Sales Goal Planning for 2014 Made Easy: The Top-Down Approach

Learn how taking a top-down approach will help you excel in your 2014 sales goal planning.

Hey, Sales Management:
It’s that time of the year when you’re meeting with senior leadership to map out what your goals will be for next year.

Your revenue goal has most likely increased from last year, and you are probably starting to sweat.


Well, friends, it’s time to take a deep breath and start working your way backwards. Remember, this is all a numbers game.

Hopefully this year, you’ve been encouraging your team to track everything in your CRM: calls, conversations, appointments, opportunities, stages of the buying cycle, etc. If you have that data and know your conversions, then your sales goal planning for 2014 will be a breeze. Here is a template to help you wrap your head around what you will need to improve upon next year in order to hit your new (and quite daunting) revenue target.

Enter: OpenView’s Top Down Activity Model

The yellow cells in the spreadsheet are the inputs, or the data that you will need to enter, including:

  • Average deal size
  • Average win rate
  • The number of new customers that you want to win next year
  • Calls to conversation conversion
  • Conversation to appointment conversion
  • Appointment to opportunity conversion

The outputs are the daily activity that each of your reps will need to have EVERY day, week, and month in order to hit that number based on your historical data.

This is the data you will need to use to your advantage to show your reps why you have activity goals in place for them — not just the end goals.

Don’t know your conversions yet because you haven’t been so great at tracking the data?

Well, here are some benchmarks to try on for size. When we collected our companies’ data mid-year, here’s what we found:

  • Organizations with average annual deal sizes less than $50K in annual contract value:
    • call to conversation rate: 14%
    • conversation to appointment: 22%
    • appointment to opportunity rate: 68%
  • Companies with an average annual deal sizes greater than $50k:
    • call to conversation rate: 8%
    • conversation to appointment ratio: 17%
    • appointment to opportunity conversion rate: 64%

I hope this helps. If you have any questions about sales goal planning, feel free to ask them below in the comments.

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