Sales Forecasting Strategies We Recommend For Your Business
We apply forecasting in everything we do. It’s basically more like planning.
Forecasting, in simple terms, means predicting or estimating or planning for something or about the future or trend.
The same way you apply forecasting in your daily life is the same way you should apply it in business. If you need to grow your business, you need to plan and forecast ahead of it.
Forecasting for your business helps you get a detailed prediction of what an individual salesperson, sales team, or your entire organization, will sell in a given time period, whether weekly, monthly or annually. It gives you a picture of what the future will be like; you can then build on it.
Sales forecast refers to the process of predicting and estimating future sales using actual sales data from your sales organization. Sales forecasts help you know whether you will find a market for your product or not, depending on the earlier arrangements made for salespeople promoting a new product. A sales forecast can also help you get investors to back up your business with additional funding, thus promoting its growth.
Aberdeen believes that forecasting sales for your business can help your company grow revenue up to 10%. If you want to do the best sales forecast for your business, have the right information and focus on driving its growth.
Sales forecasting doesn’t require having a certain class of qualifications; it needs you to have a well estimated guessing as a business owner, salesperson or individual who has been in the business for several years. Of course, to make a good sales forecast, you need to have good and reliable data about what is trending on the market concerning what you are offering and what other competitors are doing on the market.
Let us look at sales forecasting strategies that can be suitable for your business to support its growth.
1. Acquire accurate customer relationship management data.
Having the correct customer relationship management data helps you to keep track of your customers’ feedback. This is important for your business growth since it provides you with the details about your customers' behaviors, their interests, preferable products, and their feedback about the services or the goods you offered them. This information helps you find out what to include in your soon-to-release products, keep on-trend and can keep defeating your competitors.
2. Let your forecast be real.
Don’t overestimate your forecast; an accurate sales forecast should be kept simple, precise and accurate. An overestimated sales forecast becomes an overwhelming target, and the sales team might look at it as unachievable or too hard to hit, thus making it hectic. You may also end up taking away critical selling time, which hugely diminishes the sales team’s ability to deliver a sales forecast. Nothing turns salespeople off more than making it time-consuming and tiring to forecast. Having to forecast too frequently or making the process overly tasking means it doesn’t get the sales team’s focus or the attention it deserves; thus, tour business targets might not be met as expected.
3. Set sales projections.
Sales projections refer to the estimated sales that you hope to make in a certain period, whether daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly or annually. Projecting business sales helps the sales team work harder and ensure that the set projections are hit, and more so, it creates a more organized way of working for the team, and this one of the most important things in setting sales strategies for your business.
4. Ensure accuracy of your forecast.
Without having the right information by your side, especially when dealing with forecasts, it would lead your business into failure. Having the right forecasts helps your business set out as expected or as planned accordingly. Have your key performance indicators to help you sieve what is more likely to work for you and what is not likely to work for you. This is one of the most effective ways of setting the best sales focusing strategy.
5. Estimate and set prices for the goods your business produces.
Go out in the market, collect data about what your competitors are doing, look at the products they are producing, and what prices they charge for their goods? The quality of their products as compared to yours! Then set prices depending on what is trending on the market and make sure that your prices are not set too high while your competitors' prices are low; if that happens, probably, your product will be left out on the market, so you got to set your prices averagely.
6. Train your sales teams about the sales forecasting methods.
Implementing sales forecasting without the sales teams, it’s more like wastage of time since the sales team are the people who are always in the field implementing what was discussed in the administration. Including the sales team helps them know which methods are actually going to be used to ensure that this forecast is achieved as expected and how these methods can actually be put into practice.
7. Separate each commodity from the other following different lines of sales
If you are a producer of different goods, you must separate them and sell them according to their different categories; for example, if you are a producer of detergents but with different brands, categorize brands accordingly and sell them differently, simply mixing them at once. For instance, if you produce washing soap, package and sell it differently from the bathing soap, separate washing soap from washing powder, this gives a classic and unique look and good organization, which is key to succeeding in forecasting for your business.
8. Gather the right and accurate data about the previous performance of your past brands.
Before you predict or estimate, or plan ahead of something, whether, in the field of business or normal daily life, it’s always good to gather data before you take another step. Gathering data before doing anything else helps you know what worked out well for you and what didn’t work out for you to find out means of improving what worked well and ways of maintaining appropriately what worked for you and how it worked out. This is one of the most important aspects of forecasting for your business.
9. Create a clearly defined sales process for your sales team.
Having a well-defined sales process for your business is crucial for its success; a sales process is like a guide to the sales team of what they have to follow from identifying a potential customer until the time a customer is turned into a fully convinced potential buyer. Monkeypesa got the best sales process for you that your team can implement as one of its best sales forecasting strategies to help you understand sales more and suitable to boost your business’ growth.
o Identifying and Prospecting - Prospecting is the process of sourcing and identifying new leads or clients to begin working through the sales process.
o Connecting and Qualifying, The connecting process involves representatives initiating contact with those early-stage leads to gather information. Qualifying new leads involves deciding whether or not they're a good fit lead for your business and whether or not they will likely move forward in the buyer's journey.
o Initial meeting - This involves scheduling the first appointment with the leads after confirming that they have fully qualified.
o Researching - Researching involves representatives knowing more about the prospect by digging deeper; when representatives learn more about each prospect and company, it allows them to offer a more tailored and personalized experience and improves the likelihood of closing a deal.
o Presenting - This involves a salesperson running a formal presentation or demonstration of your product or service for your prospect on how he or she will benefit from it.
o Handling Objections - This involves listening to the prospect's objections and questions from prospects; this helps representatives drive your product or service to fit the prospect's needs and wants.
o Making an offer, negotiating and finalizing - When the needs of the prospect are understood, then you choose to make an offer or not. Still, once you choose to make an offer, you will need to negotiate the final terms and conditions.
o Closing the sale - This involves coming to a conclusion or reaching an end by the prospect and the representative. The close step is what every salesperson works toward. This is expected to result in a mutual benefit and a contractual agreement between the prospect and the seller.
o Deliver the product - This is the very last stage in closing a deal where the representative delivers the product or service to the customer physically.
10. Integrate your past sales forecast with the current being planned forecasts.
Looking back into your past is crucial for all businesses, especially those in existence for several years. Using their operation, they keep producing and implementing new products on the market. If you have a product that was previously on the market, look back and see how you made it to sell the product successfully, look at how you made it go viral and insane to catch the buyer’s attention on the market, after analyzing all that see how best you can forecast your strategy and use the same methods to promote the product to come or to be soon released to the market.
11. Know what it takes to turn prospective leads into buying customers
This basically looks at your marketing channel: the buyer’s awareness and consideration of a product or service from initial contact until they decide to purchase. Bring your past customer’ experience in place, see what you have always done to catch their attention until they decide to buy, employ the same means you have always used if possible until you get business from them. Remember, scoring business is one of the most important things for the sales team.
Final thoughts and words
Sales forecast needs a smart mind together with accurate data before it is put into real practice. You can employ several sales forecasting strategies as a business owner to grow your business, as discussed above.
MonkeyPesa is here with a ready-made Business Management Suite that helps streamline everything from Leads to Deals, Tasks, Accounts, and contacts.
MonkeyPesa is genuinely built for Sales teams. It is simple but well streamlined and organized.
You can contact us on or by a phone call or WhatsApp +256757537658
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