know the structural damage that it can cause. The same applies to your business. Even the smallest leak can have consequences for your sales processes. Map out the key points of the customer’s journey, and identify places where people back away from the process. Why aren’t these leads converting? When you plug the leaks in your pipeline, you’ll be able to improve its efficiency.
If it’s taking longer for customers to make purchase decisions, you might need to check for leaks, flaws or inefficiences in your sales processes.
5. The Average Sales Cycle
Another important metric is the average amount of time from the customer’s initial contact into your sales funnel to the winning of the deal or purchase. If you have a quick sales cycle, then you can be confident that your processes are working properly.
If the cycle is slow, then it may be time to check for leaks or flaws in your pipeline. You can also check your sales numbers against industry standards, or even analyze your own historical data to make note of any trends.
Over the past five years, the average sales cycle for a B2B organization has increased by approximately 22 percent thus making it imperative to streamline sales processes. It may in your best interest to acquire a pipeline sales tool to help you measure your cycle.
6. New Leads Each Month
Once your pipeline processes are air-tight and running smoothly, you should see a consistent flow of new leads that are gradually filtered down to the closing stage. Tracking the number of new qualified leads allows you to determine the success of your inbound marketing. It’s also a good idea to examine industry averages of new leads per month and then create objectives accordingly.
7. Employee Morale
While keeping track of metrics is essential, most of all, it’s important to remember the people who are in the trenches each day working for your business. Measure your own staff retention rate against industry numbers. Also, be sure to check in with sales and marketing team members to receive their input. Does your team have the right training, materials, or tools? These are all factors to consider when helping your team be the best it can be.
Most of all, don’t forget to celebrate your successes with your team. Remember, high employee morale often correlates with great performance and an increase in loyalty. With employee-centric practices and an efficient, leak-free pipeline, you’ll create an environment where your company can truly succeed.