The Best Sales Case Studies You Should Read

by Briana Morgaine 7 Minutes

When it comes to sales, it’s a good idea to learn from the experts—and one of the best ways to do that is seeing an actual, real-world example of what has worked for them, and what hasn’t.

Diving into sales case studies from industry experts is a great example of how to do this. So, I’ve rounded up some of the best sales case studies out there, and discussed what the valuable takeaways are from each.

Check them out, and apply these techniques to your own business. You’ll be increasing your sales knowledge, as well as picking up helpful tips for how to actually implement what you’ve learned in the real world.

Want to see my top picks? Keep reading.

Why turn to sales case studies?

As I’ve discussed in my other sales articles here on the Bidsketch blog (I’ll link those below), the reality is that for many new entrepreneurs, selling is not something that comes easily. In fact, selling your products or services might be the hardest part of starting your business.

And honestly, it makes sense—you know that what you do or make is great, but you feel uncomfortable playing the role of a salesperson. If you don’t have a sales background, knowing how to appropriately pitch and position your business to gain clients can feel very foreign. Not only that, but to really succeed at selling, you will likely need to enter territories you are unfamiliar with, whether that be something like creating email drip campaigns, or actually making sales calls.

So, in addition to reading through resources on how to become a better salesperson, seeing examples of how businesses have implemented sales processes that worked for them can be both hugely informative and motivating. Examining sales case studies gives you a chance to see some of the techniques you have read about in action, and see what the actual ROI for employing those techniques has been.

Plus, you are getting the benefit of learning from the experts, because a lot of the best case studies are put out by sales and marketing firms as a means of advertising their services, or they are put out there by experts who are offering their commentary. So, you can take a leaf out of their book, without actually having to hire any fancy, expensive sales consultants to help you!

However, there is a lot of noise online when it comes to sales case studies. Plenty of sites offer up a bait and switch and expect you to pay or sign up in order to see the case studies they are offering. So, I’ve rounded up some of the best sales case studies out there, from a variety of industries and vantage points, that are free and available to anyone with an internet connection.

Neil Patel

Neil Patel has long been an expert in the entrepreneurship space. (Source.)

1. Neil Patel, Quicksprout: Which of These 3 Sales Case Studies Will Grow Your Sales?

It’s always smart to turn to Neil Patel for advice; from internet marketing best practices to SEO, his insight is valuable and he continues to be one of the most respected thought leaders in the online entrepreneurship space.

In this article, Patel discusses three distinct sales strategies and walks readers through the application of each of them in detail. He ties the strategies back to his own business experience and includes sample email outlines that help illustrate what the sales strategy looks like in action.

Plus, he includes a list of action steps that you can follow in order to make the strategies he has outlined in his sales case studies work for you. Patel has written an article that is both a comprehensive guide to using three distinct sales strategies, as well as a place where readers can see case study examples of them in action, so while it is a fairly long read, it’s well worth it.

Kissmetrics offers great examples from real businesses. Image via their article, also linked below.

2. Kissmetrics Blog: How These 7 Companies Increased Revenue by an Average of 425%

You’re likely familiar with Kissmetrics, either via their product or simply based on the fact that they are one of the most reliable, respected voices in the marketing metrics space.

Their case studies are, naturally, very reliant on metrics to tell a story. This makes these case studies a must-read, as getting hard data on how sales initiatives actually improved key metrics is surprisingly hard.

Like Patel’s article, Kissmetrics dives deep into each business, and they offer a clear takeaway for each that you can apply to your own sales and marketing processes.

Modern Marketing Concepts offers a variety of case studies from their clients. (Source.)

3. Modern Marketing Concepts: Case studies

This New York-based “sales optimization company” Modern Marketing Concepts offers perhaps some of the best sales case studies that you can find specifically from a marketing firm.

Each case study is formatted as a quick, easy to digest PDF, that touches on the challenges Modern Marketing Concepts faced, and the solutions they put into place. They also include actual data demonstrating the success of each sales initiative.

While many sales case studies tend toward the vague and fluffy, those presented by Modern Marketing Concepts actually offer something concrete. Be sure to check these ones out.

Featured Customers offers lots of case studies, like these ones from Soasta and their industry competitors. (Source.)

4. Featured Customers: Soasta case studies, as well as competitors

Let’s get this out of the way at the outset: Featured Customers is a behemoth of a site to wade through. However, if you can navigate through all the information provided, you will actually find some great case studies to check out.

For example, following the link above will lead you to case studies from the software company Soasta, as well as their competitors. While case studies may not be the primary intended use of Featured Customers, it is a great resource to check out—if you have time to do a bit of digging.

Soasta’s website offers even more of their sales case studies. (Source.)

5. Soasta: Customers

Speaking of Soasta, going directly to their site yields tons of other great sales case studies that you should check out.

The best part? You can filter by industry—of which there are many, spanning industries from retail, to travel, to tech. Not only that, but the brands featured are some pretty big names, giving the case studies presented a level of resonance that discussion of smaller, unknown businesses might not have. Soasta’s case studies also include feedback from their customers themselves, which is definitely worth a read.

Case studies via Inside Sales. (Source.)

6. Inside Sales: Sales case studies

Here, Inside Sales has collected a list of case studies from their customers, which discuss how the businesses they have worked with have managed to increase their productivity levels after implementing the products Inside Sales offers.

The case studies presented here are succinct and informative; they clearly lay out the challenges facing the business, the solutions Inside Sales implemented, and the eventual results.

Core DNA shares case studies specifically from ecommerce businesses. (Source.)

7. Core DNA: 7 eCommerce Case Studies You Need to Steal From

If you run an ecommerce business, your sales needs and strategies will likely differ from those of entrepreneurs who run a brick and mortar business. So, checking out some ecommerce specific case studies is a good idea.

Now, this is not the only entry on this list that shows case studies from ecommerce businesses, but it is framed from the standpoint of a discussion of the metrics that matter specifically to ecommerce businesses. So, definitely check this one out if that is your business type.

Now that you have spent some time reading sales case studies, it’s time to create your own

Wait, what?

Seriously. You have seen how powerful a tool case studies can be for businesses; with that in mind, it’s a good idea to consider creating some case studies of your own.

Case studies make fantastic promotional tools when done correctly. You are spending tons of time researching sales processes and becoming a better salesperson so that you can generate more clients and revenue for your business—you should be putting that effort to work for you even in the future.

You can feature client case studies on your website, in marketing materials, and even use them as part of your sales pitch. Just like that, you’ve created a feedback loop in which the work you are doing now to better your sales ability will continue to benefit you in the future, driving more sales.

One of the biggest benefits of featuring your sales case studies is that they allow you to build a narrative. Storytelling is powerful, and the more you can tell a compelling story for your prospective customers, the better. So, frame your case study in such a way that you really highlight the story and paint a picture that shows all the ways hiring your business helped this other business grow and improve. By doing so, you’ll be leveraging storytelling and social proof, which makes a simple cold outreach call or email markedly more likely to be well-received.

For more on sales tactics, hiring sales staff for your team, and great resources to check out to help you improve your sales chops, check these recent articles out:

Which case study did you find the most valuable to read, or do you have one to add to this list? Leave a comment and let me know.

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by Briana Morgaine
Briana is a copy writer, copy editor, and freelance writer, covering the various facets of the small business and entrepreneurship space. She can be found writing for Bplans, and also on Twitter.