Here is the second part of extensive sales guide on sales territory and issues related to it. What else should you remember?
1. Keep an eye on your revenue streams
In sales the final point is always about revenues and the basis is to understand where the revenues come from. Ideally, the design of sales areas should rely on historical revenue sources to see how the business is gaining popularity in the market. This will help identify the sectors with the highest ROI and where problems need to be resolved.
2.Use industry indicators
Use industry data to shape your sales areas. This may include identifying fast-growing sectors or sectors at risk that can be quickly resolved, such as limited revenue growth, rising costs, or the need to better manage business risk. In other sectors, demographic change can be an opportunity to exploit or a threat that needs to be addressed.
3. Match territories to the appropriate sales representative
Each sales has unique strengths and experiences, and the same can be said about sales territories. Matching the right sales reps to the right territory is an art.
In some cases it will be easy, especially because of previous relationships. In other situations, industry knowledge should indicate who gets the territory. Another guideline is the personality traits of the salespeople. Some sellers are natural “farmers”, outstanding in developing relationships that pay off in the long run, others are more of a „hunters”, preferring to find and close a deal before moving on to the next acquisition.
Regardless of how you choose to approach it, having a good understanding of potential sales areas makes it easier to match them with your sales representatives.
All of this may seem like excessive work to achieve the final results, but a well-designed sales strategy combined with an optimal sales plan will pay off with substantial dividends. Using the right tools significantly reduces the workload associated with sales planning and management, so you can focus on the fundamentals of sales management in the company.
Territory mapping is the foundation of designing sales territories – it shows which sales representative owns a given territory and who’s its sales manager. Keeping track of all of this, especially in the planning phase and during all acquisitions at the start of each sales year, is essential, but potentially overwhelming, considering all the sales areas you may have in your business.
You can easily prepare a range of geographic territories, customer account territories, and channel account territories. You can have sales overlay teams to promote specific products. Add sales management and territory mapping can get complicated quickly, with lots of accounts that can be skipped during planning stage or misallocation of sales limits. Effective territory mapping is essential if you’d like to start sales year smoothly.
The standard solution to this challenge is to mix and match spreadsheets, or even flipcharts, to keep track of everything during the planning stage. Providing information in these formats and making sure everyone is on the same page is difficult and often leads to mistakes. A better alternative is to have a SaaS-based platform that allows access to territory maps to see at a first glance what accounts specific sellers have and who looks after a specific account, including all subsidiaries. You can also see who is delegated to these territories from the perspective of the management and product specialist.
CRM applications are great tool to help create optimal sales territories. It contains a wide range of revenue information that can be captured and consolidated to easily see customers commitment, future customers and sales successes. This information can also help to understand how customers purchase your products and services (website, call center, sales channel, or directly from sales representative). You can also see issues like purchasing frequency and product selection. All of this provides valuable insight into customer behavior, making it easier to understand how easier engage with them from a sales, marketing, and product development perspective.
Customer Mapping is the reverse of territory mapping – it’s about understanding who looks after specific accounts. This is important because the sales plan can divide the account coverage by revenue type, such as product, service, education, training, or support. However, ensuring that all these aspects of account responsibility are properly allocated – with a sales quota if necessary – is an important task to help make sure all revenue bases are covered. It also helps you direct leads and customer inquiries to the right person during the sales year, if you receive a customer inquiry or invoice inquiry. It can also help to identify revenue issues if the sales incentive program supports split commission under the split account management model.
Sales Representatives Tracking
Tracking of the account and territory details that sales reps are responsible is the key to the efficient and effective use of limited resources. Of course, it is not about gps on the phone and settling working time with a stop at a restaurant, but checking what responsibilities a given person has in terms of account management. This is a great way to make sure the person isn’t overloaded with tasks. It also helps to ensure that sales opportunities are evenly distributed across the entire sales territory.
Track your income
The final piece of the territory planning is revenue tracking, so you can see how territories are performing with the plan you set up.
Suppose you have an advantage in the match in the first half or so, and then you just hold the score. This gives you a buffer for the next year and the opportunity to use your luck. If you find yourself unsuccessful, despite your best plans and analytical efforts, you’d want to know where to apply more actions to your sales process, whether it’s lead generation, lead conversion, or closing deals.
Benefits of planning the sales territory
While this may seem like an unnecessary burden, putting the effort to fully align your sales, marketing, and customer engagement is significant value.
1.Improved customer service.
Probably the most valuable aspect of optimizing your sales area is optimizing customer engagement. It ensures that you have the right number of people in each territory and the right person to promote the right products to the right people at the right time.
2. Implementation of strategic plans.
Directing business in a new direction is one of the greatest challenges for the manager. Success requires a good understanding of where your business is today and where you want to go with it. Effective territory planning provides this capability by helping to plan the next move using hard data you can rely on. It makes sure you have an accurate picture of where the opportunities lie, even when customers, markets and business change.
3. Evenly distributed load
It’s not a good situation when some of the team members have a lot to do and high results, while others have nothing to do. This way people start to burn out or look elsewhere for better opportunities. A better approach is to distribute opportunities more evenly across territories, so that you have a more balanced workforce that can better meet and deepen customer needs.
4. Always up-to-date information
Consolidated data can help you understand how to optimize your sales territories. It can also help to better understand how your sales team works on a daily basis. Wouldn’t it help to understand the top sellers? Wouldn’t it be helpful to see who can close opportunities in the sales pipeline faster? Wouldn’t it be helpful to see who is best at business in order to come up with a proposed solution that will yield big deals? If the answer is yes, use the same opportunities you used to understand how best to develop a sales area plan and use them to better understand how to best manage your sales areas on a daily basis to maximize results.
5. Get maximum out of your selling time
Sales teams only have around 200 days per year for selling, so getting the most out of each day is essential. This means making sure your team spends time with potential customers who are most likely to spend money. Automating territory planning and management eliminates the need to spend time maneuvering through spreadsheets and flipcharts to get the best results for your business. Use business and market data to get salespeople talking to the right people at the right time and about the right product.
Interested in learning more?
Book a conversation with a software developer – Varicent or with us – a technology implementation partner; to find out how we can help.