How to improve the sales process—divert from traditional methods
Traditionally, improving the sales process has revolved around a few tried-and-true tactics. Setting the team up with more leads, providing them with updated equipment like new phones or computers, or even increasing their commissions for an added incentive are just a few that top the list. But what many haven’t considered are methods that lie within the actual processes of the sales process—this is where digital transformation and sales automation come into play.
Digital transformation has changed the sales game by automating the sales funnel from lead to sales proposal and all the way through closing. Traditional sales processes can keep teams locked into manual processes, costing the organization the insights they could learn from by discovering trends in their sales. Even if your team is using a customer relationship management tool like Salesforce, there’s more time savings and fewer headaches to be had when automation is applied throughout the entire sales cycle.
Historically, sales team members have spent a majority of their time on administrative tasks. This can include non-sales related obligations like researching prospects, updating leads, writing up call notes, and sending follow-up emails. In this system, the salesperson has to keep track of the buying process for each prospect individually, scheduling interactions for each one as they go. If a contact at a particular business leaves or changes phone numbers, it can take even more time to figure out who the right contact is or how to get in touch with them.
Without appropriate data tracking or automated scheduling, sales team members can miss out on opportunities to close or work too hard on selling a prospect who isn’t interested. Team members will be siloed in their own processes, which means they can’t learn from each other to see what works or what doesn’t. They also risk making serious manual errors in proposals and contracts, especially if they’re trying to take information from static spreadsheets that may not reflect pricing changes or product updates.
Put the work in workflows with sales automation
Sales automation eliminates the guesswork by replacing as many administrative or manual functions as possible, leaving sales team members the time and bandwidth they need to build relationships through direct interaction. An automated sales funnel can increase sales productivity by freeing up time and resources for salespeople and sales managers and giving them the space they need to pay more personal attention to clients.
A CRM or customer relationship management system is typically the first step in many sales teams’ digital transformations. For an enterprise organization especially, an automated sales funnel can mean the difference between a streamlined sales process and a frustrated, overworked team that is lost in a sea of spreadsheets. Platforms like Salesforce help automate functions like call notes, lead research, updating contact information, and tracking profiles.
By integrating with Salesforce or other CRM programs, a good sales automation program can improve on the functionality already available in the CRM. For instance, Conga Orchestrate allows your sales team to streamline workflows through easy visualization and drag-and-drop capabilities. Orchestrate removes the need to think about what the next step is for your team, and also automatically checks off steps as they go, keeping a transaction trail for each step.
Sales proposal software is another worthwhile investment for sales teams, reducing the time needed to research terms, populate fields, and deliver documents. Conga Composer helps teams create accurate proposals by pulling data directly from the CRM or any system of record, and can even automate schedules so that proposals or other documents are sent automatically.
Conga Contracts is another key software in sales process automation, which simplifies contracts for the sales team, not to mention the legal team. By integrating with Salesforce, the application automates contract lifecycle management (CLM), starting with drafting, negotiations, and finishing with secure signatures. In addition to making life easier for your sales reps, Conga Contracts improves the experience for customers, allowing them to approve and sign documents easily with a click of a button. The tool also generates reports and tracks interactions to further improve and educate the sales process.
Better data = better insights
The obvious benefit of sales process automation is the freedom it gives your sales team to spend more time selling, but another enormous advantage is the ability to track trends and interpret data in a way that spreadsheets and even basic CRM software can’t. Conga AI Analyze allows you to use advanced analytics to further automate manual tasks that you may not have known were hampering your team’s efforts. The system can also uncover potential risks and improve compliance through audit trails and reporting.
Other sales automation processes can give you an even bigger picture of your sales ecosystem through data you may not be able to access from spreadsheets or manual tracking. Conga Grid organizes Salesforce data in a single dashboard so that your team can see stalled deals, missed opportunities, and other problems in a single view.
While benefits within the organization are clear, sales automation can also improve customer relationships. Through automated notes and transaction details, team members can see trends in customer behavior, and more readily note when it’s time to step up, or when it’s time to back off. Lead management and sales funnel automation can deliver a seamless customer experience at any point in the funnel, letting the team connect with customers in new ways to fulfill expectations and resolving issues before they arise.
Sales funnel automation is a necessary step for any organization looking to get ahead. By removing so many manual processes, you can increase sales productivity, optimize your systems, and give your sales team the chance to do what they do best.