In the previous article, Best Practices for Using CRM Software for Sales – Part 1, we covered three ways a CRM system can provide tools to maximize your team’s sales potential. But a CRM system's potential to drive sales productivity is limited to your team's use of these tools.
As a sales manager, your job revolves around being information-centric and time-sensitive. The two essentially go hand-in-hand since your sales team is striving to collect pertinent customer information to generate as many quality leads in as little time as possible. We know you’re feeling the pressure to accelerate your team’s sales cycle; however, before you can get started, you need to first identify what could be holding your team back.
Contrary to popular belief, making sales calls isn’t what’s time-consuming. It’s the prep work – logging and organizing those calls – that can eat up valuable time. While doing things on paper is pretty straightforward and simple (as a salesperson, you may prefer the good old pen and paper when it comes to maintaining your list of contacts) it’s equally impractical.
Salespeople can’t personally manage operations anymore. Today, there’s no such thing as penning notes while on the phone or writing yourself a sticky note memo to have a follow-up call. There are simply not enough hours in the day for this laborious process; and, let’s be honest, that follow-up note will probably be accidently thrown in the trash with your lunch. This method is slow and arbitrary at best.
Needless to say, if you’re still doing everything by hand, your work is bound to slip through the cracks. This is where customer relationship management (CRM) automation plays an integral role in the sales process.
Automated CRM ensures all of the benefits of a traditional platform, with the chief difference being that it can be accessed by virtually anyone from anywhere. Simply put, automation takes several disparate systems and software and links them together so that they become readily-available, self-regulating technology. According to Forbes, “it was (and still is) revolutionary for the software industry.”
So, why does your sales team need CRM automation? For starters, automated software today has a lower barrier to entry and is less costly to implement. CRMs were once complex, bulky and oftentimes expensive. Back in the day, it would have cost a pretty penny to automate your sales team. Today, you can easily add this value to your sales team so that it can acquire more high-quality leads at a far less expensive rate.
In fact, we found that according to a recent infographic, sales teams that use automation have seen:
- A 53 percent higher conversion rate from marketing response to marketing qualified lead
- A 9.3 percent higher sales quota achievement rate
- 50 percent more sales ready leads at a 33 percent lower cost
- 20 percent increase in sales opportunities
Another huge benefit of an automated CRM system is that it brings more security to the table. Contrary to popular belief, security remains high and reliable within an automated system. In fact, the majority of errors stem from human-level pattern recognition and language comprehension. As a sales manager, accessing pertinent data for nurturing sales leads and following up with customers must not only be fast and efficient, but must be located in one secure, centralized location. This is what automated technology truly excels at.
The numbers don’t lie. As the aforementioned infographic demonstrates, 70 percent of companies use automation for increasing revenue, 65 percent do so to gain added insight and transparency into their sales activities, and 58 percent do so for measuring sales performance. Even more, the number of companies using automated systems is projected to increase by 50 percent by 2015, and 84 percent of top performing companies are currently using or are planning to use automation.
As you read this, ask yourself what your sales team is missing out on without collaboration technology like CRM automation. The answer should be pretty clear.
Unified communication and collaboration (UC&C) is all about automating the sales experience for increased productivity that leads to revenue. Download this report to learn more about going Google with UC&C >>