Sales Is A Numbers Game – Or Is It?

Sales Is A Numbers Game – Or Is It?

When I look back into the early days of my sales career, I vividly recall having to do sales reports and sales forecasts.

Most of the Sales managers I worked for were fixated on sales being a numbers game. 

Make more calls, see more people, do more presentations, make more sales.

They didn’t seem to care who we spoke to; “Do more calls, do more presentations, the sales will come”, was the battle cry.

As I watched, new salespeople come and went, some stayed around for a while, some achieved, many didn’t.

I just continued to make sales and to provide very scant details on my reports. It wasn’t a matter of how many people you spoke to, or how many presentations you did I figured. Neither could I ever manage to predict which visit would result in a sale so I never allocated a percentage likelihood other than 0% – unless I had made the sale in which case I recorded 100%.

Most bosses hated this. But I continued to make and exceed my quotas, so they tended to leave me alone, following the age-old adage, “If it isn’t broken, don’t meddle with it”.

My point of view and my entire process was based on one simple theory, “Find out what works and keep doing it”. 

If You Can’t Measure It, You Can’t Monitor It

I tested different scripts, different ways of asking questions until I reached the point where I could make two or three sales calls a day and return with one sale (and sometimes more).

I knew what worked, my conversion strategy was tested and proven and so my results were predictable. Everything was trackable and if I got off course and my figures dropped, I was able to self-diagnose and find what needed to be corrected.

It’s all well and good having goals but unless what you do is trackable, you will never know what really works and where to put your focus. 

So right from the top of your sales pipeline (I don’t like the term ‘funnel’) you need to measure everything.

How many calls from that advert? 

How many calls from that brochure, from that particular webpage?

Which member of my team has the highest lead-to-sale ratio, and what do they do or say differently?

If you can’t measure it, you can’t replicate it or improve it. That’s why conversion tracking is so vital.

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