What is Sales Automation? A Complete Guide
In the business world, it doesn’t matter whether you’re selling in the business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C) space. What matters most is that you are selling. The higher your sales, the greater profitability for your company. And that’s where your crew of sales reps shines.
These professionals are responsible for raising awareness about your product or service, nurturing the buyer’s consideration phase and helping them make the final decision to buy. But with so many tasks on a sales rep’s to-do list, it’s essential to modernise processes and introduce sales process automation.
If you are wondering what is sales automation, what are its advantages and disadvantages, which software you should use and how this differs from marketing automation, you’ve come to the right place. These are the answers we explore in this article, so keep reading to find out more!
What is sales automation?
In short, sales automation is using specialised software to help sales teams automate repetitive tasks to help them save time, speed up the sales process, introduce greater efficiencies in their work and ultimately, sell more.
With automation, many tasks can be streamlined and made much more efficient. However, because sales is very much a human-to-human activity, a personal touch will always be required.
How does sales process automation work?
Automating parts of the sales process can reduce time spent on mundane activities such as data entry or call scheduling, among many other things. But how does sales process automation work?
When you have the right software in your organisation, sales process automation can help with aspects such as lead identification and qualification, follow-up communication, forecasting, talent management, sales reports and analytics and a whole lot more.
Let’s explore some of these solutions in more detail below.
1. Qualify and generate leads
Through this process, sales reps can easily and quickly determine if a prospect is right for the business prior to contacting them.
2. Automate communication
one of the most time consuming aspects in a sales rep’s job is communication. With sales automation, however, these individuals can save time in terms of automating marketing messages, follow-up emails, etc.
3. Build accurate sales reports
Sales automation can generate sales reports that can help decision-makers with aspects such as budgeting, forecasting and finalising projects.
4. Manage your sales pipeline
Through sales automation, you can quickly get a bird’s eye view of the sales pipeline, who is in it and which opportunities are there to be pursued to help buyers make a purchasing decision.
With a few simple clicks, you can forecast estimates, revenue and sales, eliminating the need for endless hours spent on doing this activity manually.
6. Schedule sales calls and demos
Help your clients understand your product or service better by scheduling calls or demos with them. When this process is automated, you can assign a team member who is available and save the client time by giving them an almost immediate response.
7. Create custom quotes
Custom quotes are becoming essential in today’s competitive business environment. And when you can do this with a few clicks of a button, you can provide a faster solution to your clients based on the project scope and their needs.
8. Track performance
Sales managers will quickly be able to see which team members are meeting quotas and targets and which ones are struggling. This way, you can allocate more training time for the underperformers and focus on strengthening your team.
9. Manage orders
With sales automation software, you can receive notifications if there are any delays or potential issues that could affect orders and/or customer satisfaction. This way, you can use the software to inform customers of an issue ahead of time to keep them in the loop and aware of the situation while resolving problems as they arise.
Advantages and disadvantages of sales automation
While there are numerous advantages of sales automation, there may be some downsides as well. Below, we explore both sides of the coin so that you can make a more informed decision.
Advantages of sales automation
- Boost efficiency and productivity
- Increase sales through more conversions
- Bolster your lead generation efforts
- Retain more customers
- Improve the customer experience
- Create reports
- Onboard new team members
- Optimise your sales team’s skills
- Access data from one place
- Reduce the scope for error
- Gain better insights into customer behaviour
Disadvantages of sales automation
- Lack of personalisation
- Absence of the human touch
- Sales automation software requires a financial investment
- You may experience technological setbacks
- There is a risk of over-messaging your prospects
Features you can expect from sales automation software
Your chosen sales automation solution should contain all the features that help your sales team. For example, the ServiceOS sales automation system features tools and functionalities that include the following:
- Advance notifications
- Sales scripts and call centre automation
- Business automation
- Automated payments
- Online and offline booking forms
- Call-to-booking application
- Video consulting
- And more
What is the difference between sales automation and marketing automation?
And now, we reach the part of the article where we discover what the difference is between sales automation vs marketing automation. Although they often have a similar function, their goals are different.
In terms of similarities, both involve tasks such as emailing large groups of contacts and personalising messaging.
However, in terms of goals, marketing automation seeks to attract leads through automated processes. This is primarily achieved through research, content and distribution.
Meanwhile, sales teams can then use these leads to convert them into buyers and create a buyer’s experience. Both sales and marketing automation processes use different tools to improve their processes and performance.
Sales automation is an excellent way to transition from a manual, paper-based system to a digital system that streamlines processes, saves time and resources and streamlines the sales process. When considering different sales automation tools, ServiceOS should definitely make it on your list.
The platform enables your sales team to outperform their competitors and give your business an upper-hand advantage. We encourage you to browse through the software’s tools and functionalities. Alternatively, get in touch with us and we’ll help answer any questions you may have.