Selling without a sales plan is like traveling without an itinerary, you do not know where you want to go and what you want to do.
You end up wasting your time, money and resources.
Planning and strategizing are the two prerequisites to stay on track.
For instance, when you are exhibiting at a tradeshow, you cannot just go and stand behind a booth without any preparation.
You will have to plan and build strategies before the exhibition, to attract traffic to your booth.
Which includes –
Similarly, to succeed in sales, you need to develop the route to success with a ‘Sales plan’.
Creating a sales plan appears as a daunting task, but it is worth the efforts.
“Every minute you spend in planning saves you 10 minutes in execution; this gives you a 1000 percent return on energy”- Brian Tracy
Moreover, with a sales template, you can quickly create your sales plan.
To help you, below I have created a sales plan template and provided few samples that you can refer while creating your sales plan.
Before getting to the templates, let’s drill deeper into the concept of sales plan and understand its importance.
“Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of plan, in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act. There is no other route to success”- Pablo Picasso
The sales plan is an approach to selling that helps in setting objectives and determining strategies to achieve them.
It contains the evaluation of the past sales and prepares you to achieve better sales results in the future.
Sales plan aids in identifying new sales market, acquaints everyone with their responsibilities and helps in creating a timeline to reach the milestone.
Success cannot be achieved with random actions; you need a strategic sales plan to move in the right direction.
Below is a sales plan template that will help you in understanding the points that you need to include in your sales plan.
“Setting goals is the first step in turning the invisible into the visible”- Tony Robbins
Here you need to define the goals for your sales team that they need to achieve in a stipulated time frame.
A clear objective helps in keeping your sales team focused.
For example – A digital printing machinery company intend to increase their market share.
For this, they will have to tap into the new geographic market to increase their visibility.
So, tapping into a new market becomes their sales planning objective.
The goals you set, need to be realistic. You can’t expect a sales rep to close ten deals in one month.
When 10%–20% of salespeople miss goals, the problem might be the salespeople.
But when most salespeople miss, the problem is their goals.
Only when the objective is clear, you can create the plan of action to achieve it.
In this section, you need to assess your past as well as current sales performance and identify the obstacles that are hindering your growth.
Try to understand what’s not working and where do you need to put in extra efforts.
Only when you are aware of your problems, you will be able to search for a solution to resolve it.
Using various reporting tools, find out answers to various questions like:
Once you answer these question, you need to ponder over the reasons for the areas where you couldn’t perform well.
Example: If your sales pipeline had 15 deals but you could convert only six deals, then try to find out the reason for losing nine deals.
Focus on identifying your target audience, communicating an authentic message that they want and need and project yourself as an “expert” within your niche- Kim Garst
In this section, you need to identify your ideal customer.
Conduct thorough research to find the right target audience who can invest in your product.
Knowing whom to approach and whom to ignore, can help in saving your precious time.
For this, you can ponder over your current customer base to find answers to various questions like –
Now that you know the objectives and target audience, it is time to create a list of prospects to test your theories.
It is time-saving to have a well-structured list of companies that can leverage the benefits of your product.
Coordinate with your marketing team and prioritize your prospects based on the following criteria-
If you are a startup without a marketing department then with the aid of the ideal customer profile you can find your potential prospects by –
Research thoroughly and prioritize your prospect list according to the points mentioned above to drive your sales plan.
Here you need to find out the sales tools you will require to ease your work and fuel your sales performance.
Below are few of the sales tools that can increase productivity and support the efforts of your sales team.
Salesmate – It is a top-notch sales tool, that aids in efficiently managing your sales and provides vital insights into crucial information to take important sales decisions.
Ringcentral – It is a cloud-based communication system, that is accessible from any device and is compatible with various other applications.
Basecamp – With this project management tool, you can assign and track activities to ensure the projects are completed on time.
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You have a destination in the form of an objective.
Now you have to create a path to reach there.
Find out what do you need to do to fulfill your objectives.
It is good to have an end to journey toward; but it is the journey that matter, in the end. – Ursula K. Le Guin.
Example – You set an objective to lose 4 pounds in next 30 days.
So, for that, you create an action plan that you will –
Here are some points you need to consider while creating your sales action plan –
Set a budget by estimating expenses that will come across your way on the journey to achieve your sales goals.
That includes salary package of your sales team, cost of incentives, travel expenses, monthly subscription cost of a CRM tool, cost of mobile phone and many more.
Conduct a cost-benefit analysis, to avoid performing any unprofitable actions.
Ensure that the benefits you receive from the actions are greater than the cost.
Your job doesn’t end by merely creating a perfect sales plan.
You need to implement it and measure its progress regularly to achieve your desired results.
Jason Fried rightly said, “A plan is just a guess you wrote down”.
Track your sales records to check if your sales plan is reaping fruitful results.
Analyzing your sales records will help in understanding what’s working and which areas need your attention.
Conduct regular meetings with your sales team to review progress and address issues that have been affecting their sales performance.
Consider the mistakes, work on it and make adjustments in the sales plan accordingly to improve futures sales results.
A perfect sales plan can help you in drumming up sales and positively impact the bottom line of your business.
So, exploring and implementing best practices is the paramount to your sales success.
Below are the best sales plan practices that you can follow to achieve better results:
Diversify your sales plan across a variety of platforms to test your strategies across multiple channels and learn as much as possible.
Besides, it also spreads the risk if at all one fails.
You might have a solid sales plan, but it is pointless if your sales team is not aware about it.
To increases your sales revenue, you need to ensure that your sales team understands the sales plan and follow it stringently.
There are certain deals that don’t move forward no matter what you do.
It is high time to bid goodbye to such prospects by removing them from your sales plan to make space and time for high potential deals.
Don’t ignore your sales plan as it can guide you in your endeavor to increase your sales.
Follow and update it regularly.
Moreover, implementing sales plan gets easier with the aid of a CRM, that helps in streamlining sales data, tracking activities and managing deals to function efficiently.
Devoting a little time in sales planning can guide your sales team and aid in foreseeing potential risk at the right time before it affects your business growth.
Sales planning is necessary to work in a systemized way without losing your focus.
It keeps you on-track and helps you in closing more deals for increasing your profit margins.
We hope the above sales templates will help you in creating your sales plan.
However, if you think you want to develop it without any aid then here are some tips that can be beneficial-
Once you plan your sales, you will require an advanced tool like Salesmate for executing it successfully.
Salesmate is an all-in-one sales solution that helps you in managing your sales process.
Every detail related to your deal is systematically organized in a centralized location to access it whenever you need easily.
With this smart sales tool, you can easily analyze your past performance and even predict future opportunities.
It allows you to automate most of your time-consuming task like assigning tasks and sending introductory emails so that you can dedicate more time to selling.
It also allows you to track your emails and even save sales email templates to reuse in future.
It even gives you the flexibility to integrate with multiple applications like Google Doc, Mailchimp, and Slack to work seamlessly.
Need to know more about the features of this high-end sales tool?
Get in touch with our team they will guide you.
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