Have you ever wished to just see your sales rate rise up without having to drain your sales team out? Would not it be nice to just sit back, relax, and see things fall into places? If you are after all those stuff, then, you might need the help of sales force automation software. If you are a marketer, you may have already heard about sales force automation before but never really knew what sales force automation really means.
In today’s technological world, various innovations have been developed to make people’s lives more convenient. Same goes through in the business industry. Tons of new technological solutions and tools were brought out to make business professional’s day to day tasks a bit lighter and easier. One of these developments is the sales force automation (SFA).
In this article, you will be able to know the fundamentals of sales force automation and its usefulness to every business. You will also gain knowledge on how to select the right SFA tool to use. Read through the end and see how this medium will help you elevate your current sales force system.
What Is Sales Force Automation?
Sales force automation is a type of software or program that automates business processes such as inventory management, sales processing, customer interactions tracking, and the analysis of sales forecast. SFA is typically part of a business’ customer relations management (CRM) because it is used to record all the phases of customer interactions and the sales process.
The components of sales force automation software solutions include contact management system that involves tracking of customer’s contact that they have provided, lead tracking system, and listing of prospects that have the potential of being converted into a paying customer. The software may also include sales forecasting system, which is very useful for many marketers.
The good thing about SFA is that it can be mobile. A lot of marketers nowadays are always on the go and tons of SFA developers have made the software accessible to smartphones, which make it a lot more convenient for many business professionals.
How to Select a Sales Force Automation Tool?
It is important for every marketer to know that not every sales force automation systems are the same. There are various ones that are made for a certain type of company. Also, not every SFA tools can deliver great sales success as what everyone is expecting. There are definitely benchmarks to selecting the right software. When doing your research and reading of sales force automation tool reviews, look for the following criterion listed below.
- Reduce Manual Process – the main purpose of SFA is mainly to automate the sales process of a company; thus, it must live up to that purpose. Although, the tool can’t actually automate everything as there are certainly some sectors of sales system that need manual touch, but it should reduce the overall manual process at least. The tool must also possess a high accuracy rate in terms of recording details and tracking of records and other processes.
- Automate Sales Process – a good SFA tool must have easy to access features in it that will help the whole sales process easier, quicker, and more efficient. The software you should pick must not only be good in automating manual data entry, recording, customer tracking, and other stuff but it should also give high priority in automating the sales process. It must also be a good aid for marketers in its marketing system and make winning sales a bit easier.
- Benefits That Fit Your Needs – many sales force automation programs promise a set of advantages and benefits to its clients when they use their product. If you are a wise customer, you will not easily dig into those vendors’ promises, you would want to check it yourself instead. Be sure to consider what solutions you do need and try to match it according to the software’s features.
- Compatibility – the sales force automation tool that you should choose must be compatible with other programs present in your company. If you have customer relations management software already existing, then, the SFA tool you will buy can be incorporated with that. You must also see to it that your current system is able to support the tool of your choice as some may require higher system specifications.
- Easy to Use and Implement – some software in the market might be too complex for you and your sales team. You should choose only the ones with an easy to use user interface that does not require complex technical knowledge. Having to allocate some time to train employees in using the program is another cost on your end, and thus, you should never consider the ones that are obviously going to take the time to master.
Those are some of the criteria that you need to look for in a sales force automation app that you should buy. Choosing the right software vendor is not something that needs to be rushed because it is where the future of your sales depends upon. Be meticulous in sorting out your top sales force automation tools picks.
The Advantages of SFA
Sales force automation tools have made a massive improvement to the way business owners and marketers go about their day to day tasks, hence why many are venturing to this program. All marketers aim for a higher sales rate and a better working environment; sales force automation is one of the best ways to achieve that. Below is a list of some of the benefits of sales force automation software for your business.
- Save Time – sales force automation allows marketers to reduce the time it takes to do sales related tasks by eliminating manual processes. Automating sales processes allow the user to do the job faster with a better rate of accuracy. To be able to save time is a massive benefit among most marketers; it allows them to do more and reduce the effort in doing routine and repetitive jobs.
- More Organized Sales Report – tracking and recording of sales, collecting payments and purchase returns, and other stuff can be unruly sometimes, especially if you have a fairly big business. Sales force automation allows you to have a more organized sales report; the tool itself puts all the data to where it should be. Accuracy and proper organization is crucial to any sales force system. A single error can affect all the other part, and thus, having a tool to help you have a more organized sales report is a no-brainer.
- Lead Management – SFA tools allow you to keep track of a lead’s lifetime. You will be able to see how much were converted and the ones that declined. This feature is highly beneficial for you as it can help you have a snapshot of whether marketing campaigns are working or not, thus, giving you a head start of whether to improve or change those campaigns.
- More Organized Scheduling – because of a tight work schedule, many managers tend to miss some of their scheduled appointments. The good thing is sales force automation helps the user be more organized in making a schedule and helping it make one that will not conflict with others. The tool also allows you to manage your time efficiently and help you become more productive.
- Easier Sales Forecasting – the tool can be used to analyze previous and current sales thread and forecast upcoming sales opportunities. It gives you the benefit of having a more precise sales prediction and prepping you for the new revenues to come.
Although sales force automation is an excellent tool to use, there are also drawbacks to encounter when using it. Knowing the disadvantages do not mean you should never think twice about using the tool but only for you to be aware and encourage you to be more efficient in using the tool so as to combat the disadvantages embodied with it.
- Difficult to Use – not all software is too complex and difficult to use, but there are some that require higher technical knowledge. These tools can be time-consuming as it will require some time for training for your sales force to effectively use it.
- Constant Maintenance – computer programs and apps require constant updating and upgrading for the system to incorporate new features that are developed by its vendors. If you hate doing this stuff, then, using of SFA software would be a pain in the neck for you.
- Expensive – there are sales force automation software free and does not require any fee; however, these tools might not give you the solution you need, and you might need some features that are not present in some programs. Some SFA app can be expensive especially if they are made for a bigger type of venture.
So there you have it! Those are the fundamentals of sales force automation that you need to know. Sparing some budget to invest in a tool that would help you deliver a better sales system is always a good investment. In our modern world today, the manual process can no longer feed you in the market industry competition. If you are not yet indulging into the automatic way, then, you should think about it by now.
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