In the modern business world, it’s become increasingly evident that having the right information is crucial. Gone are the days when you could simply create a beautiful storefront and draw customers in, happen to meet clients on the street, or rely on your existing patrons to come back in for another purchase. While these are still viable options, if they’re your only sales tactics, your enterprise is almost ensured to fail. In this digital landscape, every company has to compete for potential customer’s attention. The difference between a thriving business and a suffering one is having and using the right data.
Of course, there can be so many tidbits and factoids regarding your business that even trying to navigate your data might seem overwhelming. That’s why your information needs to be organizedand accessible. The best way to achieve this is with cloud-based business software like NetSuite. Operating from a single, unified database, NetSuite offers eCommerce, ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning), PSA (Professional Services Automation), and CRM (Customer Relationship Management).
This technology can instantly bring you any piece of information you need to make a sale – that is, if you know how to use it. Fortunately, the cloud experts at SCS Cloud are here to help you learn the ins and outs of NetSuite’s innovative interface. For the next installment in our NetSuite Orientation series, we’ll explain how (and why) to use the Customer Record Sales Subtab.
The Significance of Sales
Most business owners recognize just how vital sales are, but it bears repeating: if you can’t get your products into customers’ hands, your company will simply cease to exist. As Inc. magazine puts it, “sales are like oxygen… without [this pivotal function] your business suffocates and dies.” In contrast, if you fuel your sales department with the right resources (including and especially data), your business can grow, thrive, and expand. The Houston Chroniclestates the significance of sales a bit more practically, but no less powerfully: “No matter how good your manufacturing operation is, how cutting-edge your technology is, how tight your financial goals are, or how progressive and forward-thinking your management techniques are, you must still have a sales mechanism in place, or everything else is useless.” Sales is the engine that powers every facet of your business and drives it forward.
Why Data Matters
A sale doesn’t happen in a vacuum. By definition, it involves exchanging your goods with a customer. In order to entice and convert your clients, you need to understand them. Especially in this day and age, knowing your customers requires having their data readily available. As a recent article in Entrepreneurmagazine points out, “You must have a living, breathing customer database. If you want the strongest possible customer base, you must actively, systematically, and methodically build [it]. All your contact, prospect, and customer data, order and billing information – everything – needs to be entered and stored in the database.” Then, the article recommends sorting your customers “into meaningful groups” and creating the “flexibility [to]…easily pull up prospects.” With the right information at your disposal, you can devise and execute sales strategies that truly work.
Furthermore, having key sales data about your customers can help you determine how well your business is actually doing. As another Entrepreneurpiece explains, having a well-ordered repository of digital information is absolutely essential. Understanding key figures like the “average revenue per sale” can help you get a handle on how your business is performing, and “once you know your metrics, you can methodically improve them.” The critical facts and figures (like those contained in NetSuite’s Customer Record Sales Subtab) can aid you in developing individual plans for important clients and identifying what you need to do to expand your enterprise as a whole.
How to Use the Customer Record – Sales Subtab
Taking advantage of the wealth of data in the Customer Record Sales Subtab is easy, if you follow the simple steps SCS Cloud’s specialists have compiled for you, below:
- Log in to NetSuite.
- Navigate to the Customers button on the blue bar at the top of the dashboard.
- Click on a customer from the list to open the customer’s record.
- Scroll down to the blue bar lower down the screen.
- Click the “Sales” button (between “Company Profile” and “Financial”).
- Note that the Sales Subtab has multiple secondary subtabs, which are located in the light blue bar directly below the bar with the “Sales” button.
- To track developing deals within NetSuite, click on the “Opportunities” tab at the far left of the blue bar. This shows a list of all potential sales opportunities with this customer, sorted at the top by “Date,” “Title,” “Document Number,” “Opportunity Status,” “Projected Total,” “Probability,” and “Forecast Type.”
- To view a given record, click its title.
- To edit a given record, click the blue “Edit” button.
- To add an opportunity to the record, click the “New Opportunity” button.
- To see a record of all items purchased by this customer, click the blue “Items Purchased” button to the right of the “Opportunities” button in the subtab section. This displays each purchase in a separate row, sorted at the top by “Item,” “Description,” “Quantity,” “Total,” “Unit Price (Average),” and “Last Purchase Date.” The total of the purchases are shown at the bottom in bold.
- To view a list of all items that can potentially be upsold to the customer, click the “Upsell” button to the right of the “Items Purchased” button in the subtab section. This pulls up a list of the items the customer purchased on the left with a list of potentially upsell items in a column on the right.
- To see the qualifications a customer meets (for example, if they have an approved budget for purchasing), click the “Qualifications” button to the right of the “Upsell” button in the subtab section.
- Finally, to see the gross profit from a given customer, click the “Gross Profit by Category” button to the right of the “Qualifications” button in the subtab section. This section displays the gross profit from this customer per category (if the item sold contains a category in the item record).
This should give you all the guidance you need to find information in the Sales Subtab. You can also view our NetSuite Orientation: Customer Record – Sales Subtab videofor a more detailed tutorial. Keep in mind that your NetSuite may look slightly different.
When to Leverage the Sales Subtab
Now that you know the ins and outs of the Customer Record Sales Subtab, when should you put it to use? There are countless circumstances that could call for this data. To name just a few, you might use the Sales Subtab when:
- You’ve just gotten off the phone with a very hot prospect and want to ensure that anyone who contacts this client fully grasps the deal you’ve set in motion. You could add this exciting information to the “Opportunities” tab (and, while you’re there, check and see if there are any other past sales opportunities you might pursue with this customer).
- You need to compile a report on your sales spending for the accounting department. In this instance, you could use the “Gross Profit by Category” for a major client to explain why you’d like to allocate more funding to a certain type of product.
- You realize a particular product would be perfect for a client you talked to last week, but can’t remember if they’ve already bought it. To find out in less than 60 seconds, you could simply check the “Items Purchased” subtab.
- You’re on the phone with a customer, about to close a sale. You’d like to sweeten the deal with an appropriate upsell, but aren’t sure which products would be a good fit for this client. The “Upsell” subtab offers everything you need to make a great sale even better.
- You’d like to sell a bulk order to a particular client you’ve worked with before. However, before you invest time and energy into the sales process, you want to find out if this customer is even authorized to make this type of purchase. You can open the Qualifications subtab to find out if the client has an approved budget.
As stated above, these are just a sampling of the myriad ways you can use the Sales Subtab in your day to day operations.
Are You Ready to Skyrocket Your Sales with NetSuite?
The Customer Record Sales Subtab is an impressive feature, but it’s just one of hundreds NetSuite’s cloud-based business software suite offers. SCS Cloud can help you leverage everything NetSuite has to offer. Our experienced specialists can consult with you about your needs, custom develop your platform to your particular parameters, effectively implement your new system, offer tech support, and train your team. Contact SCS Cloud todayto learn more and schedule your free consultation!