Sales

6 Sales Team Goals and Metrics

Sales teams have always been very focused on numbers. When other departments were once guided by little more than gut feeling, sales teams and SDRs were obsessed with things like leaderboards, commissions, and revenues.

That shouldn't come as a big surprise. Sales are so intimately tied to revenue that measuring results is vital for a business's survival. As a result, sales quotes or targets have always been a powerful way to motivate SDRs.

As we entered the information age, sales tracking has become more sophisticated. Companies were able to track metrics to measure the performance of:

  • Entire organisations 
  • Sales teams
  • Individual SDR
  • Specific products

But it didn’t stop there. Sales tracking has become more granular, and businesses have turned to data to improve and fine-tune their processes.

Generating all that data can be helpful. But none of it matters if you're not measuring the right things.

Which specific sales tracking metrics you should use to measure your productivity really depends on your company, its goals, and your individual team members.

However, we've selected six metrics that all sales managers will find useful for measuring performance and motivating their teams.

So, let's get into them.

#1. Build group goals that matter to your team

All teams are different, and no work environment is exactly the same. Some goals are non-negotiable, like hitting your sales quota. However, you can design other goals with the input of your team. 

Call a meeting and ask your team what sort of goals they'd like to see set. These objectives can be outside the usual metrics like revenue generated or deals closed.

Use your SDRs' natural competitiveness to drive the new goals. Healthy competition between teams can be really good for motivation. If you don't already have one, consider using an old-style leaderboard to drive greater participation. 

Don't be afraid to have a little fun. Consider mixing in a few goals that don't strictly translate to revenue. For example, you can set an objective like:

  • Most number of cold outreach emails in a day/week
  • Highest number of networking events attended 
  • Biggest call volume

Work with your team to set these goals. Focus on objectives that contribute towards positive outcomes for sales but are a break from the usual metrics you measure.

#2. Work out and communicate monthly goals

If you want to hit your annual sales goals, you must break them down by the month. It's enough time to control for the variance of a "bad week" but still gives you confidence that you’re on track.

If you're a sales manager, you've most likely been given an annual sales target. This figure could be based on:

  • Company or shareholder growth targets 
  • Minimum revenue required to stay operational
  • Historical data
  • Some combination of the above

Whatever it is, you should track your sales on a month-by-month basis.

Now, obviously, you can take your annual target and divide it by the 12 months of the year. That might work as a general rule, but it fails to account for seasonality. 

If you can, use historical data to map the rough proportion of sales for each month, i.e. December brought in 15% of annual revenue, January 7%, etc. From there, you can forecast what to expect from each month.

When your monthly targets are set, you can determine how much each department, team, or SDR needs to sell.

Determine goals for each month and ensure each SDR knows what they need to achieve. But make sure to keep your monthly goals dynamic too. Some products sell well at different points of the year; other times, your business will be launching new products, etc.

Additionally, consider making each SDR target dynamic. If you have a new team member, they might take time to get up to speed. Similarly, historical high performers should have higher targets than the average rep.

Monthly goals are great for motivation. However, don't make them too high or unrealistic, or they might have the opposite effect.

#3. Prioritise your goals

If you're a sales manager, you'll have a lot of goals to track. Some of them will make significant contributions to revenue, while others will have less impact.

You should always try to hit goals that have the most impact first. Then, when you meet these objectives, concentrate on the secondary or sub-goals.

Sequencing goals is also a great way to drive incremental improvements. If you have a junior SDR who is struggling with specific aspects of the job, sequence their goals and prioritise the areas they need to work on.

By prioritising goals, they'll spend more time on the activities where they are weak. This process can help them become more rounded and productive.

When you sequence goals, you should make them dynamic. Set a realistic road map that allows your SDRs to reach their objectives. Then, gradually raise the bar each week or month. Eventually, they should get up to speed with the rest of the team.

#4. Tie goals to incentives

If you want to motivate an SDR to hit a particular sales tracking goal, you should tie it to a specific incentive. What incentive you choose is up to you. However, things like sales commission, a bonus, or in some cases, being allowed to continue working at your organisation are all strong motivators.

A good sales manager should always be prepared to get creative with incentives. Speak to your accounts department and look at the quality of customers your reps are bringing in. 

If your reps are mainly closing deals with low customer lifetime value (CLV), explore the reasons why. 

Are these customers churning after a few months? Or are they sticking around but producing low revenue?

If you feel like your team is making sales that aren't producing reasonable revenue projections, find ways to motivate them to go after customers who will generate revenue over the long term.

Some sales teams pay commissions to teams on the first three to six months of revenue a customer makes. This situation can incentivise SDRs to chase leads that aren't always a great fit for the business long term.

So, get into the data and find out what you need to do to pull your sales team in a particular direction.

#5. Boost morale with waterfall goals

Waterfall project management has been used in software development for a long time. It's a simple way to manage a project because it maps out each phase in sequence. From there, each stage needs to be achieved before moving on to the next step. 

If you're a sales manager, you can borrow some of the principles of waterfall project management and adapt them for your teams.

The idea here is that your team works towards a linear goal. Missing out on objectives can be a morale and motivation killer, but waterfall goals can help you avoid that.

One way to implement waterfall goals is by setting your initial targets at modest and achievable levels. Then, the next phase is unlocked as each SDR meets this low threshold. You can keep raising the bar throughout the year until each rep exceeds their average. 

The beauty of this approach is that the easy early wins give reps momentum. Without the pressure and fear of strict targets, they can realise their potential.

Because each rep is working towards a team goal, each contribution is valuable. If one rep falls behind, another one can plug the gap.

#6. Stretch your team

Stretch goals are an excellent way to motivate high achievers. It goes against the principle of setting easily attainable base targets and instead sets lofty goals that will serve to push an SDR to the limit.

As a sales manager, you need to be really careful with this approach. It can get spectacular results. However, it can also fail spectacularly.

For example, if you have an SDR who is finding it challenging to meet their current quotas already, asking them to go well past that will increase the pressure they are feeling. Some individuals thrive under pressure; others crack and lose confidence. 

Knowing when and when not to use stretch goals requires good judgement and knowledge of your staff. The best time to use this motivational approach is when a team or individual rep is already well on target to meet or exceed their goal. Then you can pull out this method to see if you can push your biggest achievers to the next level.

Conclusion

Sales quotas are a great way to measure the productivity of your sales teams and SDRs. However, they're not the only goals that can motivate teams. To help your reps reach their full potential, explore some less traditional goals setting.

trumpet provides sales teams with microsites where they can perform cold outreach, book meetings, close deals, and onboard users from one centralised platform. Additionally, you can use trumpets exception analytics capabilities to track your key sales metrics and goals. 

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