Create a Sales Plan That Actually Works (Tips + Template)

Sales plans are a great marketing tool to help you become more effective in your sales process, increase your sales numbers, increase your profit, and/or increase your sales. But most of the plans that are out there are more wishful thinking than realistic, because the people who created them are often not in the sales world. The only way to create a sales plan that works is to actually get out in the field (and if you don’t have the time, use our plan!) and study your market. What do your customers want? How are they going to act when they get to the store? What will they look for on your website?

A sales plan can be very effective in helping you to stay on track and help you meet your sales goals. It helps you think through what you need to do and keeps you on track with the times.

If you have a marketing department, it’s easy to create a sales plan that is simple to understand and easy to follow. However, if you have a sales team following your plan, you can bet that they’re reading the plan in a different way. Not only are they likely not following the plan, but they may have picked up a few new tips and tricks as they follow along. That means you need a plan that is as easy to understand as possible, but also a plan that is going to be followed by your team.. Read more about strategic sales plan examples and let us know what you think.

True success begins with a strategy. Nothing beats a comprehensive sales strategy for sales success.

A sales strategy, which is particularly designed to assist your sales force generate more sales, may show you where you are now, where you want to go, and, most importantly, how to get there.

The issue is, of course, how to develop a sales strategy that really works. Continue reading for ideas and a template to help you develop a strategic sales strategy for your company swiftly and confidently.

Contents Table of Contents

What Exactly Is a Sales Strategy?

A sales plan is a strategy document that outlines a company’s strategy for increasing sales over a set period of time. A sales plan allows everyone on the sales team to understand the big picture, share the same general goals, and work toward them using the same strategy.

It typically contains the following:

  • Revenue and performance targets for a certain time period
  • The approaches that will be used to achieve them
  • The resources and actions needed to put such plans into action

What Does a Sales Plan Contain?

Revenue objectives, selling techniques and KPIs, target customers, existing sales force capabilities, and other key elements of company development are all included in a sales strategy.

It includes nine elements of strategic information in particular.

1. The Sales Plan’s Executive Summary and Scope

This section provides a quick overview of the document, concentrating on the document’s objectives and methods for achieving them. It also specifies the plan’s particular duration and other characteristics.

2. Revenue Targets and Business Objectives

This section outlines revenue targets and may also contain company objectives (e.g., optimize lifecycle value through customer success programs, etc). The document is made clearer by categorizing revenue figures into different categories (such as line and territory).

3. Performance Review of Previous Periods

This section summarizes the previous period’s performance, highlighting both errors and decisive decisions that resulted in a good conclusion. The overall aim is to improve the sales strategy by using effective inputs and methods.

4. Industry and Market Conditions

This section summarizes market developments that are likely to have a significant impact on sales performance.

5. Tactics, strategies, and methodologies

The finest selling methods, communication sequences, and playbooks for the particular business are recommended in this section.

Customer Segments No. 6

This section lists all of the brand’s potential revenue-generating omnichannel possibilities, including the following:

  • Referrals
  • Renewals
  • Upsells
  • Cross-sells
  • Possibilities
  • Segments are being added.

When new sectors of the addressable market emerge, the paper should explain them.

7. Capabilities, Resources, and Upgrades for the Team

This section summarizes and explains the present status of all production inputs (human resources, technology, specialist sales team, and so on) that are needed to process and complete sales details.

8. Individual and team action plans

Different teams and people are assigned duties, activities, and responsibilities in this area. Prospecting efforts, meeting appointments, and product demos/presentations are among the tasks.

Benchmarks for Performance & Monitoring

This section sets out the performance metrics that will be tracked, as well as the systems and procedures that will be used to keep track of them.

Examples of Sales Plans: There Isn’t a One-Size-Fits-All Approach

When you think about sales strategies, what comes to mind first?

If you’re like most individuals, it’s the yearly sales plan or weekly sales plan, which are broad strategic and tactical papers that lay out the sales strategy.

However, there are as many distinct kinds of sales strategies as there are sales requirements.

We’ll go through several sales plan samples to get you started.

30-day, 60-day, and 90-day sales strategy

There’s the 30-day, 60-day, and 90-day sales strategy. This is intended to assist a new salesperson or sales manager in gaining a fast understanding of the business during their first quarter on the job. They’ll have to meet goals on the 30th, 60th, and 90th days of their ramp-up, according to the proposal.

The 30-60-90-day sales strategy may be divided into three sections:

1 to 30 days: 

Learn all you can about a business, including its operations, consumers, goods, competitors, and procedures.

Days 31 through 60:

Evaluate your strategy and put it into action. Analyze and evaluate their existing procedures.

Days 61 through 90:

Optimize and improve the plan. Now is the moment to act. Make a strategy of action. Put any new plans and processes you’ve put into action.

Sales Strategy For Specific Clients

Using various techniques to approach and convert a prospect into a paying client is what a sales process entails.

Individual sales plans for particular sales techniques, such as specified call sequences, email follow-up frequency, and meeting schedules, are another kind of sales plan you’ll encounter a lot. This plan resembles an annual/weekly sales plan, but it concentrates on monitoring and improving outcomes for a single objective or activity.

Territorial Sales Strategy

Meanwhile, territory sales plans are often used by sales managers who supervise a geo-location or area to provide sales directors and VPs with greater insight into their sales activities.

This is a practical strategy for identifying the appropriate consumers and setting objectives to grow revenue and sales over time.

A solid area sales strategy will include the following:

  • Make your team more efficient.
  • Reduce your operating expenses.
  • Increase the quantity of sales produced.
  • Increase your customer service coverage.
  • Client and management interactions should be improved.

Note: Working on your area sales strategy and avoiding frequent modifications is critical. Unnecessary changes may disrupt your productivity and, in general, your ‘territory.’

Plan for Sales Training

There are also sales strategies for each kind of transaction. For example, Sales Enablement may have a sales training plan, while Revenue Ops may have a sales compensation plan.

A sales training plan may serve as a guide for a variety of sales training programs. It may be divided into categories based on the roles held within a company, assets, sales history, and so on.

A sales compensation plan is the umbrella term encompassing a sales representative’s basic pay, incentives, and commission.

As a result, you may arrange a sales training session to discuss the significance of a sales compensation plan and how your sales force can utilize it to boost revenue and performance.

Budget for Sales

Finally, a sales budget plan provides you with a sales projection for a certain time period based on variables that may affect revenue, such as industry trends or entrance into a new market sector. They encompass the personnel, tools, marketing efforts, and other resources required to achieve the desired income, just like a conventional sales strategy.

The following items should be included in an effective sales budget plan:

Forecasting sales: 

Estimating future sales by forecasting how many units a salesperson or team can sell in a certain time frame, such as a week, month, or year.

Expenses expected: 

Include the total amount of money your team is expected to spend. It’s important to keep track of even the smallest expenditures when estimating typical sales.

Be prepared for the unexpected: 

Always allow space in your sales budget for unexpected situations. New packaging costs, new competitive market tactics, and so forth.

The Advantages of a Sales Strategy

A sales strategy has certain advantages (such as encouraging discipline and thoroughness), but its main goal is to ensure that your sales don’t dry up over time. That is to say, it is not optional.

The truth is that the majority of us aren’t planners. We speak a nice game, but unless we’re held responsible, nothing occurs.

It’s all talk if you don’t have a documented strategy.

The first advantage of a sales strategy is that it assists you in putting all of your finest ideas into action. That isn’t all, however. You’ll also benefit from a strong sales strategy if you:

  1. Maintain alignment within your sales team, ensuring that everyone is working toward the same goal and prioritizing the same objectives.
  2. Make a list of your goals and income targets for a certain time period.
  3. Give your staff a sense of direction, purpose, and concentration.
  4. Adopt a single set of tactics and playbooks to achieve your revenue and business objectives.
  5. Know your team’s capabilities and be able to isolate your requirements, including anything from tools to people and other resources.
  6. Motivate and inspire stakeholders.
  7. Keep track of your progress and make improvements over time.


How to Create a Sales Strategy

A sales strategy is a very simple document. It doesn’t have to be written in formal language or pass a compliance check. It just needs to lay out your intentions for the next time, whether that period is a year, a quarter, or a month.

While the sales plan template has nine parts, the majority of the document merely verifies your ideas. The following are the most crucial details:

1. Your objectives

Setting sensible objectives for yourself and your team is a crucial component of developing a sales strategy. I think that concentrating only on statistics is the greatest error you can make while establishing objectives.

Smart sales targets should be pursued with vigor. Use goal-setting and planning frameworks like SMART if it helps (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound). Make objectives that push you beyond your current skills, but that appear achievable in light of your new approach.

2. The SWOT analysis you conducted

SWOT (Strengths, Flaws, Opportunities, and Threats) is one of the most effective frameworks for evaluating the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and strengths of your sales force. It aids in the construction of a bulletproof barrier around your strategy.

You’ll be able to discover what you’re missing, where you need to develop, what your USP (Unique Selling Point) is, how to use Value-Based Selling, and what your most important points are and how to use them to your advantage.

3. Your plan of action

To assist position your goods and services and distinguish your solution from rivals, you should record your sales plan.

In every step of your sales plan, a solid strategy will assist you in meeting the requirements of your consumers. You may achieve even greater revenue by balancing inbound and outbound sales tactics.

4. Your strategies

But keep in mind that this isn’t simply a wish list or a collection of thoughts. Only utilize quantifiable benchmarks and quantities in your sales strategy, which should be based on real field data. Be as specific as possible. Be as detailed as possible. Be able to take action.

Which leads me to my next point: a successful sales strategy is realistic.

It’s OK to set a five-year target of $10 billion. But how about right now? Figure out precisely what your present figures are, and then build your goals around them.

7 Points to Consider When Making a Sales Plan

Your sales strategy does not have to be a formal document, as I previously said. However, it must be stated properly so that all team members and stakeholders are aware of the strategy.

Tip #1: Make it based on extensive and up-to-date research.

You’ll need data and trends that are relevant to your specialty, industry, and ideal consumers. Keep in mind that markets and consumers are always changing. Nothing is more frustrating than clinging to prospects who are no longer a good match while neglecting whole market segments where demand for your solutions is increasing.

Tip #2: Make use of statistics and data.

Use the information you gathered throughout your in-depth study to identify issue areas, uncover opportunities in your sales process, and verify your assumptions and ideas.

You may also utilize the data to generate precise metrics and statistics to aid in the prediction of your sales plan’s success.

Tip #3: Double-check your information.

Accuracy is crucial!

Please don’t hurry! Stakeholders, in particular, need facts and statistics. A single blunder may bring your whole strategy crashing down.

Before you finalize the paper, make sure you examine your facts, statistics, and predictions.

Tip #4: Develop a tactical mindset.

Break down your overall sales action plan into tactical strategies for specific sales areas:

  • Account executives and SDRs
  • Operational sales
  • enablement of sales
  • Customer satisfaction

This may need working with cross-functional teams like marketing, customer service, and product development.

Use historical performance data as a fifth tip.

You may utilize the past to predict the future in sales. You may use historical data to help you establish goals for the current time. What were your prior income goals, for example? Are you sure you struck them? Why do you think that is? This knowledge may assist you in setting realistic objectives for your existing sales strategy and avoiding common pitfalls.

Tip #6: Make a list of the tracking methods you’ll use.

Make a list of the tracking techniques you’ll employ to keep your strategy on track. For your company model, this comprises performance measurements, monitoring methods, software, tools, and selling tactics.

Build a Strong Case for Your Proposed Budget (Tip #7)

Cold, concrete data impress stakeholders and bosses alike. As a result, having a solid detailed case for your budget will aid in the seamless execution of your sales strategy.

Not only will you need to describe the expenses for your budget, but you’ll also need to establish your goals for the approaching term. Include a return-on-investment analysis for any new tools or skills you believe you’ll need.

Template for a Sales Strategy

Are you prepared to draft your own sales plan? To get you started, here’s a sales plan template. Here’s how you can make the sales plan template work for you:

Begin by filling out the Sales Plan Template found in the following step. Simply follow the instructions in the template to determine what information is required in each area. Make no attempt to be elegant. Use straightforward language. Make an effort to be precise and unambiguous.

Then, in whichever format works best for you, distribute the information. Text paragraphs, tables, lists, charts, images, and screenshots are all examples of this. You may also customize it to fit your company’s requirements, as well as the needs of your sales staff.

The following parts should be included in a sales plan:

Summary of the Executive Summary

This is your first “statement.” It’s a formal summary that summarizes your strategy’s contents.

Keep your executive summary brief and accurate while composing it. It should be one or two pages long. Make sure it provides a summary of your plan’s features. It should cover the following topics:

  • Your objectives
  • The methods you’ll use to accomplish your objectives
  • When do you think you’ll be able to complete your plan?
  • Your strategy’s breadth

2. Revenue Targets for Business Goals

This section discusses the revenue target and related business objectives. To explain the sales plan, you may categorize revenue data into various groups.

For example, as shown in the table below, you may input the current result and the desired outcome for each goal:

sales strategy template

3. Past Performance Evaluation

Take a look back at your previous period’s performance. Take note of the errors that had a bad effect on the result, as well as their qualities that had a favorable impact.

Your objective is to figure out which strategies and techniques are effective.

4. Individualized Strategies, Methodologies, and Playbooks

Make a list of the particular sales tactics, methodologies, and playbooks you’ll use to meet the objectives outlined above.

5. Buyer Personas/Customer Segments

This section discusses prospective income sources as well as other possibilities for the business and new markets. Upsells, recommendations, and renewals should all be included.

6. Team Resources and Capabilities

Provide a summary and description of the existing production inputs needed in the sales process, such as human resources, specialist software, and the sales team.

7. Create an action plan

The action plan demands you to define precise plans and supporting methods for achieving a certain objective, such as a new purchase. Assign various tasks and duties to the teams that will carry out the activity.

An example of an action plan table is shown below:

sales plan template

8. Promotional Materials

List the tools you’ll use to guarantee that the sales strategy works well and that all sales processes are handled using these tools.


9. Performance Benchmarks

This is the last part of your sales strategy. It sets out the performance measures that will be used to track and monitor the process systems.

Also, provide a list of the sources you utilized and give links to them. Describe how the report will be produced and saved. Finally, discuss how the report will be used to assess how far you’ve come.

sales plan example

Selling Your Marketing Strategy

Okay, you’ve completed your sales strategy. Great! But you aren’t finished yet.

Present it to the sales team, management, and stakeholders as the next step. That’s because you’ll need buy-in in order for it to work.

When your sales staff is on board, they’ll be excited to complete the duties they’ve been given. When management is on board, they’ll be eager to provide you with the funds you’ll need to make your idea a reality. It’s critical to be prepared to make a strong presentation if you want to get buy-in. To put it another way, sell it.

Finally, there are a variety of reasons why you may not get all you want. There may be plans in the works that you are unaware of. Alternatively, the budget may need to prioritize another project.

If you don’t receive the funding you requested, be sure to adjust your sales strategy. The aim is to push your team’s capabilities rather than attempting the unattainable.

Final Thoughts

Sales don’t happen until you have a solid sales strategy in place. Fortunately, they aren’t as difficult as they seem.

Take your time identifying and addressing problems to overcome your greatest obstacles. After that, your sales strategy is just a document that organizes your thoughts.

What is your greatest stumbling block when it comes to developing a sales strategy? Have you discovered any techniques that have proven to be beneficial? Please let me know in the comments section below.

Also available on Medium.

Sales funnels are complicated, and not very many people can create one that works. That’s why we’ve put together this free guide to help you create a sales funnel that actually works. This guide is a step-by-step guide for creating a sales process with your sales team. It will give you all the information you need to create a sales process that helps your sales team get more customers.. Read more about what are the 7 steps to creating a sales plan and let us know what you think.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How do you write an effective sales plan?

An effective sales plan is one that will help you achieve your goals. It should be written in a way that is easy to understand and include all the necessary information for your company.

What are the 7 steps to creating a sales plan?

To create a sales plan, you should first identify your target market. Next, you should determine what the competition is doing in terms of pricing and marketing. Then, you can decide how to differentiate yourself from the competition. Finally, you can develop a strategy for achieving your goals.

How do I write a sales plan template?

A sales plan template is a document that outlines the different steps of a business plan. It includes an overview of the company, its goals, and how it plans to achieve those goals.

Related Tags

This article broadly covered the following related topics:

  • sales plan presentation
  • strategic sales plan examples
  • sales plan template
  • sales plan
  • sales planning process