Looking for a thorough sales plan template to get your sales process moving?
Perhaps you already have a sales strategy in place, but you’re not selling the volume of products and services you’d like, and you need to tighten up a few loose ends. Use this guide to improve your business plan, get organized, and increase your sales.
First, let's explore the elements of a sales plan. Then, we'll share some tools that you can use to make your sales operations run more smoothly.
Elements of An Effective Sales Plan
Every effective sales strategy contains a few key elements:
- Developing a deep understanding of your ideal customer profile
- Building a system to generate new business opportunities
- Defining your sales funnel and way to manage it
- Defining and documenting the roles of your team
- Creating a sales action plan to reach your sales goals
The primary goal of this sales plan template is to provide a guide that you and your team can follow to reach your sales targets.
Step 1: Build Your Ideal Customer Profile
There are no sales without customers! So take some time to learn about the people who need your products and services.
The best way to do this is to look for patterns amongst existing from existing customers. Do they have any similarities such as age group, geography, marital status, budgets, job titles, etc? If so, use this data to build an ideal profile.
If you don't have a lot of customers, another method is to analyze the conversations you and your team have with prospects that seem to be going well. What similarities can you draw from the types of companies they're at, roles they have, and pains they are looking for help with.
During this process, you will probably discover that there isn't one single buyer type. Likely, you will be able to segment your customer base into between 3 and 10 profiles that you can target at any given organization. After you've defined this list, rank them in order of perceived fit and ability to buy quickly.
To hone your messaging, create a matrix of use cases and reasons why your ideal customer profile would be excited to hear from you. Find out which of their concerns are most relevant.
Here's an example we use at Troops:
All of these efforts are a prerequisite to creating a solid messaging strategy. Once you have a basic idea of the type of person you are engaging with and what they care about, then you can have more meaningful conversations.
From here you can use your ideal customer profile to build a list of target accounts. Enrich your target accounts with contacts and other information that will help your sales team prioritize and get started immediately. If you don't have any existing data, then make sure you provide each salesperson with the tools to mine their own data. We'll get you some suggestions shortly..
Step 2: Create An Outreach Playbook
Sales planning walks a fine line between hitting revenue targets and keeping team members motivated. The activities of your sales process should map to a cadence that adequately fills your sales pipeline but doesn't burn out or confuse your team.
Start from the top down and use historical information to determine realistic sales projections. You may want to make $1 billion this month, but you also may need to sell 100 million products to hit that target. You simply can't do it with a 5-person team. So get out your calculator and do some math.
Generally speaking, sales teams use a mix of cold calling, planned calls, and emails to perform their duties. For each salesperson, how many calls can they make in a given time frame? How many emails can they send? What conversion rates should you expect from these outreach efforts?
Establishing a good cadence and these baseline metrics will prepare your team for success. A little later, we'll talk about some tools you can use to improve the chances of hitting your sales quota.
Step 3: Measuring Success
As sales and marketing teams work together to fill your sales pipeline, you'll need a way to determine if your plan is successful. Here are some example metrics many teams use as a barometer.
- Monthly sales
- Number of new opportunities created
- Number of accounts touched
- Number of contacts touched per account
- Total number of sales activities
- Quote to close ratio
- Average purchase value
- Performance of sales activities by type
Above, a "touch" can refer to any interaction with a potential customer. It could be a phone conversation, an email, a message on LinkedIn, or any other time that prospect interacted with your sales team.
Appoint a sales manager to keep track of progress. Key performance indicators (KPIs) should be shared daily and reviewed weekly as a team in the early days. Troops helps many companies automate this process in Slack.
One way to rally people around the cause is setting up a spiff or incentive program to encourage your team to reach their sales goals. Pick a target metric beyond just new business closed and create a monthly sales contest around it. Prizes can be monetary, such as an added bonus or other luxuries, such as a free round of golf or a pair of concert tickets.
Free Downloadable Sales Plan Template, And Other Valuable Formulas
Use these free templates to bump up your competitive advantage:
Calculating Basic ROI on Sales Activities
How to use these resources: Select File > Make a Copy and save a copy of this file. Close this window, and update the copy you just saved with your company's data.
Tools for a Successful Sales Plan
To round out our sales plan template, here are some tools you and your team can use to increase sales.
- Salesforce - The world's favorite CRM for small businesses and enterprise companies alike.
- Slack - One fantastic application for simple communication, sharing collective knowledge, and celebrating victories.
- Troops - Use data input and visibility to turn your revenue business into a highly accurate and predictable machine.
- Outreach, Salesloft - Sales engagement software to crush your sales goals.
- ZoomInfo, Trypropsect, DataFox, Clearbit - Market intelligence and data resources.
You're now set to go out and win with big your new sales and marketing plan template!
Remember, always start with the customer in mind. Do your market research and build an ideal customer profile. Set a realistic outreach cadence to move new prospects through your sales funnel. Create a sales report that measures success. Incentivize your team to perform at their best.
These strategies, formulas, and tools are everything you need to get selling!
Read more: Click here to see how Troops can help you predict the success of your sales plan.