How do I Create a Sales Plan Template?
If you’re looking for a sales plan template that fits your business, this article will provide you with the information you’ll need to craft your template, and some tips for more effective results.
Business people, sales executives, and sales managers all benefit from writing sales plans for their business, department, or team. You must know your destination before you can achieve your main goals. So you must detail the strategies and tactics that you will use to do so.
All of this information (and more) can be included in a sales plan. Read on to find out how you can craft a suitable sales plan template for your business.
What is the sales plan?
Your sales plan template outlines your goals, tactics, target audience, and potential obstacles. It’s similar to a traditional business plan but focuses specifically on your sales strategy. A business plan defines your goals while a sales plan describes exactly how you will achieve them.
Sales plans often include information about a company’s target customers, revenue goals, team structure, strategies and resources needed. An effective sales plan must:
* Communicate your company’s goals to your sales team.
* Provide strategic direction to your sales team.
* Define roles and responsibilities for the sales and leadership team.
* Monitor the sales team’s progress in achieving organizational goals.
Sales planning process
The thing to keep in mind is that sales planning does not only include creating a sales plan document. For this document to be more than a piece of paper gathering dust on a bookshelf, it must contain a high-level strategy. Meaning that you must:
#. Gather sales data from the previous year and look for trends.
#. Define your goal and create sales goals that meet your revenue goals.
#. Determine the metrics that will be used to measure success.
#. Assess your current situation, including weaknesses that will act as barriers and strengths that will help you.
#. Start forecasting sales based on demand trends and historical data.
#. Identify any gaps that need to be filled to achieve your goals.
Think of new initiatives based on opportunities you may have missed in previous years.
#. Engage stakeholders from departments that influence your results such as marketing and product.
#. Select work items based on capacity and lot numbers.
The thing to keep in mind is that sales planning should not end immediately after creating a sales plan template document. Rather, you will need to repeat this process every year to maintain your organization’s sales excellence.
Now that you’re committed to the sales planning process, let’s take a look at what you should include in your sales plan.
What is included in a sales plan template?
A typical sales plan includes the following sections:
#. Target customers: who your company aims for with its products and services.
#. Revenue targets: The amount of revenue your team aims to generate per period.
#. Strategies and Tactics: The specific actions your team will take to reach revenue goals.
# Pricing and Promotions: Document the pricing of your offerings and any upcoming promotions that can convert customers.
#. Deadlines and DRIs (Directly Responsible Personnel): Define delivery deadlines and the list of those responsible for completing them.
#. Team structure: Who is your team made up of, and what is their role.
#. Resources: The tools your team uses to reach your revenue goals.
#. Market conditions: accurate information about your project field and landscape
How to write a sample sales plan
Mission and background: Begin your sales plan by defining your company’s mission and vision. Write a brief history that provides basic information about the project, until the plan delves into more specific details later.
Sales Team: Describe who is on your team and what their roles are. Perhaps managing five salespeople and working closely with a Sales Enablement Specialist and Sales Operations Specialist.
If you plan to add the number of employees, include the number of employees, their job titles, and when you plan to bring them on to the team.
Target Market: Whether you’re writing your first or fifteenth sales plan, knowing your target demographics is crucial. What do your ideal clients look like? Do they all belong to a specific industry? Are they suffering from the same problem?
This section of the sales plan can change later. With the passage of time and the development of solutions and strategies for your project, you will need some modifications to keep your product in line with market developments. You may find success in dealing with startups at the beginning due to the small size of the project and the low prices. But as your product gets more powerful and more expensive, it’s likely that mid-market companies will do the best. Therefore, reviewing and constantly updating this section is important.
Tools, Programs, and Resources: You should also include a description of your resources. What CRM software do you plan to use? Do you have a budget for sales contests and incentives? This is the section where you will outline the tools salespeople must use to succeed in their jobs (training, documentation, sales enablement tools, etc.).
Define your niche: It’s time to name your competitors and compare products. What are their product strengths? What are its weaknesses? …You’ll also compare prices and discuss market trends. If you are a SaaS company, you will notice that software for the vertical sector is becoming more and more popular. If you sell ads, remember the rise in automated mobile ads. Try to anticipate how these changes will affect your project.
Marketing strategy: Describe your pricing and any promotions you plan to run. What key actions will you take to increase brand awareness and attract potential customers? Note the impact on sales.
Here’s an example for simplicity:
#. Product A: Price increased from $40 to $45 on February 2 (2% decrease in monthly sales)
#. Product B: Free upgrade if you refer another customer from January 1st to 20th (20% increase in monthly sales)
#. Product A: Price drop from $430 to $400 on March 1st (15% increase in monthly sales)
#. Product D: No change
Lead sourcing strategy: How will the sales team qualify customers attracted by your marketing strategy? Don’t forget to list the criteria your leads must meet and identify the inbound and outbound sales methods your team will use to close more deals.
Action Plan: Once you have set your goals, you need to know how you will achieve them. This section outlines the plan you will follow to achieve your revenue goals. Here are some examples:
Goal: Increase referral rates by 30% this quarter
# Organizing a three-day workshop on referral techniques
#. Revive contest for referral sales
#. Increase commission on referral sales by 5%
B. The goal: to get 20 corporate logos
#. Identify 100 prospects and assign a strong team to each of them
#. I hold two events at the executive level
#. Give a bonus to the first team to win 3 pennants
Goals: Most sales goals are based on revenue. For example, you could set a total goal of $10 million in annual recurring revenue, or you could set a volume goal of 100 new customers or 450 sales. Make sure your goal is realistic or your entire sales plan will be useless.
Consider the price of your product, total addressable market, market penetration, and resources (including the number of sales and marketing support).
Your goal should also be closely related to your high-level business goals. For example, if the company is trying to scale up the market, your goal might be to “get 20 enterprise logos” instead of “sell X in a new business” because the latter will only encourage you to pursue deals instead of focusing on the right type of customer.
Of course, you will likely have more than one goal. Select the most important, then prioritize the rest.
If you have multiple teams, set a sub-goal for each. This will make it easier to identify high and low performers.
Include your schedule, too. Setting regular benchmarks will enable you to see if you are on track, ahead or behind in achieving your goals. Assume the sales target for the first quarter is $30,000 in sales. Based on last year’s performance, you’ll know that January and February sales are slower than March.
Your schedule will be as follows:
#. January: $8,000
#. February: $8,000
#. March: $14,000
You should also write in the DRIs (Directly Responsible Individuals) if applicable. Rep. Carroll’s stake for the month of January is probably $5,000. Rep. Shine, who is still in the doldrums, has a monthly stake of $3,000. In a small team, this exercise helps people avoid repeating each other’s work and blaming others when goals are not met.
Budget: Describe the costs associated with achieving your sales goals. This usually includes:
#. Payment (salary and commission)
#. Sales training
#. Sales tools and resources
#. Contest prizes
#. Team building activities
#. the traveling cost
#. the food
Compare your sales plan budget to your sales forecast to create a more accurate budget.
If you want to take your plan to the next level, read the following tips that will help you create an effective sales plan.
Tips for creating a sample sales plan
Learn some tips and tricks for creating a sales plan that will help you reach target numbers and exceed company expectations.
@. Use industry trends to strengthen your plan. When presenting your sales plan to stakeholders, use industry trends to highlight how effective your plan is.
@. Decide which technology you will use to track success. You may do this as an internal reference or to let stakeholders know that you are measuring your success. Some of the tools you can use include CRM and dashboard software.
@. Support your budget proposal with facts and hard data. If a budget is part of your plan, support it with past performance data and sales forecasts.
@. Create different plans for each team. If you create a sales plan template for business development, internal sales, external sales, field sales, etc., you can get more granular detail and more specificity at the level of goals and your KPIs.
@. Get marketing inputs. Marketing and sales alignment is critical to the success of your sales plan. The more inputs you get from marketing, the more you’ll be able to align your efforts to attract and retain leads.
@. Talk with salespeople to understand the challenges they face. It can be easy to get lost in numbers and predictions. But it is important to know the movements of the salespeople on a daily basis in order to understand what will not be effective or feasible.
@. Do an in-depth competitive analysis. You must know how strong your company is in front of competitors so that you can know in which direction the plan should push your company.