Opportunities form the lifeblood of any sales organization. They are the glue between sales development reps (SDRs) and account executives. As your SDRs focus fervently on sourcing ops, your quota-carrying salespeople work tirelessly to transform those opportunities into closed/won deals.
So if you want to predict revenue, you need to be able to predict opportunities.
If you’re leading a B2B sales team, you are probably tracking opportunities in CRM. However, there are several opportunity metrics that you should consider tracking in order to be able to effectively predict how much revenue should close. From our recent comprehensive guide to sales analytics, here are six of the most essential opportunity metrics you should be tracking.
In some CRM tools like Salesforce, you can create various opportunity stage names in order to track how far deals have progressed. The benefit of using opportunity stages is that you can pinpoint where opportunities are getting stuck. For example, say you sell a marketing automation system. Opportunity stage one could indicate interest from a marketing manager (influencer), opportunities could move to stage two after a meeting with a C-level executive (decision maker) and stage three after finalizing the details of a contract/service-level agreement. By tracking opportunity age in various stages, it can enable you to develop strategies that can move deals through various opportunity stages faster.
Opportunity creation is an important moment. It signifies that a lead is actually interested in purchasing your offering. An increase in lead-to-opportunity velocity can be an early indicator of revenue growth, but without enough open opportunities, it’s impossible to hit revenue goals. Knowing how many leads convert into opportunities is vital to predicting revenue and driving growth.
Sales development reps are often given an opportunity quota rather than a revenue quota. This means that they are expected to open a certain number of opportunities each month (known as an opportunity goal). This metric can help managers identify whether reps are on pace to create the right amount of opportunities necessary for account executives to meet their revenue quota.
Are sales opportunities getting the attention they need to move deals forward? Sometimes, deals get stuck and take a long time to close. This metric shows the total number of times an account executive dials or emails a contact associated with an open opportunity. Tracking this metric is important, because it empowers you to ensure that reps are reaching out to open opportunities often enough to move deals forward.
This metric is both predictive and analytical, revealing not only how much effort is needed to create an opportunity, but also how efficient your current team is. Knowing approximately how many dials it takes to create opportunities can help ensure that your team is properly staffed and that reps are keeping busy enough to move leads to the next stage.
This is one of the most basic and most crucial metrics to track. Simply put: how effective is a rep at selling your product? If a rep isn’t winning enough deals, it could indicate that they need additional training, that there isn’t sufficient demand for your product or that your expectations need to be re-assessed. According to data from Implisit, a benchmark for B2B sales teams is an opportunity win rate of 6%.
Looking for more metrics that will help you influence sales and predict revenue? Our 2016 Complete Guide to Inside Sales Analytics has you covered! Get it for free.
Jesse WestDirector of Lifecycle MarketingringDNA
Jesse Davis West is Director of Lifecycle Marketing at ringDNA, focusing on improving the experience and maximizing the lifetime value for customers across their entire journey. Drawing on 9 years of B2B marketing experience, Jesse is passionate about communication, branding and strategic marketing. He also plays a mean lead guitar and can throw down at karaoke.