Sales of single-family homes in the US grew 16.6% in April, representing the biggest jump in 24 years, according to the Commerce Department. "Consumers are taking the leap and buying the biggest of big-ticket items of their lives, and this speaks to confidence," said MUFG Union Bank Chief Economist Chris Rupkey. "The Federal Reserve can raise rates at their June meeting without fear the economy is going to slow."
Elite sales departments tend to emphasize trend analysis and keep a close eye on the big picture instead of solely focusing on what's happening in their own companies. Effective sales departments put more effort into digital sales and a full range of sales analytics than less successful sales teams.
Admirers of Google often make the mistake of copying its perks without examining why those add-ons make sense for them, Sasha Rezvina writes. Rezvina explains why you shouldn't mimic Google and notes several startups that went different routes, including:
- Nextiva, which stopped offering free food
- Dashlane, where benefits take priority over perks
- Wistia, which abandoned "flat" management structure for a delegated-authority approach
Navigating the complicated web of tax jurisdictions in the US can be especially difficult for online retailers. Start by figuring out where your tax nexus is located, says Chris Livingston of VertexSMB. "In the days before e-commerce, knowing your nexus was simple and straightforward," he says. But as an online seller, "you must consider where your billboards are, the states where your salespeople live and where you have inventory."
Glossier, a startup beauty brand founded by Emily Weiss, has had product wait lists of up to 10,000 people. After feeling as though beauty brands were talking at her rather than to her, Weiss launched her own company and raised $8.4M in Series A funding. The company's success comes from its consistent branding and its cultivated digital community, she says.
The latest update to Microsoft's Dynamics CRM 2016 platform includes a tool called Connected Field Service, which allows firms to track Internet of Things devices continuously. Connected Field Service will issue alerts when anomalies occur, as well as order service tickets, match service technicians for preventive measures and more.
The Consumer Price Index gained 0.4% month over month during April, while existing home sales increased 1.7%, lending credence to the possibility of a June interest-rate hike by the Federal Reserve. "The probability of a June rate increase by the Fed rose to 34% after the release of the FOMC minutes on Wednesday [last week] from 19% earlier in the day, 15% on Tuesday, and less than 1.0% a month ago," said CME Group's FedWatch.
CRM platforms are best leveraged to make good use of the available data, not just to supply more, according to Constellation Research Principal Analyst and CEO Ray Wang. "We want to ask questions of our data and take action on it," said Wang. Companies must "find patterns so that we can figure out what sells, and what doesn’t sell, and then make decisions against that."
While insourcing sales activities gives companies more control over the process, outsourcing is ideal when there is a lack of qualified candidates or time is of the essence, writes Doug Dvorak. Insourcing sales can allow for better specialization of sales representatives, while outsourcing can allow in-house sales managers more time to develop before they're ready to pick up the slack.
Sales departments should ask themselves whether their sales compensation plans are aligned with their strategy, as well as whether sales representatives understand the strategy that's in place, writes Rebecca Sandberg. It's important to have a focus on causation to examine what motivates your sales reps and whether the plan is getting the job done, Sandberg writes.
- Page 1