A team without sales objectives is like a ship without a sail. The boat is at the whim of the wind and sea, and your sales team is directionless without clear guidance.

Set your sales team up for success by developing sales objectives. They provide a direction for the sale department to reach goals like closing more deals, increasing revenue, retaining customers, and cross-selling.

So, what are sales objectives? I'm glad you asked. You don't want to miss out on the benefits they provide.

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What are sales objectives?

Sales objectives are used by management to supplement the vision and goals they have set for the company and sales department. The sales objectives outline the specific, measurable actions each employee must take to achieve the overall goal.

For example, let's say the sales team has a goal of increasing revenue over the next six months. To reach this goal, each salesperson's objective is to increase the amount of revenue they bring each month by 2%.

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Both sales goals and objectives are discussed and set by the leadership team and communicated to the entire sales team, often with a sales plan. For sales objectives to be effective, SMART goals are often used to provide. These sales goals are:

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant
  • Time-bound

Sales metrics are used to monitor the progress and evaluate the success of the sales organization as they carry out the sales objectives.

Sales Objective Examples

Types of Sales Objectives

A business' sale objectives often fall within one of the following categories, but objectives can vary from company to company.

  1. Cycle time
  2. Leads
  3. Win rate
  4. Revenue
  5. Profit margins
  6. Customer acquisition costs
  7. Customer retention
  8. Churn rate
  9. Cross-sell and upsell

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Track and analyze all of these sales objectives with HubSpot's free Sales Metrics Calculator. 

When setting sales objectives for your team, remember to keep the long-term goal in mind.

What do the different types of sales objectives look like in practice? We'll take a look at some sales objective examples and the goals that are driving them.

Let's dive in.

1. Reduce cycle time by automating email prospecting.

Sales objective type: Cycle time

Reducing cycle time helps the sales team reach its goal of closing deals quicker. Focus your sales objectives for cycle time around automation, thorough research, and planning. This will help your sales team move leads through the sales process quicker.

2. Spend one hour each day prospecting to find good-fit leads.

Sales objective type: Leads

The goal is to increase the number of high-quality leads generated by the sales team. With more leads, there's a higher likelihood of closing more deals and achieving more revenue.

3. Increase win rates by 5% in Q1.

Sales objective type: Win rate

Win rate is a key indicator in the success of a sales team or individual contributor: the more deals won, the more revenue generated for the company.

4. Bring in 9% more revenue each month.

Sales objective type: Revenue

This objective can be set for either an individual salesperson or a sales team to reach the goal of increasing the amount of revenue they bring in. More revenue can be achieved by increasing the transaction size of each customer or the number of customers.

5. Limit the number of discounts given to prospects.

Sales objective type: Profit margins

If the leadership team's goal is to increase profit margins, there are a few objectives they can pursue. For instance, salespeople can minimize the number of discounts offered to prospects each month. Or the leadership team could set an objective to increase prices or bundle products to create different price points.

6. Reduce customer acquisition costs by 15% this month.

Sales objective type: Customer acquisition costs

The broader goal is to reduce the amount it costs a company to acquire new customers. This objective can be achieved by identifying where the most money is spent throughout your sales process. Focus on improving specific areas to reduce overall costs.

7. Improve customer retention by 30% by the end of the year.

Sales objective type: Customer retention

Once you've sold to prospects and they converted to customers, the ultimate goal is to retain them. Set sales objectives that focus on improving customer experience, staying in touch, resolving issues quickly, and rewarding loyalty.

8. Reduce customer churn rate by 3% within Q3 and Q4.

Sales objective type: Churn rate

Reducing churn rate is an objective that can be used to improve customer retention and revenue goals. Customer churn is often the result of selling to poor-fit prospects or not providing customers with the support they need after buying. Identify what's causing your customers to churn and set objectives to reach the goal.

9. Monitor customers in the CRM on a weekly basis to identify cross-sell and upsell opportunities.

Sales objective type: Cross-sell and upsell

If your goal is to increase the amount of cross-sells and upsells, a CRM database can help you identify the customers who have checked out a product page or requested a demo for a new feature. Setting the objective for salespeople to regularly check the CRM will identify these opportunities.

With well-crafted sales objectives, your sales team will have a clear direction for achieving their goals. To learn more, check out the five characteristics of sales reps who meet and exceed their goals next.

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Originally published May 1, 2019 8:30:00 AM, updated May 25 2021


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