Technology is constantly creating new opportunities for streamlining your sales operations.
This includes everything from developing and implementing sales strategy; to hiring, onboarding, and training an all-star sales team; to building an amazing sales stack that enables reps to perform their best.
So, it’s not surprising that so many businesses are employing a range of technology and tools to help in every aspect of their sales and operations planning.
Let’s take a closer look how technology can impact and improves your sales operations and planning.
But first, a quick refresher.
What’s the Goal of Sales Operations?
The main goal of sales operations is to empower sales reps to excel in their role by helping them sell better and faster. This can involve optimizing the sales process in a number of ways, but the core of sales ops is focused on making improvements to three key areas:
1. Sales Strategy: Maximizing profits and sales with a well-defined sales strategy.
2. Team Performance: Optimizing rep performance via hiring, training, and coaching practices.
3. Sales Stack: Building a killer sales stack with tools that enable reps to sell more efficiently.
Today we’re going to home in on that third point – i.e. how leveraging the right technology allows you to streamline your process and drive impressive results.
6 Ways You Can Leverage Technology to Streamline Your Sales Process
1. Turn Big Data into Actionable Insights
They say knowledge is power – and in the competitive world of sales, this has never been more true. The more you know about your prospects, customers, and the factors that influence their decisions, the better you can refine your sales process to increase conversions.
That’s why big data represents such a powerful potential resource for sales teams. Unfortunately, many sales teams aren’t taking full advantage of the data at their disposal.
According to Forrester, the average business only analyzes about 12% of the data available to them. That means 88% of the data they have access to is not being put to good use – or any use at all.
Why? Because large data sets are both valuable and cumbersome.
Without an effective way to manage, store, and analyze all of their data, businesses have no choice but to waste one of their most important resources.
Fortunately, modern sales technology can help your team make sense of big data. With data management and analytics tools, it’s easier to collect and organize large batches of information.
Not only do these tools make it possible to capture and manage more data, but you can also use analytics to reveal customer patterns, behaviors, and preferences. This allows you to uncover insights that turn raw data into an actionable sales strategy.
2. Easily Manage and Distribute Inbound Leads
Not only can technology improve your outbound sales process (by revealing meaningful insights that help you spot qualified leads), but it can also streamline a major aspect of your inbound sales operations. Thanks to lead management tools, you can automate lead distribution and territory management.
Lead management software reviews incoming leads and automatically routes them to the most appropriate sales rep based on custom parameters.
Not only is this a convenient, reliable alternative to assigning leads manually, but it also frees up any time that would be spent delegating and assigning leads, so managers can focus on maximizing their team’s overall performance.
Plus, bringing automation into the equation results in more balanced lead distribution – so reps can concentrate on selling, rather than worrying about which leads they’re getting.
3. Research, Engage, and Win More Deals with Social Selling
Thanks to social media, we’re all more connected than ever. For sales reps, this means access to a vast pool of potential leads and clients.
Social media makes it easier for salespeople to research, contact, and engage with potential clients and customers. And, since you can engage with hundreds of leads at once, there are no longer restrictions on who you can connect with based on location or time constraints.
This type of social selling isn’t just convenient – it’s effective, too.
How effective? Well, consider that 78% of sales professionals who use social media consistently outsell those who don’t.
With the right strategy in place, social media offers an efficient way to build brand awareness, engage with potential customers, and increase retention by keeping the conversation going.
4. Automate Repetitive Tasks So You Can Focus on Selling
Remember, sales operations exists to improve sales performance. It’s all about defining a system of strategies, technology, and sales techniques that work together to optimize the entire process.
One of the best ways to do this is to maximize the time your reps actually spend selling. That is, using sales and marketing automation to put as much of their day-to-day activities on autopilot as possible.
There are plenty of repetitive and time-consuming sales tasks that can be automated. This includes everything from scheduling meetings and responding to inbound leads to sending follow-up emails using sales email automation. Sales automation can also be used to track customer interactions so you can tell exactly where leads are in the sales funnel.
As for sales teams that don’t use automation? Well, they end up spending around 71% of their time and resources planning and defining business processes. By automating various sales activities and tasks, your sales team is able to invest more of their time closing deals and generating revenue.
5. Increase Flexibility and Productivity with Mobile Devices (and the BYOD Trend)
Mobile phones aren’t new technology by any stretch of the imagination – but there are new trends in company policies surrounding them. For example, some sales teams are experimenting with “bring your own device” policies that encourage reps use their personal phones for work purposes.
So, rather than prescribing which mobile device your reps must use for official company business, you would give them the option to use their personal phone instead.
Why consider BYOD? Because by giving your sales reps the option of using their personal phones for work, you’re allowing them to work with the device they feel most comfortable using. This has been shown to boost productivity and efficiency in sales.
In fact, some organizations have found that allowing sales reps to use their own mobile devices can increase productivity by 20%.
6. Access Customer Details from Anywhere with Cloud-based CRM Technology
Customer relationship management is at the heart of sales operations. However, in order to make the most of your customer information, your reps need to be able to access it from anywhere.
That means using a cloud-based CRM platform that ensures your team members have instant, secure access to customer data on any device.
If you’re not yet using a cloud CRM, it’s well worth making the switch, since a good CRM will provide you with a healthy return on your initial investment. In fact, CRMs have an average ROI of $5.60 per dollar spent.
By empowering your sales team to view and edit customer details on-the-go, you enable them to take instant action when a lead replies and close deals more quickly. Plenty of productive sales teams use Propeller CRM to optimize their workflow, access customer details from anywhere, and close deals right from their inbox.
Modern Technology Is Changing the Face of Sales Ops
It’s amazing what a powerful sales stack can do for your business. With the right combination of analytics, lead management, sales automation, and a cloud-based CRM platform, you can streamline your sales operations from prospecting to qualifying to closing.
Of course, Propeller is a cloud-based Gmail CRM that offers a number of these benefits in a single platform, including analytics, data management, and the ability to automate repetitive tasks. If you want to see how a powerful CRM can give your sales team a competitive advantage, start using Propeller for free today!