Building a sales territory plan – how and why

So, you have an excellent sales team, offer great products, and have effective sales scripts. And yet your sales rates aren’t as good as you would want them to be. What may be the reason? For many businesses, the main cause of difficulties is the lack of quality sales territory plans. Of course, sales success consists of many elements. You need to have trained sales professionals on your team and know your audience well. Also, you need to build your presence on multiple channels and use online tools such as ConvertMore callback software to boost conversions. However, even having all these elements doesn’t guarantee success. Without a solid plan in the background, all your efforts may be disjointed and misdirected. Building a sales territory plan is crucial – it will help you to focus your assets in the right direction and streamline your sales.

What is a sales territory plan?

In a nutshell, your sales territory plan is your strategy on how to target and approach prospects, leads, and customers in order to amp up your sales productivity. But what does a sales territory refer to? In the past, it used to refer to a geographical area your business covers.

Of course, nowadays, this definition is much more complex. With the Internet and constant technological innovations, it’s become possible to make connections and spread your business all over the world. That is why today’s sales territory can be divided in different ways such as:

  • geographical area
  • sales potential
  • business industry
  • customer type (account).

In addition to that, the best plans also include your goals as well as ways to track your results and adjust to the circumstances in the market.

Why building a sales territory plan is important?

a man defining the goals for building a sales territory plan
Defining your company’s goals is the first and crucial step.

A strong plan allows your team to be as efficient as possible while working toward achieving clear goals. Additionally, it streamlines your sales process on the whole and facilitates your business’ growth and profitability. With that in mind, let’s check some of the benefits of having a good plan:

  1. your sales teams know where to focus their attention and efforts in order to achieve the greatest ROI
  2. each sales rep is making the most of their skills and experience
  3. all members and teams of your company work together towards common goals
  4. the new approach enhances customer experience and increases customer satisfaction which helps you to convert visitors to leads
  5. there’s more time for actual selling as you don’t have to make decisions on a case-to-case basis
  6. you’ll be able to get a better insight and analyze performance.

Now, when you’re familiar with all the benefits of building a sales territory plan, let’s have a closer look at how to create an effective one.

Determine your top priority sales goals

First and foremost, you need to define clear goals. To begin, focus on larger goals you can later break down into smaller ones. Then, do exactly that – work your way downwards to create smaller goals and formulate steps that will help you achieve them.

Also, consider your timeframe – make one or more annual goals, but then break them into smaller units such as monthly or quarterly goals. Of course, this is just the first step. As you consider the following tips you can go back and redefine or adjust your plan.

Another thing you should think about at this stage is what tools you want to use. Naturally, it will depend on the type of business you have. Are you selling your product in-store only? Or does your business operate over multiple channels? In the latter case, it should be a good idea to consider what conversion rate optimization software would best suit your needs. Or, if you sell your products via phone, think about cloud-based phone systems that would work best for you.

Define your market and audience

Essentially, this refers to getting to know your customers. Assess their needs, wants, and pain points to better sell and market your product. Of course, one size doesn’t fit all – members of your audience will have different characteristics. Unfortunately, you cannot afford the time and effort to assess each prospect and customer individually.

However, what you can do is segment your audience based on their characteristics. And there are plenty of criteria you can use – from demographic features such as age, gender, or education to geographical ones such as country, climate, or area (rural, suburban, or urban). Additionally, don’t forget to take into account their psychographic traits and behavioral habits.

Evaluate the quality of your prospects and accounts

a team discussing the market
Defining your market will enable you to create an effective plan.

This means you should evaluate your customers by how important they’re to your business. For example, some customers see your product as extremely valuable and are willing to buy a lot of it and often. On the other hand, some prospects or customers may be more reluctant and not so enthusiastic. For that reason, you need to develop different strategies for different types of accounts.

Assess the strengths and weaknesses of your sales reps

The next step is to evaluate each of your sales reps. Analyze their skills, preferences, and experience. It’s important to focus both on their individual strengths and weaknesses. For example, some of your reps may have considerable experience in working with large businesses but don’t know how to approach a small startup. On the other hand, others may specialize in selling to a specific segment of your audience (based on the criteria we mentioned above).

A match made in heaven

two man making a schedule and matching reps with leads
Assign leads and customers to the sales reps who can best handle them.

Once you get this info, it’s time to pair each of your reps with leads and targets that suit their individual skillsets and experience. That ensures they equally share the workload and achieve the best possible results. Plus, they won’t feel disoriented by constantly switching between the different segments of your audience. It will boost morale and help you close more deals at the same time.

‘Proofread’ your plan before implementing it

Well, your sales territory plan is finished, right? You have your goals and you’ve created action steps to help you achieve those goals. Wrong! The last step is the hardest. It’s time to take a step back and examine your plan back and forth. Take a realistic look and search for ways to improve it further. If you notice any difficulties or unrealistic objectives and expectations, make necessary adjustments. Building a sales territory plan is a challenging task for sure. But doing it right will help you gain a better understanding of your business and your customers and build a solid foundation for success.

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