4 Ways to Improve Sales Effectiveness and Efficiency

Teams that use Lessonly's training and coaching software improve sales by more than 75%. Jump into this quick lesson to see how.

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Sales Effectiveness vs. Sales Efficiency

When it comes to running a business, there’s one thing that matters above all else: making sales. Whether you and your organization sell items virtually or in a brick-and-mortar store, certain best practices can help you succeed. And to do so, there are two aspects of sales that are important for your organization and sales reps to master. 

First, sales reps should be able to handle any problems that may arise during the sales process and win the customer over every step of the way. This leads them to bringing in and maintaining business within a specified time frame and on the right terms for maximum benefit. Secondly, sales reps need to maximize the amount of revenue generated per dollar invested in promoting, creating, and selling the product. These skills go hand in hand which means that you can’t operate sales efficiency vs. sales effectiveness independently from each other.

What do Sales Effectiveness and Sales Efficiency mean, exactly?

At face value, the terms sales effectiveness and sales efficiency, seem like they mean the same thing. While they do operate in tandem and directly affect each other, they are pretty different. Sales efficiency is simply the amount of new revenue a sales associate can bring in compared to the money put into marketing, promoting, and selling an item. This is how to measure sales performance most accurately. 

In contrast, the most common sales effectiveness definition that you’ll see refers to a sales team’s ability within a particular organization to succeed throughout every stage of the customer’s buying process, thus earning new business and further maintaining current customer relations. 

Because both aspects of selling are unable to work independently of each other, they are equally important. They allow a company to accurately measure, and subsequently improve, the overall performance of their sales members both individually and as a team. It also shows which sales members work best together and where they excel as an individual.

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5 Sale Productivity Metrics that Highly Successful Sales Teams Measure

When it comes to determining a sales member or sales team’s effectiveness and efficiency, there’s more to it than just observing the ROI. After all, there are many sales metrics, and they all indicate different aspects of success and skill. This assessment of skills and successes allows not only the organization’s leaders to gauge the sales teams’ abilities, but the sales teams can also analyze themselves. 

This analysis of sales efficiency metrics and sales effectiveness metrics allows leaders and reps to better understand what they’ve mastered and what they need to work at. They can also compare it against their goals as employees, company objectives, and overall progress to make any adjustments necessary to further their success and, therefore, its success.  These metrics include:

Percentage of time selling

The percentage of time selling metric is how much time a sales reps spends selling their goods or services to a client compared to the time it takes to complete the other aspects of the job. Many sources say that the average sales representative spends between 35% and 38% of their time making sales, while the rest is spent addressing prospects’ and customers’ needs. This could be anything from reviewing existing accounts, obtaining needed orders, establishing new accounts, or following up on past sales. 


The skill of a sales rep can be measured relatively accurately based on how well they can demo a product and how likely that demo is to get a potential client to buy said product. Demonstrating a product or service for a potential buyer requires a sales rep to combine and use all their skills at once. They must research the product, the client, the demographics of previous buyers, and more to prepare for the upcoming demo. Then, they must use their best charisma and social skills to convince potential clients that the product they’re selling really is the best of its kind available. If a sales rep can’t demo a product or service well, then chances are they won’t be able to sell it either. 

Lead-quality follow-up

Business with a customer doesn’t end when the sale does. A vital part of a sales rep’s job is the ability to keep in touch and maintain a good relationship with their clients, even after they’ve already completed their purchase. This increases the likelihood of the customer returning next time they need whatever your business offers or even recommending it to others. 

Opportunities by stage

Selling a product isn’t a single-step process. This task is done in stages, and there are opportunities for the business to benefit at each location. These opportunities by stage include prospecting, proposals, negotiation, commitment, the skills listed above, and many more. 

Number of deals closed

This sales effectiveness metric is probably the most self-explanatory of them all. How many deals can a sales associate or team close within a certain period? What percentage of potential sales opportunities presented to them results in a deal being closed successfully? 

How to Improve Sales Effectiveness

There are many things a business can implement for their sales reps to improve their effectiveness. These strategies and sales effectiveness best practices include but are not limited to the following:

Optimizing the sales process

There are many aspects to a sales process. What’s important is that your standard sales procedure for your team is always as consistent as possible, easy to repeat and replicate, and, most importantly, as easy to understand as possible.

Setting appropriate goals and KPIs

Setting goals is essential for any business, especially regarding sales. However, these goals need to be practical and obtainable. It must be clearly established which things need to be measured for individual reps and whole teams. This information can then be used to set future goals and show employees what they excel at and what skills they need to hone in a bit more.

Investing in sales effectiveness tools

Telling your sales associates what needs to be done and how to improve sales force effectiveness won’t help at all if they don’t have the sales effectiveness tools required to do so. Investing in the right technology to implement ideal sales enablement is a must. You also need to equip your sales team with the right tools to maintain and manage customer relations. 

Providing ongoing training and enablement

A one-time conference won’t be enough for skill-building, using sales tools, and establishing company goals. A company should provide sales reps with ongoing training, enablement, and coaching to ensure they’re staying on the right track. 

Improve Sales Effectiveness and Efficiency with Lessonly by Seismic

As previously mentioned, your sales effectiveness framework won’t be any good if you don’t provide your sales employees with the tools and resources they need to continuously learn and hone their skills. However, there are a lot of sales effectiveness software tools out there that claim to be the best and promise you perfect results. So how can you know which tool is the best?

With Lessonly by Seismic, you don’t have to worry that you made the wrong choice. We have several tools and resources available to your sales team and reps optimize sales effectiveness and sales efficiency. Sales teams use our online sales enablement software to deliver essential knowledge and skills training to ensure they have everything they need to be as effective and efficient as possible throughout the selling process. Interested in learning more? Jump into this free lesson to see how sales teams improve sales performance with Lessonly by Seismic.