Most people have heard of a sales pipeline, and maybe even about sales pipeline metrics. But do you have a clean pipeline?
A clean pipeline has the following qualities: a manageable number of deal stages, accurate data, regular updates, and purging of stale leads.
Why a Clean Pipeline is Important
1. A cluttered pipeline overstates your sales forecasts and your progress towards bookings goals.
For example, maybe your forecast includes a prospect valued at $1,000. But if the prospect hasn’t been contacted in 6 months, is that $1,000 really going to come through?
2. A cluttered pipeline wastes time, energy, and money. Resources are spent chasing down deals that aren’t going anywhere instead of high-value prospects.
How to Clean Your Pipeline
HubSpot gives the following actions for keeping a clean pipeline:
1. Keep tabs on leads older than the average sales cycle.
2. Contact these aging leads to see if they’re still interested.
3. Keep accurate CRM data. You don’t want to keep emailing someone who’s left the company.
4. Purge aging prospects that are not moving forward or that you’ve stopped hearing from. This keeps the opportunity dollars in the pipeline accurate, and frees up your time to spend on deals with a real chance of closing.