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Sales controlling: definition, tasks & key figures

Yvonne Wicke | 1. February 2023

What is sales controlling?

Sales controlling is the targeted management, monitoring and evaluation of the sales strategy. As part of the operational management system, sales controlling ensures that sales targets are achieved.

Sales controlling serves to increase turnover and efficiency in sales and to ensure that company targets are achieved. This includes analyzing sales figures, costs and income as well as monitoring customer loyalty measures and marketing activities. The aim of sales controlling is to make decisions on the basis of reliable and up-to-date data in order to increase the company's competitiveness.

Sales controlling tasks

Sales controlling tasks include a variety of activities aimed at monitoring and optimizing the success and efficiency of sales processes within a company.

These tasks include analyzing sales figures, identifying turnover and sales trends, monitoring key sales figures and implementing measures to improve sales strategies and practices.

By continuously analyzing data and KPIs, sales controlling enables the fine-tuning of pricing, product mix and customer care, which strengthens a company's competitive position and promotes sustainable growth.

With the help of data mining, companies can make their sales controlling tasks more effective by extracting hidden information from large amounts of data and using it to make well-founded decisions regarding sales strategies and tactics.

In the context of sales controlling, portfolio analysis is a valuable tool for evaluating the performance and profitability of a company's various products or services. By using portfolio analysis methods, companies can optimize their sales controlling by adapting resource allocation and sales strategies to the positioning of the products or services in the portfolio.

Tasks in sales: sales controlling & sales management

An overview of the central sales controlling tasks:

  • Monitoring and analyzing sales figures, sales targets and earnings
  • Monitoring of costs in sales, such as travel expenses, commission costs
  • Monitoring customer loyalty measures, such as customer satisfaction
  • Analysis of sales markets and competition
  • Monitoring and analyzing marketing activities, such as campaigns and advertising measures
  • Preparation of forecasts and sales plans
  • Support in the preparation of budgets and forecasts
  • Creation of reports and presentations for management
  • Monitoring of sales performance and success compared to targets and benchmarks.

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The role of sales controlling in the company

How should controlling be classified?

Sales controlling, or sales controlling, is an integral part of corporate controlling and has the task of ensuring the achievement of corporate goals in the sales area. It supports management in decision-making and helps to minimize risks and increase competitiveness.

Sales Controlling works closely with other departments, such as financial controlling Marketing and Human Resources. It ensures that the sales strategy and activities are in line with the company's objectives and budget. In this way, it can ensure that sales and profit targets are achieved and resources are used optimally.

Sales controlling & financial controlling

Sales controlling and financial controlling are both part of corporate controlling and work closely together to ensure that corporate goals are achieved. While financial controlling is mainly concerned with monitoring and analyzing the company's financial data, sales controlling focuses on monitoring and optimizing sales activities.

Learn more about Financial controlling .

Both areas aim to use sales planning & decisions based on reliable and up-to-date data to minimize risks.

Strategic and operational sales controlling

There are two key aspects of sales controlling: strategic sales controlling and operational sales controlling. Strategic sales controlling focuses on the long-term design and orientation of sales activities, whereas operational sales controlling focuses on day-to-day processes and the implementation of sales strategies and planning.

Strategic sales controlling

Strategic sales controlling has the task of ensuring the long-term orientation of sales and ensuring that the company's sales targets are achieved. It supports management in the development and implementation of sales strategies and sales planning and helps to minimize risks and increase competitiveness.

An important part of strategic sales controlling is analyzing the market and competitive situation. Among other things, industry trends, customer requirements and the activities of competitors are examined. The sales strategy and targets are defined on the basis of these analyses.

Strategic sales controlling includes sales planning and budgeting. This involves analyzing and planning planned sales, costs and income in the sales area. The necessary resources are provided and the implementation of the strategy is monitored on the basis of this sales planning.

Strategic sales controlling also has the task of monitoring and evaluating the achievement of sales targets and making adjustments where necessary

Operational sales controlling

Operational sales controlling comprises the daily activities in the sales area and the implementation of sales planning. Its task is to ensure the implementation of sales planning and to monitor the achievement of sales targets.

Operational sales controlling involves monitoring and analyzing sales figures, costs and income. The actual sales figures are compared with the planned sales figures and deviations are analyzed. Suitable measures are taken on the basis of these analyses in order to achieve the sales and earnings targets.

Another important component of operational sales controlling is the monitoring of customer loyalty measures and marketing activities. This involves monitoring customer loyalty and marketing activities and reviewing their effectiveness. Based on these analyses, suitable measures are taken to increase customer loyalty and optimize marketing activities.

In contrast to strategic controlling, which focuses on the long-term orientation of sales, operational sales controlling is mainly concerned with the day-to-day implementation of the sales strategy and monitoring the achievement of sales targets. Both divisions work closely together to ensure that the company's sales targets are achieved.

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Important key figures in sales controlling

In sales controlling, there are a large number of key performance indicators (KPIs), i.e. sales indicators that can be used to measure and monitor performance in the sales area. Some examples of KPIs in sales controlling are

  • Turnover: This is one of the most important sales figures and an important indicator of success in the sales area. Turnover provides information on how many products or services have been sold and how high the company's revenue is.
  • Sales: Sales indicate how many products or services were sold.
  • Customer retention rate: This indicator provides information on how well the company is able to retain customers.
  • Customer acquisition rate: The customer acquisition rate shows how successful the company is in acquiring new customers.
  • Average sales price: This indicator shows how high the average sales price per product or service is.
  • Cost per sale: This indicator provides information on how high the costs per product or service sold are.
  • Sales per salesperson: The sales per salesperson indicates how many units a salesperson has sold on average per period. This can be calculated per day, week, month or quarter and can be used to measure and compare the performance of salespeople. Higher sales per salesperson key figure indicates higher salesperson productivity.
  • Return on investment (ROI) in sales: Return on investment (ROI) is also one of the most important financial and sales indicators that shows how much profit or loss an investment has generated. It is calculated by dividing the profit or loss generated by the investment by the original investment amount. ROI can also be expressed as a percentage by multiplying the profit or loss by the original investment amount and multiplying the result by 100. An ROI of 100% means that the investment has doubled the original investment amount, while an ROI of -100% means that the investment has completely lost the original investment amount.
  • Lead-to-sale ratio: This indicator shows how successful the company is in converting potential customers (leads) into actual customers (sales).

There are many other KPIs that can be used in sales controlling, depending on the company's objectives and which aspects of sales it wants to monitor the most. It is important to select the right KPIs and monitor them regularly to ensure that sales targets are being met.

key figures-sales controlling

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Instruments of sales controlling

One of the most important elements of sales controlling is the measurement and monitoring of sales performance. There are a variety of tools and methods that can be used for this purpose. This section presents a few examples to provide an insight into the wide range of options available in sales controlling. From dashboards that provide a quick overview of important key figures to forecasting methods that make it possible to predict future developments. Gain a deeper insight into the world of sales controlling and learn how these tools and methods can help make the company more successful.

Overview of instruments


Reports offer a more detailed view of the key figures and can be created at different intervals (e.g. monthly, quarterly, annual reports).

Budget planning

A budget plan indicates which sales and costs are planned for a certain period. This makes it possible to compare the actual results with the planned results and take countermeasures if necessary.


Forecasting methods make it possible to predict future developments and estimate the impact of decisions on future results.

More here.

Break-even analysis

The break-even analysis can be used to determine when a product or service starts to cover its costs.

Customer analysis

With the help of methods such as RFM analysis (Recency, Frequency, Monetary), customers can be segmented according to their purchasing behavior and it is possible to identify which customer groups are most important.

Gap analysis

Gap analysis is a tool that makes it possible to identify the gap between the current and desired status in sales. This can be in terms of sales, market share or customer satisfaction, for example. By identifying these gaps, targeted measures can be taken to achieve the desired state.


Benchmarking is a method of comparing yourself with other companies in the same or similar market environment. The aim is to compare your own sales performance with that of competitors in order to identify best practices and learn from other companies.

Customer Value Management

Customer value management deals with the benefits that a customer derives from a business relationship. It is about understanding the needs and wishes of customers in order to develop offers that maximize these benefits.

Key account management

Key account management focuses on maintaining and developing important customer relationships. This involves understanding the needs of key customers and responding to them in order to build long-term and successful business relationships.


Sales controlling software

The use of software solutions plays a decisive role in supporting controlling and sales planning. Corporate Planner is recommended software for sales controlling.

Corporate Planner is a software that enables the creation of business plans, budget and forecast projections as well as the monitoring of the implementation of measures. With Corporate Planner, companies can pursue their strategic sales goals more effectively by automatically performing data analysis and sales planning.

Another highlight of Corporate Planner is the ability to summarize the data on dashboards and reports and thus obtain a quick overview of the most important key figures in sales. The software is also capable of integrating data from various sources in order to carry out a comprehensive analysis of the company's performance.

Corporate Planner offers the possibility to share the results of the analysis with other departments in the company to enable better collaboration and decision-making. This enables companies to continuously improve their sales strategy and tactics and adapt to changing market conditions.

Overall, Corporate Planner is an excellent choice for companies that want to achieve their strategic sales targets and improve their sales controlling performance. It offers extensive functionalities and enables companies to plan, monitor and optimize their sales activities in order to achieve their business goals.

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Summary of sales controlling

In conclusion, sales controlling is an important part of corporate management that helps to measure, analyze and control sales performance. It enables the company to adapt its sales strategy and sales planning to current market conditions and thus maximize sales and profits.

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