5 Key Inside Sales Performance Metrics you Need to Be Tracking Right Now

5 Key Inside Sales Performance Metrics you Need to Be Tracking Right Now

5 Key Inside Sales Performance Metrics you Need to Be Tracking Right Now

The last thing any sales team needs is to be left in the dark over their performance. As the old adage goes: you can’t manage what you don’t measure.

Accurate sales metrics provide an effective way to measure every step of your process, quantifying team performance, productivity levels, strengthening decision-making and helping leaders to gain a more transparent view over where they’re excelling, or just falling short.

It’s no secret that as a sales leader, your numbers matter. Today, thanks to the range of readily-available, AI-based tools like SalesLoft and Outreach, we have more data at our fingertips than ever before. The question is: how do YOU use this data to its greatest effect?
 
Every salesperson knows the importance of tracking metrics. They’re the bread and butter of any great selling operation. But, with an endless range to choose from, how do you identify, track and monitor the most appropriate sales KPIs for your teams?
 
In this blog, we’ll take a deeper look at five inside sales metrics that you need to consider right now. 

 

What are Sales Metrics?

Sales metrics are the numerical portrayal of your sales initiatives. The data behind every touchpoint, phone call, email, social outreach or cadence. These data points measure and evaluate sales performance over a rep, team or company-wide basis. Metrics provide informed insights to judge the success of operations. It helps leaders identify high-attention areas for improvement, and back up decision-making.

In the big picture, sales metrics offer insight into strategy and messaging. It gives leaders the data into the trends happening within their business. Armed with this data, sales leaders can optimize their processes and sales activities to improve RoE and RoI. Reducing bottlenecks that are slowing their teams down.

At a more micro level, sales metrics offer clarity over rep performance. They provide leaders with insights into where certain SDRs aren’t meeting quota or their full potential. With a view to resolving this. Using this, managers can inform coaching and address adoption challenges with insights rooted in data.

What are the Different Types of Metrics?

There are three crucial metric categories that should be tracked in all sales teams. No matter the product or services, industry or territory. These are: Activities, Connections and Success. At InsideOut, we refer to these as the “Holy Trinity” of inside sales metrics.

Activity Metrics

Activity metrics are the numbers that measure rep performance in a specific time-frame. Calls-Per-Day. Emails-Per-Day. Social Touches-Per-Day. These are all typical examples.

When used in the right way, activity metrics are among the most impactful sales data sets available. They can help leaders to protect their sellers’ time, increase RoE and incentivize their teams to greater performance levels by knowing the average number of touchpoints needed to reach an intended outcome. Remember, you can’t manage a team unless you know the activities they’re carrying out and how successful these are.

Connection Metrics

Measuring activity with common vanity metrics is only one-side of the coin. Often, sales managers and reps can get too caught up in hitting call quotas and lose sight of the end-goal: closing deals. Any good salesperson can make 80 calls a day… if none of those result in booked appointments or even closed deals, that’s wasted effort.

Connection metrics measure the success of a sales team’s outreach efforts. They typically include metrics such as Engagement Rate, Speed-to-Lead and Call-to-Connect. Using the insights provided by this data, sales leaders can understand the performance of their processes.They can see where outreach activities and tonality used has been most potent across outreach efforts. With a view to replicating this for greater team-wide results. 

Success Metrics

Success metrics represent the outcomes of the entire sales process, offering sight into Close Rates, Deals Won and market leadership. These typically include Closing Deal Rate and Conversion Rates.

These metrics are useful as they provide a high-level overview of the sales process across the board. It’s proof of the strength of an outbound sales strategy as a whole. Falling short of success metrics is generally a good sign that a change is required. Analyze key messaging and identify where the strategy is producing a clear RoE, and where processes are falling short.

Share Goals & Expectations

Speed-to-Qualification

If you’re already experienced in the world of inside sales, you’ve probably come across Speed-to-Lead at some point. It’s a metric that measures the time it takes your sales team, on average, to respond to a qualified prospect from the moment they become a lead through an inbound channel. Typically, you may have seen a ballpark figure of around 25 seconds as a “good” Speed-to-Lead benchmark.

But here’s the problem: Speed-to-Lead is outdated. In our current buyer reality, speed only gets you so far. It’s customer experience that really matters. Any good sales team can pick up the phone in 25 seconds or less. It’s no longer a luxury, it’s an expectation.

At InsideOut, we instead focus on Speed-to-Qualification. Rather than relying solely on speed-to-conversation, Speed-to-Qualification grounds inbound enquiries in conversations that matter. It focuses on routing every enquiry to the most relevant seller each and every time. This helps sales teams to capture more appointments based on fruitful engagement, rather than just quick, weightless responses. By doing so, sellers boost both customer satisfaction and conversion rates.

Email Engagement

Email engagement is any meaningful action that suggests the receiver is interested in your offering. It’s one of the most useful metrics to measure the quality of email performance. It enables leaders and SDRs to make their email outreach more effective by aligning with their prospects’ expectations and demands. While there isn’t a defined “engagement” metric, we can measure audience engagement using the below metrics.

Open Rate: Measuring the number of emails opened, divided by the total number of emails sent. Open rate can be used as a top-level overview of email campaign health. The higher the open rate, the better.

Click-Through Rate: The ratio of receivers who clicked on a link in an email campaign to the total number of people who received. CTR is a great way to gauge buyer sentiment. It supports sellers in tailoring their campaigns to achieve greater conversion rates from their efforts.

Response Rate: The number of responses received, divided by the total number of emails sent. A high email response rate should be the intended outcome for any email campaign. This will obviously vary based on the industry, sector, geo and persona being targeted. Time will play an undoubted role on this metric.

Opt-Out Rate: The number of people who unsubscribe after an email is sent, divided by the number of receivers. A high opt-out rate can be a red flag for obvious reasons. It suggests that you’re either reaching the wrong audience or your messaging just isn’t targeted well enough.

Call-to-Connect Rate

Call-to-Connect rate is one of the most effective metrics fir measuring the quality of cold-calling outbound strategies. It refers to the number of high-quality connections a salesperson has, compared to the number of calls made in the customer acquisition channel. As a standard, an increase in connected rate equals an increase in direct sales opportunities.

Whether a salesperson is speaking to a decision-maker or gatekeeper, a high Call-to-Connect rate shows strong prospect targeting. It’s a sign that outbound efforts are doing enough to speak to prospects on their terms. At a time, place and in a style that appeals to their needs.

First Time Appointments (FTAs)

The goal of outreach is to convince a prospect to engage with what you’re offering them. To create a steady first touchpoint before moving them further through the sales funnel.

While the objective of any salesperson is obviously to secure an appointment first time round… a lack of success may not always be their fault alone. As a sales leader, it’s important to track success on a macro level. You need to understand where cadences should to be tightened for greater engagement and RoE.

Tracking the number of FTAs your strategy generates will offer a healthy insight into overall prospect engagement. FTAs are crucial pivot points that can not only make or break new pipeline shots, but also suggest high-attention areas for improvement in the sales cycle.

For example, if you’re running multiple different cadences at any one time, FTAs offer a clear glimpse into the success of each specific cadence. This allows leaders to measure engagement in real-time. Also, they can then tailor programs in line with their best-performing strategies.

Adoption Rates

Designing a best practice sales process or Play will have a significant impact on win rates, forecast accuracy, and rep performance in your teams. That’s not to say that it will work from the get-go. A sales process is only ever as successful and effective as the sales people’s adoption of it.

It’s unfair to expect sales reps to instantly transition to a new process without attrition. In fact, a Gartner survey of over 2000 reps recently found that 62% of perceived seller burden could be attributed to overly complex internal processes that reps are asked to follow.

Tracking adoption rates provides a clear, structured overview of Play performance internally. Sales reps have been known to jump the gun to get an instant return on investment. Straying from the path of a well-defined Play or cadence in favor of commission.

On a Rep Basis: if an adoption rate sits below a set benchmark, this is a strong sign that your strategy isn’t working for that person. In this scenario, it’s important to stress the purpose of the Play to that salesperson. Whether that be visibility or name recognition rather than immediate win rates.

On a Team Basis: if adoption rates are low across the board, it suggests that a rethink is needed on a strategy level. Adoption rates beneath your set benchmark generally account for misfiring processes, or overly ambitious benchmarking that isn’t entirely rooted in accurate, historical performance data.

Final Thoughts

As organizations tread further into complete reliance on inside sales, the importance of accurate metric setting becomes even more apparent. In fact, it’s essential if you’re looking to stay competitive, continually grow and expand pipeline.

Once your business is able to analyze particular metrics, gain rigorous feedback and delve deeper into messaging performance, you’ll be best positioned to understand the factors that motivate buyer the sales funnel, making it easier to engage existing customers and attract new prospects with provable numbers that make a difference.

Looking to get started? We can help. At InsideOut we have all of the relevant benchmarking data to support you in setting accurate, real-time metrics for your team – and the technology to analyze these metrics as they happen.

Get in touch with our experts today to understand how we can drive your team’s performance forward.

Business Intelligence Senior Manager at InsideOut. A specialist in giving decision makers the insights they need to strengthen their teams and tell their story within their data.