When your salespeople are on the road, at home and in the office, they need quick access to key data and insights, enabling them to make better decisions. That’s where sales dashboards can be an enormously powerful tool. They provide a summary of key information on one screen, such as what your customers are doing, what they are buying, and how you interact and continue to work with them.
In a recent survey, more than half of senior-level marketers said their use of marketing analytics, such as dashboards, had not lived up to the expected return-on-investment. So why do some people seem to think sales dashboards are not as effective or useful as they expected?
A number of issues are at play here like confirmation bias and poor data. It’s also possible these organizations struggle with using the dashboards efficiently, or have overly complicated systems, or simply didn’t know how to leverage the data in the most useful way.
If used effectively and created using a data analytics solution, sales dashboards can — and should be — just as valuable and game-changing as ever. Here’s why:
1. Dashboards are easy to use
Dashboards are no longer complicated to navigate, with clunky interfaces and static data. Today’s sales dashboards are simple to use, making it easy to collate data and provide a visual representation of the big picture. Depending on the information you want at your fingertips, you can hand-pick the data that shows up on your screen.
That could be your quarterly or yearly Sales vs. Budget, your top 10 customers, profit margin per product, new contracts, closing calls, or any other pertinent information that could drive performance. The sales dashboard’s purpose is to automatically bring that data to life on one screen, so your salespeople can make data-driven decisions in a matter of minutes.
2. Prompt account management
Using a sales dashboard keeps your sales team focused on meeting their Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and makes better use of their limited time. Based on the data in the dashboard, they can decide what they need to do next to manage their accounts and meet their sales goals.
With the proper training from the start, sales teams can eventually operate the system on their own — with no need for help from IT or other departments. Sales teams can use their dashboards to set goals as a team since the dashboard keeps them constantly informed on where they stand.
3. Insights into sales trends
Sales dashboards allow you to immediately see how your company’s sales are performing and drill down into the underlying data. For instance, if you see something strange in your sales data, dashboards allow you to investigate the issue quickly by “drill down” into the relevant data.
You could, for instance, view all of the metrics for each sales rep. Or, you can compare sales metrics from different time periods, such as Current vs. Previous Sales. That ability to pinpoint what’s affecting your sales figures can help you figure out your next course of action.
4. Real-time, dynamic insights drive performance
There’s nothing static about a sales dashboard anymore. Dashboards provide up-to-the-minute information and updates based on performance metrics – so you never have to worry that the data you’re working with is outdated.
That also ensures that everyone involved in decision-making has access to the most accurate and current information available. For sales reps, who are often on the road and juggling multiple accounts, it’s more important than ever for them to have access to data that reflects the current situation and business performance.
If created with a data analytics solution, a sales dashboard offers simple, accessible features and information that your sales team can immediately put to use. Of course, understanding these features and how to use them is important, too.
Equip your sales team with the training and skills they need to get the most out of the sales dashboard. They need to know why this works, how it works, and how it’ll make their jobs easier. Learn more about sales dashboards by downloading this eBook, Business Dashboards.