Forecasting Sales Pipeline: Allocate your Efforts Effecient

Joakim Steenfos

3 Apr, 2023

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Forecasting Sales Pipeline: Allocate your Efforts Effecient

In this comprehensive guide, we’ll explore the importance of forecasting in driving sales and how it can benefit your business. We’ll also walk you through the setup process, share a real-world example, and explain how Radiant can help you make the most of HubSpot’s features.

What is Forecasting?

Forecasting is the process of making predictions about future events based on historical data, trends, and other relevant information. It’s a critical tool in various fields, including finance, economics, operations, and marketing, to anticipate future outcomes and make informed decisions.

Key Aspects of Forecasting:

Below are some of the key aspects of what to keep in mind when implementing forecasting.

  1. Data Analysis: It often begins with analyzing historical data to identify patterns, trends, and relationships that might continue into the future.
  2. Methods: There are various methods used in forecasting, ranging from qualitative techniques, like expert judgment or market research, to quantitative techniques, like time series analysis or regression models.
  3. Time Horizon: Forecasts can be short-term (days to months), medium-term (months to a couple of years), or long-term (several years to decades).
  4. Accuracy: No it can guarantee 100% accuracy. Therefore, it’s essential to understand the potential margin of error and continuously refine forecasting models based on new data and outcomes.
  5. Continuous Monitoring: As actual events unfold, forecasts should be compared to real outcomes to adjust models and improve future predictions.

Why Forecasting can help you gain More Sales

Forecasting is essential for B2B companies to optimize their sales strategy. By predicting future sales trends and customer demands, businesses can make data-driven decisions that lead to increased revenue. This feature enables companies to accurately estimate their sales pipeline, allowing them to allocate resources effectively and identify areas for improvement. Consequently, with better insights into potential sales, companies can devise targeted strategies to increase conversion rates and boost profits.

A picture of how Hubspot forecast tool looks like – the picture is from HubSpot

What are the Benefits of forecasting in Correlation to Sales

In addition to driving sales, forecasting within HubSpot Sales Hub offers several benefits for B2B companies:

  • Enhanced decision-making: Data-driven forecasting enables companies to make informed decisions based on accurate sales projections, reducing the risk of costly mistakes.
  • Improved resource allocation: With better visibility into the sales pipeline, businesses can allocate their resources more effectively, focusing on high-potential leads and opportunities.
  • Increased efficiency: It helps streamline the sales process by identifying bottlenecks and areas for improvement, allowing teams to work more efficiently.
  • Competitive advantage: Accurate it provides insights into market trends and customer behavior, giving companies a competitive edge in their industry.

A Step-by-Step Guide to set it up

Follow these steps to set up your forecast categories:

  1. Log in to your HubSpot account and click the settings icon in the main navigation bar.
  2. In the left sidebar menu, navigate to Objects > Forecast.
  3. Now, click on the Pipelines tab.
  4. Click the Select a pipeline dropdown menu and choose the pipeline you want to modify.

Organize your deal stages into one of four forecast categories using the category dropdown menus. Select and clear the checkboxes next to the deal stages to include:

  • Not forecasted: deals which are in your designed pipeline for the current time period, but not included in the forecast.
  • Pipeline: deals with a low chance of closing.
  • Best case: deals with a moderate chance of close
  • Commit: deals with a high likelihood of closing and committed to the forecast.
  • Closed won: deals closed within the forecasted time period.
  1. To automatically update the forecast categories when a deal moves to a different deal stage, toggle the Automate forecast categories switch on. This action creates a workflow in your workflow tool named Forecast Category Mapping for Pipeline: [name of pipeline].
  1. Now when you are done editing you can click Save.

Your deals will now be categorized into one of the forecast categories. If you seek more information about what forecasting in Hubspot is you can look at HubSpot’s own page.

Want to change a Forecast Category?

If a rep thinks a deal’s forecast category and determines that another category better represents its likelihood to close, they can manually update the forecast category for an individual deal from the deal record:

  1. Navigate to “Sales” and then “Deals”.
  2. Click on the name of a deal.
  3. Click “View all properties” in the about section in the left sidebar.
  4. Search or browse for the Forecast category property, then click the dropdown menu to select a different category.
  5. In the bottom left, click Save.

An Example Where It’s Relevant for a Company

Imagine a B2B software company that has recently expanded its product offerings. As the company’s sales team tries to navigate the growing sales pipeline, they struggle to identify which leads are most likely to convert and where to focus their efforts. Furthermore, the company can quickly generate accurate sales efforts based on historical data by implementing HubSpot Sales Hub’s forecasting feature. This enables the sales team to prioritize the best leads and allocate their resources.

How Radiant can help you Utilize Features within HubSpot

As a HubSpot partner, Radiant specializes in helping B2B companies maximize their use of HubSpot. Our team will guide you through any setup process, ensuring that your forecasting settings are tailored to your specific needs. Additionally, we offer ongoing support and training to help your team master the HubSpot platform and optimize your sales strategies. By partnering with Radiant, your company can fully leverage the power of HubSpot Sales Hub to drive growth and achieve your sales goals.

Want to learn more? Click here and see what Sales as a Service can offer you.

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