Though 2020 is (blessedly) behind us, most companies don't have the luxury of taking a breather. Last year took a lot out of all of everyone — and that goes double for business owners and sales teams.
A lot of revenue was lost in the unadulterated chaos, unspeakable tragedy, and frantic scrambling that characterized this past year — and now, we're stuck picking up the pieces. And while that task is imposing, it's not insurmountable.
Recovering lost revenue is a tall order, but it's still totally doable. Here, we'll go over some routes you can take to best approach that challenge.
Recovering Lost Revenue From 2020
Focus on time-tracking.
See if you can sway marketing to make some adjustments.
Streamline and automate administrative tasks.
Refine your lead generation infrastructure.
1. Adjust prices.
Selling at the wrong price point — whether it be too high or too low — takes a toll on revenue. If your sales were less than stellar in 2020, you might want to take a good hard look at your pricing strategy.
And while nailing an effective price for your product or service is much easier said than done, there are still certain techniques you can leverage to help you get there.
You have to understand the state of your industry and how your competition sets their prices. Having a feel for where you want to stand — relative to any alternatives — is central to pricing thoughtfully and recovering lost revenue.
Beyond that, you need to consider current demand for your product or service and broader economic conditions. You also need to take the fixed and variable costs associated with your product or service's production.
With those factors in mind, you'll need to experiment with various pricing strategies — and with some trial and error, you should eventually land on a price point that helps you recover at least some of the revenue you lost last year.
Before we move on, take a quick look at this video overview of how other sales leaders are approaching 2021:
2. Focus more on time-tracking.
Staying on top of time-tracking is particularly relevant for contractors and businesses that bill clientele based on hourly rates. If your business fits that bill, then you need to have a solid pulse on exactly how much time you work on a project for a customer.
Being mindful and diligent when tracking the hours you work for clients can be crucial when trying to recover lost revenue. If you consistently sell yourself short when tracking and documenting the time you spend on a project, you're bound to lose out on appropriate payment.
While this particular point might seem a bit less consequential than the rest, it can still be a significant financial drain. Be sure to button this side of things up and keep from unnecessarily bleeding revenue here and there.
3. See if you can sway marketing to make some adjustments.
Sometimes the blame for lost revenue doesn't fall squarely on your sales team. Obviously, marketing has a hand in reining in customers — and if that department isn't pulling its weight, you're prone to losing out on potential business.
Your company's marketing strategy might be dated, irrelevant, or just flat-out ineffective. In those cases, doing more extensive market research, taking your competition's strategies into account, and tinkering with your broader marketing philosophy is probably the way to go.
There needs to be some productive give and take between departments. If your marketing efforts aren't pulling in enough solid leads for you to work with, you'll probably need to have some frank conversations with that team to ensure that both sides of the business are complementing each other effectively.
4. Streamline and automate administrative tasks.
Time is money — so if you waste the former, you're bound to waste the latter. Burdening your sales team with easily automatable administrative responsibilities is inefficient and can undermine your reps' ability to sell freely and generate revenue.
Sales automation software allows you to streamline otherwise-time-consuming tasks and gives your salespeople more time to do what they're hired to do — sell! That's why it helps to invest in a system like a CRM to take the legwork out of processes that don't need to be done manually.
The volume and quality of leads your sales team ultimately deals with have a significant bearing on your ability to generate revenue. If you lost revenue in 2020, you might want to look into your lead generation techniques and qualification criteria.
Take a look at your lead generation infrastructure. How are you finding and connecting with leads in the first place? Ensure those avenues are well-constructed, effective, and drawing in a significant base of potential contacts.
Further down the line, you need to make sure that your lead qualification process and criteria are relevant and productive. If the leads your sales team are working with are consistently going nowhere, you'll likely need to reevaluate how they're qualified. Once you have that side of things straightened out, you'll be in a better place to start recovering some of your lost revenue.
2020 is gone, but its residual impact on businesses is far from over with. A lot of revenue was left on the table last year, and it's going to be a struggle to recoup it. But as overwhelming as that undertaking might seem, it shouldn't intimidate you. It's going to take some serious thought, strategy, and hard work — but if you approach it with tact, patience, and effort, you'll be able to figure it out.
Originally published Feb 22, 2021 8:30:00 AM, updated March 18 2021