Why Isn’t BI in Your Budget?

Everyone knows business intelligence is important, but it’s rarely a top priority for successful businesses. BI is perceived as something you would like to have, but isn’t really necessary to buy immediately. People always say the same thing:

“Why should I invest in BI? My business is doing fine without it.”

While this may be true, wouldn’t you like to achieve the same sales results while expending less effort, spending less money, and investing fewer resources? Of course you would!

That’s what a powerful business intelligence solution can do for your company. With the right data analysis, you will better understand your sales team’s successes, failures, and learn how to drive improvements throughout the process. Here’s why you need to add BI into your budget immediately.

Stop Guessing

If you’re not currently using BI, you’re probably running your business based on a combination of guesswork, intuition and luck. Without data analysis, you can’t really understand what’s going on within your sales team, for example. Ask yourself, have you ever said anything like this before?

“I think that sales reps struggle to convert prospects with product demos.”

“It feels like my sales team gets better results when they call prospects on Tuesdays.”

“Our sales cycle seems to be longer than last quarter.”

If this sounds familiar, it means you’re just guessing. These are all untested hypotheses that need to be backed up by solid data before you can act on them. Instead of thinking that your team has trouble with demos, you should know their conversion rate from product demo to closing the deal is only 10%. Only then can you take action to help your team improve their demo skills. If you don’t have a number to back up your ideas, it’s only an opinion, not a fact.

Improve Your Process

Instead of making serious business decisions based on guesses, BI can help you run your business according to the numbers. Data can improve a variety of your businesses processes, but it is especially powerful for your sales team. If your sales reps are entering data into a CRM, you’re already collecting a wealth of data about your team that just needs to be analyzed and understood. You can easily find weaknesses throughout your sales process by analyzing the data with an eye for conversion rates. For example, what are your conversion rates down the sales funnel?

This report shows you that your team has a tough time pushing opportunities from Qualifying to Present Solution. With this information, you can take action to improve your conversion rates and test out new tactics. You can then measure your results to see if the changes you’ve made have had a positive or negative effect. Even just a 5% change in conversion rates at the top of the funnel could lead to a huge increase in revenue for your company.

Find Repeatable Success

Knowing why and when you’re failing is important, but knowing why you’re successful is even more important. Without BI, you will never be able to fully understand your successes, and therefore can never repeat those successes. For example, BI can help you see patterns on your sales team and understand when an opportunity is a waste of a rep’s time.

In this report, you can see that Closed-Won opportunities tend to move much more quickly through the sales funnel than Closed-Lost opportunities. Instead of wasting effort on opportunities that will never close, your reps can learn from the past and stop putting effort into those unlikely opportunities. They can focus more attention on the opportunities that are most likely to close, leading to a higher win rate overall.

Without analytics, you would never know about these inefficiencies and gaps in your sales process and you would never realize that your sales team could be performing better and winning more deals. Convinced? You’re ready to buy BI now that you see the value inherent in understanding your business’ data.