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Excel Sales Forecasting For Dummies

Overview

When they first told you that forecasting sales would be part of your job, did you feel just the tiniest bit of panic? Did you momentarily consider consulting the Yellow Pages for listings of “Psychics” or “Tea Leaf Readers”? Well, fear not. Excel Sales Forecasting For Dummies can help you predict the future without incense or a crystal ball.

Excel Sales Forecasting For Dummies shows you how to use the number one workbook program, Microsoft Excel, to predict trends and future ...

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Excel Sales Forecasting For Dummies

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Overview

When they first told you that forecasting sales would be part of your job, did you feel just the tiniest bit of panic? Did you momentarily consider consulting the Yellow Pages for listings of “Psychics” or “Tea Leaf Readers”? Well, fear not. Excel Sales Forecasting For Dummies can help you predict the future without incense or a crystal ball.

Excel Sales Forecasting For Dummies shows you how to use the number one workbook program, Microsoft Excel, to predict trends and future sales based on something not quite so ethereal—numbers. You use data about the past to forecast the future. Excel provides all sorts of tools to help you do that, and this book shows you how to use them.

From recognizing why forecasting is a good idea to making sense of exponential smoothing, Excel Sales Forecasting For Dummies has you covered. If you have a basic grasp of how to use Excel, you’ll be ready to discover how to

  • Select and use the right forecasting method for your business
  • Choose and arrange data in lists, then manage that data with pivot tables
  • Filter lists and turn them into charts that illustrate what’s going on
  • Find relationships in your data
  • Use Excel’s Analysis Toolpak feature to create forecasts automatically, or venture into advanced forecasts using worksheet functions
  • Gain more control over your forecasting and target specific types of predictions
  • Use moving averages and predict seasonal sales

Written by Conrad Carlberg, a nationally recognized expert on Excel who also has experience in sales and marketing, this friendly guide gets you up and running quickly and easily. You’ll soon be setting up a baseline you can chart and label, summarizing data with pivot tables, making forecasts based on regression, understanding correlation, and discovering how smoothing lets us profit from our mistakes. You’ll find your confidence in your ability to make sales predictions has soared right off the chart.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
Everything rides on sales. Predicting them accurately is crucial to your business. Excel can help -- if you know how to use it. You need to really understand moving averages, exponential smoothing, regression. You need someone to actually walk you through using Excel to build sales forecasts. Most Excel books barely touch this stuff. But Conrad Carlberg makes it almost easy.

Carlberg’s “business statistics” coverage is a breath of fresh air, especially if you missed the stats course in school. (You’ll even master complicated techniques like multiple regressions.) His Excel coverage is equally handy, especially the PivotTable chapters. You’ll learn how to set up data, choose the right tool for each problem, improve estimates over time, even forecast seasonal spikes. If you’re in marketing, sales, or product management, or if you’re an entrepreneur, this could be the most valuable computer book you’ll ever buy. Bill Camarda, from the May 2005 Read Only

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780764575938
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 3/25/2005
  • Series: For Dummies Series
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 404
  • Sales rank: 685,873
  • Product dimensions: 7.40 (w) x 9.15 (h) x 0.85 (d)

Meet the Author

Conrad Carlberg is the author of more than ten books about Microsoft Excel. As a multi-time recipient of Microsoft’s MVP designation for Excel, he is a nationally recognized expert on that application.
Carlberg’s Ph.D. in statistics involves work in forecasting, as does his work in telecommunications and the health-care industry. He used the techniques in this book to reduce a crushing $24 million inventory owned by a Baby Bell to under $10 million in 18 months. The carrying costs for $24 million in equipment are significant. The point: This forecasting stuff works.
As preparation for starting his consultancy, Carlberg spent two years as a sales engineer for a Fortune 500 company.

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Table of Contents

Introduction.

Part I: Understanding Sales Forecasting and How Excel Can Help.

Chapter 1: A Forecasting Overview.

Chapter 2: Forecasting: The Basic Issues.

Chapter 3: Understanding Baselines.

Chapter 4: Predicting the Future: Why Forecasting Works.

Part II: Organizing the Data.

Chapter 5: Choosing Your Data: How to Get a Good Baseline.

Chapter 6: Setting Up Lists in Excel.

Chapter 7: Working with Lists in Excel.

Part III: Making a Basic Forecast.

Chapter 8: Summarizing Sales Data with Pivot Tables.

Chapter 9: Charting Your Baseline: It’s a Good Idea.

Chapter 10: Forecasting with Excel’s Analysis ToolPak.

Chapter 11: Basing Forecasts on Regression.

Part IV: Making Advanced Forecasts.

Chapter 12: Entering the Formulas Yourself.

Chapter 13: Using Moving Averages.

Chapter 14: Evaluating a Moving Average.

Chapter 15: Smoothing: How You Profit from Your Mistakes.

Chapter 16: Fine-Tuning a Regression Forecast.

Chapter 17: Managing Trends.

Chapter 18: Same Time Last Year: Forecasting Seasonal Sales.

Part V: The Part of Tens.

Chapter 19: Ten Pivot Table Troubles — and How to Overcome Them.

Chapter 20: The Ten Best Excel Tools.

Index.

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