Analyzing the Sales Opportunity Pipeline

Continuing with yesterday’s post on Mining the Sales Opportunity History for Insights, there’s another more common sales leader and executive function: regularly reviewing the sales pipeline. Early in the startup lifecycle, the sales pipeline is often more sporadic as the sales stages and process are being developed. Then, as the sales process matures and there’s more operating history, the pipeline becomes an importance source of forecasting.

Here are a few questions to ask when analyzing the sales opportunity pipeline:

  • What’s our coverage ratio goal? What’s our current coverage ratio? Coverage ratio is the sales pipeline relative to quota (typically 3:1 is a starting point).
  • What opportunities are in our normal range for average amount (value), average sales cycle (days from opportunity creation to close), and any other key data points?
  • How well does each opportunity meet the MEDDICC qualification standard?
  • How has each opportunity moved forward or backward in the time period since the last review?
  • What is the next step with the opportunity?
  • Anything else we need to know about the opportunity?

Reviewing the sales opportunity pipeline is a regular part of growing a startup. Build a process and include a consistent set of questions.

What else? What are some more questions to ask when analyzing the sales opportunity pipeline?

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