Sales managers conduct sales analysis to decide how companies can effectively increase sales. Sales analysis involves analyzing markets, examining the sales process, recruiting sales representatives, evaluating the sales skills needed to be effective and determining the appropriate size of the sales force.
Sales managers must first recruit sales representatives before analyzing their potential for success, according to the University of West Florida. Recruiting sources include sales conferences, professional development organizations for salespeople and job boards for sales representatives.
Sales managers must determine how many sales representatives they need. Methods of determining this involve assessing the number of customers the company expects to contact and how long it takes for sales pitches to reach customers, according to the University of West Florida. However, another method is to estimate how much sales volume each representative will generate and to compare that to how much the sales representative will cost the company.
A job description is usually needed when recruiting a sales representative, regardless of whether he is hired through social networking or a job posting, according to the University of West Florida. In selecting candidates to interview, the sales manager uses criteria such as experience, education and people skills.
Several methods can be used to analyze how successful a sales representative is. The amount of sales she generates can be determined by the average sales quota for the region. This analysis gives the company realistic expectations of how many sales the representative will likely make, according to the University of West Florida. Also, the representative's sales can be compared to the industry average, which is more feasible when the sales representative’s coverage extends beyond territories.
The effectiveness of the sales process needs to be assessed for training and mentoring purposes. Successful sales methods can be determined by comparing the success of past marketing techniques.
Market research is necessary to make sales decisions. Market research can be conducted through phone interviews and surveys of customers. Market research can also be conducted by studying sales statistics. Products that continue to sell or sell out might need to be expanded. Products that are waning in sales might need a more aggressive advertising campaign or need to be discontinued so sales representatives can focus on selling other products.