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Sales performance gaps

Taking the time to identify, address, and close performance gaps will strengthen your sales reps skills

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Sales performance is all about measuring the effectiveness of your sales team over a period of time, compared with predefined sales goals and business objectives.

When you start tracking the performance of your sales reps, you’ll realize a common pattern: some reps are top performers while others have struggled with improving their productivity. The former continuously achieve their sales goals, and the latter has difficulty following the lead. That’s a sales performance gap you should pay attention to from the get-go.

So what is a sales performance gap? How do you quickly identify the gap and tackle it successfully? Let’s find out the answers in this article.

What is Sales Performance Gap?

A sales performance gap is simply the gap between high-performing sales reps and low-performing ones.

This gap can exist in every sales organization, regardless of the business size and industry. Even if you always try to bring the best out of your sales reps, there are always just a few of them that generate most of your sales (think: 80/20 rule).

Gap Analysis in Sales

The sooner you discover a gap in your sales team, the better. Take these steps to do that:

1. Track All Sales Activities

The first and foremost step is to track all of your sales activities, including researching prospects, qualifying leads, setting appointments, and negotiating deals. This can be done automatically with tools like Revenue Grid.

By doing this, you can understand what your sales reps are doing on a daily basis, whether they’re following the sales guidelines, and who might need help.

2. Look at Sales Reports

Sales performance platforms provide insightful reports on your sales outcome, sales pipelines, and sales activities. So when you conduct a gap analysis, it’s important to review these sales reports and find out how your team is performing over time.

For example, sales pipeline reports show the number of deals in each rep’s pipeline, the value of their deals, how many deals they’ve closed and lost, how long it takes them to turn a lead into a sale, and more. When you know why a rep fails to perform well, you can come up with a potential solution to help them improve their performance.

3. Talk to Your Sales Reps

Once you identify underperformers, the next step is to sit down and talk to them. You can do this in a pipeline review meeting or set up separate meetings for each sales rep.

When talking to your rep, you can ask questions like, “how do you acquire and qualify leads?” “what do you think about your performance, compared with your colleagues?” etc. It’s also helpful to listen to their sales call, watch them give a sales demo, and review their conversations with leads.

Some typical reasons for sales performance gaps are skill deficiencies, lack of product knowledge, or not understanding how to take action from the insights.

Tips for Closing Sales Performance Gaps

Once you find the gaps, it’s time to close them. Here are some tips to guide your actions:

1. Set Expectations for Each Sales Rep

Every sales rep has a different skill set. That’s why you should align your expectations with each rep’s capabilities to ensure everyone can achieve their target.

Be clear about what they’ll be doing to accomplish the goals in a given time frame and develop a method to measure their progress. Also, a rule of thumb is underperformers shouldn’t be assigned the same goals as top performers.

2. Focus On Proper Training and Coaching

One of the common reasons for sales performance gaps is poor coaching and training. Sales leaders don’t spend enough time helping reps get to know sales processes and technologies. Or they don’t provide a road map for reaching sales goals; hence sales reps just go in whatever direction they can think of. The end result is some will hit their numbers, and some won’t.

As a sales leader, you can’t afford to ignore sales training and coaching as it’s the key to closing sales performance gaps.

3. Invest in the Right Sales Technology

Giving sales reps more tools doesn’t mean they’ll work more effectively. The truth is if your reps have to switch back and forth between disconnected apps, they might not have much time to focus on communicating with leads and closing deals. That’s why it’s best to invest in a seamless, scalable revenue intelligence platform like Revenue Grid.

Revenue Grid gives your sales team everything they need to do their jobs — including CRM and email integration, sales pipeline visibility, sales automation, revenue signals, deal guidance, team analytics, and sales forecasting — all in one place. Everyone in your sales team has the same access to all data and insights that enable them to sell better.

Once you integrate Revenue Grid into your system, you can get a holistic picture of your sales team’s performance. You can see how each rep is performing against sales goals in order to set better expectations for them and help them improve productivity. All-access visibility means you can provide timely feedback and coaching and take the right actions to close performance gaps.

Close your sales performance gaps with Revenue Grid

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    Report by Forrester: Revenue
    Operations and Intelligence


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      Core UX Writer at Booking.com

      Lavender Nguyen is a Freelance Content Writer focusing on writing well-researched, data-driven content for B2B commerce, retail, marketing, and SaaS companies. Also known as an Email Marketing Specialist, she helps ecommerce B2C brands develop high-converting, customer-focused email strategies.