Strategies for creating effective territory mapping and the pitfalls to avoid

Sharing of information between sales managers and salespersons leads to better collaboration and better sales performance. Sales managers must be on the same page with sales representatives by accessing dynamic information from the field with the help of Alignmix sales territory mapping software that improves sales efficiency and increases profit.

territory mapping

Visualizing territories helps to get a clear picture of the ground conditions that form the basis of creating the right sales strategies that are easy to implement and highly effective.  By using territory maps, it is easy to divide a large target area into more manageable regions that help to capture the bigger picture as well as the granular detail. The software allows focusing on the minor details based on different market characteristics such as assigned salespersons and customer types. It helps in the efficient allocation of territories in a balanced manner that improves market coverage.

Territory mapping can be quite confusing if done manually, and the job is quite tedious too. Chances of error are high, and static maps do not help in timely updates. It creates an information gap and does more harm than good, and there is no way to gain insights about demographic conditions that are key to successful marketing. Once you give out the map to the salespersons, you cannot have any information about what worked and what did not work. There is no way to make any ongoing changes that might be necessary to explore new opportunities. Moreover, manual mapping makes it difficult to maintain a proper balance between territories, and this can lead to disputes between sales representatives.

For efficient territory mapping that saves time, removes confusion, and improves performance, you must use software for creating and assigning territories for the sales team based on the following strategies.

Base it on demographics

As important it is to identify territories to target, it is equally important to gather information about the demographics that help to create the most successful strategies for creating territories. It is a pre-requisite before the sales team fans out across territories to knock on customer’s doors. It would ensure that there is more focus on prospective customers and eliminate the chances of beating about the bush. It increases the chances of closing as representatives would reach out to customers with high buying intentions. 

It will be possible to track leads closely so that you can monitor progress and ensure that you do not lose out on leads that you have invested in. Having more information about your customers will help to understand the areas of high success and identify customers with higher buying potential.

Current customers

Current customers are worth much more than just being buyers of your products and services.  They are invaluable assets as they can provide referrals that open the door for the cheapest and highest converting leads. Create a list of your current customers, load it on the map, and update the status of each customer so that you can pin-point the successfully closed deals. When customers are visible on the map, you can start the work of creating territories to allocate based on the locations.

When assigning territories to sales representatives, you can either evenly distribute the number of customers in each territory. Or if the customers are spread too much, you can assign a few areas to each representative.  But keep in mind that the distribution must be as much even as possible. The exercise will help in using your current customers as references when pitching new prospects.

Distribute the homes

Salespersons need more opportunities to prove their mettle and to give them more exposure; you must ensure that they have more doors to knock upon. The software will help to create territories and assign it based on the number of houses you allocate to each representative. The process begins by fixing the number of houses that you want each representative to visit. Once you specify the territory, the software will tell the number of homes within that area, and you can adjust the number according to your needs. For estimation, you can consider 1000 houses in a one square mile area located on ¼ acre lots.

Distribute by Zip code or city

When creating territories, distributing by zip code can be a bit complex because the areas can differ as well as the number of houses. It can adversely affect your goal of even distribution among the sales representatives. When creating territories by zip code, several factors come into play. The different demographics of the cities will influence the number of customers allotted to the representatives.  But zip codes being well-defined it eliminates the chances of overlapping or sales representatives taking to poaching by trespassing into other territories.

Software for territory mapping reduces the chances of mistakes considerably, but still, there are some issues to be alert about that can make the process almost foolproof.

Wrong tool selection and limited data

The more you know about your client, the more accurate will be your evaluation of how sales representatives are performing. Using the right CRM tool will help to gather exhaustive customer data that gives the real picture of the ground realities. Making too many changes to sales territories too quickly is another mistake that you must avoid as it can adversely impact customer engagement.

Excluding the sales team from mapping

The involvement of sales representatives and other members of the sales team is critical in ensuring proper territory mapping. Their involvement provides valuable inputs about the situation on the ground that lends accuracy in demarcating territories and motivates them too.  Their involvement would encourage them to take the right steps in the right territories without trying to trespass into other territories. The sales representatives will have a clear understanding of the plan and would be in a better position to implement it successfully.

The last thing that you must avoid is to feel overwhelmed with data and spreadsheets. To manage your team well and get the best results, you must use the right tools and applications that make sales performance management a breeze.

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Article Author Details

Trudie Seeger