5 Sales KPI Examples to Predict Growth

October 15, 2019
5 Sales KPI Examples to Predict Growth

So, you want to zero in on key performance indicators (KPIs) to predict sales growth, but you're focused on too many variables, too few, or the wrong ones.

Well, you’re not alone.

Some people say, “KPIs depend on your industry, market segmentation, and the complexity of your sales process.” I say, take this with a grain of salt.

There are baseline indicators that you should consider regardless of the type and complexity of your business.

5 Sales KPI Examples to Predict Growth

It’s important to take a qualitative and quantitative approach when measuring progress. This helps you uncover the real story.

As you strategize and actively work on your sales pipeline, 5 key KPIs to focus on include: 

1. Number and Quality of Prospects

The number of prospects in addition to the quality (Lead-to-Opportunity ratio) of prospects is a sales KPI example critical to building a sustainable sales pipeline.

A salesperson has to discern how many quality prospects are enough to achieve their sales goal.

For example, a sales goal of $2 million in revenue per year at an average deal size of $100,000 requires 20 clients. However, the number of prospects required for you to close 20 deals cannot be ignored.

Poor quality leads generally yield lower conversion rates, so you’ll need more of them to achieve the same yield as higher quality ones.

Many different strategies and channels exist to source more quality leads including being where your ideal clients exist, leveraging affinity groups, asking for referrals from your existing clients and network, attending industry social and business conferences, intelligent prospect targeting using social media platforms, and hosting or speaking at industry events.  

 2. Number of D.E.A.L Emails Sent

The purpose of the D.E.A.L. Email is to create a clearly articulated path to moving a deal along. In short, it encourages sales leaders to send more effective follow-up emails to prospects. 

The process entails sending a follow-up email that clearly outlines all information and recommended actions. You must 1. Determine requirements, 2. Engage the client, 3. Assume responsibility, and 4. List the desired outcomes.

Want to learn more about applying D.E.A.L to your sales process? Click on the picture below to download our eBook, Discovering High Performance with DEAL.

Discovering High Performance with DEAL

3. Closing Ratio

The closing ratio measures efficiency and factors in everything that drives production.

As a salesperson, it is important to understand your closing ratio as a KPI and benchmark and work backward to analyze the precise level of activities required to improve this ratio.

Since the closing ratio is a lagging metric, it’s important that you understand the drivers for this metric as well as for every other stage of the sales process.

For example, if you compare yourself against the benchmark in your sales organization, you should be able to understand why you are hitting your mark, underperforming or over-performing. I suggest using a CRM system with lead tracking capabilities, so there is no guessing and emotional intervention when analyzing performance. 

4. Length of Sales Cycle

The length of the sales cycle or what sales managers call “velocity” tells  is a sales KPI example that tells a story about the complexity of a sales process, stages of the client journey, possible impediments during the process, and the ability of you as a salesperson to move the deal along.

Time, stagnation, and impediments that cannot be overcome stretch sales cycles and ultimately kill many deals.

It’s imperative that you shorten the sales cycle as much as possible by shortening each stage of the sales process since this improves efficiency and ultimately leads to a quicker close. If the sales cycle cannot be shortened, then you can work on multiple opportunities concurrently to improve efficiency.  

 5. Customer Lifetime Value

The Customer Lifetime Value (CLTV) is a long-term measure of the total economic value of the average client to your company.

For example, if on average, clients spend $175,000/year for an average of 3 years, then the CLTV is $525,000. If this metric begins to worsen, then you should determine the drivers for this change.

Some of the strategies used to improve this KPI include upselling, cross-selling, improving the quality of products or services, improving the client's experience, and creating advocates and partners out of clients.

In the Client Evolution Model, advocates are clients who are willing to tell your company’s story. Partners are those who are willing to actively contribute to helping you grow your business.  

Free Resource: Making Client Relationships Work: A Guide for Sales Leaders


As a sales leader, you need to have a solid KPI plan.

Although your industry, company, and sales management will dictate what’s paramount, sales KPI examples such as Number & Quality of Prospects, the Number of D.E.A.L. Emails Sent, the Closing Ratio, the Length of Sales Cycle, and Customer Lifetime Value should always be on your list.

These metrics will ultimately tell a story, one that could help you address pressing issues and make the right improvements.

eBook – Assessing the State of Your Business: Start with Sales

Sales leaders often think that missing annual revenue goals is the ultimate mark of an underperforming sales team.

But the truth is, reps failing to hit their targets is just another symptom of poor strategic planning and lack of organizational alignment.

That’s why taking the time to assess the state of your business is so important.

Click on the image below to download our latest eBook today!

Assessing the State of Your Business: Start with Sales

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