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Sales Pipeline Management: How to Make it Work For You

Four Frameworks to Make Your Sales Pipeline Work for You

At its core, a sales pipeline is an organizational tool meant to help Account Executives organize ongoing deals so they can take a systematic approach to working on deals and moving them toward closing.

But in practice, sales pipelines can often be more about appeasing management than helping sales reps.

However, with the right frameworks in place around your sales pipeline, you can reclaim the power of pipeline management to help you optimize your time, reduce time wasted on bad opportunities, and flag stagnant opportunities. Below are some essential frameworks to keep in mind when you think about your sales pipeline:

1. Pipelines Tell You Where to Take Action

A well-maintained pipeline will help you visualize exactly what stages your deals are in, how long they’ve been there, and the next step needed to move them to the next stage.

Best practice is to work to keep a fairly even pipeline, so you always have deals moving through each of the sales stages, and you don’t focus too much on prospecting at the expense of closing or vice-versa.

When you examine your pipeline, check to see if certain stages are more bloated than the others. If so, it is likely an indicator that you need to spend more time checking in on deals in that stage, determining what you can do to move them forward, or cleaning up the data if deals are stagnant and not going anywhere.

2. Pipeline Bloat Only Slows You Down

Many managers ask sales reps to maintain a certain multiple of their quota in their pipeline to demonstrate sufficient pipeline coverage. As such, it can be tempting to keep old opportunities open so that pipeline numbers look strong and keep your manager off your back.

But pipeline bloat doesn’t help anyone. Every open opportunity means time you need to spend updating data, demonstrating activity, and diverting your attention from the deals that are actually likely to close. Work to be honest with yourself and your manager about opportunities that should be cleaned out of your pipeline, so your time can be saved for working on the highest-value deals. 

3. Clean Pipelines Help Demonstrate Your Impact to Your Manager

When reps don’t hit quota or seem to be a little behind on the quarter’s number, managers come asking questions. 

A well-maintained pipeline enables sales reps to walk their managers through not only the status of their ongoing deals but also demonstrate all the actions they’ve taken to move deals along in the quarter. 

The better maintained a pipeline is, the more accurately reps can point to when they expect deals to close, the actions they’ve taken to increase their propensity to win, and the actions they still need to take to improve their chances. These actions build trust and help establish a little leeway when the quarter’s number isn’t as strong as expected.

4. Maintaining Your Pipeline Doesn’t Have to be a Drag

You don’t have to tell us. Salesforce and other CRMs can be… well… clunky, to say the least. Updating data on CRMs is exhausting. And when you’re done, you have to re-enter your data into a forecast sheet at the end of the week. If you want more insights from the data you just entered, you probably need to request a Salesforce admin to help you build a report or dashboard, which can take weeks, if the request is even granted!

But modern software is helping sales reps update their data, visualize their pipelines, and highlight the most impactful actions they can take to move deals forward, without having to deal with their CRM at all. 

Just because updating your data right now is a drag doesn’t mean it has to be. With the right tools in place, viewing your sales pipeline can be as easy as clicking a button.

Get Your Pipeline Under Control with Patri RevFit AI Free

Want to easily visualize your pipeline health with the click of a button?

Patri RevFit AI is a revenue intelligence platform that makes pipeline management intuitive, powerful, and proactive. Powered by machine learning, Patri RevFit AI automatically analyzes your opportunities and assesses their propensity to win, their relative fit for your company’s selling profile, their likely close date, and the most impactful next steps you can take to move the deal along. At a higher level, Patri RevFit AI will also predict your likely quota attainment and utilizing a partnership with ChatGPT, provide intelligent insights and next steps for how to move your deal forward.

Patri generates a sales pipeline report, which includes likely quota attainment, ICP Fit Scores, and deal insights.

Patri RevFit AI visualizes the health of a user’s pipeline, including likely quota attainment, highlighting strongest and weakest deals, and categorizing deals by the strength of their fit.

 

Patri RevFit AI helps users do the following:

  • Clean your pipeline quickly and easily
  • Quantify the health and winnability of each opportunity
  • Identify low-probability opportunities and flag them for additional qualification
  • Produce AI-generated next steps to help you move your deals toward closing
  • Generate a visually appealing report that you and your manager can use to understand your progress on opportunities
  • Predict likely close dates, helping salespeople make more accurate commitments
  • Utilize machine learning to output predicted attainment for the quarter

Want to visualize your sales pipeline health with Patri RevFit AI?

Try RevFit AI for free or speak to a product expert if you want to learn more.

With instant AI-powered revenue intelligence for every team and every opportunity, you can identify the deals and actions that will make or break your quarter, refine your forecast, and focus resources solely on what will help you win.

Try Patri RevFit AI Free