How to automate your sales process

A well thought out sales process works to ensure your entire sales team has an efficient, and consistent process to follow when chasing prospects and closing deals.

Author: Euan Aitken | Published: 02/08/2022

How to automate your sales process

Your sales process is a critical part of your business, and you should treat it as such. A well-thought-out sales process works to ensure your entire sales team has an efficient, and consistent process to follow when chasing prospects and closing deals. Ultimately, a flexible and effective sales process will significantly affect the performance of your sales staff.

What is the sales process?

Your sales process should be a clearly defined and typically predetermined sequence of steps or stages taken by staff to convert leads into customers. Essentially, these processes should encompass all the elements within your customer's sales journey whilst working towards a closed deal. Any business that sells products or services, can benefit from an effective sales process. Typically, conventional sales processes can be defined into 7 stages. These stages are as follows:

  1. Prospecting - The initial stage in the sales process revolves around identifying ideal client profiles, and the best way to approach them to achieve success.
  2. Contacting - Now you have put together your ideal targets, it is time to break the ice. First, consider the best contact method to get your foot in the door.
  3. Qualifying Leads - This stage is your opportunity to investigate prospects to learn more about their habits, requirements and more. Ask yourself what pain points you can provide a solution for, and lead with that. This process is good as it can indicate the likelihood of a potential client choosing your business.
  4. Nurturing Clients - This stage is your opportunity to prove your reliability and relevance to your customer. This is your chance to build a strong relationship with clients leading to their trust in your unique solutions.
  5. Respond to objections - In this stage, you should be prepared to respond to any concerns your prospects may have. This is a critical stage as the way you address their objections will stand out in your relationship with them. This stage shows you are understanding of any pain points brought up and willing to take feedback on board when necessary. Being willing to alleviate concerns in an effective way is a great way to separate your business from the competition.
  6. Closing the deal - You enter this stage when you get the go-ahead from the prospect to move forward with the deal. Depending on your business operations, you can try different methods of closing techniques to see which one works best for you. You can always offer an extra incentive to sweeten the deal, such as a small discount or a gift alongside their order.
  7. Following up - Congratulations, you closed your sale, but what happens now? Despite having your first success with a client, it does not mean that the process must end. It is recommended to follow up with current customers with offers, promotions, and feature updates to keep your brand awareness high and to increase customer retention building loyalty towards the brand.

How to start automating sales processes

Now that we have broken down the elements within the sales process, we can start identifying which parts of your operations have the possibility of automations. Remember, there are several tasks that require valuable time from your team. In order to start claiming some of that time back, we have listed some processes to look into automating.

  • Use scheduling conventions to decide your appointments. A CRM such as our own will allow you to easily schedule your emails ahead of time, including SMS text scheduling, task management and much more.
  • Utilise templates. If you send regular emails, document types, newsletters or presentations to clients then you should be using templates for these. This will allow you to quickly select a previous template to use as the foundation for new templates and designs.
  • Take advantage of pre-recorded voicemails. Having a set voicemail ready will save you valuable time, allowing you to leave a message quickly and easily should a client miss a phone call.
  • Use the data you build to organise leads, lists, reports and much more. Building client profiles and target customers is much more convenient when you have all your data stored in one centralised location.
  • Log the outcome of leads electronically. When a sales representative puts down the phone, it makes it easier for everyone else if they can document how the conversation went, and whether they were interested. This ensures other team members know immediately what stage a prospect is in and prevents breakdowns in communication between staff and clients.
  • Automatically assign potential leads to the right sales rep. If you send manual emails and then have to assign them to a member of staff manually, you are already losing valuable time. Many business management software have the capability to automatically match leads to the relevant team member which ultimately improves average lead response times.
  • Create an automation wish list. Essentially, this is inspecting the vital elements within your operations and putting together a list of ideal processes you believe you could automate. This defines early where you believe you could save time with automations and identifies any repetitive or weak tasks in your current workflows.
  • Work towards fully digital processes. If you are still sending paper copies of invoices, quotes or anything else to clients, then look into converting some of these processes into e-forms. E-forms can save you time across many aspects of your sales flow and give your customers the most direct and fastest form of communication possible.
  • Score your leads based on engagement. Another powerful tool is to give customers a specific scoring system based on how they interact with your brand. This can increase depending on how often they respond to or open your emails, or interacts with your business in another way, they receive points that indicate their interest.

Are you ready to start using automations?

Sales automation software has empowered sales processes at some of the best and largest organisations in the world. Increasingly, companies are striving to streamline and fine-tune their operations, giving their sales teams more time to focus on selling, rather than admin. Ultimately, utilising and implementing automation software will build towards helping you close more deals by freeing up valuable time that is being spent needlessly on manual and repetitive tasks. If your business is looking into automations, please get in touch today and book a demo with us to see how automations, along with so many more features can refine your operations today.

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