Ask any professional salesperson, and they’ll tell you that building strong connections with prospects is one of the most important parts of closing a deal. Considering this, throwing automation into the mix can initially seem counterintuitive. But automating your sales process doesn’t mean losing the human touch. On the contrary, integrating sales automation tools in your business empowers your sales teams, giving them more time and resources to make connections and bring in new clients.
According to a recent LinkedIn study, salespeople spend most of their time on non-selling activities (with 38% spent on admin and updating CRM). When it comes down to it, sales automation can help rebalance this distribution by reinforcing and augmenting your sales team’s existing capabilities so that they can dedicate more time to the parts of their job vital to converting leads into revenue.
In this guide, we’re breaking down what sales automation is, how it fits into your process, and how it can benefit your sales team and, ultimately, your bottom line.
What is sales automation?
People who talk about sales automation typically refer to software solutions or tools that simplify and execute various sales tasks. The general idea is that sales automation will take repetitive and time-consuming responsibilities off of your sales team’s to-do list, freeing up time for them to focus on higher-value tasks, like communicating with leads and selling your product or service.
Sales automation tools, such as Wrk’s, integrate with your existing sales processes, including customer relationship management (CRM) platforms like HubSpot, Pipedrive, and Salesforce, as well as with calendars, email, and more. This helps make automation as seamless as possible and means sales teams don’t have to learn a whole new system to reap the benefits of automation. Speaking of benefits…
The big-picture benefits of automating your sales process
The benefits of adopting automation in sales and other revenue-generating departments can’t be overstated. And it’s not a matter of pros and cons: automation is rapidly becoming an integral part of sales workflows across all industries, making them more efficient, productive, and scalable with virtually no downsides. Here are three big-picture benefits that automation can bring to your sales department.
Many sales tasks are repetitive, time-consuming, and prone to human error. By automating your sales processes, you can ensure that information about leads, contract details, and communication logs is always accurate and up-to-date.
Specific tools like our Deduplication Wrfklow also ensure that you can streamline sales data so sales teams don’t get bogged down in redundant info and disorganized lists. On top of that, automation can keep cross-department platforms synced so that all revenue operations have access to the same lead and customer data and are always on the same page.
Used strategically, automation tools can help create a more consistent process for your sales teams as well as for leads. In other words, not only can automation help to ensure your sales team has access to up-to-date information and a consistent stream of qualified leads, but it also promotes regular communications (through automated follow-ups, reminders, and meeting scheduling) and a consistent onboarding process for leads and new clients.
Take our Lead Nurturing Wrkflow, for instance. This tool automatically follows each lead’s progression. It ensures that every step in the sales funnel is on track by generating and sending emails and alerting sales teams about meetings and follow-ups. This boosts communication consistency and makes sure you can account for every lead. Ultimately, improving consistency translates to more lead conversion and a superior customer experience.
Arguably the most important benefit for your business’s bottom line is scalability. Automation solutions such as Wrk enable your sales team to boost the number of leads in the sales funnel. It will also help close more deals without sacrificing or compromising the human element. Automation takes tasks off your sales team's plate by handling lead generation, nurturing, qualification, list cleaning, quote, and proposal development. It guarantees more bandwidth to focus on leads near the sales funnel's end.
To sum it up, automation can support your sales teams as client lists and sales increase, maintaining the high-quality customers have come to expect without having to scale resources or increase your sales team’s workload rapidly.
Seven sales processes ripe for automation
Now that we’ve seen the big-picture benefits, we want to dive into the specifics of sales automation. According to a report by McKinsey & Company, roughly one-third of sales tasks can be automated, so we want to highlight the top sales processes you can automate and the Wrkflows that will get you there.
Automation can reinforce organic lead generation and help keep lead lists brimming with prospects. We offer Wrkflows that support lead generation, including our List Building from Social Media Engagement Wrkflow, which automatically converts any social media likes or follows into potential leads.
A full lead list is only as good as its insights. With our Lead Enrichment Wrkflow, sales teams no longer have to spend hours hunting down valuable lead data and contact info; it’s all automatically parsed from online sources like Crunchbase and LinkedIn and updated in your CRM.
From there, automation can also help keep your lead lists organized and up-to-date. Our List Cleaning Wrkflow ensures lead lists are free from duplicate entries and redundant data. They also ensure formatting standards are maintained and contact details and revenue data are always current.
Each prospect must be accounted for as your lead list grows to keep every potential sale intact. Automated Lead Nurturing keeps tabs on each lead’s sales journey. It also generates and sends personalized communications—including custom product sheets—at the optimal time.
Something as simple as scheduling a meeting with a prospect can consume precious time due to back-and-forth emailing. Fortunately, our Deal Management Wrkflow can streamline this task. They integrate with your sales team’s calendars and automatically send out an invite, giving leads several time and date options. You can also automate reminders for meetings.
Pitch deck creation
Automation can also streamline other sales processes, like creation. Our Pitch Deck Creation Wrfklow generates presentation slides customized to each lead. Not only that, this Wrkflow automates internal feedback and approval processes for each pitch deck.
Quote and proposal development
Even as leads near the end of the sales pipeline, automation still has a role. With our Quote & Proposal Development Wrkflow, sales teams can accelerate quote generation and automate personalized emails. This will allow leads to have the information they need ASAP. This Wrkflow also automates follow-up steps, like contract approval.
The Wrfklows, as mentioned above, are just the tip of the iceberg regarding sales automation.
Contact a team member to discuss how automation can transform your sales processes for more possibilities.