[one_half] Despite its importance, many companies and sales managers struggle with the challenges and nuances of sales forecasting management, primarily because they traditionally relied on inaccurate, intuition-based methods. Instead, these struggling managers should adopt data-driven sales forecasting management practices to gain better visibility into their projected sales and improving the performances of their reps in reaching sales quotas. With the wrong sales forecasting management techniques, a company won’t be able to generate predictable revenue. Here are some essential metrics for effective data-driven sales forecasting management.

  • Opportunity pipeline engagement
    Opportunities that are forecast to close must be actively worked on – an opportunity that has received little to no engagement in recent weeks or months is at risk of stalling or turning into negative velocity. Effective sales forecasting management necessitates that managers pinpoint these opportunities to reps, allowing them to prioritize their efforts while purging stalled pipeline opportunities that have become stale.  [image source_type=”attachment_id” source_value=”20249″ align=”center” title=”Sales Forecasting Management – Pipeline Engagement” alt=”Sales Forecasting Management – Pipeline Engagement” lightbox=”true” width=”430″ height=”335″ quality=”100″]
  • Age of opportunities in sales pipeline 
    A hallmark of ineffective sales forecasting management is a sales pipeline with a number of stale opportunities clogging it up. This can lead to severe inaccuracies in sales forecasting. One strong practice of sales forecasting management is to point out these stalled opportunities to your sales reps and having them either actively work on reviving them or purging them from the sales pipeline altogether. [image source_type=”attachment_id” source_value=”20254″ align=”center” lightbox=”true” title=”Sales Forecasting Management – Sales Pipeline” alt=”Sales Forecasting Management – Sales Pipeline”  width=”575″ height=”300″ quality=”100″]
  • Conversion ratios at each stage
    A critical aspect of effective sales forecasting management is knowing your historical conversion rates for Closed-Won opportunities at each stage of your sales funnel to give you a clear idea of what the probability of converting the opportunity to a closed deal is at each particular stage. For instance, if your historical Closed-Won conversion rate for opportunities in the trial stage is 82%, you can ascribe that ratio to your current pipeline opportunity to produce more accurate sales forecasting for next month or next quarter. [image source_type=”attachment_id” source_value=”20248″ align=”center” title=”Sales Forecasting Management – Sales Cycle” alt=”Sales Forecasting Management – Sales Cycle” lightbox=”true” width=”485″ height=”300″ quality=”100″]

InsightSquared provides the sales analytics, reporting and sales pipeline review tools necessary for more effective sales forecasting management. Producing inaccurate sales forecasts can lead to management errors and inefficient business decisions, sinking the growth trajectory of a company.

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[/one_half] [one_half_last] Sales Pipeline in InsightSquared
[note][blockquote cite=”Steve Richards, Co-Founder, Vorsight”]InsightSquared was like shining a light in a dark room for us.[/blockquote][/note] [/one_half_last]