If you ask any sales rep what is the secret to closing deals faster, they will provide a ton of recommendations, from creating a sense of urgency and stating the price upfront to introducing the management to the prospect. Nevertheless, well-informed and skilled as they are, sales people often keep demonstrating just average productivity – in other words, the increase in the number of deals closed during a certain time period simply doesn’t happen.
Before starting to blame lazy employees, ineffective techniques or bad carma, stop and think over the shocking findings from Docurated’s State of Sales Productivity 2015 study – sales reps spend only ⅓ of their time actually selling. The rest of their work time they’re busy with admin/reporting/CRM, finding/creating the needed content etc. So, it turns out, most sales reps just don’t have time to apply their expertise.
What Slows Them Down?
The point is, even an advanced and robust CRM like Salesforce in most cases is not the only tool employed by the salespeople – they typically need an email client, dialer, calendar and other software to be on top of things. The necessity to go back and forth between these tools, forgetting to log important activities into the CRM or making errors when entering data are the common factors that slow down the work of the Sales department.
So, essentially, a CRM system that is meant to assist in speeding up sales, ends up consuming valuable time that could be spent for closing deals. If you simply stop updating the information in the CRM, it will turn into a useless piece of software, therefore something else needs to be done to let the sales representatives interact with prospects rather than do busywork. See below how this issue can be addressed using the right tools and an effective approach.
How to Speed Up the Sales Process for Salesforce users
Companies running Salesforce have the chance to seriously shorten the time needed for closing deals and improve sales productivity by means of bringing certain changes into their workflow. See how many opportunities to save precious time and efforts of your whole Sales department are there while ensuring all of the necessary data is regularly recorded into the CRM:
1. Melding Salesforce into personal environment
Basically, this eliminates the need to constantly switch between different tools and lets sales reps work with the software they are used to and comfortable with. It allows accessing Salesforce data, creating Salesforce contacts, tasks right within an email client or calendar with all changes automatically synced in both directions. Salespeople can view all the client-related information, communication history and tasks without leaving their email client and it reduces their reaction time.
2. Smart automatization
Imagine, how much time can be saved if there is no more need to copy paste info between your inbox/calendar and Salesforce. This is exactly what smart automatization is capable of – pre-populating data fields with the corresponding info found in your communication history or an event description. Moreover, it excludes human error and increases data accuracy.
3. Saving emails and meetings into CRM
Such functionality keeps a sales rep from saving important messages or booking meetings manually, while the system saves all the necessary client-related data from inbox or calendar within their Salesforce record. It ensures data accuracy and guarantees its 100% relevance. Acting like a helpful assistant, this feature saves salespeople’s time and provides timely and up to date info, which facilitates their work and decreases the possibility of errors.
4. Bi-directional synchronization
This means automatic sync for all of the emails, contacts, calendar events and tasks between Salesforce and the corresponding apps across all the devices used by a sales rep. So, whether in the office or on the go – they will always have access to the updated data.
5. AI driven suggestions
It is not a dream – a CRM can literally analyze the data it operates and provide suggestions and reminders that provide tips on the follow up activities, help create and handle tasks on time. Based on a lot of factors, such feature lets you plan a deals progress more accurately and facilitates their closure.
Now you see how a few workflow improvements can lead to impressive results in the long run. And that’s not it yet.
Sales Productivity and User Adoption Increase
Higher sales productivity in plain words means making more sales during the same time period. Naturally, this requires interacting with more prospects on conditions that the conversion remains the same. So, how can your sales reps manage that?
1. Receiving context related business information.
In layman’s terms, sales reps will get the data they need right when they need it, without any trigger on their side.
2. Intelligent search
An incredibly convenient time saver that enables finding any Salesforce object, like email communication records, attachments, tasks etc right from the inbox, in literally seconds rather than having to switch between the CRM and an email client.
3. No copy pasting
Sales reps can forget about making manual records, or worse – duplicating data between Salesforce and their inbox/calendar. Most of the info is captured automatically, with the possibility to add/change info when necessary.
4. Using Salesforce email templates in the inbox
Basically, all it takes is choosing the right template when creating an email, customize as needed and hit “Send”. This simple improvement can make a huge difference, making the emails look more professional and trustworthy just for the price of a mouse click.
5. Automatic email tracking
Email tracking lets the sales staff know exactly when their emails are read and be instantly notified. Consequently, it facilitates reaching out to the prospects or taking further actions without delays.
As to the user adoption, it has all the possibilities to skyrocket if the employees get to work in their familiar environment. In this case, CRM turns from a foe that requires much time and efforts into an indispensable assistant that makes the life of a sales representative a lot easier.
There’s not a single company or business in the world which is not seeking high and low for the means of increasing employee and sales productivity. It’s hard to argue that the above mentioned changes in the workflow can seriously speed up the sales process. Nevertheless, most companies go the traditional way and invest in expensive trainings, hiring “better qualified” staff etc to see the sales productivity graph go up.
The great news is, bringing Salesforce and inbox together has been made possible by the SmartCloud Connect. Its robust feature set can make a big difference in the way your salespeople work and won’t take long to deliver outstanding results. Actually, its clients report shortening deal closure time (the time from the first interaction to signing a contract) by up to 25% since the software implementation. Less average time needed to close a deal means that sales reps can work with more prospects during the same time period, and, consequently, sell more. SmartCloud Connect has brought about the increase of sales productivity by up to 18% for its clients. In other words, this is 18% more profit!
Certainly, SmartCloud Connect integration isn’t the magic pill that will automatically lead to deals being closed at a better rate, but it empowers staff to become more agile and efficient and helps uncover their potential by taking the mundane tasks off their hands.
Want to know how much faster will the deals be closed in your company with this solution? There’s no better way than to try it out by requesting a free Demo, and there’s no better time than right now!
Source: SmartCloud Blog