4 Tips to Jumpstart Second Half Sales

jumpstartIt’s halfway through July which means that summer vacations and barbecues are in full swing. It also means that it’s time for mid-year assessments and plan adjustments. Instead of waiting until October or November to assess your financial situation, get ahead and start identifying issues today.

Here are 4 things that you can do now to help improve sales.

1. Identify and coach poor performers

Poor performers are holding you back. In an article on Candium.com, sales performance management company Xactly found that “40 percent of sales teams finish their with less than 80 percent of their quotas filled.”  You need to evaluate poor performing reps to get to the root of the problem. Is the issue skill or motivation? If it is skill, then explore opportunities for training. If the problem is motivation, then perhaps contact a sales recruiter to start looking for a replacement or look internally at your own leadership and see if there is more you can do to create the right environment.

2. Review accounts that are stuck in the sales process

Often there will be a set of accounts that are moving much slower than normal through the sales process. Most likely the accounts are not fully qualified or aren’t ready to buy. Alternatively, perhaps the sales rep is not positioned properly in the account or isn’t good at closing the particular buyer type. In either case, get involved in helping the rep to unlock accounts and uncover the true reasons for lack of progress. If necessary, enlist other members of the team to assist in closing the sale.

3. Provide strong performers with additional support

Strong performers are likely counting for a large percentage of your results. Can you arrange for additional support so that they can cover more accounts? For example, have a junior representative handle smaller account renewals or follow-ups on certain types of issues.  Or, pull in additional administrative support to assist with paperwork or setting appointments.   For additional thoughts, check out this Salesjournal post about Using the Strengths of Your Sales Team to Accelerate Growth.

4. Evaluate your current sales strategy

It’s essential to assess the plans that were made at the start of the year in order to figure out what has or hasn’t been working. Have things changed in your market that you can’t control? What is the performance gap between the sales goals and actual results? You may need to shift emphasis to different product lines, sales channels or account types based on how the market is receiving your solutions. The key is to take a proactive approach to addressing the weaknesses in your plan.

The good news is that you still have over 5 months to reach your annual revenue goals. By taking action and evaluating your current situation now, it will make reaching those goals more attainable.

What other areas do you consider when making mid-year sales adjustments?