Q4 is a particularly challenging quarter for sales management and field sales teams. After all, they have to achieve both their own sales targets and corporate targets in order to bring the financial year to a successful close. Given the stress factors that are even more prevalent at year-end than in the preceding quarters, it can be a tough time.
This article explains how portatour® can help you hit your targets and get the new financial year off to a flying start by optimizing your sales territories.
In most businesses, the fourth quarter is the final stage of a financial year, which makes it extremely demanding for field sales teams.
- Time pressure in the run up to year-end: The pressure to meet personal and corporate targets is particularly high in most companies. In many cases, for example, Christmas campaigns bring in the highest sales and are therefore the most important of the year. Expectations and pressure to perform are correspondingly high.
- Difficulty focusing/prioritizing: Under the stress that characterizes year-end, it can be especially difficult to focus on the customers that are relevant for achieving your own sales targets. You need solutions that not only provide structure but also allow you to generate sales in a hurry.
Here’s how portatour® route planning can help you smash your Q4 targets and campaigns
If you already use portatour® Route Planner software, you know that you can automatically create optimized tours in seconds. It boosts your efficiency, frees up time for the essentials, and you’ll never forget a customer again. If you’re not familiar with portatour® Route Planner yet, register here for a free 30-day trial.
If you want to re-focus on sales at the end of the year in order to hit your targets, here’s our tip for you: launch a campaign specifically targeted at customers that will bring in revenue as quickly as possible. Make an exception by moving away from traditional planning based on call intervals.
How to implement this in portatour®
Bonus tip: Of course, you can also select customers based on other criteria. For example, you might want to thank them for their business this year (and so give customer loyalty an extra boost).
This will help you in the financial year that’s coming to an end. But what can sales managers do to ensure the new financial year gets off to a great start?
Here’s how portatour® can optimize your territory planning for the new financial year
Most successful sales managers have one thing in common: they set the strategic course early and plan ahead. A critical success factor here is the planning and optimization of sales territories.
The end of the year is the ideal time to reorganize your territories, first because you need to optimize any internal changes in the field sales team, and second because there are often major changes in the customer portfolio at the end of Q4, and sales territory planning has to take these into account in order to get the most from those territories in the coming year.
Example of an internal change: Your field sales employee Alexander Winter decides to leave your company at the end of the year. You have a promising applicant who could start in early January to replace him.
Some of the questions you may already be asking yourself here are:
- How will Alexander’s customers be allocated among the current team? Where would there be overloads? Which customers’ call intervals would be compromised? And so on.
- How would the outgoing employee’s customers be divided among the team if you brought the applicant on board as a new employee at the beginning of January? Which customers would the new employee manage going forward, and which would be taken on by the existing team?
Another question you can consider a few weeks ahead of time for Q4 planning is this:
- How would we have to allocate all customers among all employees in order to pay every key customer two more visits in Q4 and visit every lead at least once, without overloading the team?
The SaaS power of portatour® Territory Optimization let’s you visualize these planning ideas in minutes and adjust them as often as you like before implementing the final optimization in your team.
Significant improvement potential with travel time by customer
Here’s another powerful feature to help you with the ongoing planning and optimization of your sales territories: Did you know that with portatour® Territory Optimization you can display travel time by customer? This shows you how much travel time a single sales rep requires for regular visits to their customers. When it comes to customers who are further away, there’s potential for big improvements. You could reduce the visit interval or assign the customer to another rep who lives closer. This is a valuable tool for efficient planning!
Experience for yourself how portatour® can take your sales strategy to the next level – request a free Territory Optimization demo today and test our Route Planner.
On that note, we wish you every success for a strong Q4 and optimum planning for the new financial year!