Sales Automation Process – Everything You Need to Know in 2021

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  • Ad ID: 1438

  • Added: October 5, 2021

  • Views: 25

Description


Do you want to sell more?

We already know what you know about sales. Maybe we also know a little bit about what you don’t know.

You’ve been told that sales is all about customer relationships, right? 

If you just talk nicely to your customers and make them smile, your business will sunder the skies like a Concorde … right?

Well, that advice expired in the ‘90s.

Today, sales reps everywhere struggle with mundane tasks that take up most of their day. You can squeeze their schedule all you want, but there’s a limit to what we can do as human beings.

In fact, one-third of your sales reps’ day goes in tackling emails.

But what if there was a way for a system to handle the relationship-building part of selling, so you could focus on the most important parts of the sales funnel, like qualifying and nurturing leads, improving your sales process, and closing deals? 

There is! It’s called Sales Automation.

Sales automation will help you close more deals by freeing up all the time spent on routine tasks so you can spend it on high-value activities that drive revenue. 

And with powerful tools like email templates, automated follow-up emails, a visual sales pipeline, and automated segmenting and assigning of leads, it’ll be easy as pie!

Smart companies across a variety of industries worldwide have adopted sales automation tools to increase sales revenue and streamline their sales processes.

It’s time you do the same.

What Is Sales Automation?

To automate a sales workflow, you have to use automation tools. Some business applications offer just this tech, while some offer an all-in-one marketing and sales automation package. 

Most companies use sales automation to track their leads and keep them organized, but that’s just scratching the surface of how powerful a sales automation software can be.

The real value of sales automation comes from automating the entire sales workflow and turning it into an easy step-by-step process that your reps can stay on top of.

Sales automation software helps you nurture your leads with automation that can be completed in small, simple steps.

How Does Sales Automation Work?

There are seven steps to automating your sales cycle. Take a look:

Automated guidance

With this form of automation, the sales teams receive reminders and notes from the sales automation software. This keeps the reps on-task and prevents them from missing important prospects who could be converted into paying customers.

Lead management automation

Speaking of converting prospects into customers, there’s lead management automation.

With this step of automation, the sales executive can use rules and filters that allow them to create a more curated list of leads. 

Based on lead characteristics and behavior, including email opens, click-through rates, and social searches, your sales automation software can easily segment and score your leads and divide them into neat lists or ‘buckets’ to work on.

Communication automation

From sales email automation to automated voicemails, appointment scheduling tools, and personal email sequences, communication automation matters a lot.

communication-is-key

  • With automated voicemails, the sales reps can pre-record a message at their leisure that the lead or customer receives when they don’t answer the phone. This prevents the agent from having to come up with responses on the spot, again and again.
  • With built-in appointment scheduling, your sales agents can work with customers quickly and conveniently to schedule meetings based on when they’re both available. The software does all the tracking, so nobody has to make notes. The software sends reminders to the sales reps and customers as well.
  • With personalized sales email sequences, customers can keep receiving important information in bits and pieces about the product or service on sale.
  • Then there’s sales email automation, which can automate tasks like unsubscribing the email addresses of inactive subscribers from the email lists. This helps save time and reduce bounce rates and spam complaints.

Automated data entry

Data entry can be incredibly tedious and time-consuming, but it’s also a duty that’s unavoidable. Well, that was before the proliferation of sales automation tools. 

By auto-filling sales data like prices, product details, and contact details for leads and customers, the sales automation software streamlines contact management and saves valuable hours of your sales reps every day.

Automated research

Sales automation software goes beyond the sales team’s human ability to shake down the web and social media for key information on prospects and customers. 

It uses that information to create and update lead profiles, score leads on their win probability, and identify hot sales opportunities.

This helps the sales reps incredibly because it saves them time and ensures that they are constantly up to date on the latest information about their contacts and prospects. 

All this knowledge is stored in a central repository so it can be easily accessed by all members of the sales team.

Automated activity logging

Sales emails, phone calls, in-person visits: all this needs to get logged in real-time, so other reps know how far one rep has gotten with a prospective customer. 

Automated activity logging does all that for the agent, once again saving them a lot of time to focus more on lead generation and closing deals.

Automated record creation

When your sales teams scan business cards or receive newsletter opt-in confirmations, they can simply let the sales automation software create the new records and profiles. 

As record creation is automated, the sales reps are relieved of a major time-wasting task. They can instead focus on closing deals with hot leads that the software identifies for them.

How to Automate a Sales Process?

You know that you want to automate your sales processes, but you may not yet know how to do so.

In this section, we will walk you through the steps to get started.

Your sales process automation must follow a pattern that looks something like this:

  1. Awareness
  2. Interest
  3. Decision
  4. Action

Here goes:

Awareness

Your potential customers may find your business through a Google search, a paid advertisement on a website or social media, or even from a guest post on a blog.

The lead knows nothing much about your company yet.

At this stage, it’s best to make some great sales offers for a limited period, via email or SMS, so you can engage with the leads and evoke more interest.

Interest

If the lead takes interest in your products, you move on to the next step.

To reach this stage, the lead must have had some form of interaction with a sales rep from your company, such as opting in for an email newsletter or calling for a price quote.

Now that you have their interest, you must maintain it, and that means peppering the lead with information about why they need your products or services.

To that end, whitepapers, eBooks, and blog content can help.

You can automate sending a sequence of welcome emails. You can also set automation for reminders to be sent to your sales reps to call the leads if the leads click through the emails.

This stage is all about capturing and building on interest, and automation can save plenty of time here.

Decision

Now, your lead moves on to the third phase, or the decision stage. 

Here, you want to save time and use automation to keep in touch with them, share key information about your products, and even send across some confidential information that can include product documentation, pricing contracts, invoice details, and so on. 

Sales automation tools can help you automate the entire process of storing, updating, and sharing all these documents with no or little effort from your sales reps. 

Action

The last step of course would be payment and confirmation of the same, sending across the product to the new customers or getting them started with your company’s services, and so on.

As you’d know, this step in the sales funnel can take up a lot of man-hours, and that keeps you from contacting new hot leads. 

Sales automation software can do the job of tracking all new deals, payments, and customer details. Your software can tell you exactly how many deals have been made, and who’s yet to make their payment or receive their products. 

This way, you get to track revenue by products or services, for monthly, weekly, quarterly or any other custom time frames.

The Difference Between Sales Automation and Marketing Automation

The difference between sales automation and marketing automation can be subtle. 

It can depend on the extent to which your organization has matured in assigning separate tasks to the sales and the marketing teams. 

Largely, marketing tasks are related to attracting leads, qualifying them based on their behavior, and passing the qualified leads on to the sales team.

sales automation & marketing automation

Sales reps have the responsibility of converting the qualified leads into paying, repeat customers. This can involve a lot of tasks, some of which we’ve covered in detail.

To keep it simple, just think of marketing automation as saving time in finding and qualifying new leads, and sales automation as saving time in the whole process of converting leads into customers and keeping them engaged with the brand. 

Till now, businesses had to rely on plenty of different software to automate these tasks, but now there are some powerful CRM systems that can do both marketing and sales automation.

How EngageBay Can Help with Sales Automation

Let’s get one thing out of the way: HubSpot is the big daddy in this space.

However, if you do just a little homework, you’ll realize that HubSpot is super expensive, and not really made for small businesses.

EngageBay was launched in 2017 to help small businesses and startups that need an all-in-one marketing and sales automation software on par with HubSpot, with similar features but without the crazy prices.

sales dashboard

Thanks to its powerful, smooth automation tools, EngageBay can help you with:

  • Reaching out to customers’ phone numbers via phone from the online CRM.
  • Call recording and logging call data real-time, so you never misplace any communication records.
  • Appointment scheduling with calendar links inserted right into the signature of your emails.
  • Email tracking to predict what your leads and prospects might do next, such as opening emails and clicking through; you can then establish an automated workflow to strike while the iron is hot.
  • Studying sales analytics for default and custom metrics.
  • Establishing multiple visual deal pipelines, so you can track the progress of hundreds or thousands of leads in the sales funnel.
  • Reviewing data like past customer communications, updated customer information, and other interactions to get a 360-degree view of the customer’s needs. This allows you to achieve greater customer satisfaction.

To be a bit more specific, let’s look at what all you can do in sales automation with EngageBay:

  • Create web forms with setup rules that ensure the message appears when you want it, such as an exit pop-up that can retain a potential customer and drive them back to make a buying decision.
  • Personalize emails to build a bond between your company and the customer.
  • Segment your audience based on their persona, email response, online behavior and the corresponding lead score (win probability).
  • Automate drip email campaigns and email sequences.
  • Automate the workflow of interacting with the customers from the first contact to the payment point.

Conclusion

So, will you be looking for a new sales automation platform?

If you skim through software review platforms, you’ll notice the buzz about EngageBay! 

It’s affordable, packed with powerful automation tools, and super easy to use. 

But don’t take our word for it — try out all the key features with the free plan! We don’t even need your credit card details to begin with, and 15 members of your company can play around with the rich feature set. 

EngageBay’s free-forever plan just limits your subscribers to 500 and branded emails to 1,000 a month, but that apart, it offers everything from lead scoring to automated email sequences that can help you close more deals, and faster than ever.

We know how hard it is to find a good sales automation platform — most are expensive or complicated or both. 

Try EngageBay — it costs less than $1 a day! 

Want a sneak peak first? We have a comprehensive demo of our product in this video: 

 

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