Delivering outstanding sales results demands that your sales reps learn how to sell smarter and gain an edge over the sales reps of your competitors.
If they can learn from the experience of others, they can develop the best strategies to get the job done.
Nothing puts things into perspective like statistics.
That’s why in this post, we’ll be talking about the 15 key sales statistics that should shape every salesperson’s strategy.
40% Of Salespeople Consider Prospecting the Most Challenging Part Of Their Job
Source: Hubspot. 60 Key Sales Statistics That’ll Help You Sell Smarter in 2021
For almost half of the salespeople, prospecting for potential new clients is the hardest part of the job.
This stat tells us that sales reps find it easier to close a deal than find a prospect willing to consider what they offer.
Fishing for the right prospects is a challenging task, but make no mistake, skilled sales reps make qualified leads count.
Solving the challenges your reps are facing should be your operational priority, so it makes sense to supercharge your prospecting tactics, making your team better able to lock down sales.
If you want your reps to spend their time driving your revenue, you must develop effective prospecting practices in your company.
50% Of Prospects Are Not a Good Fit For What You Sell
Source: Sales Insights Lab. 18 New Sales Statistics for 2020 from Our Groundbreaking Study!
This statistic might come as a surprise, but according to research, half of the prospects are not the ideal fit for your product or service.
That means your reps are chasing their tails instead of going after the right crowd— and prospecting the wrong crowd is a wasteful practice that happens all too often.
In fact, the notion that you can sell to anyone is a myth that’s making your reps waste half of their time chasing the wrong leads.
Statistically, a lot of the prospects you’re trying to sell to just won’t be the right fit for what you have to offer.
Your job is to identify and winnow them out quickly for the sake of your time and resources, so your approach to prospecting has to become more effective.
Learning how to qualify sales leads is a must-have skill for successful representatives— and there’s always a way to improve.
A lead qualification checklist is a good way to achieve that.
90% Of B2B Customers Start Their Journey With a Google Search
Source: Dialogtech. 31 Statistics B2B Marketers Need to Know in 2021
Don’t get shocked when you find out that the overwhelming majority of prospect engagement starts online—in the search bar. The old days of fishing for prospects face-to-face are history.
An online presence is vital for establishing a sales funnel that will lead to a sale.
Your perfect sales prospects are out there, but without an online presence, you’re invisible to them. Neglecting it means your sales funnel will run dry like a desert well.
Building a website is not enough. Your virtual place of business must show your potential customers what you can do for them.
An impressive presence is a must for keeping your sales funnel stocked with qualified leads that can be converted to customers.
Thanks to powerful digital marketing strategies, your business can get a spotlight on the first page of the search results.
There won’t be anything standing between you and your ideal prospect once your online presence commands authority.
60% Of Buyers Want to Get in Touch With a Salesperson as Early as the Consideration Stage
Source: European Gateway. 60 Key Sales Statistics That‘ll Help You Sell Smarter in 2021
Interested, qualified customers don’t want mind games—they want a meeting to explain how you can help them succeed.
Over half of the buyers want to get in touch with you the moment they consider your services. When that happens, you have a window of opportunity to land your perfect sales pitch.
Stalling could spell disaster for your ability to close a sale.
We all wonder how many businesses missed a sale that was practically in the bag just because of poor timing. The good news is that stalling is correctable once your team is conscious of it.
Even the best salespeople on the planet have to do course corrections to their sales strategies, so don’t be afraid to join them.
65% Of Sales Leaders Who Went Over Their Revenue Targets Had a Dedicated Sales Enablement Team
Source: Hubspot. The 2021 Sales Enablement Report
The best sales leaders in the biz are the ones who top all expectations and go beyond their sales targets.
Well, 65% of them had a dedicated sales enablement team watching their back.
If you want to help your salespeople, have a team to enable them. That is the winning factor for meeting revenue targets.
Sales enablement teams have multiple roles.
An important one is recruiting your company’s marketing experts to educate reps on customer interaction with their unique knowledge. When enabled this way, your reps have a new angle for securing sales.
Next, the sales enablement team creates tools and resources for the company salespeople so they can reach their revenue targets.
Your sales enablement team will also use data from analytics to guide the sales reps’ prospecting efforts and help develop communication strategies for potential customers, as well as create prospect-centered content as an essential sales tool.
In short, sales enablement will increase sales efficiency with marketing insights.
54% Of Companies Have 4-9 People Involved in Sales Decisions
Source: Yesware. Top Sales Statistics of 2020 & Takeaways to Guide Your 2021 Strategy
Here’s what the information that more than half of companies looking to purchase a B2B solution have 4 to 9 people involved in the decision-making process means for you.
Your sales professionals must focus their efforts on onboarding all the company decision-makers or a prospect that can bring your pitch to the executive table.
Reaching out to key decision-makers has never been more critical. If you want your sales pitch to succeed, you need a decision-maker targeting strategy.
Having one allows your reps to target and reach out to prospects that have the power to influence a B2B purchase decision.
Keep in mind that your pitch has to appeal to the top-ranking employees you’re suggesting your solution to.
A proper targeting strategy is the best way to find the prospect with enough authority and capital to influence a B2B purchase decision and take it further down the funnel.
Those are the prospects worth your time.
41.2% Of Sales Reps Consider the Phone Their Most Effective Tool
Believe it or not, smartphones are regarded as the most effective sales tool, and for good reason. Many reps dread cold calling, but it is still critical for reaching out to prospects.
When cold calls are done right, they allow you to build enough trust between yourself and your prospect that they book a meeting—where your reps can deliver the perfect pitch.
To ignore the advice of 41% of sales reps would fly in the face of reality.
Instead of resisting cold calls, instruct your reps on how to engage their prospects in a lively conversation.
Getting a meeting with a prospect is only impossible when you don’t know what you’re doing. A conversation will never go out of fashion, and it’s about time your reps embrace it.
Email Remains 40x More Effective Than Facebook or Twitter
Source: The Brevet Group. 21 Mind-Blowing Sales Stats
It’s beyond impressive that even after the golden days of email marketing have passed, it’s still 40 times more effective than Facebook or Twitter.
The reason behind its effectiveness is the fact that organic traffic is all but dead on social media.
Unless you constantly pump money into your posts, user engagement sinks like a stone.
All those thousands of page likes you have under your belt mean little when your posts don’t reach and engage the readers behind them.
Don’t get us wrong, social media is great for outreach—but it doesn’t come close to email for 1-on-1 prospecting.
A personalized email is amazing for communicating with potential clients and capturing their attention.
Since you’re in perfect control over an email presentation, you have more possibilities of guiding them to your website and delivering the best email user experience.
So, a fantastic email template is better for capturing the user’s attention than a social media post with limited captions and a distracting comment section.
If you’re neglecting to optimize your email marketing, you’re letting a marketing tool more powerful than Facebook go to waste.
Now it’s time we talk about a key to a successful email—the subject line.
47% Emails Get Opened Based on the Subject Line Alone
Source: Optinmonster. 164 Best Email Subject Lines to Boost Your Email Open Rates (2021)
Almost half of all emails get opened because whoever sent the email wrote a killer subject line.
Remember when you got a promotional email whose subject line almost put you to sleep? Chances are, you don’t—because it ended up in the trash, unopened!
Fact is, it’s the subject lines that pique our interest and get us to read the entire message, and a dull one does nothing to encourage us to check out the website for more info.
A great subject line is a must-have if you want your emails to get opened.
Therefore, when writing an email for your newsletter, you have to start strong.
If you want to write powerful subject lines for your marketing emails, here are some things you should consider:
- Your subject line has to be straightforward and personal
- An email opener must be short and to the point
- Including a number, like a timer or a deadline, works like a charm
- Show value at the start, so the recipient is inclined to read about it
Remember that all the hard work you’ve put into writing a great email means little if the subject line is weak, so make sure you start things off with a powerful opening!
The Average Email Open Rate Was 21.3% in 2020
Source: Superoffice. The Science Behind Email Open Rates (and How to Get More People to Read Your Emails)
Data is clear—roughly 1 in 5 emails get opened.
In fact, the email open rate has decreased over the past years, from 24% in 2018 and 21.5% in 2019 to the current number, but that’s nothing alarming.
Average email open rates are one of your key cold email metrics because they help you estimate how many prospects you are really reaching.
Tracking and boosting this metric is at the center of your emailing strategy. These numbers give your sales team a fighting chance to get your prospects to engage with your business.
When you determine your email open rates, you can match them to the industry average and see how you can boost them.
As mentioned earlier, achieving high email open rates turns your email list into a powerful tool for generating leads that can shadow the return you usually get from your other key platforms.
Getting your email strategy in shape has everything to do with tracking email open rates. What are yours, and how do they compare to the standard?
If you want to boost them, you better roll up your sleeves. Cold emailing and email marketing require patience and dedication, but we promise it’s worth it.
92% Of Buyers Reply Within 2 Weeks of You Reaching Out
Source: Outreach. The Secret to Breaking Buyer Silence in the Sales Cycle
An overwhelming majority of your potential buyers will reply to your outreach efforts relatively soon after you make contact. After two weeks, the trail goes cold.
This statistic is a lesson in both patience and engagement.
Knowing it takes some time for prospects to reply helps reps keep their cool.
On the other hand, being aware that there is an average time limit to how much they should wait for a reply allows them to stop chasing dead ends. This means being aware of the importance of engagement.
You want your prospects to reply as soon as possible, and to get them to do that, you have to keep them engaged—something leaders lose their sleep over.
You only have two weeks to make your outreach count, so make sure you use that time well.
It’s Best to Send Meeting Invites at 2 PM
Source: Yesware. Meeting Schedule Emails: The Best Time, Day, and Week to Send
Data is clear on this one —it’s best to send invites for meetings around 2 PM. The study has also found that the worst possible time to request appointments is at 9 AM.
You want to have your meetings after the prospects you’re going after have synced in their workday and had their break.
Asking for a meeting in the morning is a strategic miss. For one, they’re still adjusting to the demands of their day and therefore lack the focus to give you the attention you need to make your pitch.
Every skilled sales rep knows it’s vital to time their presentation, and as you’re well aware, your sales presentations have to be top-notch to impress B2B decision-makers.
Therefore, make sure you do your homework on the prospect ahead of the meeting.
Prepare an outstanding, guided presentation that will leave the prospect hungry for collaboration—and invite them to it at the right time.
70% Of Salespeople Consider Referrals the Fastest Way to Conversion— but 46% Don’t Ask For Them
Source: Superoffice. 38 Social Selling Statistics: How to Master the Art of Social Selling
Using referrals is one of the fastest ways to reach a client and establish credibility. After all, a recommendation from a trusted friend or peer is always more effective than any marketing method.
Have you ever landed a client just because one of your satisfied customers recommended your product or service?
If you have, you know that ignoring the power of referrals is a waste of opportunities. In fact, it’s downright lazy.
Asking for referrals should become your reflex by now because it will help you bypass all the trust issues that come with prospecting new clients.
Missing out on the opportunity to get referrals makes life unnecessarily difficult for almost half of all salespeople.
Do better, ask for referrals after a job well done.
Only 39% Of Sales Reps’ Time Is Actually Spent Selling
Source: Hubspot. Salespeople Only Spent One-Third of Their Time Selling Last Year
The average salesperson spends a third of their time selling; they spend the rest on prospecting would-be clients and administrative tasks.
That’s why increasing rep productivity should be your prime concern if you want your sales to grow.
For your reps to lock down on more sales, reduce the time they spend on non-sales tasks. Consider all the time in their typical day at the office when they’re not doing their primary job—selling. It’s a terrible waste of resources.
Since those tasks have to be completed regardless, a good way to save time on doing them is to automate their support tasks.
Introducing task automation is hard at first, but it does wonders for increasing active sales time for your reps.
60% Of Buyers Require At Least 4 Follow-ups
Source: Invesp. The Importance of Sale Follow Us—Statistics and Trends
Over half of buyers need to be sent at least four follow-ups before they say yes to your pitch. Despite that, almost half (48%) of reps never follow up on their prospects.
We can’t talk about selling smarter without addressing the problem of neglecting follow-ups.
If half of your buyers require multiple points of contact before a purchase, then this activity is as important to the sales process as any part of the funnel.
Pulling your prospects by the sleeve might be tedious, but it’s necessary.
Reps have to be persistent when pursuing leads, so sending compelling follow-up emails to convince the prospect to onboard is mandatory.
When you write an effective follow-up, you show your potential buyer the individual effort you put into bringing that value to them, personally.
Trying harder than your competitors to onboard clients is a way to stand out among your competitors.
In this guide, we’ve been through 15 major sales statistics that you have to be aware of.
To put this data to work means following the tips we laid out to address what they mean for your sales reps and the revenue they achieve.
Even if the data makes you spot weaknesses in your strategy, it represents an opportunity to improve and set new records for your company.