Data analysis is one of the most powerful areas of business in today’s world. It’s not surprising. Research shows that: “Businesses using big data experienced a profit increase of 8–10%, and a 10% reduction in overall cost”. If a company wants to decrease resource usage, grow revenue, raise productivity, and increase both employee and customer satisfaction, they need to collect and analyze information. What type of data is the most useful? This article is about that.
Before we dive deeper into the subject, we will take a closer look at the main reasons to base your decision-making process on data and the methods of collecting it. Our goal is to provide a quite extensive guide, from which you’ll learn how to apply data-driven conclusions to your company’s operations. Meetsales can play a significant part in it, but more about that later.
Why should you make decisions based on data?
We won’t spend time explaining what data actually is because nowadays probably the majority of people know that. Most of us are digital natives or at least digital immigrants, and we understand the power of information. We have access to it, know where to find what we need, and how to use it in our private and professional lives. Thanks to computers and mobile devices, we are constantly bombarded with tons of data. Moreover, we are also the sources of it.
That’s the main reason why enterprises turned their eyes to statistics, numbers, and other pieces of information in recent years. They can measure every activity of their prospects and customers, which gives them essential insights into how the business prospers and if there’s something that should be improved. On the other hand, the clients use the internet on a daily basis, and they leave a lot of information about themselves, which helps companies understand them better and answer their needs. Unless someone is violating the GDPR and other privacy regulations, collecting statistics about customers’ behaviors is nothing bad, and it can actually benefit a business in the long run.
The advantages of data-driven decision-making
As the headline of this section and the overall theme of this article suggest, the main point of collecting and analyzing data is to make better decisions. It is expected that the final result of such an approach is to help the business thrive, no matter what are the current goals of the company. Information can come in various forms. Numbers, statistics, diagrams, written requests, and so much more. It shows what already happened, but not only. More importantly, it can help to predict, or should we say, change the future. That is, if we learn from it and shape our strategies accordingly.
Making decisions based on a data-driven approach covers almost every area of business, from product to customer service. It can help you detect elements that are no longer valuable or efficient to get rid of them. For example, if one of the sales channels doesn’t contribute to the profitability of your firm anymore, or even generates additional expenses, it should be shut down. Instead, you can implement a new strategy or put more effort into other existing channels.
The same goes for employees. If their productivity lowers week after week, the numbers can show you why and support you in finding an adequate remedy. Without data, you wouldn’t be sure if you hired a team that doesn’t care about their work or if there’s another problem. Looking at the stats means you can quickly determine weak points and propose solutions that will give your employees more motivation or influence their productivity in a positive way.
Data is also crucial for managing certain aspects of your business. It’s especially useful when it comes to the two most important resources, money and time. You can use statistics to reclaim control over every part of the company in these areas. Becoming more cost-effective and making people aware of how they can achieve their work goals quicker wouldn’t be possible without knowing what is the current state of operations and what has to be done differently.
There are countless things that can be fixed or enhanced thanks to data. One of the key ones we haven’t mentioned yet is customer experience. You can not only help your business level up and make your team happier but, above all, focus on your clients, their satisfaction, and loyalty. Measuring the customer path and adjusting your activities to their requirements is the best way to get a higher winning rate. It won’t only be great for your profit, but also for retention.
Since you know all the benefits now, we can proceed to the next step, which is finding the right ways of collecting the precious data that will help you boost your business. It would also be nice if you could seamlessly analyze it and get reports with lessons to learn. We’re here to help!
How to get the data you need?
One word - tools. Thanks to the technological revolution, we can use digital apps installed on our browsers, desktops, and smartphones to run businesses, optimize processes, and analyze data collected along the way. Sales teams have a plethora of platforms to choose from. They don’t only make their daily work easier, but also automatically gather every piece of information about their performance, order values, client retention, and more. The era of CRMs that required salespeople to fill in data manually is coming to an end. No one remembers about that, nor has time for it.
Modern enterprises want to invest in sales tools that offer automation, efficiency, and an all-in-one approach. The more universal a system is, the better. However, it all depends on the specific needs of your organization. Maybe you want your emailing platform and ERP separate. We talked about it more in our article about useful sales tools. Hear us out, though. A multi-functional app will help you save resources and requires less implementation and onboarding time. It can also be used as the core of your sales operations.
Why do the majority of these tools have built-in analytics modules? Because it's easier to measure all the activities performed within the system without the need to integrate it with an external platform. Data collection happens in real-time and everything is processed quicker and more precisely. You can relate more to the reports you receive when they reference the features of the platform.
Meetsales can be your go-to platform for sales analytics. The full version of our solution has an internal feature that displays data on the number of calls and their duration, closed deals, order value, salespeople’s performance, and more. It has everything the management needs to build better strategies, make decisions based on facts and not instincts, as well as motivate their employees to get better results.
Before you hop on board with our web app dedicated to B2B sales teams, you can try it for free and test its basic functionalities. Of course, the analytics module is available in the full version, but with the trial, you will learn how Meetsales can empower your sales team to achieve their professional goals and help your company grow.
Ten types of data that matter in B2B sales business
Let’s get specific. The real question here is: What exactly should be measured in a sales department to give their superiors a full and true perspective on the ongoing affairs? Of course, you can collect data on every little detail, but that’s rather counter-productive and can make your reports hard to read. Being smart about data analysis requires knowledge about your sales team’s KPIs and goals. After you establish that, you will know what sets of information are required to find out if every employee is heading towards achieving their objectives, or if they’ve already done that.
However, we want to give you a set of universal indicators that usually are considered at B2B sales companies for better decision-making and growth. Take what resonates and start analyzing data to make your business thrive.
One of the crucial metrics to understand your team’s performance. It’s the number that can be calculated simply by comparing the number of leads in general and the number of closed deals over a certain period of time. You should always aim for the highest win rate. If it’s low, it’s time to investigate your sales process and find where it’s flawed to fix it.
Average time to close
If deals at your company take too much time to be closed, maybe it can be improved. To determine how it is with your sales team, you have to be aware of how long leads stay in the pipeline before the transactions are finalized. Also, check out how long each step of the funnel takes to detect possible faulty steps and operations.
Average order size
You might have a lot of sales that happen quickly, but if their value is low, you won’t see significantly higher profits. Divide total sales revenue by the number of closed deals, and you will get this metric. There might be several reasons why customers place small-sized orders. Sometimes it’s because of unfavorable market conditions, so you should always take that into account before you start re-building your team’s process from scratch.
This is the total amount of money that the sales department brought to the company over a set period of time. Usually, it’s measured year-to-year. The goals here should be realistic and adjusted to the current situation in the company and around the world. If you don’t plan to hire new people for your sales department, their capabilities will be limited and constant growth won’t probably be possible. The same goes for global crises like the pandemic or the recession.
New vs. existing customers ratio
There’s nothing wrong with having a solid base of returning customers that regularly purchase your products or services. However, without new clients, your business will get stagnant. You want your sales team to not only continue the existing deals, but also to provide new prospects and convert them into paying customers. Compare revenue from existing and new clients to find out which category dominates your sales department. Find out if this ratio is in your ideal balance or not. If not, it’s time for a new customer acquisition plan.
You don’t want to keep your customers waiting. That’s why it’s essential to have a short response time. Does it take too long for your sales rep to reach out to their leads? Maybe the process is inefficient, and they have too many tasks to handle aside from talking to potential customers. There can be many factors that can influence this metric, so keep your eyes open and remove any obstacles that prolong it.
Similarly to the above, you also want your employees to send follow-ups at the right time. If it’s too early, it will be annoying for the prospect, but if it’s too late, they might pick someone else. Sales teams usually agree on the perfect amount of time to send follow-ups in their industry, but if your department constantly misses its deadlines, it’s time to react and introduce adequate changes.
Time spent on meetings
It would be harder to measure this if the majority of sales meetings would still happen in person. However, we live in the digital era and salespeople meet with their leads online, for example via Meetsales. We are aware that small talk at the beginning of the video chat is necessary to build strong business relationships. Answering questions and discussing the offer can also take a lot of time. Nevertheless, if the salesperson spends hours on calls with prospects, and they sell nothing, it’s not a good sign. Determining the average time spent on meetings will showcase the effectiveness of your team.
Number of emails/calls
Some sales can be closed with one video call or a few emails. Find out how many emails are sent and calls performed over a certain period of time and analyze how they influence the revenue. Many calls and emails, but no sales? Maybe it’s time to create a new communication strategy that will be more persuasive and client-oriented. Not enough emails and calls with low profits? Motivate your employees to engage more. When using Meetsales, you will be able to compare these statistics for each employee and see who’s performing better.
Drop off rate
If you could get this number and know at what stage the clients usually drop off, that would be the first step towards learning why they quit mid-transaction. It’s one of the key metrics that will help you curate better sales strategies for the upcoming year at your company. It will show you what your team has to improve to become customers’ favorite B2B sellers.
Of course, you can analyze other types of data if you wish. It all depends on your business niche, requirements, current situation, and future plans for your company. With all that, you can try to predict the future and create assumptions for the next month or year. The numbers you will see in reports will influence KPIs, individual goals for each employee, and the collective goals for the entire sales team. Having an intuitive, helpful tool that will help you collect, analyze, and display data is important to do it effectively.
We propose Meetsales as your to-go solution here. It’s your sales team’s best friend in today’s remote-first world, where B2B customers expect professional assistance in their online shopping. It helps to stay focused and productive, while maintaining true relations with each client, just like in the offline era. Our powerful and automated analytics module means that Meetsales becomes the one source of truth for salespeople and their management. What else might you need to close deals successfully and grow revenue? It’s better to have an all-in-one web app than several systems responsible for different tasks. Trusting Meetsales means you get exactly that.
Try our product for free and check out its basic functionalities. After a 14-day trial period, you can ask for a quota, implement the full version of Meetsales in your sales department, and start data analysis to make better decisions within the next few months. Sell more and better with Meetsales!