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How to Build a Sales Strategy Plan for Your Business

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Building and developing a sales strategy plan is arguably the most crucial activity your business will engage in. Whether focused on B2B sales strategy, inbound, outbound, small-to-medium business (SMB) or enterprise, the company needs a dependable source of income to survive.

The key to achieving dependable revenue is in tying specific sales activity to solid, thoughtful, and data-backed objectives formed with the company’s long-term goals in mind.  

While proponents of the adage  stop planning, start doing  have a point in case (no sales strategy plan succeeds without execution) I would argue it’s akin to the famous idiom  shoot first, ask questions later.   

Without a sales strategy plan in place, sales reps and directors make decisions based on what is in front of them at that given time. Not because they’re careless or foolish, but rather unaware of the company’s long-term goals. As a result, it becomes challenging to tie sales activity to specific data-backed objectives.     

So, to create dependable, long-lasting growth throughout the business, sales directors need a strategy. And that, ladies and gents, starts with a solid sales strategy plan.

What is a sales strategy plan?

A sales strategy plan is a company’s roadmap for securing dependable, long-term revenue through the retention and acquisition of new and existing customers. 

They typically encompass everything from specific tactics, market strategy, processes, objectives, forecasting, budgeting, and timeline. Also, plans vary in length, often spanning over a year, maybe two, with an added focus to each fiscal quarter.       

Most businesses’ sales strategy plans are top-down, with revenue targets commonly stipulated by investors, shareholders, and other C-Level executives with a vested financial interest in the company. These are either achieved through the increase of revenue, reduction in expenses, or a combination of both.     

How to develop a sales strategy plan

As I just mentioned, its those at the top that generally implement sales strategy plans. Someone decides on an arbitrary revenue or growth figure based on external factors, divides the number evenly amongst sales territories, and hits the trigger button. 

The problem with this approach is that it’s far too simplistic . It fails to take into account which markets and territories could support the most growth, the continually evolving customer journey, competitors, market maturity, etc.

Consequently, these poorly-planned strategies lose traction over time, create confusion amongst the sales team, and fail to achieve their overall objectives.

So, to build a successful sales strategy plan directors should follow this five-stage sales strategy plan template:  

  • Put the customer at the center of your business
  • Align with overall business goals

SWOT Analysis

  • Go-to-customer strategy

Setting goals

Customer centricity.

Every company starts and ends with its customers. Period. This is why how you hold your customers, or the customer experience you want to create, is the driving force behind all sales strategy plans. 

While customer experience isn’t exclusively a sales issue, we inevitably find ourselves communicating with them daily as they build their primary relationships with our brand. 

Therefore, the experience they have with the sales team shapes their opinion of the company, and in extension, how they share that experience with their peers or through social networks, either good or bad.

As a result, customer experience is critical to the success of the sales strategy plan, forcing sales teams to think about:

  • How they want their customers to view the brand?
  • Around which fundamental values do they want to build their customer experience?
  • Are the field reps aware and communicating appropriately during their face-to-face visits?

What I’m trying to say is, before engaging in budget talks, sales forecasting , and annual sales objectives, the entire organization and sales team need to put the customer at the heart of everything. They need to take an outside-in approach to the sales plan and consider what kind of experience they’d like to create. 

Corporate alignment

The sales team is responsible for executing the corporate strategy. Sure, marketing, customer success, and other internal and external communication programs play a part in creating awareness around the brand, but it’s sales that get the job done.

It’s important to note that this means more than just hitting target revenue. Senior executives are concerned about market positioning, maturity, customer perception, and what they stand for as a brand. As a result, they will have various goals other than pure revenue, such as:

  • Increase market share
  • New product line revenue
  • Increase share of wallet
  • Territorial expansion

The “big picture” enterprise goals must be taken into consideration when building a sales strategy plan. If not, the entire future of the organization is put in jeopardy.

Let me give you an example.

Imagine you are given an annual target revenue of $99m at a company with three primary service plans. 

The first represents your traditional business model, the one your sales team has sold for years. It’s a maturing market, and your company has a solid reputation and an established client base.

The second service plan is an ambitious entry into a new vertical and market segment. It’s a potentially lucrative gamble being a relatively unexplored segment, but the sales team lacks experience and reputation. 

The third and final service plan requires expansion into a new sales territory . Again, this is an unexplored ground that senior executives have earmarked for potential in the future.

As the sales director, you have two options to hit your target revenue of $99m. You could:

  • Focus on your traditional service plan . Your sales team knows the market well, has an established reputation amongst industry leaders, and with a bit of luck, could reach target revenue without worrying too much about the success of the new service plans.
  • Develop a sales strategy plan balanced across all three . You might decide to split your annual revenue target into three, smaller $33m pieces – one for each service plan. You choose to reallocate resources and training budget to help with the two untested plans.

If it were you, what option would you choose? Option 1 or Option 2?

Hopefully, you avoided the potential trap of Option 1. 

While it may bring you short-term success (your target is to hit $99m after all), the long-term future of the company is at risk. Investments made within these new divisions that widen the organization’s revenue plan may be forced to scale back or shut down completely, severely impacting the company’s long-term growth strategy. 

Another critical step in building a sales strategy plan is SWOT analysis . This tactic is handy when assessing the challenges your organization faces when venturing into a new market or under pressure from increasing competition, by looking at a company’s:


By analyzing each of these areas, businesses can build on their strengths, mitigate their weaknesses, uncover new opportunities while blunting the various threats that may crop up down the line.

So how do you undertake a SWOT analysis?

First of all, you will need to allocate an hour, maybe two, to gather a diverse group of colleagues (both internal and external if possible) as well as company leadership. This diversity is critical in providing differing perspectives on each of the four points of your SWOT analysis.

Once you’ve gathered everybody, I recommend handing out a pad of sticky notes and asking each person to come up with five separate points for each quadrant. Doing this exercise first gives every member of the team a voice while reducing the pressure of “group think.”

To help in your analysis mull over some of the following questions: 

  • What are your most substantial assets?
  • Which of those assets would you consider the strongest and why?
  • What is unique about your company?
  • What advantages do you hold over your competitors?
  • How skilled are your sales team?
  • Which of the business processes are most successful?
  • What are the potential areas for improvement?
  • What is it customers are saying they would like to see more of?
  • Are there any physical or tangible assets the company lacks?
  • Are there skill gaps within the sales team?
  • Where do your competitors have an edge?
  • What are some of the current market trends?
  • Is the market expanding or constricting?
  • Are there any upcoming industry events?
  • Do you need to consider any upcoming regulatory changes?
  • Is your chief competitor losing traction with their customer base?
  • Is there something clear and obvious missing from your market?
  • Are there any competitors that could be a potential threat in the future?
  • Is the current customer base satisfied with your services?
  • Is the sales team happy?
  • Is customer behavior changing?
  • Are there any legal threats facing the company in the near future?

Once you’ve completed this exercise, you should end up with a prioritized list of points up for debate amongst the leadership group. You can then convert these points to real-time strategy and add actionable objectives to the sales strategy plan.

Go-to-Customer Strategy

This section of the sales strategy plans focuses on how, as an organization, you can most effectively reach your target customer base.

Figuring out the pros and cons, risks, and costs to all the possible routes to your customers is an extremely time-consuming, complex task. Sales directors must look at:

  • Field sales
  • Inside sales
  • Channel partners

Each route also has its subset of implementations, such as SDRs, territory account management, product specialists, outsourced lead scoring, the primary account managers…the list is truly endless!

What’s more, the go-to-customer strategy is a continually evolving process that needs constant revision to match real-time market changes.

Fortunately for us, sales author David Brock came up with three questions to help analyze core issues within the customer-go-to strategy:

  • How do we find and engage all our target customers?
  • What’s the most effective method in engaging them?
  • How can we achieve this at the lowest possible cost/risk?  

So let’s start by answering our first question. 

To do that, we need to know who our customers are. Now, this doesn’t include everyone; you need to identify your company’s “ sweet spot .” What is your company the absolute best at doing in the world, and who benefits from it?

As soon as we begin to move away from that sweet spot, the quicker the win rate plummets and the costlier the sales cycle becomes.

To answer the second question, we need to look at our customer’s buying process. How do they initiate contact with the business? Is the first touch online, or through outreach via the outside sales team? How do they want to buy from us? 

The simplest and easiest way to find out is by asking your customers. 

Finally, after settling on the customer’s preferred method or process of engagement, how can we achieve this with the lowest cost/risk? The most economic risk deployment model is rarely the cheapest, so strike a balance between both customer and budget allowance.

Now that we’ve taken an in-depth look at our organizational objectives, market positioning, customers, and devised a go-to strategy, it’s time to put this all together with some actionable goals.

Setting  goals for sales reps  is mandatory. Not only as necessary incentives that push them to the limit, but also for keeping their activity aligned to overall business objectives.

This is why all sales goals should follow the SMART principle:


The more specific you can be when setting sales goals, the more likely your team is to hit them. 

Their primary goal is probably to increase revenue. So instead of giving them an arbitrary figure, ask yourself how much would you like to increase revenue? By when? Why? And How? The more specific you can be, the better.

To evaluate your field sales team’s progress, asses them against some form of quantitative yardstick. If not, how can we know they’re on track or, more importantly, if they are falling short, how we can interject and provide the necessary support?

When setting goals, directors need to toe a fine line between ambition and reality. Yes, we want ambitious objectives that force our reps to go above and beyond what’s expected, but on the flip side, set them too high, and it has the opposite effect – demoralizing and alienating the team from management.

Find that sweet spot somewhere in the middle, and you’ll find your reps much more driven to carry out your sales strategy plan.

The sales goals directors and managers set have to be tied to a relevant, quantitative objective. It goes back to the point I made earlier regarding corporate alignment. If the sales strategy plan fails to execute the bigger picture set out by the company executives, then its future success and longevity are put in jeopardy.

Let’s take a look at a quick example.

Imagine our corporate team tasks us with increasing market share by 20% over the next financial year. 

As sales directors, we must decide on the most cost-effective yet risk-averse strategy to achieve that goal. One option would be to increase our Share of Wallet by  boosting customer retention  figures or reducing churn. 

Now, an actionable sales objective for our reps would be to improve our customer satisfaction ranking, or in other words, where a customer places us against our competitors in loyalty and satisfaction.

Setting relevant sales goals


Finally, our sales goals need an expiry date. If sales reps believe they have all year to hit their objectives, then where’s the incentive? Again, it will need to be achievable as I alluded to earlier, but with just enough stick to get things moving at the business end of the quarter.

Well, I hope that’s given you a head start when developing your next sales strategy plan! Just remember, there is no one-size-fits-all sales plan. Customize the sales strategy plan template provided to fit your needs, those of the organization, and their goals. 

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What is Sales Planning? How to Create a Sales Plan

Jay Fuchs

Published: December 06, 2023

Sales planning is a fundamental component of sound selling. After all, you can‘t structure an effective sales effort if you don’t have, well, structure . Everyone — from the top to the bottom of a sales org — benefits from having solid, actionable, thoughtfully organized sales plans in place.

how to create a sales plan; Sales team creating a sales plan for the upcoming quarter

This kind of planning offers clarity and direction for your sales team — covering everything from the prospects you‘re trying to reach to the goals you’re trying to hit to the insight you're trying to deliver on.

But putting together one of these plans isn‘t always straightforward, so to help you out, I’ve compiled this detailed guide to sales planning — including expert-backed insight and examples — that will ensure your next sales plan is fundamentally sound and effective.

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In this post, we'll cover:

What is a sales plan?

Sales planning process.

  • What goes in a sales plan template?

How to Write a Sales Plan

Tips for creating an effective sales plan, sales plan examples, strategic sales plan examples.

A sales plan lays out your objectives, high-level tactics, target audience, and potential obstacles. It's like a traditional business plan but focuses specifically on your sales strategy. A business plan lays out your goals — a sales plan describes exactly how you'll make those happen.

Sales plans often include information about the business's target customers, revenue goals, team structure, and the strategies and resources necessary for achieving its targets.

sales strategies business plan

Free Sales Plan Template

Outline your company's sales strategy in one simple, coherent sales plan.

  • Target Market
  • Prospecting Strategy

You're all set!

Click this link to access this resource at any time.

What are the goals of an effective sales plan?

sales strategies business plan

And if (or more likely when ) those goals change over time, you need to regularly communicate those shifts and the strategic adjustments that come with them to your team.

Your sales strategy keeps your sales process productive — it offers the actionable steps your reps can take to deliver on your vision and realize the goals you set. So naturally, you need to communicate it effectively. A sales plan offers a solid resource for that.

For instance, your sales org might notice that your SDRs are posting lackluster cold call conversion rates. In turn, you might want to have them focus primarily on email outreach, or you could experiment with new sales messaging on calls.

Regardless of how you want to approach the situation, a thoughtfully structured sales plan will give both you and your reps a high-level perspective that would inform more cohesive, effective efforts across the team.

An effective sales org is a machine — one where each part has a specific function that serves a specific purpose that needs to be executed in a specific fashion. That's why everyone who comprises that org needs to have a clear understanding of how they specifically play into the company's broader sales strategy.

Outlining roles and responsibilities while sales planning lends itself to more efficient task delegation, improved collaboration, overlap reduction, and increased accountability. All of which amount to more streamlined, smooth, successful sales efforts.

Sales planning can set the framework for gauging how well your team is delivering on your sales strategy. It can inform the benchmarks and milestones reps can use to see how their performance stacks up against your goals and expectations.

It also gives sales leadership a holistic view of how well a sales org is functioning as a whole — giving them the necessary perspective to understand whether they have the right people and tools in place to be as successful as possible.

Sales planning isn‘t (and shouldn’t) be limited to the actual sales plan document it produces. If that document is going to have any substance or practical value, it needs to be the byproduct of a thorough, well-informed, high-level strategy.

When sales planning, you have some key steps you need to cover — including:

  • Gather sales data and search for trends.
  • Define your objectives.
  • Determine metrics for success.
  • Assess the current situation.
  • Start sales forecasting.
  • Identify gaps.
  • Ideate new initiatives.
  • Involve stakeholders.
  • Outline action items.

When putting this list together, I consulted  Zach Drollinger — Senior Director of Sales at edtech provider Coursedog — to ensure the examples detailed below are sound and accurate.

Step 1: Gather sales data and search for trends.

To plan for the present and future, your company needs to look to the past. What did sales look like during the previous year? What about the last five years? Using this information can help you identify trends in your industry. While it's not foolproof, it helps establish a foundation for your sales planning process.

For the sake of example, let‘s say that I’m a new sales director for an edtech company that sells curriculum planning software to higher education institutions. My vertical is community colleges, and my territory is the East Coast.

Once I assume this new role, I‘m going to want to gather as much context as possible about my vertical and how my company has approached it historically. I would pull information about how we’ve sold to this vertical.

How much new business have we closed within it in the past five years? How does that compare to how we perform with other kinds of institutions? Are we seeing significant churn from these customers?

I would also want to get context about the general needs, interests, and pain points of the kinds of institutions I‘m selling to. I’d look for insight into figures like degree velocity, staff retention, and enrollment.

Ultimately, I would get a comprehensive perspective on my sales process — a thorough understanding of where I stand and what my prospects are dealing with. That will ensure that I can deliver on the next step as effectively as possible.

Step 2: Define your objectives.

How do you know your business is doing well if you have no goals? As you can tell from its placement on this list, defining your goals and objectives is one of the first steps you should take in your sales planning process. Once you have them defined, you can move forward with executing them.

To extend the example from the previous step, I would leverage the context I gathered through the research I conducted about both my and my prospect's circumstances. I would start setting both broader goals and more granular operational objectives .

For instance, I might want to set a goal of increasing sales revenue from my vertical. From there, I would start putting together the kind of specific objectives that will facilitate that process — like connecting with administrators from at least 30 community colleges, booking demos with at least 10 schools, and successfully closing at least five institutions.

Obviously, those steps represent a streamlined (and unrealistically straightforward) sales process, but you get the idea — I would set a concrete goal, supplemented by SMART objectives , that will serve as a solid reference point for my org's efforts as the sales process progresses.

Step 3: Determine metrics for success.

Every business is different. One thing we can all agree on is that you need metrics for success. These metrics are key performance indicators (KPIs). What are you going to use to determine if your business is successful? KPIs differ based on your medium, but standard metrics are gross profit margins, return on investment (ROI), daily web traffic users, conversion rate, and more.

I kind of covered this step in the previous example, but it still warrants a bit more elaboration. The “M” in SMART goals (“measurable”) is there for a reason. You can‘t tell if your efforts were successful if you don’t know what “successful” actually means.

The edtech sales example I‘ve been running with revolves mostly around me assuming ownership of an existing vertical and getting more out of it. So it’s fair to assume that sales growth rate — the increase or decrease of sales revenue in a given period, typically expressed as a percentage — would be an effective way to gauge success.

I might want to structure my goals and objectives around a sales growth rate of 20% Y/Y within my vertical. I would make sure my org was familiar with that figure and offer some context about what it would take to reach it — namely, how many institutions we would need to close and retain.

Step 4: Assess the current situation.

How is your business fairing right now? This information is relevant to determining how your current situation holds up to the goals and objectives you set during step two. What are your roadblocks? What are your strengths? Create a list of the obstacles hindering your success. Identify the assets you can use as an advantage. These factors will guide you as you build your sales plan.

Continuing the edtech example, I would use the historical context I gathered and the objectives I set to frame how I look at my current circumstances. I might start by considering my goal of increasing revenue by 20% Y/Y. In that case, I would look at the company's retention figures — ideally, that would give me a sense of whether that needs to be a major area of focus.

I would also try to pin down trends in the colleges that we've already closed — are there any pain points we consistently sell on? I might take a closer look at how we demo to see if we might be glossing over key elements of our value proposition. Maybe, I would use conversation intelligence to get a better sense of how reps are handling their calls.

Ultimately, I would try to identify why we're performing the way we are, the inefficiencies that might be resulting from our current strategy, and how we can best set ourselves up to sell as effectively as possible.

Step 5: Start sales forecasting.

Sales forecasting is an in-depth report that predicts what a salesperson, team, or company will sell weekly, monthly, quarterly, or annually. While it is finicky, it can help your company make better decisions when hiring, budgeting, prospecting, and setting goals.

After the COVID-19 pandemic, economics has become less predictable. Claire Fenton , the owner of StrActGro — a professional training and coaching company — states, “Many economic forecasters won't predict beyond three months at a time.” This makes sales forecasting difficult. However, there are tools at your disposal to create accurate sales forecasts .

In our edtech example, I would approach this step by trying to estimate how my sales org is going to fare with the specific vertical we‘re pursuing in the time window we’ve allotted.

The method I decide to go with will depend on factors like how many concrete opportunities we have lined up — in addition to elements like the kind of historical data we have handy, how the reps working these deals tend to perform, and the degree of insight we have about our potential customers.

Let's say I consider those factors and decide to run something called a multivariable analysis. In that case, I could start by taking stock of the opportunities my reps have lined up. Then, I could look at the reps working those deals, their typical win rates, and the time they have to close — among other factors.

For instance, I might calculate that a rep working with a particularly large institution has a 50% chance of closing within the window we‘ve allotted. Using that insight, we could attribute 50% of the potential deal size to our forecast — we’d repeat that process with all of the opportunities in question and ideally get a solid sense of the revenue we can expect to generate in this window.

Step 6: Identify gaps.

When identifying gaps in your business, consider what your company needs now and what you might need in the future. First, identify the skills you feel your employees need to reach your goal. Second, evaluate the skills of your current employees. Once you have this information, you can train employees or hire new ones to fill the gaps.

Continuing the edtech example, let‘s say my forecast turned up results that weren’t in keeping with what we need to reach our goals. If that were the case, I would take a holistic look at our process, operations, and resources to pin down inefficiencies or areas for improvement.

In my search, I find that our sales content and marketing collateral are dated — with case studies that don‘t cover our product’s newest and most relevant features. I also might see that our reps don‘t seem to have too much trouble booking demos, but the demos themselves aren’t converting due to a lack of training and inconsistent messaging.

And finally, I find that a lack of alignment with marketing has prospects focusing on unrealistic outcomes our sales team can‘t deliver on. Once I’ve identified those gaps, I would start to hone in on ways to remedy those issues and improve those elements.

Step 7: Ideate new initiatives.

Many industry trends are cyclical. They phase in and out of “style.” As you build your sales plan, ideate new initiatives based on opportunities you may have passed on in previous years.

If your business exclusively focused on word-of-mouth and social media marketing in the past, consider adding webinars or special promotions to your plan.

In the edtech example we've been running with, I would likely ideate initiatives based on the gaps I identified in the previous step. I would start a push to ensure that our sales content and marketing collateral are up-to-date and impressive.

I would also consider new training programs to ensure that our coaching infrastructure is prioritizing how to conduct effective demos. Finally, I would start to work on a plan with marketing to ensure our messaging is aligned with theirs — so we can make sure prospects' expectations are realistic and effective.

One way or another, I would take the gaps I found and find concrete, actionable ways to fill them. I would make sure that these initiatives aren't abstract. Just saying, " We're going to be better at demos," isn‘t a plan — it’s a sentiment, and sentiments don't translate to hard sales.

Step 8: Involve stakeholders.

Stakeholders are individuals, groups, or organizations with a vested interest in your company. They are typically investors, employees, or customers and often have deciding power in your business. Towards the end of your sales planning process, involve stakeholders from departments that affect your outcomes, such as marketing and product. It leads to an efficient and actionable sales planning process.

This step is sort of an extension of the previous two — once I‘ve identified the key issues and roadblocks obstructing my edtech startup’s sales org, I would start identifying the right people to fulfill the necessary initiatives I've put together.

In this example, I would tap some stakeholders in charge of our sales content and marketing collateral to produce newer, more relevant case studies and whitepapers we can pass along to the institutions we're working with.

I would also go to middle management and either offer more direction for coaching on demos or bring in a third-party training service to offer more focused, professional insight on the issue.

Finally, I would connect with marketing leadership to align on the benefits and outcomes we generally stress when pitching the schools we sell to. That way, we can ensure that the institutions we're connecting with have realistic expectations of our product or service that we can speak to more clearly and effectively.

Step 9: Outline action items.

Once you have implemented this strategy to create your sales planning process, the final step is outlining your action items. Using your company's capacity and quota numbers, build a list of steps that take you through the sales process. Examples of action items are writing a sales call script, identifying industry competitors, or strategizing new incentives or perks.

In our edtech example, some key action items might be:

  • Revamp our prospecting strategy via more involved coaching and re-tooled sales messaging.
  • Revamp administrator and college dean buyer personas.
  • Conduct new trainings on demoing our software.
  • See our new prospecting strategy from ideation to execution.
  • Align with our sales enablement stakeholders for new, more relevant case studies and whitepapers.

Obviously, that list isn‘t exhaustive — but those are still the kinds of steps we would need to clarify and take to structure a more effective high-level strategy to produce different (ideally much better) results than we’ve been seeing.

One thing to keep in mind is that sales planning shouldn't end with creating the document.

You‘ll want to reiterate this process every year to maintain your organization's sales excellence.

Now that you‘re committed to the sales planning process, let's dive into the written execution component of sales planning.

Featured Resource: Sales Plan Template

HubSpot's Sales Plan Template: 10 Section Prompts for Outlining Your Sales Plan

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Outline your company's sales strategy in one simple, coherent plan.

How to Write a Sales Plan

Table of contents.

Elizabeth Veras

Every business needs a business plan as well as more detailed road maps that offer guidance to each department working toward that common goal. As the revenue-generating engine of your company, the sales department should be a top priority for this type of document, aptly named the “sales plan.” This guide introduces the concept of a sales plan and gives you all the guidance you need to create a sales plan that works for your business.

What is a sales plan?

A sales plan details the overall sales strategy of a business, including the revenue objectives of the company and how the sales department will meet those goals. This may also include revenue goals, the target audience and tools the team will use in their day-to-day. In addition, the sales plan should include examples of the hurdles and pain points the team might encounter, as well as contingency plans to overcome them.

“[A sales plan] is essential to support the growth of an organization,” said Bill Santos, vice president of the ITsavvy Advanced Solutions Group. “A sales plan helps individual reps understand the priorities of the business as well as the measurements by which they will be evaluated.”

Business plans vs. sales plans

Business plans and sales plans are closely linked. A sales plan, though, should outline the actions that the sales department will take to achieve the company’s broader goals. A sales plan differs from a business plan, though both work toward the same end.

“A business plan is a ‘what’ [and] a sales plan is a ‘how,'” said James R. Bailey , professor of management and Hochberg Professional Fellow of Leadership Development at the George Washington University School of Business. “Business plans are where a firm wants to go. A sales plan is a part of how they can achieve that. A business plan is direction; a sales plan is execution.”

For example, a software company that developed a new mobile application might state in its business plan that the app will be installed by 1 million users within a year of launch, while the sales plan describes how that will actually be achieved.

How to write a sales plan

Every sales plan should suit the individual needs of a different company, so they come in all shapes and sizes. There is no one-size-fits-all sales plan; the one you create will be unique to your business. With careful planning, you’ll have a much clearer vision of what you need to accomplish and a road map for how to get there. 

Chris Gibbs, vice president of global sales at Centripetal Networks, named some additional items that every sales plan should include.

  • Targeted accounts: Assign each salesperson a few key accounts to focus on, and grow from that base.
  • Targeted verticals: Sales teams might focus on specific market segments or verticals, such as a particular industry.
  • SKUs: Salespeople should emphasize certain SKUs or inventory items rather than get lost in a broad catalog of merchandise to sell.
  • Sales and marketing coordination: Sales and marketing teams should work together to create promotions to help generate sales.
  • Product road maps: Every company has a road map, and each product should have a road map that shows the plan and direction for a product offering over time to chart out when a product will launch and when it might sunset or be replaced by a newer model.
  • Forecasts: Sales forecasting is projecting sales volumes and expectations by comparing them historically to sales of previous years, and then conducting market comparison to determine where sales will fall against the competition.

“Sales plans are extremely important to ensure there is cohesiveness between product teams, sales and marketing,” Gibbs said. “In addition, they’re important for ensuring that timing of new products and/or new version releases coincide with sales objectives and forecasts.”

What are the steps to create a sales plan?

A sales plan is necessary for businesses of every size, from an individual entrepreneur to a Fortune 500 company. When you’re ready to actually write your sales plan, follow these steps:

1. Define the objectives. 

Clearly outlining your goals and stating your objectives should always be the first step in creating a sales plan or any other business venture. You should include the expected sales volume and any markets or territories you expect to reach. 

For example, let’s say you own a retail store selling household goods and electronics. If your purpose is to establish yourself as a trusted local retailer, ask yourself the following questions:

  • If so, are they purchasing anything or just browsing?
  • Was it word of mouth?
  • Was it through marketing efforts, such as email marketing, direct mail or social media?
  • How many are new customers?
  • How many are repeat customers?
  • Where do you want your sales to come from? 
  • What are some external and internal factors that could impact your sales? These include industry trends and economic conditions.

When you can precisely state your key objectives, you are setting yourself up to plan later steps around achieving your goals.

2. Assess the current situation.

The next step is to create an honest overview of your business situation in relation to the goal you set in the first step. 

Review your strengths and assets. Take a look at your resources and how you can apply them to your goal. This can include personal relationships and competitive advantages like new products or services.

For example, if your goal is to enhance your relationship with your customers, you’d need to ask yourself some questions to examine your current situation:

  • What is your current relationship with your customers?
  • Where did most of your sales come from?
  • Where would you like to expand your sales?

When examining your strengths and opportunities, conduct a SWOT analysis to get a clearer picture of where your business stands.

3. Determine and outline the sales strategies. 

Sales strategies are the actual tactics your team will use to reach customers. They can include marketing channels as well as procedures for lead generation and client outreach employed by your salespeople.

Here are two examples of potential sales strategies: 

  • Use your POS system to retain customer information so you can track current and new customers.
  • Employ email marketing, text message marketing , social media, outbound call center services and direct mail marketing campaigns.

4. Define roles for the sales team. 

Each member of the sales team should be assigned clear roles, whether they vary from person to person or everyone performs the same functions.

Defining the sales direction of the team is crucial, as it shows the focus of the company and helps the team target and execute sales most effectively.

The plan of attack for the sales team should be communicated clearly by leadership, whether it is from team leaders or the CEO.  

5. Inform other departments of sales objectives.

A sales plan shouldn’t just update a company president or C-suite; it should inform the whole organization of the sales team’s objectives. 

Clearly outline your plan for the rest of the company to help them understand the goals and procedures of the sales team. Other departments become more efficient when interacting with the sales team and clients. This also conveys a certain level of quality and professionalism to the clients about the company.

6. Provide tools for the sales team.

Provide the tools each member of the sales team needs to achieve the stated goals, such as customer relationship management (CRM) software. The best CRM software is customizable to meet a company’s needs, making it much easier for your team to use the software and work efficiently.

7. Detail how the department will track progress. 

Offer strategic direction and insight on how progress will be monitored. Having a quarterly review to assess whether the company is on target is just as important as the plan itself.

Markets change, and so should your sales plan. Keeping it up to date will help you capitalize on the market and achieve your goals. Tracking progress is made easier by the tools you use to collect data. That data will then have to be analyzed and presented in a way which all departments can understand and use for future growth. 

Key elements of a sales plan

Every sales plan should also include the following elements.

Realistic goals

You need to set achievable goals . Challenge your sales team, but don’t push too hard. Bailey said that these “deliverables” are among the key points to include in a sales business plan. 

“Deliverables need to be as specific as possible and moderately difficult to achieve – specific inasmuch as being measurable in a manner that is uncontested [and] moderately difficult inasmuch as making sales goals too difficult can lead to failure and discouragement.”

Midpoint goals also help build morale and keep the team working toward a larger goal. Instead of having one giant goal, creating smaller goals to achieve along the way will keep your team focused.

Set milestones that give you the opportunity to regularly determine whether you are on track to achieve your sales goals or need to make adjustments.

Sales tools

Tracking sales throughout the term is helpful, and you can employ tools to keep track of each team member as well as the department overall. It also helps establish a culture of accountability among salespeople.

“Tools can help, especially project management and CRM software,” Santos said. “Having a weekly cadence of update and review is also important, as it sends a message that ownership and updates are important.”

Clear expectations and a defined commission structure

Assign goals and responsibilities to each team member to make expectations clear. This is true whether or not each team member has the same goals.

“We meet with each individual to come up with a plan that works for them so that they can reach their goals,” said Leah Adams, director of client success at Point3 Security. “We measure results based on numbers. Each team member has his own plan and how they’re going to get there.”

It’s also necessary to spell out the commission structure in full detail.

“The only real difference is how sales count,” Bailey said. “In petroleum-based products … a few big clients are necessary. Compensation needs to be structured not just in contract value, but in graduated terms: Above $1 million, commissions move from 5% to 9%, and so forth. In smaller-volume enterprises, commissions might be front-loaded with higher percentages early, then graduated down. You have to reward what you want.”

Training programs

Along the way, some training might be necessary to maintain the momentum.

“What’s important to us is that we’re teaching these individuals to be the best salesperson they can be,” Adams said. “We help them do that by constantly training them and giving them knowledge of what’s going on in our industry. Everything stays on track because each member of the team knows their individual goal; though each person has a number, they also know the ultimate goal is for the entire team to hit.”

Adams said that an effective CRM keeps things organized and helps delegate tasks and responsibilities on a schedule that uses the company’s lead information.

Key steps to follow when devising a sales plan

Here are some best practices for creating a sales plan:

  • Refer to the business plan. The sales plan should directly address the objectives of the business plan and how those objectives can be achieved.
  • Advance clear objectives. The clearer the objectives are, the easier it will be to reach your goals.
  • Reference prior sales data. Chart sales over the previous few terms, and project the trend for the current term. New businesses can create sales projections based on expectations.
  • Outline the commission structure. This will help motivate your team and help you calculate anticipated costs.
  • Be clear about how progress is measured. There should be no dispute about this. If larger clients carry more weight than lower-volume buyers, that should be stated upfront.

The benefits of a sales plan

A sales plan keeps the sales department on track, considering the details of how they must operate to hit their targets and achieve company objectives. Because the sales team is the primary driver of revenue, it is an incredibly important document. [Related article: Adopting a CRM? How to Get Buy-in From Your Sales Department ]

“It’s extremely important to have a sales plan in place, almost a must,” Adams said. “Without this plan, it’s almost impossible to get through the year and hit the company’s sales goals.”

It’s not uncommon to encounter obstacles along the way, however. A good sales plan accounts for that.

“Almost always, you’ll run into the speed bumps along the way, but with a plan in place, it makes it a whole lot easier to navigate through it all,” Adams said. “The sales plan allows you to adjust when necessary so the goal can still be hit. I strongly believe a plan allows you to stay in control and reduce the risk while being able to measure the team’s results along the way to that finish line.”

A solid sales plan helps you deal with unexpected events and acts as a benchmark for where your company is and where you want it to go.

Sales plan templates

Sales templates are helpful in that many of them are based on tried-and-true formats that have been used by businesses across several industries. They can also provide structure so that it is clear to each employee what their role and responsibilities are. 

Create your own sales plan by downloading our free template .

“A template helps plan each individual’s daily activities in a structured way,” Adams said. “If you know what each person is doing daily, it’s easier to help correct what’s going wrong. It helps with things like conversion rates, etc. Yes, these templates can be customized in any way a team’s manager sees fit, based on how he believes the team will perform better.”

Sales plans should be unique to the company; however, there are key components they should always include. Because there is somewhat of a formula, you can use a template.

Templates are extremely helpful, Gibbs said. “It creates uniformity for the team, as well as a yearly or quarterly sales plan to present to senior management.”

Gibbs added that templates can easily be customized to meet the needs of a particular business or sales team.

Keeping your team on track with a sales plan

Planning is vital for any business, especially when dealing with sales targets. Before selling your product or service, you must outline your goals and ways to execute them. Essentially, a sales plan enables you to mitigate problems and risks. When there is a clear plan of action, you will know how to proceed in order to attain your goals. 

Enid Burns contributed to the writing and reporting in this article. Source interviews were conducted for a previous version of this article.


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How to create an effective sales plan: Tips and examples

Josh Gillespie

Josh Gillespie Director of Enterprise Sales at PandaDoc

A sales plan is a roadmap that outlines your business’s strategy for selling its products or services.

Acting as an essential tool for businesses of all sizes and in all industries, a robust sales plan helps to identify sales goals, target markets, and sales tactics to achieve those goals.

Without further delay, let’s take a look at how you can create an effective sales plan for your business.

What is a sales plan?

A sales plan is not dissimilar to a business plan, except that a sales plan focuses entirely on sales activities.

A sales plan contains everything your sales team needs to know about their roles and how they can influence meeting your organization’s sales targets in addition to contributing to the company as a whole.

A sales plan includes, but is not limited to:

  • Analysis of your target market and buyer personas
  • Month-to-month forecasts
  • Specific sales strategies to attract, engage, and sell to potential customers
  • Sales team roles, their specific responsibilities, and their necessary skill sets
  • Potential challenges and roadblocks to sales
  • Individual and team-wide, short-term, and long-term goals.

A sales plan is a customizable document that is not designed to remain static.

As your company changes and grows, your sales plan should alter to reflect the specifics of your business.

Types of sales business plan

There are several types of sales business plans that you can create, all of which can be supported by a sales or business plan template .

Your ultimate choice depends on the best approach to meet your overarching needs and goals.

Here are some of the most common types.

New product

This type of plan is specifically designed to introduce a new product into the market and achieve specific sales goals.

It includes detailed information on the product — such as its features, benefits, and unique selling proposition.

The plan also includes a timeline for product development and launch , pricing strategies, promotional campaigns, and sales targets for the first year.

Sales goals

A sales goals plan focuses on goals instead of revenue.

This type of plan may include hiring and onboarding followed by sales training plans — or plans to introduce a new method of sales activity into your existing processes.

A sales goals plan provides a clear roadmap for your sales team to follow, and helps to identify potential challenges and roadblocks that may arise along the way.

Customer segment

The customer segment sales plan is centered around identifying the target customers for a new product and creating a sales strategy to reach them.

It includes a thorough analysis of the customer segments , including their demographics, psychographics, and buying behavior.

The plan also outlines the sales channels that will be used to reach these customers — such as online marketplaces, social media, or brick-and-mortar stores.

This plan includes specific tactics for each channel, including promotional campaigns and pricing strategies that are tailored to the target customer segments.

Why is sales planning important?

To reach your company’s overall sales goals, it’s essential to implement sales planning.

Effectively planning sales and comparing reality against sales goals templates can provide indicators a sales strategy isn’t working —so you can take the necessary steps to improve it.

When sales targets are aligned with precise actions and timeframes, your team feels part of your business’s success — and ultimately more motivated to reach their sales targets.

Setting clear expectations and providing ongoing feedback and support is an efficient way to measure progress against your sales goals, identify areas for improvement, and make adjustments as needed.

The process of sales planning also helps to optimize the use of your company’s resources — including time, money, and personnel.

By identifying the most effective sales strategies and tactics, sales planning helps you allocate your resources in the most efficient way possible.

Another benefit of sales planning is that it aids the process of identifying new sales opportunities and potential customers.

By analyzing the market and customer data, sales planning enables your sales team to target specific customer segments and develop effective sales strategies.

Studying examples of sales plans can help illustrate this, so let’s look at an example sales plan excerpt now.

Target market

A company that specializes in customized software solutions for small to medium-sized businesses might create a sales plan to target businesses in major US metropolitan areas working in the technology, retail, and healthcare industries — with annual revenues of $1 million to $20 million.

Sales objectives

In this example of a sales plan, the sales objectives could be to simultaneously increase sales by 25% and to acquire 10 new customers in the first year of operation.

Sales strategies

To achieve these sales objectives, the company might attend industry trade shows and conferences to generate leads, offer free consultations to potential clients to showcase their expertise, and establish partnerships with other companies that serve their target market.

Sales metrics

Appropriate sales metrics to track would include tracking the number of leads generated per month and the conversion rate of leads into clients.

For the sales team to work together to attain these objectives, a realistic approach would be to provide regular sales training and coaching to improve performance, as well as establishing performance goals and incentives to motivate the sales team.

3 Key elements of a sales plan

There are several elements that should be included in your sales plan, but here are three of the most important:

1. Training initiatives

The first key element of your sales plan is composed of training initiatives that provide your sales team with the skills and knowledge they need to effectively sell your company’s products or services.

This can include training on product features and benefits, sales techniques, objection handling, and customer relationship management.

By investing in training initiatives, you can work to improve sales team performance, achieve better sales results, and build a winning sales culture.

2. Realistic objectives

Your sales plan should clearly outline your chosen sales objectives and targets that you want to achieve — such as revenue targets, market share goals, or customer acquisition targets.

These objectives should be specific, measurable, and achievable, and should be tied to your overall business goals and objectives.

3. Sales tools

Specific sales tools that help you meet your sales targets can include customer relationship management (CRM) software, sales automation tools , lead generation solutions, and management tools.

In addition, consider including any other technologies that can help to streamline your existing sales process and improve efficiencies across the board.

How to create a sales plan

Okay. Now it’s time to create your sales plan.

sales strategies business plan

1. Write your mission statement

Your mission statement is your WHY.

Why did you start your business? What’s your motivation?

A sales plan mission statement is a concise and compelling statement that outlines the purpose and objectives of your sales plan.

It should communicate the core values, goals, and aspirations of your sales team and set the tone for your overall sales strategy.

To begin writing your mission statement, think carefully about your core values as a business.

These can include elements like customer service, innovation, teamwork, integrity, or quality.

These values will guide your sales team in their day-to-day interactions with customers and help them stay focused on the bigger picture.

Your mission statement should also address the needs and wants of your target audience.

Identify who your ideal customer is — and their expectations of your sales team.

This will help you create a mission statement that resonates with your target audience.

Remember to regularly review and update your statement to ensure that it remains relevant and inspiring to your team.

Here’s a great example of a mission statement:

“Our mission is to provide our customers with exceptional service and innovative solutions that meet their needs and exceed their expectations. Through teamwork, integrity, and a commitment to quality, we will achieve our sales goals and become the go-to provider of (product/service) in our industry”.

2. Identify your goals

What are your sales goals for the next year?

How will you measure success?

Identifying clear and achievable sales goals will help you to set sales quotas and guide your team with clear directions.

You must have a clear understanding of your overall business goals.

This might include increasing revenue, expanding your customer base, launching a new product, or entering a new market.

Next, think about how you can determine your sales revenue target.

This should be a specific and measurable amount that you aim to achieve within a specific period of time, perhaps per quarter or year.

3. Analyze your target market

Analyzing your target market is a critical step in developing a successful business strategy.

It involves gathering and analyzing information about your potential customers, including their needs, preferences, behaviors, and characteristics.

This may involve conducting market research, analyzing sales data, and identifying trends in your industry.

Use primary and secondary research methods to gather data about your target market.

Primary research involves collecting data directly from your target audience, such as through surveys or focus groups.

Secondary research involves analyzing existing data sources, such as government reports or industry publications.

Look for patterns and trends in the data you gather, such as changes in consumer behavior, emerging technologies, or shifts in industry regulations.

This will help you identify opportunities and threats in your market.

You should also assess your current competition — check out their products, pricing, marketing strategies, and customer service.

This will help you to differentiate your business and identify areas where you can compete effectively.

For example, you may find new approaches such as how to use sales prospecting effectively to reach new target audiences.

4. Prepare your sales strategy

This section of your sales development plan should include a brief overview of your target audience’s journey with your brand — their pain points and problems, and how your sales team will work to solve their issues effectively with your business’s solution.

Your sales strategy will include activities such as digital marketing tasks on social media, email, search engine optimization (SEO), and pay-per-click (PPC) advertising .

You may also have decided to embark upon referral marketing to incentivize your existing customers to refer new customers to your business.

Go ahead and list your strategies accordingly in this area of your sales plan.

5. Use the right tools

To effectively develop a sales plan, you need the right tools for the job.

The right tools will help you write a comprehensive and effective sales plan.

Some tools you may find helpful include:

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software

CRM software can help you track customer interactions, sales leads, and customer data.

These tools can help you understand your customers better, create targeted marketing campaigns, and improve your sales performance.

Sales forecasting tools

Sales forecasting tools can help you predict your future sales based on historical data, market trends, and other factors. Use these tools to set realistic sales goals and allocate resources accordingly.

Competitor analysis tools

Competitor analysis tools can help you research your competition, their products, and their sales strategies, as well as how to differentiate yourself from your competitors.

Marketing automation tools

Marketing automation tools can help you automate repetitive marketing tasks — like email campaigns.

Strategic sales plan template

Much like thinking about the key elements every sales proposal must have , you need a strategic sales plan template to get started.

You can also use a combined sales and marketing plan template for a unified approach.

Strategic sales plan examples include territory sales plans — in this example you divide your market into geographical regions.

You then assign sales reps to specific territories to identify key accounts within each territory, and to develop a sales strategy for each region.

Use a strategic sales planning template to list your intentions and teach your sales team how to create a sales process map to map out the sales journey.

Boost your sales team’s results with an effective sales plan

To create a sales plan that encourages the best results, consider taking the simple approach with PandaDoc’s free sales plan templates .

A PandaDoc template will help you to write a compelling and shareable sales plan.

You’ll find commonly used sales plans sections with tips that guide you in filling out your data.

By following these tips and creating an effective sales plan with PandaDoc, you can help your sales team achieve better results and drive growth for your business.

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8 Examples of Strategic Sales Plans

8 Examples of Strategic Sales Plans

Casey O'Connor

What Is a Strategic Sales Plan?

When you should implement a strategic sales plan, what to include in your sales plan, 8 examples of plans to implement your sales strategy, how yesware can help your team put your sales plan into action.

A strategic sales plan is a must-have for any business that’s looking to increase their sales, amp up their revenue, bring a new product to market, or branch into a new territory.

In this article, we’ll go over everything you need to know about strategic sales plans: what they are, when to create one, and exactly what it needs to include. We’ll also show you a handful of real-life, tangible examples of really effective sales plan components.

Here’s what we’ll cover:

A strategic sales plan is designed to guide a sales organization through their overarching sales strategy. It provides them with access to the resources needed to prospect, pitch to, and close new accounts.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: action plan

Strategic sales plans can include any combination of the following:

  • Ideas: If you utilize a certain sales methodology — consultative selling or target account selling , for example — you might outline its key principles and a few tactical examples of it in action in your strategic sales plan. Your strategic sales plan should also include an overview of your target customer.
  • Processes: In order for your sales team to reach maximum productivity, it’s important that your sales processes are clearly defined and standardized. Your sales team — both new hires and seasoned vets alike — should be able to refer to your sales plan for a repeatable, scalable process that’s backed by solid metrics. The processes should provide direction to sales reps that allow them to contribute to the company’s goals.
  • Tools & Tactics: The best strategic sales plans are more than just high-level strategy and goals. They also include specific, step-by-step strategies that sales reps can implement in sales conversations, as well as the specific tools and content that reps need to close more deals.

Sales plans also typically spell out the organization’s revenue and overall business goals, as well as the KPIs and benchmarks that sales managers and other stakeholders will monitor to determine whether or not those goals are being met.

They should also outline management’s strategic territory design and quota expectations, with specific indicators and data to back those decisions. 

Finally, these sales plans should take into account your current team’s sales capacity, and should specifically address the acquisition plan for any resources that are not yet available but that may be necessary for future growth.

If your sales team doesn’t already have a strategic sales plan in place — that is, one that’s referenced and updated regularly, and is the product of careful data analysis and inter-team collaboration — you may want to consider creating one. 

Research shows that the majority of the highest-performing sales teams operate under a formalized, closely monitored sales structure. 

On the other hand, most underperforming sales teams lack this structure. 

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: sales structure

It’s clear that a well-defined sales plan is one of the prerequisites to optimized sales productivity and success; every salesforce should strive to create and adopt one if they want to meet their sales goals more efficiently.

That being said, there are a few key indicators that signal a need for more urgency in putting a strategic sales plan in place. 

You’re Trying to Increase Sales

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: sales pipeline

A strategic sales plan will help your sales and marketing teams align their processes so that your outreach efforts are tailored to your target audience.

You’re Looking to Amp up Your Revenue

For startups and small businesses, attaining as many new customers as possible is usually the name of the game.

For larger or more established businesses, however, the business plan may instead emphasize revenue goals. In other words, the deal size starts to matter much more than deal volume. 

A sales strategy plan can help salespeople target and nurture higher-value accounts. Sales planning can also boost your revenue by illuminating untapped potentials for revenue growth within your existing customer base through cross-selling, upselling , and referrals.

You’re Gearing Up to Launch a New Product

A sales strategy plan is crucial for businesses that are preparing to bring a new product to market.

Thoughtful sales planning will ensure your go-to-market strategy is optimized and designed for short-term and long-term success by clearly defining and speaking to the pain points of your ideal customer profile.

Strategic Sales Plan Example: Go-To-Market Strategy

One last note: for businesses that already use strategic business planning (or for those on their way after reading this article), be sure to update your plan at least yearly. Many businesses at least review their plan, if not update it more formally, on a quarterly basis.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: The Buyer's Journey

Consider including the following components in your strategic business plan.

Mission Statement

A company’s mission statement speaks to its purpose and values, as well as the strategy, scope, and standards of its business doings.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: mission statement

Consider a company’s mission statement like its North Star; it can act as a guiding force for decision-making that’s consistently aligned with the ethics and values of the company.

Industry & Market Conditions

Great sales planning cannot be performed in isolation. It’s important that your plan also takes into account the current market conditions, including any challenges, recent disruptions, or upcoming notable events.

Organization Chart

A sales org chart can range in scope from very simple, like the one above, to more complicated. Some go as far as naming individual employees and outlining their specific responsibilities. 

A detailed org chart is especially helpful for efficiently onboarding new hires.

Product Info & Pricing

No sales plan would be complete without a one-sheet that outlines the features, benefits, and value proposition of your product or service.

It’s also helpful to include information about pricing tiers, as well as any discounts or promotions available for leverage at a sales rep’s discretion.

Compensation Plan

While we have no doubt that you’ve hired only the most intrinsically motivated salespeople, remember the bottom line: cash is king.

Money is the primary motivator for most salespeople, regardless of how truly loyal and hard-working they may be.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: golden rules of sales compensation

With that in mind, it’s a good idea to include your company’s compensation plan and commission structure in your sales plan. This is a surefire way to motivate your team to continuously improve their sales performance. 

Target Market & Customer

One of the single most important components of your strategic sales plan will be your ideal customer profile and/or your buyer persona .

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: Ideal Customer Profile and Buyer Personas

Sales Enablement

With the tremendous rise in content marketing, it can be challenging for salespeople to keep track of the various materials available for generating new business.

Your strategic sales plan should direct your sales team to the many resources available to them to leverage throughout the sales cycle. It should also highlight the tools, software, CRM, and training — collectively known as sales enablement tools — available to and expected of them.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: sales enablement

Branding & Positioning

The strategic sales plan should offer at least a high-level overview of your brand and messaging specifics, including social media presence. Take the time to optimize your company’s LinkedIn presence — it’s a goldmine of new business opportunities.

Marketing Strategy

In today’s day and age, it’s unlikely that your sales and marketing team are working in isolation from one another. At a certain point, sales and marketing strategies start to flow together until they (ideally) perform in harmony.

Still, it’s important to outline the perspective of the marketing team within your strategic sales plan. This will help your salespeople fine-tune their sales pitch and speak more meaningfully to the needs of the customer. 

Prospecting Strategy

Most salespeople report that their number one challenge in lead generation is attracting qualified leads. 

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: B2B lead generation challenges

Prospecting can certainly be daunting, but it’s worth the effort to get it right. Tweak and fine-tune the process until you’re sure it’s as efficient as possible. Make sure it’s repeatable and scalable, and map it out within your sales plan.

Action Plan

Any good strategic sales plan will also include a step-by-step section, much like a playbook. Here, you’ll outline the specific tactics and processes — including scripts, demos, and email templates — that have been proven to move prospects through the sales funnel . 

Be as specific as possible here. This will act as a blueprint for the day-to-day sales activities for your team.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: SMART Goals

It can be tempting to leave the numbers with the finance department, but financial transparency can go a long way in creating a culture of trust among your sales team.

You don’t need to go through every line item in the spreadsheet, but it’s not a bad idea to include a high-level look at where the dollars are flowing. 

KPIs, Metrics, and Benchmarks

Be sure to give your team a snapshot of how they’re currently performing, with real numbers to back it up. This will help them self-initiate regular SWOT analysis of their own sales actions and processes. This will give them an opportunity to right the course if things aren’t going according to plan. 

Remember that your company’s strategic sales plan will be highly unique. It may take some time and tweaking to find the components and format that best meet the needs of your business.

Below are a few components that you might consider including in your sales plan.

Buyer’s Guide

A buyer’s guide is a short, simple information sheet that describes your product or service, its features and benefits, and its use. Below is an example of a buyer’s guide from Wayfair .

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: buyers guide

In many cases, this document is as useful internally as it is for the customer. 

Customer Profile

One way to avoid wasting time on unproductive leads is to include an ideal customer profile (ICP) in your sales plan.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: ideal customer profile

30-60-90 Day Plan

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: 30-60-90 day sales plan

Microsoft Word Sales Plan Template

Here’s a great example of a sales plan goals template , easily accessible through Microsoft Word.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: sales plan template

Battle Cards

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: Battle Cards

Territory Design

Well-designed sales territories see a 10% – 20% increase in sales productivity. Pictured below is a basic example of a territory design map.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: territory map

When designing your territories, keep in mind the following best practices .

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: territory plan

Your compensation plan (including a specific commission structure) is one way to motivate your sales reps.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: compensation plan

While it may seem controversial or sensitive, the compensation plan is an important component of a strategic sale plan.

Marketing Plan

Your salespeople should be extremely familiar with the marketing strategies your company is using to attract new leads. Here’s a great example of a template you can use in your sales plan that outlines the different campaigns at work.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: marketing plan

This kind of resource will help your reps know who to contact, when, and with what kind of content throughout the sales cycle .

Yesware is the all-in-one sales toolkit that helps you win more business. It can be an invaluable resource for putting your sales plan into action in a way that’s streamlined, productive, and intuitive.


Yesware’s meeting scheduler tool helps you skip the back-and-forth when scheduling meetings.

Meeting Scheduler integrates with your Outlook or Gmail calendar and helps your clients automatically schedule meetings with you during times of availability. New events are automatically synced to your calendar. 

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: meeting scheduler

​ It can also create meeting types for common calls, like a 30-minute intro call or a 60-minute demo call. These templates can be automatically saved and generated with custom descriptions and agendas, so everyone can come prepared. 


One of Yesware’s most popular features is its prospecting campaigns.

These features enable salespeople to create automated, personalized campaigns with multi-channel touches. The tool tracks communication and engagement throughout the process and helps move prospects through the pipeline with little administrative effort from the sales team.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: prospecting campaigns

Yesware’s attachment tracking feature helps you find your winning content by tracking which attachments are most often opened and read by your prospects. You can use these insights to sharpen your content and increase your engagement.

Strategic Sales Plans Examples: presentation report

The reporting and analytics tools are also extremely valuable in optimizing your sales plan.  These reports enable salespeople to use data to win more business. The feature generates daily activity, engagement data, and outcomes to show you what is/isn’t working across the board.

Try Yesware for free for 14 days to see how it can help your sales team carry out your sales plan today.

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How To Build a Strategic Sales Plan + 10 Examples

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  • May 28, 2023


Every sales team has some sort of plan, even if it’s just “sell more of the product/service that you’re employed to sell.”

A sales plan is a portfolio that includes a layout of your processes, target audience, objectives and tactics. It’s used to guide your sales strategy and predict cost and returns. 

Yet without a codified sales plan, it can be difficult to give a sales team the motivation and purpose they need to successfully engage customers and continue to generate revenue.

Not having a sales plan that’s written down and signed off on by stakeholders can lead to confusion around what sales reps should and shouldn’t be doing , which can be demotivating.

It might seem daunting or time-consuming to put together an entire sales plan, but it doesn’t need to be. Here’s how to create a thorough sales plan in 10 simple steps. 

What Is a Sales Plan? 

A successful sales plan defines your target customers, business objectives, tactics, obstacles and processes. An effective plan will also include resources and strategies that are used to achieve target goals. It works similarly to a business plan in the way it’s presented, but only focuses on your sales strategy. 

A sales plan should include the following three components: 

  • Ideas: If you use specific business methodologies, you may choose to outline key principles and examples of them in action within your sales plan. An example could be conversation tactics when pitching your product to your target customer. 
  • Processes: In order to streamline productivity and business strategy, you’ll want to make sure your processes are defined within your sales plan. Your sales team should be able to refer to the sales plan when they’re in need of direction. 
  • Tools and tactics: The most effective sales plans include not only high-level business strategies, but also step-by-step approaches for your sales team to utilize. These tools can include key conversation pieces for your sales reps to use when pitching a product or content to close out a deal. 

Solidifying a sales plan is crucial for a strong business model. Taking the time to narrow in on the components above will set you and your business up for success down the road. 

Sales Planning Process

Sales Planning Process

It’s important to keep in mind that sales planning isn’t just about creating a sales plan document. A sales plan should be a go-to item that’s used every day by your team, rather than sitting on your desk collecting dust. Creating an effective sales plan requires high-level strategy.

You should: 

  • Decide on a timeline for your goals and tactics
  • Outline the context
  • Write out the company mission and values
  • Describe the target audience and product service positioning
  • Include sales resources
  • Draw out an overview of concurrent activities
  • Write an overview of your business road map
  • Outline your goals and KPIs
  • Outline an action plan
  • Create a budget 

 Below we dive into each of these steps to create your ideal sales plan. 

1. Decide on Your Timeline

Setting goals and outlining tactics is not going to be productive if you’re not working toward a date by which you’ll measure your efforts.

Determining the timeline of your sales plan should therefore be your number one consideration. When will you be ready to kick-start your plan, and when is a reasonable time to measure the outcomes of your plan against your SMART goals?

Remember that you need to give the plan a chance to make an impact, so this timeline shouldn’t be too restrictive. However, you also want to make sure that you’re flexible enough to adjust your plan if it’s not producing the desired results.

Most sales plan timelines cover about a year, which may be segmented into four quarters and/or two halves to make it a little more manageable.

2. Outline the Context

Use the first page of your sales plan to outline the context in which the plan was created.

What is the current state of the organization? What are your challenges and pain points? What recent wins have you experienced?

Do you have tighter restrictions on cash flow, or does revenue appear to be growing exponentially? How is your sales team currently performing?

While you’ll discuss your business plan and road map later in the document, you can also outline the long-term vision for your business in this section. For example, where do you want to see the business in five years?

Tip: Comparing the current situation with your vision will emphasize the gap between where you are now and where you need to be. 

3. Company Mission and Values

It’s essential that you put your mission and values at the heart of your business. You need to incorporate them into every function – and this includes your sales plan.

Outlining your mission and values in your sales plan ensures that you remember what the company is striving for, and in turn helps ensure that your approach and tactics will support these objectives.

Remember: A strong brand mission and authentic values will help boost customer loyalty, brand reputation and, ultimately, sales.

4. Target Market and Product/Service Positioning

Next, you’ll need to describe the market or markets that you’re operating in.

What is your target market or industry? What research led you to conclude that this was the optimal market for you?

Who within this industry is your ideal customer? What are their characteristics? This could be a job title, geographical location or company size, for example. This information makes up your ideal customer profile .

If you’ve delved further into audience research and developed personas around your target market, then include them in here, too.

5. Sales Team and Resources

This step is simple: Make a list of your sales resources, beginning with a short description of each member of your sales team.

Include their name, job title, length of time at the company and, where appropriate, their salary. What are their strengths? How can they be utilized to help you hit your goals?

You should also include notes around the gaps in your sales team and whether you intend to recruit any new team members into these (or other) roles.

Tip: Communicate the time zones your team members work in to be mindful of designated work hours for scheduling meetings and deadlines. 

Then, list your other resources. These could be tools, software or access to other departments such as the marketing team – anything that you intend to use in the execution of your sales plan. This is a quick way to eliminate any tools or resources that you don’t need.

6. Concurrent Activities

The next step in creating your sales plan involves providing an overview of non-sales activities that will be taking place during the implementation of your sales plan.

Any public marketing plans, upcoming product launches, or deals or discounts should be included, as should any relevant events. This will help you plan sales tactics around these activities and ensure that you’re getting the most out of them.

7. Business Road Map

For this step, write up an overview of your business’s overall road map, as well as the areas where sales activities can assist with or accelerate this plan. You’ll need to collaborate with the CEO, managing director or board of directors in order to do this.

In most cases, the business will already have a road map that has been signed off on by stakeholders. It’s the sales manager’s job to develop a sales plan that not only complements this road map, but facilitates its goals. 

Tip: Highlight areas of the road map that should be touchpoints for the sales team. 

Ask yourself what your department will need to do at each point in the road map to hit these overarching company goals.

8. Sales Goals and KPIs

Another important part of the sales plan involves your sales goals and KPIs.

Outline each goal alongside the KPIs you’ll use to measure it. Include a list of metrics you’ll use to track these KPIs, as well as a deadline for when you project the goal will be achieved.

It’s vital to make these goals tangible and measurable.

A bad example of a goal is as follows:

Goal 1: Increase sales across company’s range of products and services.

A better goal would look something like:

Goal 1: Generate $500,000+ in revenue from new clients through purchases of X product by X date.

9. Action Plan

Now that you’ve laid out your goals, you need to explain how you will hit them.

Your action plan can be set out week by week, month by month, or quarter by quarter. Within each segment, you must list out all of the sales activities and tactics that you will deploy – and the deadlines and touchpoints along the way.

Tip: Organize your action plan by department – sales, business development and finance. 

While this is arguably the most complex part of the sales plan, this is where sales leaders are strongest. They know which approach will work best for their team, their company and their market.

Budgets vary from team to team and company to company, but whatever your situation, it’s important to include your budget in your sales plan.

How are you going to account for the money spent on new hires, salaries, tech, tools and travel? Where the budget is tight, what are your priorities going to be, and what needs to be axed?

The budget section should make references back to your action plan and the sales team and resources page in order to explain the expenditures.

6 Strategic Sales Plan Examples 

You can create different types of strategic sales plans for your company, depending on how you want to structure your sales plan. Here are a few examples.   

Customer Profile 

A customer profile outlines your ideal customer for your service or product. It will usually include industry, background, attributes and decision-making factors.  

Creating a customer profile helps narrow in on the target customer your sales team should focus on while eliminating unproductive leads.  

Buyer’s Guide

A buyer’s guide is an informational sheet that describes your company’s services or products, including benefits and features. This document is useful both for your sales team but also for a potential customer who requires more information on the product before purchasing. 

30-60-90-Day Plan

This plan is organized based on time periods. It includes outlines of goals, strategy and actionable steps in 30-day periods. This is a useful sales plan model for a new sales representative tracking progress during their first 90 days in the position or meeting quotas in a 90-day period. 

This type of sales plan is also ideal for businesses in periods of expansion or growth. It’s helpful to minimize extra effort in onboarding processes. 

Market Expansion Plan

A market expansion plan clarifies target metrics and list of actions when moving into a new territory or market. This sales plan model is typically used with a target market that resides in a new geographical region. 

You’ll want to include a profile of target customers, account distribution costs and even time zone differences between your sales representatives. 

Marketing-alignment Plan

Creating a marketing-alignment sales plan is useful if your organization has yet to align both your sales and marketing departments. The goal of the sales plan is finalizing your target customer personas and aligning them with your sales pitches and marketing messages. 

New Product/Service Plan 

If your organization is launching a new service or product, it’s best to create a sales plan to track revenue and other growth metrics from the launch. You’ll want to include sales strategy, competitive analyses and service or product sales positioning. 

Sales Plan Template

4 additional sales plan templates.

Here are some additional templates you can use to create your own unique sales plan. 

  • Template Lab 
  • ProjectManager

5 Tips for Creating a Sales Plan 

Now that you’ve seen and read through a few examples and a sales plan template, we’ll cover some easy but useful tips to create a foolproof sales plan. 

  • Create a competitive analysis: Research what sales strategies and tactics your close competitors are using. What are they doing well? What are they not doing well? Knowing what they are doing well will help you create a plan that will lead to eventual success. 
  • Vary your sales plans: First create a base sales plan that includes high-level goals, strategies and tactics. Then go more in depth on KPIs and metrics for each department, whether it’s outbound sales or business development . 
  • Analyze industry trends: Industry trends and data can easily help strengthen your sales approach. For example, if you’re pitching your sales plan to a stakeholder, use current market trends and statistics to support why you believe your sales strategies will be effective in use. 
  • Utilize your marketing team: When creating your sales plan, you’ll want to get the marketing department’s input to align your efforts and goals. You should weave marketing messages throughout both your sales plan and pitches. 
  • Discuss with your sales team: Remember to check in with your sales representatives to understand challenges they may be dealing with and what’s working and not working. You should update the sales plan quarterly based on feedback received from your sales team. 

When Should You Implement a Strategic Sales Plan? 

Does your organization currently not have a sales plan in place that is used regularly? Are you noticing your organization is in need of structure and lacking productivity across departments? These are definite signs you should create and implement a sales plan. 

According to a LinkedIn sales statistic , the top sales tech sellers are using customer relationship management (CRM) tools (50%), sales intelligence (45%) and sales planning (42%) .

Below are a few more indicators that you need an effective sales plan. 

To Launch a New Product or Campaign 

If you’re planning to launch a new service or product in six months, you should have a concrete marketing and sales strategy plan to guarantee you’ll see both short- and long-term success. 

The sales plan process shouldn’t be hasty and rushed. Take the time to go over data and competitor analysis. Work with your team to create objectives and goals that everyone believes in. Your sales plan should be updated formally on a quarterly basis to be in line with industry trends and business efforts. 

To Increase Sales

If your team is looking to increase revenue and the number of closed sales, you may need to widen and define your target audience. A sales plan will help outline this target audience, along with planning out both sales and marketing strategies to reach more qualified prospects and increase your sales conversion rate. 

Now that you’ve seen sales plan examples and tips and tricks, the next step after creating your sales plan is to reach those ideal sales targets with Mailshake . Connect with leads and generate more sales with our simple but effective sales engagement platform.

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Sales Strategy Planning: How to Plan Ahead for 2024

In the fast-paced world of sales strategy, there's a constant push to get ahead, to outshine competitors, and to capture the lion's share of the market. (Roar.) But how do we achieve these lofty goals? The answer lies in effective planning.

Why sales strategy planning is important in 2024

Imagine setting off on a journey without a map or a GPS. You might end up somewhere, but it's unlikely to be the destination you had in mind. The same holds true for businesses. Without a well-crafted sales strategy plan, we're essentially operating in the dark, hoping to stumble upon success.

Sales Strategy Planning is the beacon that guides us. It's our roadmap to reaching our sales targets and business objectives. It helps us understand our target market, get a handle on the competition, and determine the most effective sales tactics to employ. A robust sales strategy plan can make the difference between a thriving business and one that's merely surviving.

A well-implemented sales strategy plan can do wonders for our bottom line. It enables us to focus our resources (both time and money) where they're most likely to yield results. It's not just about boosting sales; it's about increasing profitability and ensuring the long-term success of our business.

Notably, sales strategy planning is often overlooked in the rush to get a product or service to market. However, without it, we risk wasting resources on unprofitable ventures or missing golden opportunities. It's the tool that allows us to make informed, strategic decisions about where to invest our effort and resources.

In essence, sales strategy planning is the rudder that steers our business ship. It helps us navigate the choppy waters of the market, directing us towards profitable shores. And the good news? Mastering it is possible. With the right guidance, tools, and perseverance, we can design a sales strategy plan that propels our business to new heights.

So, let's embark on this exciting journey together. We'll explore the ins and outs of sales strategy planning, from understanding its goals to developing and implementing a successful plan. And on the way, we'll share practical sales strategy examples and useful sales strategy templates to help you craft your own winning strategy.

Understanding sales strategy planning

What is sales strategy planning.

Sales Strategy Planning isn’t just about selling a product or service; it's a holistic approach that encapsulates a multitude of elements. This includes understanding our target market, identifying our competitors, and setting actionable objectives that align with our business goals.

Sales Strategy Planning is essentially the blueprint of how we intend to sell our products or services. It is a comprehensive roadmap that outlines our tactical approach to sales, including key steps like identifying potential customers, determining pricing, and establishing effective distribution channels. This plan isn't a static document, rather, it's a living, breathing strategy that evolves as we learn more about our market and adjust to changing conditions.

For a deeper dive, check out these sales strategy examples that provide real-world applications of effective sales strategies.

The goals of sales strategy planning

The primary goal of Sales Strategy Planning is to set us up for success by identifying and leveraging opportunities that will drive revenue growth. But, it goes beyond just increasing sales figures. Here's a snapshot of some key objectives:

  • Increase Revenue : This is a no-brainer. The main aim of any sales strategy is to boost sales and grow our revenue.
  • Enhance Customer Relationships : By understanding our target market, we can tailor our offerings to meet their needs and build stronger relationships.
  • Identify Growth Opportunities : A well-crafted sales strategy helps us identify new markets, new customer segments, and new products or services to expand our business.
  • Improve Competitive Positioning : By understanding our competition, we can better position our products or services to stand out in the market.
  • Forecast Sales : A good sales strategy allows us to predict future sales based on market trends and historical data, helping us plan and budget effectively.

Remember, the goals of Sales Strategy Planning aren't set in stone. They can and should be customized according to our unique business needs and market realities. Don't hesitate to revisit and revise them as necessary to keep pace with our evolving business landscape.

For a more detailed understanding, consider exploring this sales strategy framework to help set you on the right path.

5 steps to develop a sales strategy plan

Creating a comprehensive and effective sales strategy plan is no small feat. It's a meticulous process that requires clarity, research, and thoughtful decision-making. Here are the crucial steps we need to take to build a robust sales strategy plan.

1. Define your sales objectives

sales strategies business plan

Firstly, it's crucial to identify our sales objectives . What goals do we want to achieve with our sales strategy? It could be anything from increasing our sales by 20% over the next quarter, expanding into a new market, or boosting our conversion rate. The key is to ensure these objectives are SMART: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. This step sets the foundation for the rest of our plan and keeps us focused on our ultimate goals.

2. Know your target market

sales strategies business plan

Next, it's time to understand our target market better. Who are we selling to? What are their needs, preferences, and pain points? You’ve gotta consider demographics, psychographics, and buying behaviors. This knowledge is vital for tailoring your sales tactics to match customers' expectations and needs.

3. Understand your competition

sales strategies business plan

Competitor analysis is another essential step. Knowing our competition helps us identify our unique selling proposition (USP). It allows us to pinpoint what sets us apart and why customers should choose us over others. This knowledge also provides insights into potential opportunities or gaps in the market that we can leverage.

4. Determine your sales tactics

sales strategies business plan

Once we understand our objectives, audience, and competition, we can decide on our sales tactics. Will we use content marketing to educate potential customers? Or do we implement a direct sales approach? Maybe a blend of both? The tactics we choose should align with our objectives, resonate with our target market, and differentiate us from the competition. And because we're heading into 2024—yeah, we're gonna want to take things like AI for sales into consideration. For further guidance, check out these sales strategy examples .

5. Set your sales budget

sales strategies business plan

Lastly, we need to establish our sales budget. This financial plan should cover all aspects of our sales strategy, including staff salaries, training costs, marketing expenses, and CRM software. It's vital to balance our spending with realistic sales forecasts to ensure a positive return on investment (ROI).

In conclusion, creating a sales strategy plan is a dynamic, multifaceted process that requires a deep understanding of our business goals, our customers, and the market landscape. But when done correctly, it can provide us with a clear roadmap to sales success.

Implementing your sales strategy plan

Once your well-defined sales strategy plan is in place, the next logical step is to put it into action. This phase involves three critical aspects: training your sales team, utilizing sales tools, and tracking and measuring success.

Training your sales team

At the heart of any successful sales strategy are the individuals who make the sales happen: your sales team. It's essential to equip them with the necessary skills and knowledge to execute the sales plan effectively.

We recommend conducting comprehensive training sessions that cover the specifics of the sales strategy plan. These sessions should include role-play scenarios, group discussions, and practical exercises to help your team build their skills. Furthermore, continuous learning opportunities such as workshops, seminars, and e-learning platforms can keep your team updated on the latest sales techniques and trends.

Using sales tools

This ain’t 1965 anymore. You have a variety of sales tools available to aid in the implementation of your sales strategy plan. These tools can help streamline processes, enhance communication, and improve overall efficiency.

We suggest exploring different tools and selecting those that align best with your specific needs. For instance, Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software can help manage customer interactions, while sales analytics tools can provide valuable insights into performance metrics. And tools like Magical can help save your sales team time on admin work and repetitive tasks like messaging.

You might also consider checking out some sales strategy templates to help structure your sales efforts effectively.

Tracking and measuring success

The final, yet equally important, aspect of implementing your sales strategy plan is tracking progress and measuring success. This allows us to identify which strategies are working and which areas might need improvement.

Key performance indicators (KPIs) can be helpful in this regard. These measurable values demonstrate how effectively your company is achieving key business objectives. Some common sales KPIs include sales growth, sales target, and conversion rates.

Remember, the goal isn't just to track these metrics, but to learn from them. Leverage this data to refine your sales strategy, ensuring it remains as effective and efficient as possible.

In the next section, we'll discuss how to adjust and optimize your sales strategy plan based on the feedback and data you collect during this phase. Stay tuned!

Adjusting and optimizing your sales strategy plan

Now that we've covered the steps to create your sales strategy plan, let's delve into the world of refinement. Like any well-oiled machine, your strategy requires regular check-ups and tune-ups. Here's how.

When to review your plan

The best time to review your sales strategy plan is a bit like the best time to plant a tree – yesterday. The second-best time? Now. In business, as in life, change is the only constant. Market trends shift, new competitors emerge, and customer preferences evolve. Therefore, it's crucial to stay on top of these dynamics and adjust your strategy accordingly.

We recommend conducting a thorough review of your plan every quarter. This frequency ensures that your strategy remains agile and responsive to market changes, without becoming a constant source of disruption. That being said, it's also important to stay flexible. If a significant event occurs – like a new competitor entering the market or a dramatic shift in customer behavior – don't wait for the next quarterly review. Respond proactively.

How to adjust your sales strategy

Adjusting your sales strategy is not about scrapping everything and starting from scratch. It's about calibrating your existing plan to better align with current realities.

First, revisit your sales objectives. Are they still relevant and achievable given the current market conditions? If not, redefine them. Next, look at your target market and competition. Have there been any significant changes? If so, adjust your tactics accordingly.

One of the most common reasons for adjusting a sales strategy is a change in the competitive landscape. For instance, if a competitor has launched a new product that threatens your market share, you might need to revise your strategy to counteract this threat. This could involve anything from adjusting your pricing to ramping up your marketing efforts.

For detailed guidance on how to adjust your sales strategy, check out our sales strategy development guide.

Leveraging feedback and data

Effective sales strategy planning is a data-driven process. This means leveraging feedback and data to inform your decisions and adjustments.

Feedback can come in many forms, from customer reviews to sales team input. It's essential to create a culture where feedback is valued and acted upon. This could involve regular team meetings to discuss sales performance, or customer surveys to gain insights into buyer preferences and pain points.

Data, on the other hand, is all about the numbers. This includes sales figures, conversion rates, customer retention rates, and more. Use this data to identify trends, spot opportunities, and diagnose problems.

For instance, if your data shows a high customer churn rate, this could indicate a problem with your product or service. In this case, you might need to adjust your sales strategy to focus more on customer retention.

Remember, adjusting and optimizing your sales strategy plan isn't an optional step – it's an integral part of the process. So, keep your finger on the pulse, stay flexible, and never stop refining. That's the secret to sales success.

Case study: successful sales strategy planning

Company overview.

Let's delve into the intriguing case of Acme Tech, a budding technology firm. (Name changed to protect their privacy.) Acme Tech was founded in 2013, with a focus on delivering innovative software solutions to their clients. Despite their compelling product line, they faced a steep challenge in achieving desired sales targets.

Implementation of sales strategy

Recognizing the need for an effective sales plan, Acme Tech decided to revisit their sales strategy. They began by redefining their sales objectives, which included increasing their market share and boosting quarterly sales by 15%. To accomplish these objectives, they studied their target market in-depth, identified key players in their industry, and analyzed their competition.

Armed with this knowledge, they developed a unique sales tactic: rather than focusing solely on their products, they decided to underscore the value their solutions could bring to their customers. They utilized sales strategy templates to structure their approach.

To implement their strategy, they invested in training their sales team to effectively communicate the value of their products. They also leveraged a variety of sales tools, including CRM software and automated email marketing tools, to streamline their sales process and enhance customer engagement.

Result and learnings

The effective implementation of their sales strategy yielded impressive results. Within a year, Acme Tech was able to increase their market share by 10% and surpass their sales target by 20%. This success story serves as a testament to the power of a well-structured sales strategy.

Key takeaways from Acme Tech's experience include the importance of understanding your target market, the power of emphasizing the value proposition to customers, and the necessity of equipping your sales team with the right tools and training.

We hope Acme Tech's journey inspires you to revisit your own sales strategy. Remember, a robust sales plan can be the difference between meeting your sales targets and exceeding them. So don't wait, start crafting your sales strategy development plan today!

Final thoughts on sales strategy planning

Like a well-oiled machine, your sales strategy is the engine that propels your business forward. It provides direction and focus, allowing you to navigate the often choppy waters of the market. Remember, it's not just about selling more , it's about selling smart .

From understanding what sales strategy planning is, to knowing when and how to adjust your plan, we've covered a lot of ground. We've outlined the steps to develop a strategy, from defining your sales objectives and knowing your target market, to determining your sales tactics and setting your budget.

We've also explored the implementation phase, highlighting the importance of training your sales team, utilizing the right sales tools, and tracking your success. And, of course, we've delved into the process of adjusting and optimizing your plan, leveraging feedback and data to make informed decisions.

Throughout, we've woven in real-life scenarios and sales strategy examples to provide a practical perspective. We've also included resources like sales strategy templates to help you get started on your own strategic journey.

But remember, the path to mastering sales strategy planning is not a straight one. It's a continuous journey of learning, adapting, and improving. So, here's to your success in the exciting world of sales. We hope this guide becomes a part of your toolkit as you forge ahead, and we can't wait to see where your journey takes you next.

Until then, keep planning, keep strategizing, and keep selling. After all, the world of sales waits for no one.

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Small Business Sales: A Complete Guide

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SMBs have a variety of motivations, and your solutions need to help them reach their goals.

sales strategies business plan

Paul Bookstaber

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Small and midsize businesses (SMBs) represent a huge opportunity for sellers. According to the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA),  99.9%  of U.S. businesses are small businesses. That means there are a lot of prospects to go after. Even better, SMBs tend to make decisions faster than enterprise companies, in part because there are fewer decision-makers involved. What does that mean for you? Faster sales cycles and more inked deals.

But winning an SMB sale isn’t as easy as picking up the phone. There’s a specific art to it. In this article, we’ll explain what an SMB is and break down how salespeople should operate with small business sales clients. We’ll also explore different strategies for business-to-business (B2B) sales among SMB clients.

What you’ll learn:

What is an smb (small and midsize business), what are the benefits of selling to smbs, what are the challenges of selling to smbs, how do you sell to smbs, grow revenue faster with a single source of truth.

Discover how Sales Cloud uses data and AI to help you build relationships and close deals fast.

sales strategies business plan

SMB stands for small and midsize business. Generally, small businesses have fewer than  100 employees  and midsize businesses have fewer than 1,000, but the numbers are subjective. The  Small Business Association , for example, classifies small businesses by the number of employees and average annual receipts, and it varies by industry.

In many cases, SMB owners are still very much involved in all the decision-making, and they manage operations differently when compared to  enterprises , which have multiple layers of bureaucracy.

Almost two-thirds of SMB leaders are looking for growth, according our Small and Medium Business Trends Report . What starts off as an account with low-value sales could turn into a long-term customer, depending on the customer’s desire to expand. On top of that, you can lean into these other advantages of selling to small businesses.

  • Shorter sales cycles:  Many sellers focusing on SMB clients will tell you it takes weeks or months to close a deal, rather than the months-to-quarter-long  sales cycles  in enterprise deals.
  • Faster decisions:  You’re building relationships with only one person or a handful of people at an SMB, so you can reach the final say more quickly and with less input.
  • Vast selection of opportunities:  The SBA cites approximately  33.1 million small businesses in the U.S.  And every year more are started — so there’s always a fresh opportunity waiting out there.

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There are a handful of reasons why sales to SMBs present a different set of challenges than selling to enterprise-level corporations.

1. SMBs have smaller budgets, so every dollar counts

SMBs generally have smaller budgets, tighter operating margins, and less liquid resources. Small business owners don’t always have adequate working capital to grow their operations or invest in big solutions. They’re more likely to scrutinize each deal and rely on subscription payments.

To overcome an SMB’s  objections to pricing , offer low-commitment, month-to-month options that minimize the up-front cost. In these B2B sales, your company must deliver consistent  ongoing value  to encourage clients to keep doing business with you.

Also, be patient. If the timing isn’t right, SMBs won’t place an order right away. An SMB’s cash flow may be limited, and they may need to wait a few months before converting.

2. Limited time for SMBs means fewer chances for you to sell

Small business owners are often busy around the clock. They’re more likely to work seven days a week and put in overtime to keep things running smoothly. An SMB owner oversees it all when it comes to applying for funding, marketing, maintaining employee engagement, sales, customer service, invoicing, and all the tasks associated with running a business.

Given that small business owners are constantly strapped for time, they may be hesitant to take any  pitch meetings . Be sensitive to their limited availability by working around their schedule. Your flexibility will go a long way in helping to convert the buyer into a happy customer.

3. Not all SMBs want to grow, and not all of them should

While some SMBs scale and grow quickly without consequence, there is such a thing as growing too fast. Many small businesses will benefit more from focusing on stability and self-sufficiency than from setting their sights on exponential growth.

However, small business sales reps can still introduce value by offering solutions that improve operational efficiency, streamline processes, and minimize costs. That way, instead of growing top-line revenue, your customers can focus more on how they can increase their profits.

4. Many SMBs prefer scalable operational expenses over big purchases

This is most commonly seen in software sales. Back in the days of traditional client-server software packages, technology trends favored large enterprises. Software packages required a cash commitment up front, backed by a staff of in-house IT professionals for implementation, maintenance, and security. Few SMBs had the resources for those kinds of purchases, and those that did often preferred to avoid such large expenditures.

However, software as a service (SaaS) has changed the game. In charging a monthly fee that can be scaled up or down as an organization’s needs evolve, many software companies opened their services and technology to SMBs. Small businesses can now afford technology that was previously unavailable to them.

If your company is able, offer a subscription payment plan or another method to reach SMBs with strict budgets. This helps by simultaneously improving your monthly recurring revenue (MRR) and offering your clients more payment options. Salespeople can also turn this into a quick win by offering free trials and starter packages. These help clients better understand the benefits of your products or services, experience their advantages firsthand, and then justify the purchase.

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When you sell to a small business, many of your tried-and-true selling techniques apply. Still, there will be times when you need to tailor your approach. This could look like showing ROI in a different way, speaking to specific selling points, focusing on simplicity, and more.

1. Focus on your client’s ROI

Make a strong case that shows how your goods or services will give your prospects a meaningful return on their investment. Get to know the owners, how they work, the biggest pain points they face, and what matters most to them. Then you can  pitch a solution  that helps drive their vision forward. Your solution should plainly state how it’s the answer to your client’s specific needs, whether that’s driving extra website traffic or moving more products off of shelves.

2. Respect the owner’s limited time

When it comes to selling to SMBs, you need to be the flexible one in the relationship. Setting prices, determining service terms, and even worrying about your competitors all take a back seat to getting a small business owner to give you their precious time. Make it a rule to set and keep appointments on your end, but stay adaptable so you can accommodate your client’s schedule.

3. Keep interactions small, intimate, and personal

A small platoon of sharply dressed businesspeople may be the last thing a small business owner wants to deal with. Your lead may feel more comfortable in jeans than slacks and may prefer to do business with someone who feels approachable.

Develop a true understanding of your  prospect’s  personal and professional pain points. You need to first build rapport, then a relationship, and the rest will flow more naturally.

4. Focus on ease of use

No matter what you sell, small business clients must be able to implement it seamlessly into their existing processes. Offer solutions that integrate seamlessly with their current business and ensure they’re helped and trained as needed. The easier your offering is to use, the more likely your client will immediately be able to take advantage of your solution to save time, trim costs, or increase revenue.

5. Look for opportunities beyond the sale

Continue to deliver value as you enter the post-sales period. SMBs are relationship-oriented. What’s especially important to your buyers is  post-sales service , so reassure them and provide them with a plan for onboarding and continuing customer success.

This could include value-driven follow-ups, customer education, and an evolving understanding of your client’s unique challenges and needs. You can train your clients to be expert users, and some of your best customers could even turn into brand ambassadors, further building on your relationship.

The art of small business sales is to know small businesses

SMBs have a variety of motivations, and your solutions need to help them reach their goals. A successful B2B salesperson finds a way to help clients achieve their dreams. Think beyond your quarterly sales goals, and look to build client relationships that will span your career. Whether clients want to grow or stay as is — or whether their budget is lofty or modest — you should strive to help them increase efficiency, decrease overall costs, and proactively manage their revenue. Be a force for good for their business.

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Paul Bookstaber is a writer at Salesforce. He has a decade of experience in content marketing in B2B tech. Before that, he published a magazine and ran a tabloid blog. Today, he splits his time between Florida and the Mountain West, and loves to hike, ski, and watch Bravo. He is in a polyamorous relationship with Luke and Roger, who are cats.

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  • Sales Territory Management- Steps and Strategies for Growth 

sales territory management

‘When in Rome, do as the Romans do’ is more than just good travel etiquette.  

It can be your most effective strategy to unlock the true revenue potential of all your sales territories.  

How?      In the dynamic field of sales, the effective management of territories is a linchpin for success and this linchpin lies in your ability to customize and adapt to each unique territory. 

Sales Territory Management involves dividing the market into specific areas, assigning each to a sales rep, and tailoring strategies for maximum impact in those regions.  

The goal is to boost efficiency, prevent overlap, and optimize sales efforts in a targeted way. 

In this blog, you will learn why sales territory management is worth your time, how to set up a winning sales territory plan in x steps and the best practices that promise to yield the highest benefits in every territory. 

What is Sales Territory Management?  

Sales territory management is the strategic process of dividing a market into geographic areas to optimize sales efforts. 

It involves planning, organizing, and directing sales activities within these designated territories.  

The primary goal is to maximize efficiency by tailoring sales strategies to the unique needs and characteristics of each region.  

This essentially enables you to customize your approach to boost sales where it matters most, create a real impact on the ground and build stronger connections with customers in diverse market landscapes. 

The Importance of Sales Territory Management  

Sales Territory Management is indispensable for business success, particularly for managers and sales representatives, as it operates at the core of strategic sales operations.  

Importance of Sales Territory Management

Here’s what you stand to gain from effective sales territory management: 

  • Strategic market penetration: A competent sales territory plan allows businesses to strategically penetrate diverse markets by tailoring sales strategies to the unique characteristics of each territory.     Example : Apple strategically positions its flagship stores in upscale urban centers with a high concentration of tech enthusiasts. The Apple Store on Fifth Avenue in New York City, for instance, caters to the luxury tech market, providing a hands-on experience with the latest devices in a prime location known for high-end shopping.   
  • Resource optimization: Efficient territory management involves strategic allocation of sales personnel, marketing efforts, and other resources based on the potential of each territory.  By identifying high-potential areas and allocating resources accordingly, a company can maximize its return on investment and reduce unnecessary costs.  Example : Tesla optimizes resources by assigning experienced electric vehicle sales specialists to regions where environmental consciousness is a priority. In California’s Silicon Valley, Tesla’s sales teams leverage their expertise to appeal to the tech-savvy population, contributing to the brand’s dominance in the electric vehicle market.   
  • Holistic customer engagement: Sales teams are able to develop a deeper understanding of the unique needs and preferences of customers within specific territories.   By tailoring sales and marketing strategies to the characteristics of each territory, businesses can enhance customer satisfaction and boost customer retention .    Example : Louis Vuitton ‘s flagship store on Champs-Élysées in Paris is a prime example of holistic customer engagement. Sales associates, trained in the history of the brand and the art of luxury, go beyond transactions. They curate personalized shopping experiences, host exclusive events, and establish enduring relationships with high-end clientele.   
  • Agile adaptation: Your territory plan provides a reliable framework for agile adaptation, enabling quick responses to the changes in customer behavior, market trends, and competitive landscapes.  Real-time field feedback provides a data-driven foundation for making informed decisions, ensuring the adaptability and relevance of your sales approaches.    Example : Recognizing the demand for regional content, Netflix deftly adjusted its sales approach in territories like India.  

Sales teams focused on forging partnerships and acquiring rights for popular local films and series, ensuring that the platform’s content resonated with the nuanced preferences of Indian audiences.  

This adaptation not only boosted subscriber numbers but also solidified Netflix’s position as a go-to streaming service for diverse and culturally rich content. 

  • Performance accountability: Assigned territories instill a sense of ownership and accountability for sales reps, fostering increased motivation and a proactive approach to achieving goals.  Additionally, the resulting transparency helps in recognizing top-performing individuals, identifying areas for improvement, and fostering a culture of continuous learning and development within the organization.    Example : Pfizer ‘s sales representatives in the Northeastern United States not only track pharmaceutical sales but actively engage with healthcare providers to monitor patient outcomes. 

This accountability ensures that Pfizer’s medications not only reach the market but contribute positively to patient health. 

  • Strategic insights through data: Effective territory plans yield a large volume of well classified data. Relying on data analysis, this approach goes beyond routine reporting to uncover trends, identify growth opportunities, and refine strategies based on real-time field feedback.    Example : Amazon leverages sales territory management to analyze customer data in urban versus suburban areas.  

This data-driven approach influences Amazon’s inventory management, allowing the company to stock products that align with the distinct preferences of urban and suburban customers. 

  • Cost-effective operations: Beyond reducing travel costs , efficient territory management involves streamlining processes, minimizing redundancies, and optimizing workflows for overall operational efficiency.    Example : FedEx optimizes delivery routes in densely populated cities like Tokyo, where package delivery density is high.   By strategically planning delivery routes, FedEx minimizes fuel consumption and delivery times, contributing to efficient and cost-effective operations in metropolitan areas. 

Now that you’re aware of the significance of sales territory management, the next step is to set up your own sales territory plan.  

Steps To Create a Winning Sales Territory Plan  

Create your own territory plan in 12 simple steps with insights from the strategies of industry giants: 

1. Understand your market : Conduct thorough research to understand your target market, including demographics, industry trends, and competition. 

In 2021, Adidas conducted market analysis revealing a rising interest in sustainable fashion. They responded by launching the “Futurecraft.Footprint” sneaker, showcasing their commitment to eco-friendly products and reducing carbon emissions.  

2. Set clear objectives : Define specific, measurable, and achievable sales goals for your territory. These could include revenue targets, market share growth, or customer acquisition metrics. 

Walmart’s clear goal to expand its same-day delivery service was realized by investing in technology and partnerships. They achieved a 60% increase in same-day delivery orders, meeting customer demands for faster and convenient shopping.  

3. Segment your territory : Divide your territory into manageable segments based on factors like geography, industry, or customer size. This helps tailor your approach to specific needs. 

Starbucks, in 2022, introduced location-specific coffee blends in response to regional preferences. The “City Mugs” campaign highlighted unique coffee blends exclusive to certain cities, creating a buzz and increasing sales in those areas.   

4. Customer profiling : Develop detailed profiles of your target customers within each segment. Understand their pain points, preferences, and buying behaviors to tailor your sales strategy. 

Recognizing the rise in skincare awareness, Procter & Gamble, launched the “Age Perfect Radiant Serum Foundation”, targeting the 50+ age group. The product’s success was attributed to a deep understanding of the aging demographic’s skincare needs.  

5. Prioritize prospects : Identify high-potential accounts and prioritize them based on factors like revenue potential, strategic fit, and ease of conversion. 

Tesla prioritized the Chinese market in early 2022 by opening a Gigafactory in Shanghai. This strategic move not only reduced manufacturing costs but also allowed Tesla to respond quickly to the growing demand for electric vehicles in China.   

6. Resource allocation : Allocate resources effectively, considering factors like sales team size, marketing budget, and support staff. Ensure that your resources align with the potential of each segment. 

Best Buy optimizes resource allocation using customer analytics, analyzing in-store and online data to pinpoint high-potential territories and make adjustments accordingly.   Adjustments include increased inventory, elevated marketing investments, and assigning experienced staff to capitalize on demand, leading to heightened sales and customer satisfaction.   

7. Sales territory mapping : Create a visual map of your territory, highlighting key accounts, competitors, and strategic locations. This helps in optimizing travel and resource allocation. 

Johnson & Johnson uses GIS technology to map sales territories for its medical device division, enabling the medical device sales team to optimize their routes, prioritize key accounts, and tailor product offerings, leading to improved customer relationships, increased market share, and more effective territory coverage.  

8. Develop specialized sales strategies : Tailor your sales approach for each segment, considering the unique needs and preferences of your target customers. Align your strategies with overall company goals. 

Samsung, in 2022, revamped its sales strategy by offering extended warranties and personalized support for premium smartphones. This customer-centric approach aimed to increase brand loyalty and satisfaction.  

9. Sales training and evelopment : Ensure your sales team is equipped with the right skills and knowledge to effectively engage with prospects. Provide continuous training to adapt to market changes. 

General Electric invested in virtual reality (VR) training for its sales team and this immersive approach enhanced their understanding of complex industrial products, resulting in more confident and informed client interactions.   

10. Monitoring and evaluation : Implement a system to monitor and evaluate the performance of your sales territory plan. Regularly review key metrics and adjust strategies as needed to stay agile in the market. 

Google refined its advertising algorithms in 2022 to prioritize user privacy. The introduction of the “Privacy Sandbox” aimed to provide advertisers with valuable insights while respecting user data protection, ensuring compliance with evolving regulations.  

11. Feedback loop : Establish a feedback loop with your sales team to gather insights from the field. This information is valuable for refining strategies and addressing challenges in real-time. 

Acme Tech utilizes a feedback loop where sales reps regularly share market observations and client feedback. This iterative process has allowed Acme Tech to swiftly adapt its product offerings, address customer pain points, and stay ahead in a dynamic market.

12. Adaptability : Markets evolve, so be ready to adapt your plan. Stay informed about industry trends, customer feedback, and competitive actions, and adjust your strategies accordingly. 

In 2021, Netflix adapted its content strategy by investing heavily in interactive storytelling. The success of interactive films like “Bandersnatch” demonstrated Netflix’s agility in responding to changing viewer preferences for immersive content experiences.  

Remember, a winning sales territory plan is a dynamic document that requires continuous refinement based on market changes and feedback from the field. 

5 Strategies to Nail Sales Territory Management  

In practical execution, managing sales territories is a tall order because it entails constant analysis of the ever-changing market and time-sensitive strategic realignment. 

Here are 5 strategies designed to make this a cakewalk for you: 

1. Utilizing software and tools:  

Leverage advanced software and tools to enhance the efficiency of your sales territory management.  

CRM systems, in particular, can be instrumental in organizing and analyzing data. 

Utilizing software and tools for sales territory management

LeadSquared’s Mobile CRM helps you set up sales territories and accordingly assign leads to your field reps. Geo-fence their tasks and minimize fake location check-ins and falsified meeting logs.    Send automated beat plans to your sales reps that cover everything from number of meetings scheduled and goals for the day to best travel route.  Boost productivity and minimize distractions. 

Send automated beat plans to sales reps

Conduct reliable field sales surveys by creating standard survey forms and assigning them for each location to your reps. Geofence reps and auto-populate location details using the geotagging feature. 

Leverage detailed reports to assess which lead source, geography, demography, product

Leverage detailed reports to assess which lead source, geography, demography, product, and sales rep is bringing in the most revenue . 

This helps you identify trends in different territories and guides your strategy revisions with data backed inferences.

2. I mplementing predictive analytics for upselling

Implement predictive analytics to identify upselling opportunities within existing customer accounts in each territory. Analyze past purchasing patterns, customer behavior, and market trends to anticipate additional product or service needs. 

Increase revenue by strategically presenting relevant upselling opportunities   to customers, demonstrating a proactive understanding of their evolving needs. 

For example: Netflix employs predictive analytics to analyze viewing habits within specific regions. By understanding viewer preferences, Netflix suggests personalized content recommendations, contributing to increased subscription retention and additional revenue.  

3. Leveraging localized influencer partnerships  

Forge partnerships with local influencers or thought leaders in key territories. Leverage their influence to promote your products or services within the community, tapping into their established trust and credibility . 

Enhance brand visibility, build local trust, and generate authentic interest in your offerings, leveraging the influencers’ connection with the target audience. 

For example, Starbucks collaborates with local influencers in different cities to promote region-specific products and events. These influencers share their Starbucks experiences within their local communities, contributing to increased foot traffic and sales in those specific territories. 

4. Strategic account planning

Develop detailed account plans for key customers within each territory. 

Tailor sales strategies for long-term relationships by understanding customers’ business goals, challenges, and buying cycles. 

A prime example of effective strategic account planning is Microsoft’s engagement with major enterprise clients such as IKEA and PayPal.  

Microsoft’s account managers work closely with each client, conducting in-depth analyses of their business objectives and challenges.

5. Tailoring approach to territory-specific customer behavior

Customer behavior is bound to vary across regions. Ensuring that you tailor your sales approach to their preferences will optimize your resource allocation. 

Lead source, lead engagement and lead score are a few pointers that can help you customize your approach. 

Additionally, your reports will give you a good idea about what line of action is effective in which territory. 

Consider the following example from our own records: 

 “While targeting prospects in the GCC, sending emails, SMS and other digital engagement campaigns will help with the discovery call but the deal will not advance towards closure without an in-person meeting.”   – Atharva Dubey, LeadSquared,Cluster Head-Sales, Middle East

Atharva’s findings underscored the significance of in-person meetings for deal closure in the GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council).  

In conclusion, mastering sales territory management is the key to unlocking untapped potential in diverse markets.  

By implementing strategic segmentation, personalized approaches, and continuous refinement, businesses can elevate their sales effectiveness. Make quick work of this and maximize your ROI across territories with LeadSquared’s powerful CRM. 


Think of a sales territory as your strategic home base. It helps sales teams zero in on specific areas, tailor their approaches, and meet goals by understanding the distinctive features of that region.   Sales territories essentially define the geographic or demographic areas assigned to sales reps, allowing for focused and personalized sales efforts. 

When creating a sales territory plan, identify your target market, dive into customer needs, set clear goals, allocate resources wisely, define sales tactics, and set up performance metrics.   Keep it flexible – adjust based on results and the ever-shifting market. 

To effectively manage and grow a sales territory, start by prioritizing existing relationships to foster customer loyalty. Actively seek new opportunities to expand your customer base and stay informed on market trends to develop adaptive strategies.   Adjust approaches based on performance metrics, ensuring flexibility and responsiveness. Foster team collaboration to create a comprehensive effort in managing the territory.   Be sure to consistently seek ways to add value to customers , as this approach is key to fostering growth in the sales territory. 

Saleha Mariam - LeadSquared

Saleha Mariam is a marketing enthusiast with an affinity for all things business and a fondness for the written word. She is presently interning at LeadSquared as a Content Writer. You can reach her on LinkedIn or write to her at [email protected]

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Sales & Marketing Plan for a Laser Tag Business

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Establishing and managing a prosperous laser tag business goes beyond providing exceptional gaming experiences; it necessitates a well-defined strategy encompassing marketing and sales.

This comprehensive guide helps you develop a sales and marketing plan tailored specifically for the business plan of a laser tag enterprise.

We’ll begin by emphasizing the paramount importance of conducting a thorough market analysis to gain insights into competitors and discern the preferences of potential players.

Following that, we’ll focus on constructing your business’s brand identity and strategically positioning it within the market.

Lastly, we’ll delve into an exploration of various marketing channels aimed at engaging potential players. Additionally, we’ll examine diverse sales strategies to augment revenue generation for your laser tag business.

Market Analysis

Understanding the market landscape is fundamental before delving into specific sales and marketing strategies. This analysis serves as the cornerstone for making informed decisions on positioning your laser tag business amidst competition.

Competitive Analysis

  • Identify key competitors: Conduct a thorough assessment of other laser tag businesses in your vicinity. Analyze their gaming arena designs, equipment quality, pricing models, customer feedback, and marketing tactics.
  • SWOT Analysis: Perform a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) comparing your Laser Tag business to competitors. This critical evaluation aids in identifying areas for outperformance and differentiation.

Target Audience Profiling

  • Demographic and Psychographic Details: Define the demographic and psychographic profiles of your ideal laser tag players. Consider factors like age groups, interests, income levels, gaming preferences, and entertainment inclinations. This understanding will guide your marketing messaging and gaming experience customization.
  • Customer Needs and Expectations: Ascertain the primary desires of your target audience in a laser tag experience—whether it’s immersive gameplay, advanced technology, themed environments, or family-friendly entertainment. Tailor your gaming offerings accordingly.

Branding and Positioning

The brand identity of a laser tag business extends beyond mere visuals—it embodies the emotional connection you establish with your players.

Brand Identity Development

  • Brand Story and Values: Craft a captivating narrative that reflects your laser tag business’s essence. Share the inspiration behind launching the venture and highlight unique perspectives or values within the entertainment industry.
  • Visual Elements: Develop a consistent visual identity encompassing logos, color schemes, and gaming environment designs. Ensure these elements resonate with your target audience and reflect your laser tag business’s distinctive personality.

Market Positioning Strategy

Define your unique selling proposition (USP) and establish a compelling positioning statement to shape players’ perceptions.

  • Define your USP: Clearly articulate what sets your laser tag business apart. Is it innovative gaming modes, state-of-the-art equipment, themed gaming environments, or personalized gaming experiences?
  • Positioning Statement: Create a statement encapsulating how you want your laser tag business to be perceived by players. This statement should guide all your marketing and operational decisions to maintain consistency in the player experience.

Marketing Channels

Utilize diverse channels to effectively communicate your brand and gaming experiences to potential and existing players.

Digital Marketing

  • Social Media: Utilize platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube to showcase thrilling gameplay highlights, share interactive stories featuring player experiences, and engage with your audience. Run contests, share gaming tips, and build a vibrant gaming community.
  • Website and SEO: Develop an informative website detailing your gaming schedule, party booking options, and gaming strategy insights. Optimize it for SEO to enhance visibility in local searches for entertainment seekers in your area.

Local Advertising

Establish a strong local presence to broaden your outreach and connect with potential customers:

  • Visually Appealing Collaterals: Design eye-catching flyers and brochures that highlight your unique gaming offerings and distribute them strategically in entertainment centers, schools, and community hubs.
  • Community Engagement: Participate actively in local events, fairs, or gaming expos by setting up booths to offer free demo games or organize tournaments, attracting potential customers, and fostering community relationships.
  • Collaborative Partnerships: Form alliances with nearby businesses, such as arcades, restaurants, or event planners, to create joint promotions or package deals that attract diverse customer segments.

Promotional Activities

Entice potential customers by offering attractive promotions and packages:

  • Themed Gaming Nights: Launch special gaming events or themed nights like ‘Galactic Wars Week’ or ‘Superhero Showdown Saturdays’ to create excitement and draw in crowds.
  • Group Discounts: Offer discounted rates for group bookings, birthday parties, corporate team-building events, or school excursions to encourage larger bookings.
  • Referral Programs: Incentivize existing customers to refer friends by providing discounts or free gameplay for successful referrals, thereby expanding your customer base through word-of-mouth referrals.

Sales Channels

Efficient sales channels are essential for maximizing revenue and ensuring exceptional customer satisfaction.

In-Person Sales

Optimize revenue during customer visits through upselling and supplementary sales strategies:

  • Enhanced Gaming Experiences: Offer premium gaming options, such as exclusive access to themed arenas, extended gameplay hours, or personalized gaming sessions for special occasions.
  • Merchandise Sales: Display and promote branded merchandise, including t-shirts, laser tag accessories, or collectibles, strategically within your gaming facility to capitalize on impulse purchases.

Online Booking and Sales

Leverage technology to facilitate convenient and seamless transactions for your customers:

  • User-Friendly Online Booking System: Implement a hassle-free booking platform on your website and social media channels, enabling customers to make reservations effortlessly.
  • E-Commerce Opportunities: Introduce online sales of gift cards, exclusive memberships, or branded merchandise, allowing customers to make purchases conveniently at their leisure.
  • Virtual Demonstrations or Tours: Offer virtual tours of your gaming arenas or online demonstrations showcasing the immersive gaming experience, thereby enticing potential customers and providing a sneak peek into your offerings.

Membership and Loyalty Programs

Encourage repeat business and foster customer loyalty through specialized programs:

  • Membership Plans: Introduce membership options that offer exclusive gaming perks, monthly passes, or discounted rates for frequent players, incentivizing customers to return.
  • Loyalty Rewards: Develop a digital loyalty program where customers earn points for each visit, which can be redeemed for free gameplay sessions, merchandise, or exclusive discounts, enhancing their overall experience and loyalty to your brand.

Privacy Overview

Small Businesses Reveal Their Business Growth Strategies for the Future

Posted: November 30, 2023 | Last updated: November 30, 2023

Small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are looking “beyond Main Street” and “plan to prioritize cross-border sales,” according to the seventh edition of Visa's Global Back to Business Study . And it’s not only American businesses that have global growth in mind. The study examined consumers and small businesses in 10 international markets: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Hong Kong, Ireland, New Zealand, Singapore, United Arab Emirates (UAE), and the United States.

The global move is powered, in part, by the adoption of new technologies by entrepreneurs, including digital payment solutions like cashless transactions. This is critical because the survey also reveals that 55% of consumers expect to increase their use of digital payments this year.

The Covid-19 pandemic halted the growth plans of many small businesses. But many entrepreneurs are back in gear. Jeni Mundy, Visa’s global head of merchant sales and acquiring, says they’re “seeing the small business mindset shift from survival mode to growth mode, as SMBs harness the power of digital payments to improve efficiencies, reach new audiences and simply thrive in today’s increasingly digital world.”

Mundy adds, “It used to be that only big businesses could scale to access customers across the country or around the world, but today’s small business owner can be virtually borderless.”

The latest small business mindset

The Global Back to Business Study shows how many SMBs are shifting their mindsets:

Ready to explore the world

Seventy-nine percent of the business owners surveyed say they’re focusing their growth strategies on “expanding into new geographies.” Small in-store and online retailers are even more ambitious, with 90% saying they see cross-border sales as an opportunity for growth.

And the world is ready—72% of consumers say they’re already comfortable making global purchases. Some consumers were still hesitant about shopping globally but said card protection (50%), positive reviews (43%), and shipping assurances (34%) would increase their comfort level and encourage them to make global purchases.

Plan to go cashless

This is an aspiration for nearly all the small businesses surveyed—95% of entrepreneurs say they plan to be cashless “someday.” But some of the small companies are more motivated—35% acknowledge that accepting new forms of payment is an opportunity to reach new customers, and 51% plan to shift to “being cashless” in the next two years by accepting the use of mobile payment apps (55%), mobile wallets (50%), and contactless cards (36%).

More marketing

To reach new customers, the business owners surveyed plan to increase their social media presence (44%), offer new products or services (41%), and invest more in marketing in general (40%).

The new consumer mindset

No matter who or where your customers are, it’s critical that you understand the current consumer mindset. Eighty-two percent of shoppers say they’ve already used digital payments for an average of 58% of their shopping, 55% of consumers plan to increase their use of digital payment tools, and 40% plan to go cashless. In addition, 59% of consumers abandoned a shopping cart once they realized digital payments weren’t available.

Another factor driving customer sales is sustainability—68% of consumers say a company’s sustainability practices have at least “somewhat of an impact” on their decision to purchase from them. And 77% say they will pay more for sustainable products and services.

In addition to shopping globally, the consumers surveyed plan to invest their time and money locally. Nearly half (49%) say they will support their local economies and shop more at local businesses in the coming year, and 44% plan to make personal connections in their communities. If you own a brick-and-mortar retail store , consumers expect you to accept contactless cards (57%), mobile payment apps (49%), and mobile wallets (49%).

Also, digital payments encourage local customers to tip more often, with 77% of consumers saying they’ve noticed that more stores accept (and even encourage) using digital payments for tips, and 43% of those consumers felt more pressure to tip.

Small business and new technologies

In addition to adding digital payment solutions, 91% of the small businesses are “at least somewhat likely” to consider using automation and AI services like ChatGPT over the next 12 months “to help elevate their business against competitors.”

Adopting new tech solutions is a somewhat scary concept for most of the business owners surveyed. Only 33% say they’re “completely confident” in their abilities to evolve their businesses and “keep up with changes in technology and consumer preferences.” Far more (67%) say they’re less confident about tackling those tasks.

Many of the small businesses surveyed are also concerned about cyberattacks—67% say they don’t think their companies could fully recover from a fraud incident or cyberattack .

SMBs are "not too small to go global"

The Small Business Administration (SBA) encourages entrepreneurs to do business internationally, stressing that small businesses are “not too small to go global.” The SBA says small businesses that engage in exporting “are more likely to increase their bottom lines, expand their footprints, grow at higher rates, and employ more people.”

The agency adds that selling internationally is a smart way to diversify your customer base while protecting your business from the “ebbs and flows” of the U.S. market.

Small Businesses Reveal Their Business Growth Strategies for the Future

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Gartner's top strategic predictions for 2024 and beyond, in 2023, generative ai unleashed massive creativity and productivity potential. our top predictions for 2024 show every strategic conversation needs to include genai..

By Ava McCartney | 4-minute read | December 04, 2023

Big Picture

Understand how this year’s predictions shape your thinking and strategic planning

Our annual list of top strategic predictions empowers savvy, forward-thinking executive leaders inside and outside of IT to examine what it means for AI to move from a tool to a collaborator and creator. Consider these predictions as you would planning assumptions : Determine the time horizon for each prediction, and evaluate near-term flags to determine whether the prediction is increasingly or decreasingly likely to come true.

Gartner’s 2024 predictions, which we expect your organization will come up against in the next three to five years, fall into three categories, and encompass the most critical areas of technology and business evolution.

Download Now: Your Detailed Guide to the 2024 Gartner Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends

Top 10 Strategic Predictions for 2024 and Beyond

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Category No. 1: GenAI makes people better and more powerful personally and professionally

Individuals can use GenAI to create better resumes, reports, work products and interactions with others. By 2026, 30% of workers will leverage digital “charisma filters,” which make you seem better than you are, to achieve previously unattainable advances in their careers.

Because GenAI can boost the output of the entire workforce, countries with large, inexpensive workforces will not have as pronounced an advantage. By 2027, the productivity value of AI will be recognized as a primary economic indicator of national power, largely due to widespread gains in workforce productivity.

  • GenAI can help create a more diverse workforce inclusive of those in a wide range of age groups, from different educational and ethnic backgrounds, and who are neurodivergent. By 2027, 25% of Fortune 500 companies will actively recruit neurodiverse talent to improve business performance.

Watch Now: The Gartner Predictions for 2024: Industry Webinar Series

Category No. 2: Businesses will get better at overcoming their worst traits

There is a rapidly growing need for more electricity to power computers. GenAI amplifies energy costs and availability . By 2026, half of G20 members will experience monthly electricity rationing, turning energy-aware operations into either a competitive advantage or a major failure risk.

GenAI can provide modernization plans, refactoring plans, testing and validation, and other capabilities to speed up modernization efforts. By 2027, GenAI tools will be used to explain legacy business applications and create appropriate replacements, reducing modernization costs by 70%.

Supplementing the workforce with robots can help businesses grow, but this will expose the need to change business operations. By 2028, due to labor shortages, there will be more smart robots than frontline workers in manufacturing, retail and logistics.

  • The rise of machine workers and customers is prompting a rethink of key business operations. Through 2026, 30% of large companies will have a dedicated business unit or sales channels to access fast-growing machine customer markets.


Category No. 3: New threats create new responsibilities and communities

While GenAI brings a great deal of opportunity, malinformation is a new threat vector . By 2028, enterprise spend dedicated to battling it will surpass $30 billion, cannibalizing 10% of marketing and cybersecurity budgets.

CEOs must empower a single responsible executive, such as the CISO, to tackle the challenge of malinformation across the organization. By 2027, 45% of CISOs’ remits will expand beyond cybersecurity, due to increasing regulatory pressure and attack surface expansion.

  • Unions have historically pressured organizations and governments to protect people before companies. By 2028, motivated by the adoption of generative AI, unionization among knowledge workers will increase by 1,000%.

The story behind the research

sales strategies business plan

From the desk of Distinguished VP Analyst and Gartner Fellow Daryl Plummer

“The existence of large language models (LLMs) covers a broad range of creative capabilities that keep building more excitement. But opposite that excitement is healthy skepticism and concerns about risk. Our predictions this year demonstrate how GenAI can pervade any topic. In fact, such conversations started without GenAI are shortsighted.”

3 things to tell your peers

Use Gartner predictions as planning assumptions on which to base your strategic plans.

Evaluate near-term flags to determine whether a prediction is becoming more or less likely to turn into truth.

Anticipate that predictions with longer time horizons are less likely to come true than those with shorter time horizons.

Share this article

sales strategies business plan

Daryl C. Plummer | Distinguished VP Analyst

Daryl Plummer is VP, Distinguished Analyst & Gartner Fellow. His research focuses on the strategic issues of cloud computing, digital disruption, and the unfolding of the future through predictions, trends and evolving digital business cycles. Mr. Plummer is a Chief of Research in the Technology & Service Providers Organization, where he helps oversee research across the four roles of General Manager, Product Managers, Product Marketers, and Tech CEOs. In this role, he is responsible for the advancement of research and the promotion of same to solve the critical problems of, and answer the key questions for, tech providers from engineers all the way up to and including the CEO and board of directors. Daryl is also Chief of Research for Cloud computing and a primary analyst covering multiple strategic Cloud topics. He focuses his research on the broad cloud service market, including market trends, forecasts, the cloud vendor landscape and cloud sourcing scenarios. He tracks different cloud usage cases, including public cloud, private cloud and hybrid cloud scenarios and is the originator of the topic of Distributed Cloud Computing. Covering cloud strategy and evolution requires one to see how end user scenarios are evolving in the context of technology and service provider strategies that are producing cloud innovations at an ever-increasing speed. Mr. Plummer provides a perspective on the key phenomena which will drive the largest segments of change.

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Boost Your Beverage Sales - Learn How To Sell Your Product to Distributors, Retailers and Consumers

Boosting your beverage sales requires a unique sales and marketing game plan that involves selling to retailers, distributors and ultimately the end consumer.

Hundreds of new beverages are introduced into the market every year but only a handful are successful at gaining distribution and getting consumers to actually purchase their product.

Sell your Beverage to C-Stores Boost Sales and Marketing,LLC

Paul Gage the owner of Boost Sales and Marketing,LLC has successfully sold beverages for Pepsi Bottling Group, Coors Brewing Company and Miller Brewing Company.

Paul has learned professional sales and marketing strategies from attending Pepsi University, Coors University, Miller University and UBS University.

He developed and used unique sales and marketing strategies that allowed him to be a top producing salesperson at Pepsi, Coors and Miller Brewing Company.

Paul has sold over a million units of a unique seasonal product in the very first year of launching this product. He sold the product to major retailers such as Walmart, 7 Eleven, Quik Trip, QVC, Bj's and thousands of c-store accounts. How To Build Beverage Distribution and Beverage Sales You can have the best tasting beverage in the world and if people don't know about it and can't purchase it, then your new beverage is going to fail.

Building distribution can be extremely tough for any new beverage manufacturer especially if you don't understand how to navigate the competitive beverage industry.

Beer Cooler at a grocery store

Go To Market Strategy - Beverage Distributors and Retail Channels Selling your new beverage to any type of distributor or placing your beverage in the wrong retail channels could be the biggest mistake you make.

You need a distributor that frequently visits their retail accounts and can make sure your product is on the shelf with the correct pricing and sales promotions.

DSD Beverage Distributors are considered the best distributors at distributing a new beverage product because they are frequently in the store merchandising your product and building relationships with the retail staff. Convenience Stores - The Best Channel To Launch A New Beverage When you are Launching a new beverage such as an energy drink, energy shot, functional beverage or a new craft beer, the convenience channel is considered to be the best channel to build brand awareness and get consumers to try your beverage.

There are multiple benefits of launching a new beverage in the c-store channel such as there are over 152,000 independent and chain cstores.

Consumers frequently visit c-stores to purchase cold single serve beverages more than any other retail channel.

Beer Distributor wholesaler for Corona Beer

Sales and Marketing Strategies That Boost Beverage Sales Developing a Sales and Marketing Plan that builds brand awareness and motivates consumers to purchase your new beverage is critically important to the success of your new beverage.

Retail buyers want to know how you are going to drive new traffic to their accounts and get consumers to purchase your product.

Selling your new beverage to a distributor and major retailers means absolutely nothing if Consumers don't purchase and repurchase your product. You Need To Create Habit Forming Reorders... The best way to create reorders is to build an aspiring "lifestyle" around your beverage that resonates with your consumers.

You have to get consumers hooked on your product and your brands lifestyle.

In order to generate exciting sales numbers, there are multiple Sales and Marketing strategies that you can execute in any retail account (on or off premise) that will create brand loyalty and repeat purchases.

In-Store Marketing is going to be critical to your retail success because how you position, price and promote your product in the store will influence sales. Beverage Manufacturers Need To:

• Execute Successful Sales Promotions that will Drive Sales

• Offer Valuable Incentives to Motivate Distributor Sales-Reps and Retailers to promote your New Beverage

• Use Attractive Promotional Models to Sample your new beverage and educate consumers

• Strategically gain floor, shelf and cooler space for your new beverage that will create impulse purchases and boost your new beverage sales

• Build a Valuable Relationship with Retailers and Distributors and become a beverage expert... "Own The Account"

Full Cooler Door or Coors Light Beer

Creative Sales Promotions Will Boost Beverage Sales Promoting your new beverage to consumers must be done in a creative way that will draw attention to your beverage.

You want to create a "cult" like following for your beverage.

If you can create a trend and develop loyal consumers for your new beverage, then you will not have to worry about your competition.

Beverage Promotions must be exciting, alluring and most of all entertaining.

You must build a meaningful relationship with your consumers that will build brand loyalty.

Paul Gage with Sexy Miller Lite Girls

If you want to successfully launch a new beverage, you must: • Have a Smart "Go-To-Market" Strategy • Have a Creative Sales and Marketing Strategy • Have a unique beverage that consumers can't live without...

Contact Boost Sales and Marketing, LLC if you want to Boost your New Beverage Sales and Distribution.

Learn How to Sell Your New Beverage to Convenience Stores Learn How to Sell Your New Beverage to Major Retailers Learn How to Pitch Your New Product to Retailers Learn How to Sell Your New Beverage to a Beverage Distributor Discover How Beer Distributors can Boost Your New Beverage Sales.


  • Product Pitch
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  • Corona Beer Girls - Learn How To Become A Corona Beer Girl
  • Bacardi Girls
  • Become a Model
  • Model Videos
  • Bev Promotions
  • CL Maxim Photos
  • Sell To Retailers


Tradeshow Marketing Ebook

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MyOwnBusiness Institute

  • How To Write A Business Plan
  • Free Online Education to Start Your Own Business
  • Our Courses
  • Starting a Business

The business plan is the blueprint for your business, the who, what, where, when, how, and why. It provides a single place to keep all your ideas, the roadmap that will help you pursue these ideas, and the overview so that you can share your vision with others. In this session you learn about business plans, including the key elements of a business plan, ways you can use your business plan, and best practices to write your business plan.

Illustration showing a ladder to a lightbulb and many business components

  • What is a Business Plan?
  • Why Write a Business Plan?
  • Uses for a Business Plan
  • Business Plan Formats
  • What to Include in Your Business Plan
  • Best Practices
  • MOBI's Free Business Plan Template
  • Top Ten Do's and Don'ts
  • Business Resources

The primary value of your business plan is to create a written resource that evaluates all aspects of your new business including a description and analysis of your business’s prospects, its economic viability, and more. The very process of writing your business plan helps you put your ideas on paper, so you can see what you have and what you need.

Your business plan is your blueprint for starting your business, your script to tell the story of your business to others, and your comprehensive analysis of the opportunity for your business. Business plans motivate you to state your goals, analyze your strategy, implement your strategy, and share your vision. Business plans are valuable for new as well as existing businesses.

Because industry and economic trends are always changing, it’s important to re-examine your business plan on a regular basis. Revisiting your business plan will motivate you to update your assumptions, projections, and analysis based on evolving industry factors, economic factors, or actual operating experiences that you might not fully understand until you have started your business. If you correctly assess the changing economics of your business, your plan will provide a useful roadmap and a financing tool.

MOBI’s Starting a Business course includes the key topics that are typically included in a business plan. As you go through this course you can consider the topics as they relate to your business. You can then add this information to the free MOBI Business Plan Template either as you go or when you finish the course to create your own business plan. You will also be able to find a variety of business plan templates either online or through other resources such as your local library, civic center, or economic development office.

Could you start a business without writing a business plan? Yes. Is it recommended? No. The process of writing a business plan will force you to think carefully about your ideas and plans and will help you evaluate whether it makes financial and practical sense.

For example, you might think you can earn a profit with your product, but when you examine all the parts in your business plan, you may realize that the packaging and marketing you plan to do for your product cost more than the selling price, when you include all your business costs as well. This may help you decide to wait on your marketing plans until you have more sales, or perhaps investigate less expensive packaging options.

Writing a business plan allows you to combine all the aspects of your business in one place so you can evaluate the pros and cons together, as well as calculating whether a profit is actually possible given the plans you have in mind.

There are many uses for your business plan, and the format you choose to create may depend upon how you plan to use it. Here are some typical uses for business plans:

As part of an academic program : You may be taking this MOBI course as part of an educational program or entrepreneurship training, in which you are creating a fictitious business. As part of this program, you may be required to prepare a business plan for this fictitious business in order to learn about and analyze each aspect of starting a business. In this case, your business plan is an academic exercise to improve your entrepreneurship skills, and it is largely for your own personal use, or perhaps that of your teacher or course moderator as well.

To apply for financing : In this scenario, you are creating your business plan to share with a financial lender in order to apply for or request funding for your business. In this case you are preparing a business plan for external audiences (the lender), and the financial assumptions, projections, and analysis are going to be most important.

To record your business ideas : If you have a business idea that you are thinking of pursuing, creating a complete business plan for your idea is an excellent planning tool. It gives you one place to put all your ideas and to examine all the different information needed to move forward. You may or may not choose to share your business plan with others, at least initially, but it is your roadmap that you update as you learn more about your intended business and the market. As you continue on your entrepreneurial journey, you may decide to share your business plan with others, including potential partners, customers, employees, or investors. Keeping your business plan up to date will ensure you are ready in the event you have an opportunity to share your idea.

To launch your new business : Since your business plan is your roadmap, it can be used to execute on your business idea to start your business. In this scenario, you might want to include a greater amount of detail for every aspect of starting your business and update more frequently as you go. For example, include addendums for marketing plans and calendars, sales activities, supplier contracts, financial statements, and more.

To establish a freelance or independent business : In between Personal Use and Starting a Business might fall Independent Contractor, Home-Based or Freelance Business uses of a business plan. Sometimes aspiring entrepreneurs pursue a business idea on the side. These types of businesses allow a person to start small and grow, maybe beginning with just one client. The gradual start of this type of business may not require all aspects of business analysis and planning required by other businesses. At the same time, it is important to learn what is required to operate an independent contractor, home-based, or freelance business, so these minimum requirements would be the most immediate focus of the business plan for this use.

To acquire an existing business or franchise : Business plans can be used to evaluate existing businesses to get a sense for the health of the business and areas that are doing well or need attention. This can be important whether you are taking over a family business (family succession) or buying a business or franchise. There may be different considerations when creating a business plan for an existing business, but it is equally important to gather the facts and details yourself to do an accurate analysis.

Regardless of the format you use, there are a few fundamental parts of a business plan. These fundamental parts are shown below. Of course, these sections are included in the free MOBI Business Plan Template :

Executive Summary

Financing and Financial Projections

Business Organization

Business Location

Marketing, Ecommerce, and Sales

  • Addendums: Licenses and Permits (and others)

The Executive Summary is just that, the overall  summary  of your business idea. Here you include the fundamentals about your business including a paragraph about each of the key topics below:

Name and Description of Business :Provide the name and a brief description of your business. The description should be brief, concise. Imagine you bump into a potential investor or customer in an elevator and you have 30 seconds before the next floor to describe your business, what would you say to include the most important and impactful points?

Target Customer and Market : Describe your ideal customer and your target market. What is the problem you are solving or the need your product or service is solving for this audience?

Industry and Economic Trends : Describe the current industry and economic conditions that are making this the right time for your product or service and that are providing a potential for sustainability and future growth.

Value Proposition : Describe the value you are bringing to your customer through your product or service. What are the unique benefits, qualities, and/or circumstances that allow you to create value for your customers?

Vision : Describe the vision of your business and why you are committed to making this vision successful. Explain your plans for growth and what you can realistically achieve in a defined time frame.

Founder(s) and the Team : Provide a background of your life and work experiences that are related to this business, list your credentials (including the MOBI Starting a Business Certificate of Completion you can earn through this course!). Share your inspiration for this business. If you plan to hire employees, consultants, or service providers like lawyers, accountants, bookkeepers, etc. describe your plan for engaging with these other members of your team. Describe management roles and structure and provide background information for any executives who will share leadership roles alongside you. Be honest about your strengths and weaknesses and those of your team. Don’t be afraid to identify key positions or expertise you are actively looking to fill.

Goals : Outline your key goals for your business. These can be both short-term and long-term goals.

The  Deciding on a Business  and  Marketing  sessions of the Starting a Business course will be helpful in populating a lot of this information .

Financial Exhibits : Provide a chart or spreadsheet showing all of the sources of your start-up capital (money) including what you or other investors will contribute and what you intend to borrow. Be sure to include a detailed list of categories showing what the money will be used for and how much will be left over for working capital (“working capital” is money that you can access and use to run your business once it is started).

Accounting : In a separate exhibit, provide your Balance Sheet, and projected Profit and Loss Statements (Income Statements) for the first three years (by month for the first year, then by year for the second and third year).

Analysis and Costs : List and explain all the key costs, categorized by fixed costs (things that don’t change, like rent), variable costs (costs that change, like the cost of materials and supplies), product, delivery, etc., and profit margins that are important for your business. As part of this exhibit be sure to include a one-year Cash Flow forecast including all estimated sales, all costs, and capital investments that will be required during this time.

Internal Controls : Describe the internal controls (processes and policies you establish) you intend to have in place. For example, what is your check signing policy? What are your strategies for controlling shrinkage and preventing shoplifting? How will you monitor deliveries and inventory?

Break-Even Analysis : Use your financial analysis to calculate your break-even point. The break-even point is the sales level at which the total revenue of your business is equal to the total cost of running your business.

The  Financing the Business  and  Accounting and Cash Flow  sessions of the Starting a Business course will teach you about the financial statements mentioned in this section, and help you learn how to gather and report financial projections for your business to populate this part of your business plan.

Business Organization : What type of business organization have you chosen for your business (sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company, nonprofit, etc.). Describe why it is the best fit. Provide information about any of the steps you will need to take to establish your business with this organization structure.

Professional Consultants : If you will be working with any consultants and have not already listed them, or would like to provide greater detail, you can include it here.

The  Business Organization  session of the Starting a Business course provides great detail about the types of business organizations as well as related liability and tax issues you should consider when deciding on your business organization.

Describe where you will operate your business. If you are opening a store or restaurant, it may be easy to identify the kind of space you need, whereas if you are starting a business as an independent contractor teaching music lessons or doing graphic design projects, you may decide to work out of your home, join a co-working space, or rent an office. Likewise, if you provide services like landscaping or house cleaning, you may not need a space at all.

Provide details about the space you intend to pursue, what amenities do you need, what features will be important? If you plan to rent, lease, or buy space, include any financial information including all costs, and any credits you may be eligible to receive, for example incentives for minority-, women-, or veteran-owned businesses, or credits, rebates, or discounts through other governmental economic development programs.

If you already have a space, include the address and description of the property.

The  Choosing a Business Location  and  Freelance, Independent, and Home-Based Businesses  sessions will teach you about how to select your business location, and what you should consider .

Market Research : In greater detail than provided in your Executive Summary, describe the market research you conducted to identify and understand your target market and customers. Include sources of information. Describe your position within the target market.

Marketing Strategy and Tools : Explain the traditional and online marketing strategies and tools you will use to find, engage, and build your target market as well as how you will close sales and foster customer relationships and loyalty.

Ecommerce : If you plan to sell your product or service online, describe your ecommerce strategy. What channels will you use, how will you take and fulfill orders, how will you build awareness and drive traffic to your online store?

Cost : Provide a detailed description of all costs for each marketing activity. How will you evaluate your marketing efforts for effectiveness?

Sales : Describe your sales process, activities you will conduct, obstacles you expect, how you will overcome them, and any customer service strategies you will use to retain and expand your customer base.

The  Communication Tools ,  Marketing , and  Ecommerce  sessions will provide the information and guidance to help you populate this part of your business plan, and the Selling and Controlling Costs bonus sessions in the Quick Start Entrepreneur course provides information about the sales process and business costs .

Workflow : Outline the workflow of your business and the processes and procedures you will put into place if not already mentioned above.

Supplies/Inventory/Production : Provide details about how you will acquire supplies, manufacture your product or service, and deliver your product or service to customers. Include any equipment or facilities needs.

Measurement and Assessment : Describe how you will measure the success of your operations for efficiency, cost control, quality, and any other parameters.

Crisis and Contingency Plan : Include your damage control plan. What will you do in the event of a natural disaster, economic downturn, product obsolescence (your product is no longer needed by the market), cybersecurity breach, or other catastrophic event. Include any business insurance you have purchased or intent to purchase.

If not mentioned elsewhere, describe your plans for order fulfillment, supply chain (where you will get supplies for your product or service), and hiring and managing employees.

Addendums, items not required but helpful to include

Licenses and permits required for your business. The Licenses and Permits session will help you learn what you might need.

International and national intellectual property protection through trademarks, copyrights, and/or patents.

Marketing collateral you may be creating and/or examples.

Resumes of founders and key team members.

Other pertinent information.

Just as there are many different uses for business plans, there are also different formats. The format you choose may depend on the intended purpose for your business plan. MOBI provides a free MOBI Business Plan Template to help you create a comprehensive written outline for every aspect of your business, and this could be useful for any of the uses above.

Additional formats include shorter, one-page forms, most commonly based on  The Business Model Canvas  (wikipedia), invented by Alex Osterwalder, a Swiss business theorist and entrepreneur. Some providers offer a “Lean Canvas” template, created by Ash Maurya, an entrepreneur and author of Running Lean, is a popular variation of The Business Model Canvas.

Another popular format is the presentation format or “slide deck” which can be created with Google Slides, Microsoft PowerPoint, Canva, or other software tools. This format is often used when presenting your business idea to others in a meeting. The presentation format is created as a visually compelling summary of your business plan. Typically a conversation accompanies your presentation so that you can describe and explain the information summarized in the slides.

If you decide that a one-page format or presentation is right for your business plan’s purpose, it is our recommendation that you also create a full business plan to ensure you are prepared with all of the information you need and can respond to any questions about your business from your audiences.

There are a few best practices to keep in mind when you are creating your business plan.

Do your best . You may not have all the answers your first time through your business plan, and that’s ok. Just do your best and include the information you have. The activity of writing your business plan will help you identify where the holes are. As you pursue your business, you will gain more knowledge, information, and insight that you can continue to add to your business plan over time and fill in the holes.

Use a template . You don’t have to reinvent the wheel when writing your business plan. Choose an easy-to-follow, standard business plan template, such as the MOBI Free Business Plan Template provided in this course and on our website. Using a template can help ensure that you include all the important topics. A template will also keep you organized as you research and document information about your business. Using a template can help you see what information you have and what information you need.

Tell a story . Even though your business plan will describe very different aspects of your business, all of the information you include should be cohesive and tie together. Think of your business plan as the story of your business. This story should be present in every aspect of your business plan, and it should be clear to your audience how each part fits into the whole to create and support the story.

Be thorough, detailed, and specific . Be as detailed, specific, thorough, and accurate as possible. Use clear, concise language and be realistic in the information you provide. Allow yourself plenty of time, and dedicate yourself to producing your best effort. When conducting research, try to look at several different sources of information. When studying your industry, look at more than one business. Be realistic about your financial situation and the needs of your business, as well as the opportunities.

Make it visually appealing . If you are sharing your business plan with others, be mindful of the presentation. While the information included in your business plan is most important, if the presentation is messy or filled with errors your audience may not read it. Does your business plan look nice? Is it organized? Is there a title page, table of contents, or section headlines, and page numbers? In case you leave it behind with someone to review, does it have your name and contact information? Have you proofread to make sure there are no errors, typos, or messy formatting mistakes? Have you included graphic elements like your logo, graphs, perhaps photos or drawings, things that provide interest and well as information. Your business plan can be a valuable selling tool, so be sure it’s visually appealing.

Keep it current . As mentioned earlier, industry and economic trends change all the time and can impact your business and business plan. Take your business plan out once a month, or in a frequency that works for you, and read it. If anything has changed, update it. This way you can be sure you are ready when an opportunity arises, for example to talk with a potential investor, customer, partner, or employee.

Set realistic goals . It would be nearly impossible to sit down and write your business plan in one afternoon or one day. Set a realistic goal for yourself to complete different parts as it works for your schedule. Perhaps you break it down by week or month? For example, next month you could devote to researching all the financial information required for your business, and then you write that part of your business plan. Then perhaps you focus on marketing after that. It’s also helpful to just get your ideas on paper. You’ve got to start somewhere, and it’s often easier to start with words already on a page than with a blank page.

Get feedback . Share your business plan draft with trusted advisors or experts in your intended industry to get their advice and use their input to revise and improve your plan.

Start at the beginning, again . Once you have completed your first draft of your business plan, go back and reread your Executive Summary. After having done all the research and deep thinking to populate all of the other sections, did you learn anything new that changes your overall summary? If so, make those changes while the ideas are fresh in your mind.

We have provided the free MOBI Business Plan Template for you to use in planning your business. As you go through this course, you will learn about the topics that are included in the template. You can add information to your business plan template as you go, or you can begin working on it after you have completed the full course.


  • Prepare a complete business plan for any business you are considering.
  • Tell the story of your business, and make sure this story is present throughout your business plan.
  • Use your business plan as your own planning tool and a place where you can record all your ideas about your business.
  • Make your business plan visually appealing, it can be a powerful selling tool.
  • Submit your business plan to experts in your intended business for their advice.
  • Spell out your strategies on how you intend to handle obstacles in your sales process.
  • Be honest about your strengths and weaknesses and those of your team.
  • Include a monthly one-year projected Profit and Loss Statement, and yearly projections for years two and three.
  • Identify your unique value proposition in your Executive Summary.
  • Demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of your intended industry by including your market research information.


  • Start a business without developing a business plan first.
  • Forget to include your own life experiences, business history, and educational achievements which have led you to this business.
  • Exclude the financial statements and projections, especially when using your business plan to seek funding.
  • Leave out challenges or weaknesses, instead identify anticipated problems and how you will overcome them.
  • Rely on a one-page business plan for all your information and needs, be sure to create a full business plan as well.
  • Overlook including a damage control plan in your Operations section.
  • Use overly complex language that will confuse your audiences.
  • Skip sections because you aren’t sure what to include, instead continue your research and find the answers.
  • Ignore economic or industry trends that may impact your business, regularly update your business plan.
  • Include general information without the details or proof to support your claims.

If you are writing your business plan while reviewing this material, take a moment now to include any information about your business related to this session. MOBI’s free Business Plan Template and other worksheets, checklists, and templates are available for you to download. Just visit the list of MOBI Resource Documents on the Resources & Tools page of our website.


sales strategies business plan

Featured Video: The Importance of Market Research 

Featured Video:   Key Components of a Good Business Plan  originally appeared on  BusinessTown

Featured Video: Business Plan: What are the key components?

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