Sales Forecasting Software: An Ultimate Buyers’ Guide

Sales Forecasting Software is the means of forecasting future sales revenue regularly, quarterly, and annually by considering factors correlated with engagement, market, government regulations, business policy, seasonality, representative number, etc.

Sales Forecasting is an effective means of revenue management. Structured forecasting benefits businesses make hiring, knowledgeable budgeting decisions, and resource administration.

Examples of Sales Forecasting Software

Salesforce Sales Cloud: Increase real-time distinctness of the team’s pipeline and prediction with precision so you can grow your business with confidence. Drive growth with Sales Cloud 360, the best-in-class sales solution that has helped power the world’s best sales teams on the world’s #1 CRM platform. As a result, firms of all sizes, industries, and geographies, realize value faster with Sales Cloud 360. You also get access to 150,000+ sales organizations and a 2 million user-strong community passionate about sales growth.

Zoho CRM: Zoho CRM enables sales teams with a 360º customer association lifecycle management solution. Key characteristics include contact management, AI-powered conversational assistant, task management, marketing campaigns, sales funnels, pipeline control, workflow self-regulation, sales forecasting, client support & service, inventory management, recording & analytics, and seamlessly uniting with 500+ popular manufacturers apps in a unique business system.

monday.com: On monday.com Work OS, sales managers can monitor all of their team’s ongoing deals at a glance. Start within an hour using ready-made sales templates. Then leverage embedded workflow analytics to make better data-driven decisions about your priorities. The single most straightforward way to maximize your team’s potential, this drag-and-drop platform provides instant clarity on your pipeline, forecasted and actual revenue, deals by a representative, and team capacity.

Users of Sales Forecasting Software

  • Marketing: The marketing team can use the deal risk profiling in the software to adjust their ABM strategy and understand their contribution to sales revenue.
  • Sales Operations / Administrators: The sales forecast is one of the primary constraints of the sales transactions team. Forecasting software protects the sales rep and sales transactions team time by automating information capture and data update into the CRM and provides flexible modeling possibilities to come up with the most accurate forecast.
  • Finance: The most significant advantage of the sales forecasting software is it provides the finance and accounting teams the knowledge they require on earnings metrics which encourages them to develop their resource plan.

Critical Benefits of Sales Forecasting Software

  • Sales Planning: Sales forecasting furnishes sales managers a glimpse into the future anticipated revenue. Depending on the budget, the sales managers can improve their approach to hit the numbers. If the measures exceed the quota, it helps the sales ops crew plan for additional sales reps, allocate more marketing budget, and generate new technology to support the growing organization.
  • Motivation and Performance of Teams: The primary question the forecast answer is if the company will meet a sales allowance or not. If yes, administrators can stimulate the team to beat the forecast, especially the driving growth teams. If not, it encourages the underperforming teams to push harder to reach the numbers.
  • Sales Forecasting Process: A good sales forecast should be collaborative across teams and businesses (sales, marketing, finance, supply chain), data-driven, and real-time. Organizations usually struggle with diverse groups using different methodology/tools to make the forecasting. Standardizing and bringing consistency in the forecasting process across the organization is the most significant benefit the sales leadership sees in forecasting tools.
  • Sales Activity Management: Sales activity management includes keeping track of what your sales reps are doing for every deal in the pipeline. These activities work as immeasurable signals to circumscribe the risk attached with each value, one of the most critical determinants in the sales forecasting model. This software retains a record of all the activities performed by the sales rep across channels and provides managers visibility into rep activity.
  • Improve Company-wide Accountability: Forecasts help in identifying weak contributions to revenue. It can be further penetrated down from enterprise-level to geographic level to account level to transactions rep level. You can also slice it if participation from certain products is lower. Hence forecasts can help recognize areas to double down on at most granular levels to adhere to targets.

Prerequisites to buying Sales Forecasting Software

  • Consistent Sales Process: A defined sales process outlining the steps needed to close a sale is a must. If the reps follow different processes, it becomes challenging to assign closing probabilities and forecast suffers.
  • Defined Sales Goals: The forecast has to be benchmarked against the target so that you can leverage your sales team accordingly. The goals must be represented at the rep level, team level, department level, business unit level, and ultimately at the org level.
  • Integration:  It is the most crucial factor determining how good your forecast is the nature of your data. So all the current systems capturing data must be blended with forecasting tools. It may also be feasible to start charging new data points and create a robust infrastructure so that all the data goes to the device in the format that the tools needed. Hence be ready with a comprehensive enterprise commitment before you buy a sales forecasting tool.
  • Data Consistency: Different sales teams have a different understanding of the clients and customers. Also, depending on the frequency of the update, the CRM creates an incomplete view of the customer. Hence it becomes necessary for sales teams to collaborate on customer issues so that CRM has one unified customer view.
  • Standard Sales pipeline: Your CRM should be updated with opportunities and their stages of progress like qualified, demo done, contract sent, negotiation in progress, etc.
  • Subjectivity: Forecasts are ultimately a function of the assumptions that go into the model, which are subjective decisions made by the forecaster about using data. Particular subjectivity is always inherent in the sales forecast if it takes sales feedback to decide a deal’s closing probability.
  • Known Average Sales Cycle: Having a good understanding of the time taken to generate a lead, prospect, pitch, close, onboard, renewal rates, etc., helps improve the forecast accuracy.
  • Size of the Sales Team: Organisations with multiple products selling across numerous geographies and big sales teams are ideal for buying sales forecasting software. So instead of every small group doing a separate forecast, a single tool helps align everyone to a standard forecasting methodology.