Sales Audits: Unlocking Your Sales Engine

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Sales Audits: Unlocking Your Sales Engine

What is a Sales Audit?

There are many types of sales audits, typically it’s a process you go through to empirically understand why you are getting the sales results you are, and what you can do to make them better.

Sales Audits are of most benefit when you are looking for growth, investment and to scale as it reduces the risks inherent in any sales growth initiative, and allows for better resource allocation.

Sales audits are also useful if a business is seeing a sales plateau or a dip in sales – diagnosis and critical decision making allow for improvement strategies to be designed, again minimising risk.

The Morton Kyle Sales Insight Audi – feedback from our sales audits is typically around what happens post audit. Senior leaders unanimously agree that the quality of the discussions they can now have with their team members, managers, and the rest of the business based on the information that comes back has allowed them to introduce change with:

  • Greater impact
  • Lower levels of friction and
  • Higher levels of engagement
  • Speedier resolution and payback

Sales Revenue Assessment

Sales Audits can be many things – based on what issue your business is seeking to address.

One of the critical elements of this sales analysis is the revenue assessment – are you looking to answer questions like these:

  • Is my sales function fully optimised?
  • Am I getting the highest possible sustainable revenue from my sales function?
  • Is the sales function leaking sales opportunities, leads and deals?
  • What are those leaks, what are they costing and how do I fix them?
  • Are our sales habits, mindsets, processes helping us or causing friction?
  • Could we do better?

Business Performance Evaluation: Sales Analysis Leads to Better Conversations

Or do you want to engage your whole business along the revenue supply chain and ask questions like:

  • Are we getting the highest possible return from marketing?
  • Do we have a joined-up sales and marketing function?
  • What’s each sales actually costing us, by channel?
  • What marketing channels are working – what should we do more of / ditch?
  • Is our CRM an asset or a dumping ground?
  • What value is wrapped up in the CRM and sales pipeline?
  • How can I get reliable sales forecasts?
  • How can I motivate, engage and empower the sales team?
  • Where are the bad debts coming from?
  • Where are the bulk of our complaints coming from and why?
  • What customers, via what channels, spend the most/most often after 3 years?

Selling is not a one function activity – there is a revenue supply chain that sits through every function in the business, so these conversations are critical. Your sales audit will empower the right data driven conversations with the right people.

Are You Looking for a Sales Performance Review?

You can book your initial consultation by calling Carol on 0779 002 1885.

Let’s explore your current position and address your key concerns – discretion assured – whether you’re at a critical point in your organisations evolution, unsure of where to lead your team towards growth, looking to sell so want to maximise sales, or simply wanting a revenue health check.

We’ll assess where you are versus where you’d like to be, and design a sales audit that will get you there in the best way. Leaving you empowered, fully informed and in control.

Your Sales Performance Review

If you’re still wondering if your business would benefit, then check out the case studies just below.

Are you looking for

  • All the information you need to make critical spend, resource and strategy decisions?
  • Insights in what to do more of and what to ditch?
  • Drive ownership of sales performance across key stakeholders with full visibility and accountability – from the most junior sales rep through to the accompanying sales support functions?
  • Build meaningful sales KPI dashboards?
  • Change the sales culture?
  • Future proof the sales and business functions?
  • Minimise sales leaks that are currently making your competitors stronger?
  • Empower the players in the sales function to manage themselves, their performance and their time?
  • Introduce sales performance management as a positive as part of Continuous Sales Improvement?
  • Highlight positive and negative trends before they happen, so you get time to react and avoid?
  • Improve the quality of boardroom / investor / bank conversations by having the sales management information you need to have detailed sales strategy discussions with real time evidence?
  • The ultimate sales sat nav to guide you through whatever stage you’re in – consolidation, growth, boot-strap, rapid scaling?
  • The power to accurately forecast, building credibility and stability?
  • The confidence to make fully informed decisions?

You can get more details on our Morton Kyle Sales Insight Page, or you can call Carol on 0779 002 1885 to book your confidential consultation.

How You, Your Team and Your Business Benefit from a Revenue Assessment and Sales Performance Review?

Sales Audits come in many sizes and shapes depending on your circumstances and what it is you’re looking to achieve.

But this is critical – if you’re serious about managing sales growth, building an environment for sales success and cultivating a continuous sales improvement culture then there are a few fundamentals that signal success:

  • There is a ‘one-truth’ around data – everyone must look at the same data and have it mean the same thing!
  • Metrics – need to be evident
  • Measurement – needs to be easy, real time, accessible to all, transparent
  • Goals – needs to be defined – as does red alert and time to celebrate

Your sales audit will have these success pillars built in – leaving you in control, informed and with a clear roadmap to your desired destination.

Along the way, most sales audits typically uncover easy wins that if you don’t exploit then your competitors will!

Sales Analysis and Revenue Assessment Case Studies

Here’s two case study examples to show you why sales audits are so valuable, and how things could have worked out much differently had the business owners gone with their knee jerk reactions…

Sales Audit for Sales Decline – Case Study 1:

Client was looking at the new business team in a buoyant but finite market and seeing a 9 month sales plateau starting to take a sharp downward slide.

Their knee-jerk options:

  • Invest in training
  • Start performance management
  • Increase coaching
  • Talk to customers
  • Enhance/change the product
  • Fire the sales manager
  • Up the marketing spend
  • Fire the sales team
  • Ditch the market and concentrate in another vertical

Or, any or all of the above…what’s the solution?

Now – what’s the BEST solution?

On further exploration, the sales pipeline audit took me 4 days, I discovered the cause of the drop in sales revenue was a change in strategy.

A change that had been employed about 14 months ago in the business.

Quite simply, the sales pipeline audit showed that 14 months ago the business has eschewed all manner of account management and moved their whole focus into new business development.

This was a great idea. Their vertical was soft, the competitors were know, their market was finite, so it was simply about coverage. Their decision to go all in on building their sales footprint was valid.

The execution was flawed. Taking their focus from account management was a mistake. Focusing too hard on recruiting customers, onboarding, then failing to service their needs, build value and connection, meant new customer just didn’t get the resource or attention they needed.

Contracts didn’t get renewed. Ouch

Even worst – word had spread – ‘ customers were talking, word was spreading, the general vibe was ‘the upfront pitch was great, but once you’re signed in no-one cares’….

How about that for a sales killer?

So, in a nut shell, bigger focus on new business development caused sales to peak then plateau then drop through the floor? Yes!

It turns out, the real problem was nothing to do with the new business development, the team, the function, the price, the product, the market, the business or the vertical.

Changing the Account Management function and giving it the support, resource and attention it needed fixed the hole, eventually.

Now compare that solution to the list of solutions they could have employed?

See how easy it is to dive off in the wrong direction when the sales results don’t come in as expected?

It’s the wrong time to be making the wrong decision!

The Sales Performance Review and Analysis Uncovered the Real Problem.

That real problem had everything to do with the vibe that was now going around in their vertical market that said ”this company is great at the up front sell, BUT, once you’ve signed, you’ll never hear from them again, and, heaven forbid if you do have a problem, it’ll take you months to get a response, if you are lucky enough to get a response that is”

By diverting extra resources back to the account management team. By ensuring a strong and immediate account management and customer retention strategy, the new business team started to see an immediate lift in their sales conversion.

4 days and 1 Sales Audit saved that company in that vertical market.

Sales Performance Review and Audit – The Sales Team Can’t Close – Case Study 2.

Division failing badly, average order price sinking fast, conversion rate running at 1:25. The division was being propped up by other more profitable trading divisions by things were getting worse not better as time went on.

Again – large potential market, highly competitive but very buoyant, nowhere near saturation.

But 1:25 conversion from meeting to order was killing the business.

Their knee-jerk options:

  • Fire the sales team and start again.
  • Cancel the external sales function and rely simply on a telesales team.
  • Shut the division
  • Focus all efforts on account retention and growth.
  • Outsource the whole sales function.
  • Franchise the business and simply become a HQ function.

Either way something had to change.

A three day Sales Performance Audit came to several crucial conclusions:
  • Competitors we making the same mistakes as this company…so it really was a race to the bottom
  • This was good because the noise in the mid market was low compared to the bottom of the market
  • The division wasn’t selling what the prospects needed…although they could have – big disconnect
  • The division wasn’t selling what they thought they were selling…no-one had unpacked the benefits
  • The average order value of the competitor that was succeeding and doing very well was 7x that of the division in trouble (again – mid market gap – very positive)
  • It was a very crowded market of failing ‘me-too’ competitors
  • Every competitor was trying to serve every vertical
  • Every competitor was doing a ‘hit and run’ sale

Knowing all of this and employing some highly practical selling solutions mean that neither the product nor the routes/channels to market changed. So, there was zero investment needed to make this team a success, help them to close and build a bigger and higher converting sales pipeline.

Instead by changing the vertical, extending the sales presentation by 1 stage, and by employing a higher level and more robust ROI demonstration during the sales process, we got the sales results we needed.

All resulted in a 4x increase in average order value and a 1:6 close rate instead of a 1:25 over 4 months.

Summary: Sales Audits Help You Unblock Sales Issues Fast!

So, in the examples above you can see how the findings in the sales audits made a positive, meaningful, timely, low cost and low risk impact by identifying the key cause of the sales dip, and providing much better solutions than the knee jerk reaction options.

And there are plenty more examples of how intensive Sales Audits can dramatically change the fortunes of a sales division.

For example – had we dismissed the Sales Audit all together and taken some or any of the actions outlined in the first case study above, the client’s sales performance in that vertical would have nosedived still further, even faster…and still with no clue about how to improve it.

In the second case study…simply training the sales staff would have brought about marginal improvements in the short term, would have minimised the growth potential and most definitely would have seen the sales division closed within 6 months.

Solving the immediate problem is one thing.

Identifying the true cause of that sales performance is another.

Avoiding the knee jerk/quick work around reaction that can pile one problem on top of another.

That’s where Sales Audits really comes into their own. They are invaluable in saving time, money and other valuable resources. like goodwill, employee engagement and brand reputation.

Scoping the cause of the problem and not just the symptoms displayed by the problem is a must to prevent you from doing more harm than good. You can send results spiralling out of control, waste precious time and money as well as driving you insane in the process.

When you’re dealing in high risk situations, where the cost of getting it wrong is huge, where you’re against the clock, and money is flowing in the opposite direction to you…shouldn’t you take a deep dive into causes before looking at solutions?

To discuss any aspect of the Sales Audit, contact Carol on 0779 002 1885

Sales Audits can be conducted in as little as 3 days and feedback provided within a further 7 days.

When you’re business isn’t getting the sales results you want, need and deserve, time is of the essence so let’s start talking soon

Carol

0779 002 1885

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