The Essential Guide to Sales Pipeline Management
Sales pipeline management is the systematic process of tracking sales activities and forecasting revenue throughout the sales cycle. Managing your sales pipeline effectively allows you to gain visibility into ongoing discussions, hold your sales reps accountable, and maintain more control over the complete sales process.
When it comes down to it, buyers control the sales conversation in today’s world. They no longer rely on salespeople for making informed purchase decisions because everything they need to know about a product or service is easily available online. They can easily do their own research and develop their shortlist of solutions before ever speaking to a sales rep.
It’s true now more than ever: buyers are liars.
Buyers don’t want to be “sold to” in their search for unbiased product information. So they often withhold details about how much homework they’ve done on their own, about their current situation, or about their past success with no solution in place. Withholding this sort of insight is how they maintain control in the sales process.
But with a solid system in place for managing your sales pipeline, you can take back some of that power.
A highly organized and methodical pipeline gives you more visibility into the things you need to know about your prospects before closing a deal. By mastering sales pipeline management, you’ll be able to:
- Understand individual prospects’ level of interest and probability of purchasing
- Recognize buyer needs and goals that can ultimately be leveraged for closing
- Productively keep the conversation moving forward in each stage of the sales cycle
It starts with defining your stages between prospect and customer, the different buckets your buyers fall into as they progress through the pipeline. A consistent, data-driven approach to managing these pipeline stages helps you optimize your salespeople’s time. Your reps can focus on the prospects who are serious about solving their challenges with your solution.
Organizations with effective pipeline management see 15% higher revenue growth on average than those without, according to a study by Harvard Business Review. Sales pipeline management can be your secret weapon for skyrocketing revenue if you’ve got the right process in place.
EBQ and EBQ’s clients have experienced this first hand. Thanks to our systematic sales process, our sales team and the sales teams of clients we work with can accurately predict revenue, prioritize their most promising prospects, and allot special attention to accounts that need it — all of which leads to increased revenue and business growth.
Keep reading The Essential Guide to Sales Pipeline Management to learn our comprehensive approach to managing the pipeline, forecasting revenue, and closing more deals.