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The Ultimate Guide to Sales Performance Evaluation
Wednesday, November 16, 2022

The Ultimate Guide to Sales Performance Evaluation

Bowen Moody

CEO and Co-Founder, Wonderway
The Ultimate Guide to Sales Performance Evaluation

Measuring sales performance is essential, but it's not always as simple as looking at the sales efficiency formula. If your revenue is increasing, that's great, but you can't stop there. 

It's also important to look at other sales metrics, such as the average value of each sale, the number of new customers, and the number of repeat customers. To fully understand the performance of your sales team, you need to implement a sales performance evaluation strategy. 

In this article, we will share vital information on sales performance evaluation, mention important KPIs you need to monitor regularly, and explain how to conduct a successful sales performance evaluation to promote further growth of your sales team.

We will also show you how to use Wonderway, our sales performance platform, to deliver the proper training to the right person at the right time and boost win rates and efficiency. Book a demo to learn more about Wonderway.

Let's begin with the essentials of sales performance evaluation for sales professionals.

What is sales performance evaluation?

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Sales evaluation is essential for any business that relies on sales to generate revenue. By analyzing your sales team's performance, you can identify areas where they excel or need improvement. 

When done correctly, sales evaluation can be a powerful tool for driving your business forward, ensuring your company is as efficient and effective as possible.

What are the objectives of a sales performance evaluation?

Sales evaluation is key to understanding what works well in your sales process and what bottlenecks may hinder your results. 

By identifying top performers in your team and assessing areas of improvement, you can optimize your sales process to drive more sales and boost your revenue.

What are the root causes of poor sales performance?

While every company is distinct, some common root causes lead to significant sales reps performance drops:

  • Inadequate training: instead of blaming sales reps immediately, take a step back, and reconsider further training. Plenty of good sales training ideas will keep things interesting and fresh while ensuring your sales reps stay sharp and on point.
  • Lack of motivation: if your sales reps are well-trained and skilled, ensure they have the right motivation to push and close sales. Increasing bonuses after hitting certain thresholds are always a good idea. But make those targets realistic – setting the bar too high will demotivate the team even further.
  • Poor leadership: sometimes, the team leader isn't up for the task. If that is the case, move them to another team or reconsider their bonuses – maybe they need further motivation to get going.
  • Sales reps issues: while blaming a sales rep should be the last step, sometimes the root cause lies within a small number of teammates or even a single person. This can be due to their behavior, attitude, unfixable lack of motivation, or inadequate sales qualities. If that is the case, you can either move them to another position or progress toward terminating their contract.

What are the consequences of poor sales performance?

Sales performance is a crucial indicator of a company's health and growth potential. Poor sales performance can waste resources and lead to stagnation or revenue declines. It can prevent a company from achieving its full growth potential.

Improving sales performance is essential for any business that wants to grow and prosper. You can improve your sales performance and achieve your goals by optimizing sales processes, training sales staff, and providing proper motivation.

Who is responsible for the performance of a sales team?

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Sales managers play a vital role in ensuring their team members perform well and achieve their targets. However, sales performance is also the responsibility of each sales representative.

They are the ones who contact potential customers and close deals. Thus, sales managers and representatives must work closely to ensure that the team meets its targets.

Sales managers need to provide guidance and support to their representatives, while sales representatives need to be proactive and take the initiative to close deals. Only by working together can sales teams be successful.

What are the benefits of conducting a sales performance evaluation?

Well-executed sales evaluations can lead to greater output from existing resources. It allows you to look closely at your sales process and determine its weaknesses. It provides valuable data you can use to optimize sales strategies and tactics. Finally, it can help you measure the impact of other factors, such as marketing and pricing, on your sales.

What are the most common challenges with sales performance evaluation?

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Understanding sales evaluation is one thing, but executing can bring some unexpected challenges, such as

  • Wrong criteria: it's vital to evaluate your sales organization based on more than just the amount of money it generates. If you're introducing a new product, for example, you might see a short-term revenue decline as people become familiar with it. However, the new product could positively impact your sales organization over the long term.
  • Inconsistent criteria: when analyzing and comparing teams, it's essential to use consistent standards. For example, you might not get an accurate picture if you only compare a team pushing your flagship products to other groups. Therefore, it's crucial to choose sales efficiency metrics carefully.
  • Lack of patience: changing evaluation criteria too often will make it impossible to track performance over time. Determine critical KPIs, but stick to them – if you change what you measure every couple of months, you won't be able to conclude the previously collected data.

It all sounds like much work, so who should conduct a sales performance evaluation? Let's find out.

Who should be involved in sales reps' performance evaluation?

Sales managers are the ones who should evaluate sales reps' performance. They are deep in the process and clearly understand what changes to implement after completing the evaluation. It allows them to provide more accurate and helpful feedback to sales reps, which can ultimately improve performance.

How often should you conduct a sales performance evaluation?

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It's vital to strike the right balance in frequency. Evaluating sales performance too often can be disruptive and create unnecessary work, while periodical evaluations can make it difficult to identify issues and make necessary changes.

The sweet spot is typically quarterly evaluations. It provides enough data to draw conclusions and make changes while also giving sales reps time to get used to new KPIs or objectives. 

However, monthly evaluations may be a better option for companies that move fast and need to make quick shifts. The key is to avoid changing the KPIs too often, which can create confusion and make it difficult to track progress.

What are the critical KPIs for sales performance evaluation?

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Determining where to focus is the key ingredient of good analysis. Here are some key sales performance indicators and how to use them

  • Sales growth: determine if the sales teams are going forward.
  • Revenue per unit: know how much you earn per new user.
  • Acquisition cost: see how much it costs to acquire a new customer.
  • Churn rate: track the number of customers you lose in the process.
  • Lifetime value: determine how much you can expect to earn from a single customer going forward.
  • Average sale value: evaluate which sales reps are better at making more significant sales.
  • The number of sales opportunities: see how much room there's for improvement if you work on closing more deals.
  • Upsells and cross-sells: see how well your team offers additional purchases to customers.
  • Sales targets: determine if the target bars are too low or too high.

How to gather all this data and ensure it's accurate and up-to-date? Let's find out.

How to collect data to assess the performance of your sales team 

Sales performance management software is a tool that helps you get the most out of the information you collect. You can track sales data, analyze trends, and forecast future sales automatically without any manual effort.

It can save you time and allow you to focus on other aspects of your business to stay ahead of the competition.

Wonderway is a sales performance software that helps you get the best out of sales reps, from new joiners to experienced pros. It collects all sales data in one place, enables you to understand problems, and shows how to fix them.  Book a demo to see how it works.

What factors to consider in a sales performance evaluation

Key performance indicators (KPIs) are essential to track sales, but it's also important to consider other factors when comparing sales data. Otherwise, you might make sales mistakes that could decrease your revenue.

The global pandemic has had a profound effect on economies worldwide. Businesses have had to adapt to changing customer behaviors and needs. Some have been able to weather the storm better than others. 

We can say the same about market changes. When a new competitor enters your niche, maintaining sales can be challenging. But if you can adapt and change your strategy, you can stay ahead of the game.

When a veteran employee quits, it can significantly impact your sales team. You may see a drop in productivity, as the remaining employees may be unable to fill the void left by the departure. It can result in a decline in sales, which will become visible in the team's stats.

When conducting evaluations, it is essential to consider all aspects of the situation and not just rely on leading indicators. It is because leading indicators may only sometimes give a complete picture of what is happening with your team's performance.

4 key elements of a successful sales performance evaluation process

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Here are four elements every evaluation process needs to include

  1. Identifying data you want to track: by aligning your KPIs with your business and sales goals, you can use the accumulated data to make informed decisions about your company's future.
  2. Collecting data using the right tools: this will make your data collection process much smoother and more accessible and make metrics accurate and easy to analyze.
  3. Drawing conclusions: once you have collected enough data, it is time to compare it to the selected KPIs and all other factors that could influence it. You want to notice patterns and share findings, which should all result in a plan of action.
  4. Implementing changes: conducting evaluations for the sake of it isn't very meaningful if you don't take action based on the results. Make sure you use your gathered information to make fundamental, tangible changes to improve your business.

Let's share some bonus tips for performing sales evaluation.

4 tips for conducting effective sales performance evaluation

By understanding sales data, you can make informed decisions about where to focus your efforts and resources. You can do the following

  1. Be patient: gathering data requires time, especially if you haven't done it before. 
  2. Choose appropriate tools: using the right tools can boost your team's sales productivity.
  3. Use consistent criteria: ensure you use the same standards when assessing each sales rep's results.
  4. Share the results with the right people: sales managers aren't the only ones interested in improving performance. You should also inform the CEO, COO, CFO, and HR department if some teammates are severely underperforming.

What are some best practices you can implement today? Let's discuss the most significant ones.

4 best practices for improving the performance of your sales team

Data gathering and analysis are essential, but implementation is what matters. Here's how to make sure you're doing it right.

  1. Focus on a handful of sales metrics at a time: while there are plenty of sales performance metrics you can track, choose only those that will make an impact and move the needle toward your strategic goals.
  2. Stimulate agents: setting encouraging bonuses for reaching targets and creating a positive, people-first working environment will ensure agents aren't only driven by pressure but enjoy their work and are happy with their paychecks.
  3. Implement changes gradually: the key to good sales performance management is implementing changes slowly, ideally one at a time. It will allow you to see the impact and define the decisions that brought results and improved sales metrics.
  4. Pay attention to market trends and global changes: sometimes things don't go your way, but the causes have nothing to do with you. But, if you keep an eye on the market, you can predict drops/rises, giving you a competitive edge.

In this post, we've discussed all the factors impacting sales performance evaluation. Let's see how Wonderway helps you accomplish your goals by providing all features you need for successful sales performance evaluation.

Wonderway: an intelligent sales performance platform

Wonderway helps you gather all crucial sales performance metrics in one place to track sales reps' progress, gather actionable insights, provide personalized training and generate detailed reports. 

What can Wonderway do for you?

With Wonderway, you can track sales metrics, compare performance against goals, and get feedback from reps and managers. It makes it easier to identify areas for improvement and implement changes that help you boost sales.

Besides sales evaluation, you can use Wonderway for

  1. Sales onboarding
  2. Upskilling
  3. Coaching
  4. Certifications

Let's discuss how to use Wonderway to unlock peak sales performance to make every deal count.

How to conduct sales performance evaluation with Wonderway

Wonderway is primarily a sales training platform but can also help you evaluate sales performance. Here's how.

CRM data analysis

Wonderway integrates with your CRM and uses machine learning and artificial intelligence to collect and analyze sales metrics over time. 

You may set clear targets for representatives, such as when to send their first emails, make their first phone calls, close their first deals, and more. When sales reps show low performance, Wonderway will notify you automatically. 

Our assessments allow sales reps to practice critical sales tasks before meeting with clients.

You can evaluate how they present, email, call and demonstrate your products or services before putting them in the field. You can detect patterns in performance and get advice for improvement.

Personalized training

With advanced data, Wonderway helps you provide personalized sales training to each sales rep and fill their skill gaps. Whether newcomers or veterans, you can assess the strengths and weaknesses of each sales team member.

Our advanced training programs consist of premium content created by industry professionals. We cover all sales process stages, including prospecting, discovery, negotiation, and more. During the training, reps can practice with real customers and push existing deals through the pipeline.

Continuous monitoring

Once the training is complete, Wonderway will continue to monitor data. You will be able to see the impact of sales training and further evaluate sales reps' performance and the training process based on your team's results.

Sales performance evaluation: The key takeaways 

A well-designed sales evaluation process can help you avoid common pitfalls, collect accurate data, and improve your most important sales KPIs, leading to consistent revenue increases. 

To do so, you must create the right sales performance evaluation strategy. With advanced platforms such as Wonderway, you can take action and improve the performance of each representative through personalized training. 

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