Voice based forecast analysis

Voice based forecast analysis

As you may already be aware, Forecasts in Zoho CRM help you set and achieve sales targets for your teams by a specific period (by month, by quarter etc). By creating and working with forecasts, you are effectively able to use the knowledge of current sales progress to set and meet future sales goals for your teams.
The challenge with the current forecast setup is that, while the system will actively help you monitor sales progress, in the cases of failure to meet the set target, you may not exactly know why your deals are falling out of the pipeline. Or you may not know what is it that you are doing well, that is giving you winning deals, for that matter.  Knowledge of this winning/losing pattern will help you set better goals and also meet them better.
This is where VoC enters the picture. With our new Voice based analysis dashboard, you are provided with real-time insights about your customers' emotions and feedback, offered to you in the context of your sales forecasts.
This way you are effectively able to understand what went right / wrong with deals in a specific forecast category, which will
a) Potentially help you take corrective actions for deals on a losing path, before its target period is over
b)  Set and meet better data-driven sales targets with VoC insights at your disposal for future sales goals.

Voice based forecast analysis

Forecasting in any organization setup is used by businesses to help in planning and estimating future outcome. It is an effort to predict future results based on past events and insight. In agreement with the fact, the demand to understand the past and present trend in any sales cycle, Zoho CRM is introducing Voice of Customer for forecast analysis to its users. In simple terms, let us understand this with a simple business scenario. Say a company had $1000 target for the previous quarter, which it was unable to achieve. To analyze what went wrong, to avoid making the same mistake again, to make corrective actions, and to achieve the set target for the next quarter, you will use the insights in VOC based forecast analysis. The insights will help you better your sales and target predictions for the future by understanding what customers are talking about you in the context of the forecast.
Forecast analysis in VoC involves a detailed analysis of past and present sales trends or events that predict future events. Based on this technique, Zoho CRM has come up with intelligence based analysis on keywords received from customers from various channels. Zia captures information on top and latest keywords spoken by customers and the intent with which the keywords were spoken. This information in conjugation with many other CRM features will give insightful dashboards for customers.
For every role in an organization, you can set a deal amount or deal revenue that needs to be delivered/achieved in a particular period (quarterly or monthly). You can see the performance trends and comparisons across periods.

Let's say Zylker Tech uses Zoho CRM to keep a track of their sales efforts. Currently in their CRM, the Forecasts module projects a target of $10000 for sales department for the upcoming quarter.
In this context, with insights in the Voice based forecast analysis, they can observe real-time, key takeaways from customer feedback plotted in the context of forecast details. For example, here you can see that there are three customers in the 2500-3000 deal lost category, who've mentioned the term "bad product" in some of their conversations with the organization. If a handful of customers have been lost because of their feedback that a product is bad, this could immediately prompt correction actions from the organization as a whole in terms of revisiting their offerings, and also reaching out to these customers to make remedies. 

This will also help sales teams to plan future conversations with such customers to meet their targets better. 

There are several more chart components in this dashboard, and they are outlined in the following sections in this post. This is just an example to indicate the value from just one particular chart. To summarize, the insights in this dashboard will help you in the following ways.
  1. To observe real-time feedback from customers in the context of sales forecasts, which will help you meet your sales targets better.
  2. To recognize a winning/losing path for deals across a projected target period and use the insights to increase the chances of successful deals.
  3. To learn from what went wrong and apply the learning to future sales targets.

How does Voice based forecast analysis work

Zia captures all types of voice related attributes such as, keywords spoken by customers and the intent and sentiment with which the keywords were spoken. This information in conjugation with many other CRM features will give insightful dashboards for customers.
For every role in an organization, you can set a deal amount or deal revenue that needs to be delivered/achieved in a particular period (quarterly or monthly). You can see the performance trends and comparisons across periods.

Key components in forecast analysis:

  1. Forecast type: In Zoho CRM, forecast analysis is based on the deal count (Deal Quantity) or the deal amount (Deal Revenue).
  2. Forecast period - You can set the forecast based on
    1. Quarterly (Quarter 1, Quarter 2,.... Quarter n)
    2. Monthly (Month 1, Month 2, Month n) period.

Types of forecast analysis

  1. Improvement analysis - The revenue that was achieved or exceeded for that quarter or month or the no of deals that were achieved or exceeded for that period.
  2. GAP analysis - The revenue that was not achieved for that quarter or month or the no of deals that were not achieved for that period.


It is incomplete when we stop with just viewing the numbers. It turns out to be useful and important only when we question the reasoning for the gaps. It is at this juncture that VOC will help us analyze these forecast for our customers based on their constantly uttered keywords and the intent of these keywords before and after a deal win or deal loss. It is reasoning out everything based on the Voice of the Customer. What was spoken by the customer before a deal was won or lost? How many deals were open when they were spoken?....We already have umpteen number of charts inside VOC to cater to these needs. What is new is that, CRM has now curated a certain set of charts based on forecast attributes and deliver these insights as dashboards within VOC.

Type of Charts for Voice based Forecast Analysis   

Overall Keyword tabular view  

This analysis covers details on how many deals were lost, won or open for the targeted period. The type of keyword mentioned by the customers for that month or quarter before a deal loss or deal won or any open deals. You can view the latest keywords spoken before every stage of a sales cycle.



Top 5 Keyword Buzz for lost deals

Displays the deal loss percentage for every month or quarter. The number of lost deals where the top keywords were spoken over the chosen period. This will help understand the keywords that led to losing the deal and not being able to achieve the target.


Product vs sentiment analysis

The chart displays the top 3 products and the sentiment associated with these products that has resulted in winning, losing or deal staying open for that quarter. This information about the products and their associated sentiments is analyzed for the deal outcomes. This helps to visualize what sentiment is expressed at larger levels for a product that results in target not being achieved. You can view the top keywords associated with a particular sentiment.



Keyword quadrant analysis for lost deals

Latest keywords mentioned before lost deals is plotted against quadrants. This helps the user to avoid using those keywords for upcoming deals and prioritize the issues to avoid more deal loss. This helps achieve the set target for a period by analyzing the gap and avoiding such keywords that lead to deal loss.




Keyword quadrant analysis for open deals

Latest keywords that were uttered during an open deal are plotted in this chart. You can compare this chart with the previous chart to find out similarities and the trajectory to lose a deal. This acts like a foresight so that you avoid using those keyword that lead to deal loss mentioned in the previous chart.


Open deal amount by intent

Deals that are open are analyzed by the intent and the keywords associated with the intent. The intention of the deal gives the user a perspective on what the state of the deal would be at the end and how it will affect the target. 



Intent-based deal lost tabular analysis

Displays the intent based keywords mentioned in a particular deal. This is similar to the previous chart but this gives detailed understanding in the tabular view.


Configuring Voice based Forecast Analysis

To configure Voice Based Forecast Analysis:
  1. Go to the Voice of the Customer module from the list of modules available in your organization.
  2. Click the Voice based Forecast Analysis option under Dashboards. 
  3. Click the Actions button and select Configure Dashboard.
  4. In the Configure Dashboard- Voice based Forecast Analysis page, do the following:
    1. Select the required Forecast for which you require VoC to conduct the Forecast Analysis. 
    2. Select the module for which you'd like to configure the dashboard.
      Choose from Leads or Contacts.
    3. Set Keyword Preferences. 
      You may instruct the system to conduct the analysis for all keywords or specific keywords chosen. 
  5. Click Configure.

  1. The voice-based forecast dashboard is displayed only for the current quarter of the selected forecast.
To learn more about configuring dashboards, click here

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