In sales we all know what a sales process is and have created a system for your team or company to be successful. Typically, these companies have previously identified the steps of their sales process and like what they’re doing, but what if there was an even better way to do it? Sales process automation isn’t a new concept but it’s underutilized. I’m going to show you what sales process automation is for those that aren’t familiar, why it matters, and 4 steps to start taking advantage of it now.
What does sales process automation mean?
Sales process automation is a method of taking recurring or repetitive tasks and using a digital software platform to perform those tasks for you. Platforms like CRM’s, lead management or generation apps, and scheduling forms are all examples of automation.
This is a practice that most, if not all, sales professionals should already be doing. Sales process automation is designed to save you time, remove mindless tasks from your plate, and free you up to focus on more high-level strategy.
4 steps to automate your sales process
- Identify your current process and what software you’re using
- Talk to your reps and managers about what tasks take up the most time
- Eliminate unnecessary softwares or steps in the sales process
- Start using a platform for identified tasks
“61% of businesses leveraging automation reported exceeding revenue targets in 2020.”
#1 Identify your current process and what software you’re using
The first step in any process improvement is to identify what you’re currently doing. You can’t improve a process unless you’re aware of all the tasks, steps, and roadblocks you’re already facing. Identifying what you’re doing, good or bad, will help guide your automation. Here are some basic steps to start with:
- What softwares platforms are your reps and managers using?
- Which software is the most used?
- What tasks are these softwares performing?
If you aren’t currently using any software to manage your sales process, skip this step.
#2 Talk to your reps and managers about what tasks take up the most time
After you’ve identified the steps in your sales process and what software you already have (whether it’s working or not), the next step before automation is knowing the routine of your reps or managers that could be automated and isn’t. I suggest that you simply ask your team how their time is spent. Here are some questions to ask:
- What does your daily routine look like?
- What tasks do you have that take up the most time each week?
- Are there any tasks you don’t like doing? Or procrastinate because they seem tedious?
- If you could change one thing about the tasks you’re expected to do, what would it be?
Asking preliminary questions like this is the best way to get a good sense of what your reps or managers are experiencing without having to guess. After this step you’ll know what software you have and what your team does daily plus some insight into what they would like to change.
“More than 30% of sales-related activities can be automated.”
#3 Eliminate unnecessary softwares or steps in the sales process
Now that you’re aware of what your current process looks like, you’ve identified repetitive tasks, and you know what isn’t working, it’s time to cut out the unnecessary stuff. Whether it’s steps you’ve uncovered in your sales process, or a software that you thought was helping more than it was, eliminating what isn’t working for you will already free up so much of your wasted time and effort. This will also help before you get to the last step of implementing a software solution that has what you actually need.
#4 Start using a platform for identified tasks
Depending on the tasks you want to automate like emails, lead generation, or rep tracking, there is a different platform to use. Since you’ve identified what tasks can be automated, it’s time to choose your solution. If you want to automate scheduling meetings, something like Calendly will help, or if you want to automate personalized email sends then platforms like ZOHO or MailChimp will work best for you.
But if the kink in your sales process is field sales related, SalesRabbit is going to be your best option. Our software is designed to help contractors and field sales reps with their lead generation, lead and area management, and so many other things to simplify your sales process with one solution. If you want to hear about us in action, check out our feature on the Roofing Show with our VP of Sales, Sean Huckstep and Dave Sullivan where he explains everything we do to help you automate your sales process.
*Bonus Tip: Integrations are your friend!
A great way to sync your software if you have to use more than one platform, is with integrations. A lot of companies offer integrations that are helpful to sales teams and SalesRabbit is no exception, we have dozens of integrations plus a specific one with tray.io that helps you automate your sales process. Always check out your integration options!
Are you automating yet?
With this quick guide to sales process automation, I hope you’re looking into automating some of your tedious tasks if you haven’t already. This is a great way to take an already successful sales team, trim off wasted time, and have a better sales process than any of your competitors. If you’re still not sure where to start, talk to us! We’ve been where you are, we know how to fix it, and make your team even better!