What is sales management?

DSM Digital School of Marketing-sales management

The term ‘sales management’ refers to the coordination of people and resources to successfully produce the desired outcome. These long-term goals can cover a vast spectrum however, generally speaking, these are:

  • Increased sales volume,
  • Contribution to profits, and
  • Continuous growth.

To achieve these deliverables, sales managers have numerous responsibilities. These include, but are not limited to:

  • Demand/sales forecasting,
  • Establishing quotas/objectives,
  • Budgeting,
  • Organisation,
  • Recruitment,
  • Training,
  • Compensation, and
  • The evaluation of sales performance.

What is demand/sales forecasting?

The difference in forecasting product demand and product sales boils down to real numbers versus practice and instinct. Forecasting product sales usually involves more mathematical calculations as opposed to gauging product demand as the latter relies more strongly on economic conditions and consumer confidence in the market. Both methodologies leave room for error and are far from being an exact science.

How to forecast product demand

Predicting demand for a product is a type of sales prediction. Forecasting demand is a kind of macro sales forecasting which looks at gauging consumer interest in a specific product across the entire market.  Macro forecasting emphasises the existing level of demand for a product.

This forecasting technique also looks at how the current demand for products shapes demand in the future. Predicting demand necessitates detailed sales figures that are gathered from the current market in addition to numbers from past years. Evaluating future demand without previous sales figures, to make informed projections, is difficult but not impossible.

How to estimate product sales

Predicting product sales is a type of micro sales forecasting. This method of sales prediction focuses on a detailed product forecast in order to provide an organisation with concrete financial figures concerning expected product revenue.

While predicting demand concerns itself with consumer interests, sales forecasting focuses on a financial number. Micro forecasting governs the market share of a given product as well as how that market share will evolve over time. Market share is the percentage of total sales of a  particular product in comparison to the sales of competitor products across a given market segment.

What is a sales representative?

At the end of the day, however, the most important role of sales management is not to manage sales but to manage the people who make the sales – in other words: the sales representatives.

A sales representative is an individual who showcases as well as sells a product or products to businesses, organisations and government agencies. They do not sell directly to consumers. Sales representatives are crucial to manufacturers and wholesalers because they are the ones who promote and market the merchandise for these entities.

There is quite a variety of jobs available for sales representatives. This is because the product/s that they sell could range from soft drinks, sweets or office equipment to pharmaceutical supplies. Each product requires the sales representative to have an excellent understanding of the product. In addition, sales representatives are expected to attend conferences and trade shows so that they can keep up with products and customer needs.

Learn Sales Management with the Digital School of Marketing’s Sales Management Course

Are you interested in becoming a sales manager and managing a sales team? The Digital School of Marketing’s Sales Management Course will show you just how to do this! Modules in this course include:

  • The Role of Sales and Marketing
  • Marketing Communication Concepts
  • Sales Funnels
  • Personal Selling
  • Selling Processes
  • Sales Forecasting, Budgeting, and Pricing Strategies
  • Sales Planning and Requirements
  • Sales Training and Development
  • Role of Technology in Sales
  • Leadership in Sales
  • Customer Service in Sales
  • Supervise a technical project team

For more information, please follow this link.

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