What is the end goal or the final destination of every business? Revenue and profits. And how does a business arrive at this destination? With sales! That’s right – the sales of your business can make or break your goals. And how do we achieve sales, especially in a year like 2020 where entire economies seem to have been surrounded by the pandemic and the subsequent lock down?
That is where the key to success really lies. Even before the pandemic, the world of business had been steadily moving online and the origin as well as the evolution of CRM was a major milestone that further facilitated the use of the digital world for conducting business. Sales Analysis is one of the most important functions that has come from this evolution and the use of this system for propelling businesses towards success.
So what exactly is sales analysis? The analysis of each sale over a period of time is known as sales analysis. This could include quarterly, monthly, bi annual and annual analysis as well. The analysis is in context of the sales targets that have been set by the business and its team members. The way the sales have been reached and the resources that have been used as well as any lag between the goals and the actual figures are all reported and studied in the sales analysis process.
This is something that has been built into CRM systems and platforms as well as so that the sales analysis can be reported across all integrations including email, landing pages, website, and others to find out where the maximum sales took place. This helps in better resource planning in the long run as well.
Let us now turn towards the benefits of sales analysis and why it should be used by each and every business:
1. Opportunity Identification: When we are running a business, we never know where the next sale can come from. While positioning and market segmentation take place, a sale may happen in a different demographic when someone wants to give something from your repertoire to a person from your segment, or even when cross selling happens (like an offer or any other related scenario). And also, there are missed opportunities that come and go with the various seasons that we fail to cater for. The sales analysis process helps you understand and cater for all these scenarios in the future. The sales analysis or the report will specify all the new opportunities, the missed opportunities and continued opportunities from where we have been gathering our conversion numbers.
2. Segmentation and Positioning: This brings us directly to the next point in question – segmentation of the market and positioning within the same market. In a certain niche, there are many sub niches where a sale may ideally happen. A certain product or a service may cater to a certain segment or many segments in the same market. This should be seen as an opportunity to position oneself in the best way. But how to do it? Well, the sales analysis process comes handy here too, since you can use the information in order to zone into your core audience. This will help you find the targets that can be used for better positioning since you will find the right resources to articulate your message as per the needs and tone of this core audience where your actual prospects are lurking.
3. Targeted Reach and Engagement: When you are trying to close a sale, the two most important things would be who you have reached and how you have reached them. The first part defines your reach, while the second part goes into the neighbourhood called engagement. It is very important to use sales analysis so that you are able to track reach and engagement in order to find eyeball heat generated by posts on certain social media platforms, or certain kinds of posts; as well as emails that have gone unopened – among a number of other considerations. When you use sales analysis, you are able to take stock of all these small things so that you can fine tune your system of reach and engagement for more effortless conversions.
4. Understanding the Customer: Above all else, the sales analysis process is one that will help you understand the customer and his or her evolving needs. These needs can evolve with age, and with changes in the market including the advent of a competitor. This is what makes sales analysis a very important factor, since it would report all these changes and help you deal with them in the best possible manner. When you know when the changes will take place and what they are, you will be better prepared to create the basis for dealing with the same. This will also help you understand your customer in a far better manner so that you are able to articulate the solutions offered by your business, in the language that the customer can relate to.
5. Bandwidth: Every business has its own bandwidth in terms of team size, time, resources so on and so forth. When we close a sale, it comes at a cost in terms of the resources that have been used. Therefore, a business has to be very mindful of such factors so that there can be a focus on minimizing the cost of closing a sale. This in turn, will create higher profits from the revenue. In order to study this cost of closing a sale, the sales analysis function will come handy. This report can be used by the various teams and team members who are involved in the sales pipeline so that the process is much more fine tuned. This will also help the business make future decisions including how much stock or inventory to hold on to for the next season depending on the past performance during the same season. This helps in profitability as well.