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Digital Transformation

Salesforce Rolls Out Revenue Optimization Tools to Drive Sales Growth

Quick Take: Soon, chief revenue officers will have access to updated revenue optimization features including Pipeline Inspection, flexible forecasting, AI-based conversation insights and revenue analytics templates — all built directly into Sales Cloud 360.

While some parts of the world are getting back to normal, supply chains are still disrupted and market conditions are changing fast. Leaders want to get back to growth, but with these factors at play, it’s not easy to manage revenue. 

According to a recent Salesforce Research survey, 44% of salespeople feel more pressure than ever to deliver revenue results. Simultaneously, Chief Revenue Officers (CROs) are being pressured to develop new revenue streams and adapt to increased buyer expectations. This role is inherently complex — with revenue data scattered across the business — from deal spreadsheets to customer conversations, from pipeline data and forecasting calls to marketing funnels. It takes a tremendous amount of time and energy to gather relevant data and distill it into useful, actionable insights.

Revenue intelligence for Sales Cloud

While a CRO’s role isn’t easy in these conditions, there’s also a reason for optimism. 76% of CEOs expect the global economy to grow in the next 12 months, and leaders see an opportunity to create new revenue streams in the modern era of digital sales. 

To provide CROs with a new level of predictability to forecasting for this growth, Salesforce today announced new features to optimize revenue built right into Sales Cloud 360. 

Now, CROs and revenue operations teams can unlock customer, deal and pipeline data to easily drive predictable revenue and identify trends to understand what is and isn’t working. These tools will be available within existing Sales Cloud technology, enabling teams to quickly redefine sales processes for a new digital-first world.

New features include:

  • Drive predictable revenue with Pipeline Inspection: Pipeline management is the first line of defense against lost revenue and is the foundation for sales growth. Sales leaders now get actionable pipeline insights in a simple, consolidated view, including top KPIs, week-over-week changes, and more deal health signals. They can focus their attention on the deals that matter most, locate real-time coaching moments to accelerate rep development, and provide support on deals that need course correction. 
Quickly see week-over-week deal changes at a glance
  • Improve forecasting accuracy with flexible forecasting: Where pipeline focuses on quotas, forecasting is the ultimate source of revenue truth. Now revenue operations teams can base forecasts on custom fields to ensure forecasts reflect unique business models accurately. For example, a web service company can maintain forecasts based off of monthly recurring revenue or annual contract value in addition to total revenue, or an energy company can create a forecast that factors in expected megawatts that change seasonally. 
Choose custom fields on which forecasting is based
  • Understand customer signals with actionable insights: Using AI-powered Einstein Conversation Insights, CROs can use video and call transcripts to influence longer term strategies. With visualizations that identify important signals to revenue — for example, how quickly competitors are mentioned in conversations, or when challenges arise in pricing discussions — CROs can shift strategies across sales and marketing in response. Trends that may have been anecdotal within small sales teams can now be measured, analyzed, and acted upon at a level that can impact revenue over quarters and years. 
CROs can spot trends in competitor mentions or feature questions to anticipate the need for strategic changes
  • Discover new insights with Revenue Analytics Templates: Tableau CRM now leverages AI and machine learning capabilities to automate and enrich the forecasting process, as well as display rich, actionable insights. For example, a CRO who is tasked with increasing margins can now visualize how different types of customers impact revenue. Understanding the traits of customers that prioritize features when purchasing, over others that prioritize low cost, can guide teams to focus on high-value customers with a high probability of closing.

The impact of revenue optimization

“When I look to drive growth, it all starts with making things as easy as possible for our sellers. We do that with Salesforce by finding ways to augment sales with a clear picture of the next best action. Salesforce allows us to gather data about our pipeline and customer engagements in a single place,” says Marcus Jewell, Chief Revenue Officer, Juniper Networks. “Then, we use that data to inform our decisions about how to coach sales reps, which deals need our focus to make an impact, and where we can remove friction in the selling process. The visibility Salesforce provides across our business also allows me as a leader to forecast better, and we’ve even started using Einstein AI for a data-driven perspective to help de-risk the forecast and increase predictability.”

“The opportunity for revenue leadership — CROs and revenue operations teams — to effectively plan and execute across the departments and channels requires insights to guide towards optimal outcomes,” said Mark Smith, CEO and Chief Research Officer, Ventana Research. “Salesforce provides the intelligence for customers and sales across any channel enabling revenue forecasting from data and analytics and providing the insights that can be acted upon at any level of the organization.”

Driving revenue growth in an all-digital world

The CRO’s main objective is to create long-term value for the business, three to five years down the road. 

To make decisions on how to sell tomorrow, however, revenue operations teams need a complete view of how revenue is created today. With Sales Cloud providing all insights in one place, revenue operations teams can take action and coordinate across siloed departments — sales, marketing, events, finance and enablement  — to drive growth for their business in a rapidly changing market.

More information:

  • Flexible forecasting and Pipeline Inspection will be generally available in June ‘21 globally. Revenue Ops Analytics Templates and Einstein Conversation Insights are generally available now. 
  • Join our virtual Going for Growth series today at 12pm PT  to learn more about Driving Predictable Revenue. Learn more about these features on the product page and on our blog.

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