Sales Training: Sales Trends And How To Analyze Them
Timely and correct analysis of emerging sales trends is very important for the continued success of any business. Sales patterns of products in a segment are good indicators of the way the market is going to swing in the coming days. Upward or downward sales trends are indicative of the emerging path the sales will follow. Understanding sales trends perfectly is important to decide marketing strategies and also to retain existing customers.
There are many market indicators that can help you understand the emerging sales patterns. You can look out for the customer segment that has the highest growth as well as maximum decline in terms of dollars. This will indicate what is flying off the shelves faster and what is not as hot as it was just a few months back. Growth and decline rates of customer segments in terms of percentage are also an accurate way of judging emerging trends.
Sales trends can also be predicted by studying the consistency of the growth patterns. If a particular consumer segment is registering consistently high growth figures, it can be safely assumed that they are going to be the next trend setters in that particular segment for quite some time now. If a product segment is showing exponential growth over a longer period, it is a sign that it is going to make huge waves in the market.
The analyst must be aware that there are different types of sales trends - short term, medium term and long term. Conducting an analysis segment-by-segment can produce useful and reliable information. It must be noted that long term analysis may not help in predicting sales trends. However, they are useful in understanding market trends. Sometimes a different tool called market segmentation is used to study and understand sales patterns. The process involves dividing the market into smaller sub-markets called segments. Trend analysis is carried out on the basis of products or services sold in a particular segment, sales outlets, departments and branches available and demographics of that particular segment which includes gender, age, income and education.
Analysis carried out on the basis of such segmentation provides predictive and detailed information about how a company or its products are performing in that segment and also trends about how they are expected to perform in the short term and long term period with the planned input and sales strategies. Such sales trend predictions are vital for the management as well as the marketing team in terms of deployment of resources and sales personnel to sustain future demand, if positive growth is predicted.
Companies are now investing in trend analysis and forecasting software which helps them decipher the results of ground work done by the research team. With the help of such advanced software they can accurately predict growth rate and percentages, forecast short term and long term market behavior and also help in understanding the input and resources required to cope with the demands of the emerging market situation.
Sales trends forecasting software can also accurately provide revenue and volume analysis, product wise sales and growth figures and provide the current and emerging sales patterns for a particular market based on the information provided.
Source: J.M. Dawson
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