One of the keys to capitalise on commercial efforts is to take good advantage of data. This will enable us to use available information to make strategic decisions. With this in mind, some of the best tools is a sales report, taken at the end of each cycle that will be useful to know our market and our outlook in regard to sales and expense control.
A sales analyst or report is a document that record sales transactions and trends for a business within a specific period of time (monthly sales report, for example). Essentially, it shows whether sales are increasing or decreasing. However, details and supplementary information included in it will be paramount to steer the course of our actions and achieve business goals.
What is the purpose of a sales report?
At its core, a sales report has a clear purpose: solving our company’s problems. However, it is important to keep in mind that this document does not guarantee that sales will increase or that we will open new lines of business.
A sales analyst is a tool that facilitates our company’s accounting efforts. Where are we failing? Which are the actions that help us sell more? Visualising the data quickly and efficaciously will allow us to obtain certain strategic insights:
- Understanding what the cornerstone of your business is: which products or services have greater sales volumes.
- What profit you have obtained.
- Sales trends: which are the months with the highest and lowest profits. Are they related to marketing campaigns you carried out?
- How sales have performed at specific periods.
- How to optimise your team, your actions and your operations.
- Identify market opportunities and areas where sales can be increased.
- What your year-on-year growth volume has been.
Tips to improve your sales reports
The document does not need to analyse sales simply as something immutable or fixed, it should instead go beyond and try to understand which are the business values.
A good sales report will give us the capability to collect relevant data that allows us to properly monitor and control all business processes.
Guidelines and tips on presenting a sales report
- Dynamism and flexibility: it should take into account the target audience, and should therefore be modifiable. Therefore, if it is targeted at the company’s middle management and junior staff, the most important will be to detail customers’ activities and history. If it is targeted at higher levels such as executives, it should try to put into perspective data related to the overall strategy.
- Precise information: a good sales analysis needs to provide the company with as much data of the business transaction as possible without the need for analysis or supporting documentation. It should all be clear after reading it for the first time and the information should be useful and practical.
- Context and perspective: if our document is prepared with the purpose of positioning a specific product or service, it should add key information to provide context information for the market we will address, and obtain an action perspective.
- Combine metrics.To make the most out of the data collected, we need also to learn how all the metrics relate to each other. Instead of looking at each report as a single entity, try to mix and match many of them in order to obtain a more comprehensive insight.
- Give data a human perspective. Computers and CRM software are a very useful tool to achieve a better understanding of the business. However, it is still important to understand the value of human perception. Your reports and metrics will give you the numbers, but make sure to keep in mind your team’s feedback and experience.
Advantages of improving our sales analysis
A sales report is much more than a document containing stats and metrics. In fact, if you keep these guidelines in mind, it may help you outline a strategic plan for next year and improve the relationship with your customers.
In addition to being useful to optimise business efforts, there are certain advantages to improve our business reports:
- Obtain a global view of our business and an outlook about the future. Allows for the design of a depiction of the state of the company in the mid/long term and carrying out a business strategy.
- Control the sales flow. This is useful for knowing how to manage money.
- Report the details of the sales process itself. This will be useful to create a record for sales and customers, that we will be able to use in future actions.
- Determine our company’s success. Forecast the best moment to launch marketing campaigns and other actions.
You may be interested in: Why you should add mobility to your 2018 sales action plan
Mobile technologies, present and future of business reports
Many organisations are aware of the importance of efficiently handling their customers’ and business processes’ data, which is why business report mobile systems are increasingly improving so that the information submitted at the end of each sale is as detailed and useful as possible from the very first moment.
In addition to providing real-time information, reporting allows for the management of business follow-ups and the obtainment of useful metrics since the very first operation. But, how is it possible to make reports at any time and place? The answer is clear: thanks to mobile technologies.
Customers, sales and the future of your company depend largely on the data you are able to collect and on how fast and how well you manage them. This is why mobility fits every situation and allows us to obtain (and share) precise information at the right time.
The sales visit report or a daily sales report will be much more comprehensive and accurate if performed onsite, even from the very home of the customer. If the sales rep has to wait until he finishes his day to write the reports, much of the key information will be lost along the way.
Mobile telephony and technological advances allow our sales personnel to stay connected everytime thanks to cutting-edge smart devices, such as tablets.
In fact, trends in relation to mobile CRM software for 2018 make a reference to the concern over staying connected even without an internet connection. Having the right solution, you can work in offline mode and synchronise online with offline data automatically. This is one of the great advantages of the inaCátalog app for sales personnel: information that is always available without depending on the Internet. This results in a continuous availability, time savings and greater independence for your sales force.
Do you want to increase the profitability of your company’s business efforts with the best sales reports? Try inaCátalog and bring data into your decision process.