Predictive Sales Analytics in a Nutshell And How to Use it in Your Sales Strategy


Share on LinkedIn


Today’s businesses can take advantage of many exciting technologies. Some of these, like the augmented reality shopping experience, help customers make informed choices about their purchases. Others, like predictive sales analytics, help businesses make informed choices about their customers. 

It’s easy to be skeptical about such a concept but have no fear. This is a data-driven strategy that’s very likely to yield results. Read on for more details about this exciting approach to boosting sales.

What is predictive sales analytics?

Image Source

Predictive sales analytics uses data about your customers to anticipate what they’ll do. It can help you spot opportunities you’ve missed and make informed guesses about your future. If you’ve considered automation opportunities in the sales process, it can also have an element of automation to it if a tool is used to carry it out.

A predictive sales analytics program measures certain metrics within your business, such as the number of deals you close each month. You can use these metrics to determine how well your business is performing, or if you’re falling short (e.g., your close rate is too low). You can, in turn, use this information to identify problems and work more effectively in the future.

Specialized predictive sales analytics tools allow you to easily process large amounts of this information. Although we can undertake predictive sales analytics without a tool (when we’re deciding which leads to pursue, for example) using some kind of AI-powered tool like business voip is often preferable, given the amount of data needed to make informed choices.

Importance of predictive sales analytics

When used properly, predictive sales analytics can help you to refine various aspects of your day-to-day sales strategy. These refinements will ripple out and positively impact your overall sales performance.

Better sales forecast accuracy

Machine learning tools like kudu software will make it easier to store and identify relevant data for your sales forecasts. These analytics tools may provide you with ideas on how to use them efficiently in addition to offering data such as previous sales and industry trends.

These analytics can also give you an accurate idea of how much revenue you should be earning over a specific time span. This allows you to make more realistic business decisions and avoid any nasty surprises. 

Image Source

We can typically understand future revenue by looking at recent customer interactions and recent sales numbers. If this latter number is lower than expected, we can use this to drive improvements to our sales strategy.

This kind of data analysis is also useful for different kinds of assessments. For instance, we can use it to compare our performance against average performance metrics. If we’re falling short, this suggests we need to modify our sales coaching techniques.

Improved lead generation

Predictive sales analytics allows you to identify leads that are more likely to buy something from you. It also allows you to improve your strategies for attracting people to your business and establish reliable strategies for closing a deal. If you’re struggling with cold sales emails, for instance, this tool can help you refine them.

A further benefit of this analysis is the automation of certain tasks. It can help you identify common customer questions, ensuring sales staff are ready to deal with key concerns. This kind of automation lets you devote more time to potential leads and increase the likelihood of a sale.

Understand customers better

Elsewhere, predictive sales analytics help you drill down a little further into specific customer types. You may want to establish common customer motivations, which, in turn, results in more sales or a streamlined sales process.

Understanding customers properly can aid in other tasks, such as marketing. If you can identify specific customer types, this can produce better promotions and marketing campaigns.

How predictive sales analytics can improve your sales

But enough tinkering around the edges: how will predictive sales analytics positively affect your sales numbers? This can be done in several different ways. 

Disruption and innovation

Image Source

Although it’s (arguably) hackneyed as a term, disruption is still a key part of doing business today. That’s also true when talking about predictive sales analytics, which can be a highly disruptive tool within your business.

These analytics accomplish this by predicting changes in the broader marketplace. These predictions allow you to anticipate changes and alter your business practices as needed. You might want to change your overall business model or consider how you can meet your customers’ needs more effectively. 

As we discussed earlier, the key to this kind of disruption is plenty of accurate data. If your data is inaccurate or incomplete, this means your predictions (about the marketplace or anything else business-related) will be skewed, and your business will suffer for it.

Enhance sales process

The sales process is (or should be) a key concern of your business plan. The data you glean from predictive sales analysis can help you make this as strong as possible.

A good sales process isn’t just about things like messaging and personalization. Sometimes, it can be about whether you reach out to somebody at all. Analytics data can tell you if someone is likely to buy something from you. You can use this data to inform your communications with them going forwards.

Furthermore, you can use data to home in on likely prospects. This is achieved by looking at the behavior of your biggest spenders and looking for similar behavior in other people. If you find these commonalities (e.g. in pages visited, products bought, or services signed up for), you may wish to reach out to them.

That said, it’s not enough to merely find some common characteristics. You need to add personalized services like providing CCaaS cloud customer support to the sales process. This ranges from simple tactics (like using customer names in emails) to more complex ones (like personalized product recommendations). It even determines when you communicate with somebody as customers may be more or less receptive to a message at different times.

Improve customer retention

Image Source

While you always want to gain more customers, it may be worth focusing on the ones you already have. This is because it’s more labor-intensive to find a new customer than keep an existing one. As such, customer retention strategies are very important.

While your data will show you who your biggest spenders are, it may also show customers whose spending with you is increasing. Both of these are important. It’s essential you understand why they might leave. Use your data (including factors like a customer’s exit page) to work out common reasons for your customers’ departure and see if your big spenders are vulnerable to them. 

Upsell and cross-sell

Another way to personalize your communications with customers is with specific recommendations. While the strategies we just discussed tend to target bigger customers, upselling and cross-selling often focus on smaller ones instead.

Predictive sales analytics data allows you to identify certain behaviors across different customer segments. For example, your analysis may show that people who buy a specific product go on to buy another specific product within a certain time span. Equipped with this knowledge, you may want to discount or bundle these products to encourage this course of action. 

Key takeaways

Predictive sales analytics lets us put our data to proper use. By making the right connections between different chunks of data, we can identify valuable customers and increase the value of other ones. It also lets us make better choices about future actions. Given the growing popularity of predictive analytics, these tools are an increasingly smart choice.

If you’re ready to delve into predictive sales analytics, take some time to consider what you want to achieve and what you’re working with. Make sure your data collection is both accurate and comprehensive too. By combining this with the right analytics tool, you’ll be able to work more efficiently and effectively than ever before. 

Richard Conn
Richard Conn is the Senior Director for Demand Generation at 8x8, a leading communication platform with integrated contact center, voice, video, and chat functionality. Richard is an analytical & results-driven digital marketing leader with a track record of achieving major ROI improvements in fast-paced, competitive B2B environments.


Please use comments to add value to the discussion. Maximum one link to an educational blog post or article. We will NOT PUBLISH brief comments like "good post," comments that mainly promote links, or comments with links to companies, products, or services.

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here