The modern sales process is a lengthy process that includes many tactics, steps, and practices. As much as it’s important to generate leads and convert them to hit your sales targets, it is equally important to monitor the activities of your sales team and track your sales revenue.
If you notice a drop or spike in your sales performance, this could be an indication that something is wrong with your sales process – probably a change in market trend or demand, an issue with your product, or a problem with your sales strategies.
Regardless of what the problem is, a sales report can provide business managers with insights into the sales activities, how the sales reps are performing, and general market changes to modify your existing sales strategies and initiatives.
Usually, the sales team tracks sales on a daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, or yearly basis to increase their performance, manage their activities, and generate remarkable sales results. Sales managers and reps get a detailed overview of all the relevant sales processes and metrics to optimize their sales approach to ensure healthy business growth.
Although sales reporting in the past was disintegrated and manual, there are many modern sales reporting software available for sales teams to use to create interactive reports in form of a dashboard that makes it easy for everyone within and outside the sales team to track and monitor the sales activities.
More importantly, there are numerous sales report templates available for sales reps to download and use to create sales reports. In this guide, we will share everything you should know about creating sales reports for better sales results in 2023.
Table of Contents
- What is a sales report?
- What is a sales report template?
- Why are sales reports important
- Key metrics to include in your sales report template
- Advantages of setting up a sales report template
- Sales report templates
- How to make sales report?
- How to make a sales report to your boss
- Steps to develop an effective sales report
- Tips for your sales reporting process
What is a sales report?
A sales report otherwise known as a sales analysis report is a document that describes the sales activities and performance of a company. It uses powerful data visualizations and interactive technology to provide insights into the financial capacity of a company and find trends and patterns that can be used to improve its sales service and enhance growth.
Sales reports give business leaders and sales managers a snapshot of the company’s exercise within a specific period to gain a better understanding of its financial situation and help them determine the best action and decision to make the situation better.
With a sales report, you can find new marketing opportunities and discover historical factors that could affect your company’s success and ultimately improve your business results with sales data from modern sales reporting software.
Companies track their sales performance at different times, a daily sales report tracks sales KPIs that are critical to daily sales activities such as the number of phone calls or meetings set up by a sales rep or typically the number of sales leads generated in a day. A weekly sales report monitors sales activities carried out over a longer period – track the number of deals closed by the sales team or revenue generated.
A monthly, quarterly, and yearly report tracks sales operations on a longer basis and gives you a bigger picture of each sales representative or the sales team as a whole. Compiling all this on a sales dashboard enables you to automate your sales tasks and focus more of your time on more important human-centric tasks.
What is a sales report template?
A sales report is beneficial to the effective operations and growth of sales teams and the company as a whole. From the performance report of the company, sales reports can help the sales team and the company prepare for the future and help you align your goals for better success.
A sales report template is a predefined layout of a sales report that is available for sales teams to download and customize to create their own report. Sales report templates work by filling in the required data in the preset field to generate the visual summary of your sales team’s and company’s progress towards achieving their sales goals.
Sales managers, sales leaders, and sales reps use sales report templates to get performance overviews and provide actionable insights into the key organizational metrics such as deal value, sales pipeline, sales forecasts, and sales team to improve your decision-making.
Sales leaders can use sales report templates to quickly generate reports and keep track of the company’s churn rate, revenue forecast, the performance of sales campaigns, active deals in the pipeline, the average deal size they are pursuing, and how close they are to achieving their sales quotas.
Why are sales reports important
Sales reports are important to sales teams and the entire organization for the following reasons:
1. Improve productivity and performance
Sales reports give you a clear overview of how your sales team is performing, the number of deals they close, and overall revenue generated over a specific period – week, month, quarter, or year. From this report, the sales managers and reps can see how they are doing and use this to develop new strategies that can help them improve their productivity and financial performance.
2. Help them make informed decisions
Sales reports help sales teams to generate accurate and up-to-date sales data that can show them where they are performing well and where they need to improve. These data can enable the team to make better-informed decisions on the future techniques or practices to go for. The daily or weekly reports can help them identify activities or tactics that need to be removed or improved.
3. Increase efficiency
Sales reports can help your sales team to determine what sales leads and initiatives are worth pursuing and those that need to be ignored. When your sales team knows where to focus their time, attention, and sales efforts, it enables them to save time and generate incredible results from your sales campaigns.
4. They ensure constant monitoring
There is a saying that you can’t improve what you don’t know, this also applies to sales operations and performance tracking. The sales process is a lengthy and dynamic one, and so things can always be really fast in a week, month, or quarter which can be a result of internal or external factors.
Hence, sales reporting enables you to constantly monitor everything that’s going on with your sales process, so you can provide solutions to it on time before it goes out of hand.
5. They provide a navigational system for sales teams
Sales reports provide a form of “navigational aid” to guide sales teams in the right direction. Sales reporting enables you to get actionable insights that can help improve your sales performance and drive future revenue. The insights from your sales reporting help your sales team understand what’s important and focus your time and effort on these things to get better results.
6. They keep goals simple and clear
Sales can be very daunting and include so many activities that it is not surprising to see a sales rep forget some of their tasks and even fail to achieve thier goals. Sales reports can show your sales team important KPIs that need to be achieved to achieve impressive business results and constantly track how they are doing with achieving those KPIs. Check out the detailed guide about objectives and key results.
Key metrics to include in your sales report template
A key performance indicator (KPI) otherwise known as a sales effectiveness metric is a performance measurement used by sales managers and leaders to track and manage the effectiveness of the sales team activities and performance. The majority of modern sales teams are driven by their sales KPIs.
Usually, your business model and goals determine the KPIs you set for your sales team and business as a whole. The common KPIs to include in your sales report template includes:
Sales qualified leads (SQLs) are leads that have been passed down from the marketing department – known as the marketing qualified leads (MQLs). Following some set conditions by the sales department, MQLs become SQLs, which are leads that have been nurtured by the sales team and are more likely to make a purchase. A sales report shows the number of SQLs available in your sales funnel.
2. The number of emails sent and calls made
Sales reports show and monitor the number of emails and call a sales team/rep makes within a specific period. This KPI enables you to determine how productive your sales reps are and identify the specific sales-related activities they perform that result in demos and bookings.
Trials are essential KPIs to include in your sales reports especially if your business operates on a SaaS model. It counts the number of accounts that sign up for your product trials and begin within a specified time period. So essentially if the marketing teams generate a substantial amount of leads, sales teams can use the trial KPI metric to qualify and eventually close the sales deal.
4. Completed activities per user
This metric helps you determine which sales activities are most valuable and identify which reps are hitting their sales quotas. This metric also specifically tracks the number of completed sales activities.
5. Sales cycle length
This metric measures the amount of time between first meetings or interactions with prospects to the time they eventually close the deal. Sales cycle length helps you determine how long it takes to convert a lead to paying customer and to measure the effectiveness and efficiency of your sales process.
6. New deals added
This KPI tracks the number of new deals added to your pipeline. Since it’s important for sales reps to consistently add new deals to the pipeline, this KPI helps you identify a gap in your sales record in terms of the number of deals. With this discovery, you can plan and strategize on the best practices to drive more leads into your pipeline.
7. Average cost per lead
This KPI measures how much it cost the company to get a new lead. It is directly related to the cost of acquiring new customers. The average cost per lead considers all marketing expenses incurred when gaining new customers.
8. Sales growth
This KPI tracks and measures the sales growth, which also means the growth of the company. It is an efficient way to monitor the rate at which your company is growing within a specific period.
9. New deal value
Considering the volume of leads doesn’t necessarily translate to the value or monetary benefit they bring the company. This KPI determines the value of leads and enables sales teams to identify the order of deals prioritization so they don’t put too much of their time and effort into deals will low value.
10. Deals lost vs. Deals won
As the name implies, this KPI measure the number of deals won with the number of deals lost within a specific time period. In situations where you won many deals, it identifies some of the common threads or specific actions that sales reps performed to nurture the leads and successfully move them down the funnel till they become customers.
In the same vein, measuring the deals lost also helps you identify common threads or activities that are dominant among leads that were lost. Essentially, this helps the team identify what they are doing wrong to improve on it.
11. Lead conversion rate
Conversion rate is one of the most important KPIs for sales teams. It measures the effectiveness of the sales teams at converting new leads into customers. Lead conversion rate is important to help you assess the efficiency of your sales strategy and determine whether your sales revenue targets are realistic enough for your sales teams. Find the guide about lead to revenue management.
12. Average conversion time
This metric measures how long it takes for a prospect to convert on average. This enables your sales team to moderate their expectations with regard to sales performance.
CLV is another crucial KPI that sales teams must measure to determine their customer value to the business. Customer lifetime value is the prediction of how much a customer is worth to your business throughout the period of your relationship with them.
In addition to CLV, sales reports can also measure the lifetime value of their customers to increase their chances of generating recurring revenue.
Churn rate is a measure of how many customers stop doing business with your company over a specific period. Churn rates have the ability to impact your sales forecasts and ultimately let you know why the customers stopped doing business with you. If it’s an internal thing, you work on it and improve for future cases.
Advantages of setting up sales report templates
Beyond the general importance of creating sales reports – which is to make more money and save time – it also helps to target customers with tailored, data-driven strategies to improve customer satisfaction and experience.
Some of the significant business benefits of setting up a sales report template include:
1. It enables you to monitor all your relevant KPIs in one centralized location without having to go back and forth with multiple sources to compare and analyze them
2. It allows for activities, goals, and strategies of both the sales and marketing teams to be aligned with the comprehensive sales dashboard metrics.
3. It makes data to remain accessible and easily interpreted at various stages of the sales and marketing steps.
4. It gives you access to individual sales rep dashboards for real-time customer analytics and inventory control which will eventually help them improve decision making.
5. A sales report template can give you a quick at-a-glance view of the performance of the entire organization. It specifically helps you gain valuable insights from the data that every member of the organization, even non-technical members can easily understand. It also uses data visualization features with the dashboard.
Sales report templates
Sales reports are tracked and monitored at different times, usually, daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly to improve the efficiency and performance of the sales department and the organization as a whole.
Daily sales report template is used to track and measure the daily activities and efficiency of the sales reps, sales manager, and the business on a daily basis. Although daily reports are not focused on sales outcomes – outcome metric such as the results gotten from the sales efforts, that sales reps can’t control – rather it focuses on the process metric – the daily activities that sales reps can control such as the number of calls made, emails sent, etc.
The weekly sales report template measures and track the individual performance of sales reps in a given week. It tracks KPIs like lead conversion ratio, lead to opportunity ratio, total sales per region, sales volume by channel, etc., on a weekly basis.
The monthly sales report template is used to monitor, evaluate and analyze sales trends, activities, and performance in a given month. Monthly sales reports provide a longer overview of how your sales reps and company is performing in a long run.
The quarterly sales report and yearly sales report are used to measure sales operations and performance on a much longer basis – every quarter and year respectively.
In this section, we have identified some of the most popular sales report templates in 2023.
1. Sales status dashboard template
A sales status dashboard template gives sales teams a glance at the current status of new leads, prospects, and targets in the sales pipeline. It measures key metrics such as sales opportunities, revenue growth, and regional data in sales status templates.
2. Monthly sales dashboard template
Monthly sales dashboard templates help companies to develop monthly strategies to improve their sales performance. It measures and visualizes data gotten from metrics such as monthly sales, revenue, customers, monthly retention, and expansion rate in the monthly sales template.
3. Sales performance dashboard template
The sales performance template helps to track the sales performance of sales teams in an organization. Since sales performance is one of the most relevant sales KPIs that can help teams increase sales and do away with redundant strategies. It tracks important metrics such as sales growth, target, cost acquisition, and customer lifetime value.
4. Sales KPI Dashboard template
A sales KPI dashboard combines all relevant key performance metrics in one template to help sales teams monitor the important aspects effectively. It measures key metrics such as the upsell and cross-sell rates, customer churn rate, incremental sales, and sales revenue per rep with profit margins.
5. Lead generation dashboard template
Lead generation is improtant to help sales teams boost their sales and fine-tune their marketing strategies for optimum performance and organizational growth. As a result, the lead generation dashboard helps teams to monitor how leads are introduced to the sales funnel. It measures key metrics such as lead sources, conversion rates, and proximity goals.
6. Sales team leaderboard template
A sales team leaderboard template helps the team fulfill the dual task of completing targets, improving team morale to boost sales performance. Its measures key metrics such as monthly recurring revenue, new customers, retention rate, and other important performance metrics to enhance sales.
7. Marketer dashboard template
Since sales and marketing work hand in hand to boost sales and ensure organizational growth. A marketer dashboard template can help sales teams visualize key performance metrics such as lead generation goals, conversion rates, and marketing team’s performance metrics for an overall analysis.
8. Executive dashboard template
An executive dashboard template can help you visualize important sales and business data and monitor executive decisions for your organization’s sales agenda. It measures key metrics such as monthly revenue growth, customer growth, and customer cycle data.
9. Product performance template
A product performance dashboard includes individual templates for every organization’s product to monitor how the products are performing, and to determine which are performing best and least performing. It measures key metrics such as product performance, sales increments, cost of goods, and in and off-store purchases.
10. Sales opportunities dashboard template
The sales opportunities dashboard looks into the sales opportunities constantly to expand sales. It measures key metrics such as the number of sales opportunities, average purchase value, sales value, current, and lost opportunities as well as all latest opportunities.
11. Customer acquisition costs (CAC)
Customer acquisition cost or acquisition cost is the total cost that a company incurs to gain a new customer such as discounts, incentives, closing costs, and other necessary expenditures. It tracks all the costs that a company takes on itself to signup for a new customer. The costs differ depending on the business type and the type of resources you use to acquire new customers.
Measuring your cost acquisition cost helps you improve the customer lifetime value over time.
12. Pipeline value forecast
A pipeline value forecast is used to predict the sales value of your business as well as the performance of your sales reps within a specific period of time – could be for the next three months. It analyzes your historical data to discover patterns and trends in your business market. It considers the value of your sales pipeline and committed deals.
13. Sales growth
Sales growth is one of the most important metrics tracked in a quarterly sales report. It measures the amount of revenue by sales representatives within a specific period. These metrics help sales teams to gain insights into the organizational financial situations to derive conclusions about the sales strategies. Sales growth can also help you monitor the individual performance of sales reps in driving sales results.
14. Number of meetings/calls per rep
This template measures the number of meetings and calls made by sales reps on a daily basis. This is an important part of the daily sales report template to help you see how your sales reps are performing. From this, you can easily determine how your KPIs are doing to help you eliminate KPIs that are not helping achieve your goals.
15. Lead response rate per rep
This measures the rate at which a sales representative responds to lead or prospects inquiries or certain actions, such as when they download content, subscribe to your newsletter, or signup for your webinar.
This is different from when a lead is requesting information or sending an email to the sales team – majorly because the sales rep is compelled to respond on time to these. The lead response rate looks into the effectiveness of the sales reps with regard to their response to leads.
16. Number of sales/close deals
As the name implies, this gives an overview of the number of sales and deals that the sales team is able to close within a specific period. It is an important business metric for retailers who have many items with low-added value and as a result, need to close as many sales deals as possible to make a profit margin.
17. Number of new leads per rep
As the name implies, this tracks and monitors the number of new leads that a sales rep adds to the pipeline. It identifies specific qualifications for leads and builds the report based on the numbers get. It is important when a sales rep struggles to improve their sales number due to their low-quality leads.
18. Number of touchpoints/per rep
This metric looks at the number of touchpoints that a sales rep uses to connect with the prospect. It specifically looks at the number of emails a sales rep sends to a potential customer that has indicated an interest in the product and the number of voice mails/phone conversations held with potential customers who have an interest in the company.
This metric seeks to provide an overall “effort or Outreach” KPI for every sales rep without making it easy to manipulate.
19. Average transaction size
Average transaction size is a retail KPI that is tracked to gain valuable information about customers by tracking their behaviors. It is specifically helpful to evaluate these KPIs as it can provide sales teams with actionable insights on how to adjust their advertising and online sales to correspond with the needs and interests of customers.
20. Total volume of daily sales
This is one of the metrics captured in a daily sales report. It measures the number of sales achieved on a daily basis. It is very important for the retail industry to measure this to determine which day of the week performed best in terms of sales volume, so as to leverage this for future sales.
How to make sales report?
When writing a sales report, you must always consider your final objectives and let this guide all your activities. There are some crucial questions that you must ask yourself when writing reports:
- Who are you reporting for and why?
- Is it for a weekly assessment or to evaluate a situation or a campaign project?
- What is the time period of the report?
- And What is the main message you want to share?
Once you can provide answers to these questions, it makes it easy to create and organize your report. You can create a sales report in the following ways:
1. Identify the audience of your sales report
Before creating your sales report, it is important for you to identify who the report will be for – who will be using them. Consider their background, scope of work, and their familiarity with some of the terms that you will be using in the report.
For example, if a CEO wants to gain an idea of the sales team and the company’s general sales performance, you can create a performance report to show all the activities of every sales rep with their performance.
2. Determine the purpose of your report
The next step after identifying the purpose of your report is to determine what the report will be used for – its purpose. This is important to help you understand why they need the report and what they can achieve with the report. Some of the common purposes of a report include:
- To present business figures to the management and key stakeholders to show the growth trend of the business and get budget approval from them.
- To identify industry sales trends to understand how the business industry works and develop ways you can improve your strategies.
- Gain valuable insights and understand the sales team activities to understand the team workload and make hire requests where necessary.
- It can be created to show sales teams how they are performing against other team members, particularly, to motivate them to hit their goals and improve their productivity and performance.
3. List the sales activities you want to measure
It is important that you list all the sales activities that you want to measure to help you generate sales data that can help your business. Identify some of the important sales-related tasks that your sales rep performs and consider using a CRM system to track the sales data.
Examples of sales activities to measure include the number of sales calls made, the number of product demos made, the number of revenue generated, the number of emails sent, etc.
4. Establish the scope of your research
After identifying the sales activities that you want to measure, the next step is to determine the metrics and items you will use in your report. Consider important metrics like the time period your report will be covering, the product line, and the sales team member included.
Regardless of the scope your choose for your report, ensure that it purpose of the sales report is identified in the first step and the audience it will be for.
5. Include sales plans and quotas
Include important information from your sales plan and key performance indicators (KPIs) like sales quotas where necessary in your sales report. You can achieve this by showing the actual sales vs. your sales goals. In situations where there is a significant difference in the sales quotas, sales managers must give business leaders, managers, and key stakeholders reasonable explanations for this.
6. Choose an appropriate report format
After you have identified all the above steps, the next step is for you to decide on how the information will be presented or displayed. Consider using data visualization elements such as bar charts, pie charts, tables, graphs, etc., to visualize sales data in a way recipients can easily view and understand. In this step, you must understand that the people you are creating the report for determines which format you choose.
7. Analyze and Interpret sales report
Now that all the above steps have been covered, the final step is to examine the sales data in your report by including the data analysis and interpretations. Doing this gives the report more context and completes it, making it easy and insightful for its audeince to access and understand.
Tools for creating a sales report
There are many tools available in the market to help you create sales reports. Aside from tools, there are also available templates that you can download and customize to create your sales report. However, for the full fulfillment of this topic, below are the two most popular sales reporting tools:
1. Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets
Google sheets or Microsoft Excel are spreadsheet software programs that you can use to create sales reports based on the data you enter. The advantage of using this is that it is less expensive, less technical, and easy to use.
The disadvantage of using Excel or Google sheets is that it’s not automated and can be repetitive, hence you create the process and manually maintain the reports.
2. Customer relationship management (CRM) Software
Customer relationship management (CRM) software is a system that helps businesses and sales and marketing teams to manage and track interactions with customers, store their information and automate several processes connected with a customer’s journey through the sales and marketing funnels.
A CRM system replaces all old forms of data collection methods like spreadsheets, multiple databases, and apps with a streamlined process that helps sales and marketing teams to connect all the data from sales leads and customers in a centralized location.
CRM software like Sloovi Outreach can help your streamline your sales process with better visibility, activity tracking, and clear prioritization.
Sloovi Outreach will enable your sales teams to smash your sales target, reduce cost, and improve sales productivity by tracking your daily sales workflow, creating customized and intuitive reports, scheduling more meetings, and prioritizing leads with dynamic Smart Views.
Sloovi Outreach has a report creation feature that provides sales leaders with all the insights about the activities of their sales reps and helps you create customized and intuitive reports.