When you’re a sales rep, you become intimately familiar with your sales pipeline. You know where all of your deals stand, and almost know when they will close. Being hands-on, it makes it easy to know how well your sales pipeline is doing.
As a sales manager, leading a whole team of sales can make it hard to know just how well everyone is doing and the overall health of your sales. You no longer have a clear view of a specific subset of leads and clients.
That’s why we’re here to help you learn how to keep track of your team’s sales pipeline and make sure it runs strong.
Reimagine the Shape of the Pipeline
Most people imagine a sales pipeline as a funnel or a, with a 3x multiple relationship between the mouth of the funnel and the base. This often accounts for an expectation of sales people to have the same relationship within their deals. Unfortunately, this shape is inaccurate and can make the team look like they are underperforming.
The sales pipeline is more like a wide-mouthed cocktail glass, wide at the top, but quickly drops off and narrows to the bottom.
The most significant drop off is at the top. This is when leads lose interest, make different decisions, etc. This better represents the statistic that 79% of marketing leads never convert into sales.
Once you have a better idea of what a sales pipeline should look like, you can set better goals for your team that they will be able to reach and surpass.
When Should You Purge?
It’s easy to know to purge a lead when they go with a competitor or flat out tell you they’re not interested. Once you get this information, you stop contacting them and mark them as inactive in your CRM.
But what about the contact you built a good relationship with, was interested, and then just ghosted you? How do you know when you purge these contacts vs. continuing to follow up with them?
Most reps keep these leads in their pipelines with the hopes to rekindle the conversation at some point. While it’s okay to check in with these people occasionally, it’s not okay to keep them in your pipeline and expect something to come of it. Set a reasonable amount of time with your team, maybe once monthly, that they purge all inactive leads and start fresh.
What is Your Sales Velocity?
Sales velocity, according to HubSpot, is the measurement of how quickly deals move through your pipeline and generate revenue. A sales velocity equation uses four metrics (number of opportunities, average deal value, win rate, and length of sales cycle) to determine an organization's sales velocity and how much revenue they can expect to generate over a specific time period.
You can use this to assess how long, on average, each step of the sale should take. Having this knowledge helps the sales leader know what they can expect from each of their team members based on their individual pipelines.
Another way this helps is knowing the fast parts of the sales process, like the wrap up, and the slow parts, like the reach-out phase. Once you pinpoint the slow parts for your team, you can take control of those stages and find ways to speed them up to increase the sales velocity, overall increasing your sales.
Overall, getting the full picture of your team’s sales pipeline can be difficult. Using these tools can help you be a successful leader and empower you to keep the pipeline strong.
Need help getting started? Let us know! It’s what we do best.