You know, of course, that done correctly, sales forecasting can do Very Good Things for your business. But you want more than just “Oh it’ll be good, trust us.” How, exactly, does it help? After all, you’ve got a presentation to the CEO, you can’t go in with “It’ll be really cool.”
Soffront, which sells CRM, recently wrote a good blog post focusing in on just that very question -- what specific ways does sales forecasting help your business?
The basic idea behind forecasting is that it would be great to be able to see into the future. That way you’d know who wants to buy what when, and you could adjust your offerings, inventory, staffing and other factors accordingly, resulting in a minimum of waste and a maximum of profit.
Last October TMC’s Paula Bernier (News - Alert) noted that Soffront’s CRM, in addition to being designed to help with sales forecasting, is also engineered to be less cumbersome than most CRM systems.
The product offers forecasting, sales pipeline analytics, sales revenue analytics and other such features with its CRM.
Seeing as how Madame Zozostris is unavailable with her crystal ball, the next best thing is sales forecasting. It can be done smart and cost-effectively, Soffront says, resulting in five specific advantages:
It lets you pinpoint, as much as is humanly possible, how many more customers you’ll need, how many sales you can expect to make off each one on average, and other such information.
As was said earlier, it gives you a much better idea of what sort of inventory and staffing levels you want to shoot for, to minimize waste.
Forecasting also helps answer the question “Just what do my customers really want, and how can I give it to them?”
Demographics exist to be targeted. Sales forecasting helps you research them and project how much you’d gain from each kind of customer -- what products you should target to whom when.
And don’t underestimate the benefit that comes with being able to set sales targets based on something more like “realistic expectations” than “random speculation.” David Sims is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of David’s articles, please visit his columnist page. He also blogs for TMCnet here.
Edited by Juliana Kenny