Sales Goals: 35 Tips for Setting & Achieving Sales Performance Goals in 2021
- by Elay Cohen
- September 9, 2020
SalesHood - Sales Enablement Platform
As sellers we aim to exceed our hopes and dreams and make each year the best year ever in our careers.
With 2020 almost behind us, have you started thinking about 2021 yet? Do you have clarity on your 2021 goals? Have you started to write them down? What’s most important to you and your business, right now, in these times? It’s a good time to start getting ahead and thinking about your 2021 plans.
The SalesHood community is full of motivated sales professionals determined to crush their numbers and make 2021 the best year of their sales careers. Inside The Hood our community collaborates and gets dialogue going about our goals and the most effective ways to reach them.
Below is a curated list of sales goals crowdsourced from the SalesHood community.
These are all areas that our community of highly skilled, motivated professionals focused on hitting their sales goals have been talking about for 2021.
All the sales goals you set as an enterprise will be the backbone for strategic marketing, team, sales decisions and in turn lead sales growth. Having clear sales goals will boost your sales department’s success because:
When setting sales goals for your sales department, make sure to set lofty sales goals. If a goal is too conservative – is it really a goal?
What’s your current goal? What’s that number you are thinking?
Got it? Good. Now double or triple that.
Now that you have some real, challenging goals set – it’s critical to break these goals down into strategic sales goals and sales action plans that will help you improve sales KPIs. Breaking sales goals down into tasks focused on how to achieve them is critical.
As we look ahead at 2021, we ask ourselves, what’s most important to focus on and execute? What do we have to be great at? How should we engage with buyers, virtually? What should we say? What should we do before, during and after our remote meetings? How should we show up virtually?
Sip some coffee, read on and learn more about some tips to achieve your sales goals for 2021. Take some notes and feel free to tailor these goals to your sales process and buyer’s journey.
It’s important to learn and practice the skills needed to master selling virtually. We need to make sure our remote work environments are professional. We need to be up to speed on the latest online selling tools. We also need to up our game on we effectively conduct remote sales and customer meetings.
Meeting-less selling is a concept that we need to embrace and use at every step of the sales process and the buyer’s journey. The one who “wows” buyers with your virtual selling expertise. Learn more about mastering remote here by taking this free course by Winning by Design.
LinkedIn is a social network for professionals – employers, employees, buyers, consumers, etc. It is the best place to meet prospective business partners or customers quickly. As a salesperson, you can use LinkedIn to connect the dots with influencers, stakeholders, and decision-makers pre and post meetings. Forget all the SPAM and focus on the value LinkedIn will have on helping you achieve your goals.
LinkedIn is invaluable. It helps us with:
LinkedIn Sales Navigator is one of the most important sales tools that enables sellers to research company size, revenue, team and get to know a company and their personnel before ever sending an email, making it super easy to find and qualify potential leads, in addition to building a casual relationship over time. LinkedIn! LinkedIn! LinkedIn
Thoughtfulness is not a trend or gimmick. It makes the business more meaningful. As much as you can, treat everyone—from researching buyers, companies, employees, and competitors carefully and share prospecting insights respectfully. A thoughtful approach to marketing and sales makes customers feel more like people and less like prospective money bags.
Open-ended questions are a part of active listening – when you ask questions that require more than a yes or no answer to get more information from a client it gives customers room to share their concerns about their challenges, your products, and it also creates an opportunity to pitch since it sets a conversational tone. Master asking questions with Selling Through Curiosity.
Most salespeople ask yes or no questions to avoid the inconvenience of ambiguous answers.
Become more comfortable asking open-ended questions by writing down your discovery strategy, soliciting feedback from peers, and most importantly – practicing.
Active listening skills are a pivotal part of problem-solving. If your sales team or customer service executives do not take part in active listening, most of your customers will not have a reason to return. One benefit of active listening is that you can generate new ideas for products by listening to your customers. Some practical listening tips are:
Most of these listening skills coincide with appropriate customer service etiquette, but are also cues of a caring, problem-solver – it makes a salesperson better and, in turn, can help lead to the achievement of your sales goals for 2021.
Be an active listener and curious problem solver by uncovering, validating, and quantifying business issues and customer-compelling events.
Irrespective of your product or service, value communication is challenging. An example is when you are selling a product that needs a bit of explaining to understand its uniqueness (for example, sales enablement software). Your sales goal in value communication needs to revolve around illustrating the unique properties of the software concisely.
If your sales staff are already practicing proper value communication, then kudos. Otherwise, you will should look at teaching your teams how to focus on value communications. You can learn more about Selling Through Curiosity.
If sales managers and coaches are effective, they can get better results from their team. If coaches can understand their team, coordinate the team, get collaboration and feedback going, share from their experience – the sales team will thrive under them. Feedback, huddles and consistent communication as a team will exponentially increase revenue outcomes.
Coaches should challenge sales executives to think differently and more significant about their businesses by providing value-adding insights and proof points.
Like salespeople, a good coach should take the same approach for their team to listen, make diagnoses, and solve problems with proper actions. Implementing sales enablement software will help the entire sales process from A to Z – from onboarding, to pitch practice to sales huddles and win stories – and have the whole team working together off of one master, high performing set of product information.
Not all sales processes are efficient or effective, so as a sales manager, you need to develop techniques that work for your team. You being the sales leader in charge of most of the strategic planning, can spend more time developing and doing things that lead to a maximum impact for your team on the long term. The time you spend creating ideas that cause the most results will give your team material to carry out efficient sales processes. It’s also important to spend time updating your sales process to ensure it is optimized for virtual selling.
As a sales department with a deadline to meet, the temptation to continually pitch products to customers never fades. However, helpful, problem solving content and conversations will always improve the possibility for sales. Instead of often giving product pitches during emails and other communication media, engage prospects to try and solve their problems.
As sales leaders, we always worry our team isn’t doing enough to hit the sales target. “Not doing enough” falls directly on you – the sales team leaders – shoulders. “Not doing enough” however frequently isn’t a lack of effort or lack of talent. Lack of productivity can often be blamed on a few things:
One of the best solutions to implement in improving team wide productivity is implementing a Sales Enablement program.
Sales enablement aligns people, processes, and priorities, while strengthening team communication via frequent sales huddle meetings and helps inexperienced and less skilled sellers learn from the best sellers on the team. Empower your team with the information they need to sell effectively.
An important attribute that makes an excellent sales person is the ability to identify assets and exploit them maximally, applying them to your customers needs.
Your Unique Selling Position (USP) is what makes your business different from your competitors. A part of your sales productivity timeline targeting should be identifying your USP in clear terms and creating a sales process that allows you to highlight your Unique Selling Position to potential customers. .
If you cannot give a clear, concise, and compelling answer to the question “what’s your Unique Selling Position?” then you haven’t figured it out yet.
If you figure out your USP, you can emphasize it in your marketing and selling your product and telling buyers why your product is what they need. Even if you have the same product or service as another company, you can have different USPs and attract customers better fit for each USP.
Make sure to Validate Deals and have mutually agreed with customer success plans, aka close plans, written in customer’s language, validated early and often.
Don’t wait to go too far into a business commitment before validating deals. Also, ensure that everyone clearly states their expectations, prices and budgets.
Avoid negotiating late in the sales process and also avoid negotiating with the wrong people. Early negotiation will help avoid becoming entangled in the project without a way out or with a costly way out. Initial talks will go a long way in helping you save money and achieve your set market goals.
When you start applying proper means to target sales, there is no doubt that you will begin to win more of the market share. The tide of sales will shift from your competitors and give you a larger market share and more room for sales. To achieve more shares in the market, you will need to stretch the goals you set and go beyond them per day.
Meticulous account management is an example of a way to increase customer retention and maintain or increase total revenue. With account management, the success equation is quite simple: stay top of mind, stay asking questions, stay reporting wins, stay solving problems. Keep your current customers happy and willing to spend, satisfied customers make great references, and are a pipeline to new business.
Some sales team leaders and sales people often forget to communicate details of a meeting and the purpose of the meeting. Send meeting-agenda confirmations and start customer meetings with a clear purpose and expected outcomes and roles. Make sure that every meeting has clear, actionable takeaways. It does a lot. Learn more about managing virtual stakeholder meetings here.
Following up meetings immediately with customer’s notes, assignments, and plan of actions conveys that the customer’s needs are top of the seller’s priority. If you discussed an action plan, follow up on it and send updates to your customer. Afterward, create a sense of urgency with each detail.
Sending out customer meeting summary notes immediately, validating what you heard and qualifying the next steps serve as a reminder to the customers of what was discussed during each meeting, action plan, and the reminders for idea implementations make the action items clear and adds a level of urgency. Customers love to know you are working for them and most importantly – are clear about their needs.
The time it takes each deal to go from initial contact to final closing varies and depends on your pipeline, sales cycle, deal value, and other factors. If you want a better chance of hitting your sales targets, pay attention to the customers you already have – nurture them, make them feel valued. Up-sells and cross sells across departments add up in B2B Sales.
New sales are sexy. However spending too much time on hypothetical potential customers that are yet to commit, and neglecting your long-standing customers is a common hiccup sales people make. You need to create new avenues for sales, but don’t neglect your existing customers. Remain top of mind.
Uncover and validate customer-compelling events with power before forecasting deals as committed. Focus on the customer’s timeline rather than yours. When dealing with customers, set your goal aside and focus on theirs to help them achieve their solution.
Don’t get defensive when customers object. Learn more by replying with thought-provoking and curious “why” questions. Defensive tones have never helped any sales team win deals.
Make customer stories and references shared with customers relevant, emotional, and quantifiable. One way people that don’t know you judge your business is through your customer references and reviews. An excellent review with details similar to a prospects needs helps a prospective buyer become a customer.
Don’t beat your competition—plant traps as questions mapping competitive weaknesses to customer’s stated business priorities and needs. When you aim to be better, trampling on others makes you appear weak, so do not go for the more vulnerable standpoint. To get the upper hand in marketing, you can spend time researching you and your competitor’s product to ask questions that lead toward the benefits your software has over theirs.
Close with class. Send handwritten “thank you” cards to customers. Gratitude is a trait everyone appreciates. Making it more personal with a written note makes your appreciation more sincere and appreciated. Most people just send out emails and ask for reviews, but you can be different and send a card. The post office is still functional – use it! Ask your customers for their preferred mailing address since they are working from home and probably not in the office these days.
Revenue goals are targets that lead to performance and strategies that improve the gross profit of a company. As your enterprise grows, revenue targets will grow. Revenue targets need to have its center in areas of business growth. For example, your revenue target has to orbit around sales that will boost your business growth.
You need to consider your sales profit margins and support your targets by marketing plan information. Lastly, you should keep all your business costs in mind since they affect your final revenue. Here are four steps to setting and achieving your revenue goal:
Weekly goals are a bunch of targets you can set as a team leader per week to meet their annual goals at the end of the year. A week has seven days, so setting sales targets per week will give your team ample room to make daily changes that affect the overall long term result you get.
After setting annual goals, it is easy to get sidetracked when you do not break down these goals into attainable smaller ones.
For a team to be successful, the team leader sets goals quarterly or monthly, and each member contributes to the success. Quarterly goals are the perfect way for any sales manager and team member to review their team sales calls and rates in line with the team goals. By analyzing sales revenue every quarter, a team leader can raise awareness in their team. Quarterly goals give the team leader a criterion or pedestal to monitor efficiency every quarter.
SMART sales goals are Specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. To know how to set SMART goals, you have to understand how they work by observing examples. Some examples of SMART sales goals are:
Activity goals or sales activities measure the activity of each sales rep. It is entirely up to each representative to meet the metrics. When a sales manager sets activity goals, it puts the representatives on the right track to achieving quarterly goals, monthly goals, weekly goals, daily goals, and annual goals. On a manager’s side, they can implement activity goals with consistent huddles (daily or weekly) to track progress.
Annual revenue indicates the total money made from all of the sales from the previous year before taking out expenses and costs. The sales targets for annual revenue is to aim for specific improved numbers from the last fiscal year by following some of these plans:
The bottom line is that every aspect of life – you need to set goals. Setting goals and breaking them down into smaller goals ensures success, and your business is not an exemption.
Here are five helpful steps on how to come up with your Sales Action Plan:
The overriding theme for 2021 seems to be a “back to basics” approach in sales.
It’s time to solve big problems for our customers. It’s time to make sure every communication is purposeful and prosperous with insights. It’s time to make sure curiosity is reborn as a core sales skill and a sales process driver. It’s time to focus on purpose, curiosity, and insights. It’s time to bring even more value to every customer conversation, and to turn our sales profession into a sales practice with daily exercises, connections, and mindfulness.
Are you clear yet?
Work with your team, let us create an even better one together.
Let’s make 2021 the year we sharpen and refresh our skills. Let’s make 2021 the year we connect with our buyers and our teams to achieve greatness. Let’s make 2021 the year we are mindful of our sales legacy.
Cheers and have a fantastic sales experience this year and in 2021.
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