Sales: Big Data Benefits and Challenges


Sales Big Data Benefits

Big Data Study - Sales Big Data Benefits and ChallengesSo where do sales executives see the gold in Big Data? One of the most popular sales big data benefits was using it to identify the most valuable customers for the organization. That was rated much higher than any other activity. Finding opportunities to cross-sell products and services came in next. Identifying which customers not to sell to finished lowest on the list..

The case of technology maker and services provider Dell Inc. illustrates how companies are using Big Data to better identify their best prospective customers. In 2007, the company began working with a provider of cloud-based analytics for software that would help Dell’s sales force pinpoint which prospects were better than others, according to a press article last December.1 The software identifies the types of customer behavior most likely to lead to the purchase of different products (for example, signing an office lease). An executive from Dell told a reporter that the company’s sales productivity, efficiency and revenue in Europe nearly doubled. This was achieved in part by halving the number of leads that marketers forwarded to the sales organization, which enabled sales to focus on the best prospects. This was one of the substantial sales big data benefits.

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Exhibit IV-8: Areas of Greatest Sales Big Data Benefits

Q18-b: Degree Of Potential Benefits Big Data Could Generate – Sales — Mean Summary

Exhibit IV-8: Areas of Greatest Sales Big Data Benefits | Degree Of Potential Benefits Big Data Could Generate - Sales -- Mean Summary

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Executives say that their biggest obstacle to deriving Sales Big Data Benefits is the silo problem: getting business units (divisions, other functions, etc.) to share information with the sales function that could prove valuable in identifying trends and making decisions.

Similar to their colleagues in marketing, sales managers didn’t rate keeping data secure very highly in their list.

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Exhibit IV-9: Greatest Big Data Challenges for Sales 

Greatest Challenges to Getting Value from Big Data: Mean Summary – Sales

Exhibit IV-9: Greatest Big Data Challenges for Sales | Greatest Challenges to Getting Value from Big Data: Mean Summary - Sales



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  1. Rachael King, ‘How Dell Predicts Which Customers are Most Likely to Buy’, The Wall Street Journal, Dec. 5, 2012. http://blogs.wsj.com/cio/2012/12/05/how-dell-predicts-which-customers-are-most-likely-to-buy/ []

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