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An Introduction to Sales Automation Software

Just about every company out there has a sales team of some sort. Even small operations generally put someone in charge of handling sales for them. However, these days, you can hardly expect ideal results without leveraging available software. When it comes to sales, you’ve never had more options than you do now. Before you pick a sales automation software, though, you may find the below information beneficial. It should help you better understand what this software does and which title will produce the most returns for your company.

What is Sales Automation Software?

Sales automation software is designed to handle a lot of the necessary steps in your sales plan that may take up unnecessary amounts of time or otherwise needlessly tax your company. A lot of this would be considered administrative or “behind the scenes” work. These operations are important, but they take your salespeople away from explaining complex products to customers, expanding your customer base, going after competitors’ customers, generating and nurturing leads, dealing with current customers and much more. This software doesn’t necessarily set out to replace salespeople, per se, but instead to make them more effective.

Aside from helping with these low-impact chores, sales automation software should also assist your employees with actual sales. This type of software can typically help salespeople generate estimates on the spot, for example. They can then take these estimates and turn them into actual proposals without wasting valuable time. Once the deal is confirmed, the software can process the order and have it sent out if necessary.

Some platforms will also help with customer service. They can keep a database on each one, so you have their information ready the moment a customer calls in. This can go a long way toward helping each one feel like they’re the only customer you have and resolving any problems they have as quickly as possible.

Finally, no sales software—of any kind—would be worth a dime if it didn’t include analytics and reporting. As you probably already know, all of your customers aren’t worth the same, in terms of dollars and cents. Therefore, you wouldn’t want to treat each customer as the same investment. With the right analytics, it will be clear which ones provide you with the highest returns. You’ll also get a good idea of which customers could give you greater returns if you gave them more attention.  This alone is a huge advantage of using sales automation software.

Major Goals of Sales Automation Software

While all of the above probably sounds great, the major goal of sales automation software actually remains fairly simple. It’s used to free up your actual sales people so that they can accomplish more high-yielding tasks.

Despite its name, this software doesn’t really complete sales. Selling to people is such an intricate task that it’s better left to humans. However, this software can give your salespeople more time in front of leads and customers, doing what they do best, instead of having them waste valuable daylight.

Although sales automation software may not complete sales, as we covered above, one of its major goals is to facilitate them in just about every way. Your salespeople should never be in the middle of a sale and lack for vital information. These platforms are designed to put everything they need at their fingertips.

Choosing the Right Option for Your Company

It’s tough to go wrong with sales automation software. That being said, you don’t want to pay for more software than you’ll actually end up using. For example, it may not be that important that you keep a database of customer records. Perhaps you sell one very specific product to a niche market and this just doesn’t come up.

Another example of this would be to look at your business plan. Does it involve large amounts of sales every year or does your company sell a product that will only be purchased a dozen or so times each cycle? If it’s the latter, you may not need help processing an order. Furthermore, your product might be made-to-order, meaning it’d be a fairly tough process to automate.

Companies that only have a handful of employees may not want to spend the money on monitoring, tracking and evaluating them. Of course, if you have a large sales staff, this kind of assistance is most likely invaluable.

Keep in mind, too, that sales automation software and CRM (Customer Relationship Management) are sometimes used interchangeably. However, the latter doesn’t usually automate sales tasks.

With sales automation software, it’s not hyperbole to say you could transform your business. At the moment, you may be paying perfectly good salespeople to handle tasks with little ROI. That’s wasting money and potential. Sales automation software will free them up to do more of what you hired them for and help them do this even better.

 

Cloudswave Awards Q2 2016 : Best Sales Force Automation Software

The Cloudswave Awards is a seasonal ranking of the Top 10 business applications across several categories.
This ranking is based on the cloudswave score, the weighted average score that captures the essence of multiple critic reviews into one number.

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