Increasing Revenue – Using The Sales Funnel
One of the Drivers of Profitability is finding ways to increase Revenue (often referred to as Turnover, or Income, or Sales). It is possible to increase sales by understanding and improving the sales process that exists within your business. When I refer to your sales process, I am referring to the process that starts with Marketing or Prospecting activities, and ultimately leads to a customer making a decision to buy your product or service – and all the stages along the way. This is sometimes referred to as a Sales Funnel.
It is called a Sales Funnel because of the simple realisation that not everyone is going to buy our product or service. We talk to many, many more people in the marketing stage than the number that ultimately end up becoming customers. Hence the analogy of a funnel – wide at the top, narrow at the bottom.
A Generic Sales Process Diagram and Funnel Description can be downloaded here.
Having a defined and consistent sales process will improve sales performance, leading to more sales. It also allows you to monitor and potentially improve performance at each step. For example, you might measure “percentages” of how many people progress from stage to stage (or overall), and consider how that can be improved along the way. Remember, small changes can produce large results!
These “percentages” are useful in another way too. If you are trying to meet specific sales targets, and you know your percentages, you can use this information to “reverse engineer” how big a pool of prospective customers you will need to have to find enough customers to meet your sales targets. Then all you need to do is fill your funnel with the right number prospective customers. It sounds easy – and really, it is! It just requires hard work, focus and determination (and adequate resources).
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