Sales teams feel constant pressure to speed up time-to-revenue and quickly close deals.
They are faced with doing more with less time. To help take some of the pressure off, companies focus on technology investments to help their sales teams increase win rates and accelerate revenue while automating a lot of the tedious, manual processes that prove to be a bottleneck in the sales cycle.
But simply investing in technology isn’t enough. Some parts of the sales process remain disjointed and even with technology to streamline steps, teams could still be working in silos. Sales teams that are stuck manually toggling between different technology solutions are taking precious hours away from actually selling.
When implementing new technology, it’s equally important to consider how the current processes are or aren’t working for the business. The sales process is too important to leave to manual effort, inefficient workflows, and the chance for critical information to be missed or incorrectly entered.
Automating across multiple steps in the sales cycle will allow sales teams and other critical stakeholders to collaborate more deeply, access accurate and critical data, provide a better customer experience, and speed up time-to-revenue.
7 sales processes you can automate now
When leaders automate key areas in the sales process, they will gain visibility into the customer journey so improvements can be made to enhance the customer experience. Further, leaders can help increase their team’s productivity, efficiency, and accuracy by automating repetitive manual tasks. Additionally, they can gain insight into opportunities to scale, when needed, without worrying that workflows and processes won’t keep up.
1. Quote and proposal generation
Proposals and quotes are one of the first interactions customers have with businesses, so they are essential to get right. Oftentimes, this process is outdated, leaving sales teams to manually pull and insert data into old, off-brand templates. This process increases the risk of error, negatively impacting the customer’s experience and overall slowing down the sales cycle.
When automating the proposal and quote process, you can expect a more efficient and quicker sales cycle that benefits your business and customers alike. There are three major benefits your business can expect when you decide to automate the proposal process:
- Decrease manual tasks for sales reps to allow for more selling time
- Increase proposal and quote accuracy
- Modernize the proposal and quote process
2. Accurate forecasting and opportunity updates
An important part of the sales process is understanding future opportunities that your business can work toward. Identifying qualified leads that are likely to move from “opportunity” to “customer” can help sales teams make better decisions about where to direct resources and energy. Accurate forecasting relies on up-to-the-minute data, but sales teams often only have access to poor quality data that’s hard to manipulate.
When deciding to automate forecasting and opportunity information, your business can expect:
- Increased efficiency and accuracy which can help you make important sales decisions
- To gain a comprehensive understanding of sales activity
- To improve cross-team collaboration and reduce silos
3. Contract negotiations and order forms
No matter how smoothly a sales process goes, one area where the process typically bogs down is during the contracting phase. This process often requires a lot of back and forth with customers while going through contract negotiations and terms. Without automated or digital solutions, it’s difficult to gain visibility into this process. Version tracking can be confusing, and the process overall can be slow, manual, and tedious.
Automating this process can be beneficial for your customers and internal teams alike. Some of the key benefits of automating this process are:
- Greater visibility into where contracts are in the process
- Improving customer experience
- See faster time to revenue
4. Signature execution
Capturing compliant signatures quickly and efficiently is key to moving sales and other business processes forward. But the traditional pen-to-paper way of collecting signatures is a slow and time-consuming process. Plus, tracking where documents are in the signature process is nearly impossible. The signature step shouldn’t be a wrench in the system. That’s why considering an eSignature solution that integrates with your existing solutions can help speed up the signature process.
When implementing a secure eSignature solution, there are multiple benefits to your business, like:
- Streamlining your signature process
- Speeding up approvals
- Authenticating and securing signed documents
5. Billing and invoice generation
Few things create more headaches for customers and businesses alike than billing errors. Incorrect pricing or payment terms or duplicate invoicing can negatively impact your customer’s experience. Not only can inaccurate billing hurt a company’s reputation, but the inability to accurately track invoices or payment follow-ups can hurt the bottom line while simultaneously creating more work for your teams.
That’s why automating the billing and invoice generation and delivery process can prove to be beneficial for your business. With automation your business can expect:
- Greater visibility into the entire sales process
- Increased billing and invoicing accuracy and efficiency
- Faster time to revenue
6. Customer onboarding and statements of work
Onboarding a new customer is an exciting time and creating a great first impression is vital. When going through the onboarding process, there are typically essential documents that need to be reviewed and signed by both parties. But when onboarding documents, such as welcome letters, company guidelines, statements of work, and more, are delivered at different times by different people in your company, the process can seem disconnected.
When automating the customer onboarding process, there’s an opportunity to provide greater cross-team visibility into this process. Your company can benefit from:
- Delivering a great customer experience
- Increased information and document accuracy and efficiency
- Improved cross-team collaboration
7. Renewal management
The contract renewal process is an important time. This process presents an opportunity to re-engage customers to ensure their satisfaction and maintain (or even increase) their business. But, using slow and inefficient processes can hurt their experience, risk repeat sales, or even the relationship. Plus, manual renewals can lead to errors, which ultimately slow down the process because of rework. And the lack of an automated and standardized renewal process can increase the potential for late or missed renewals.
Automating the renewal process can benefit your company and sales teams alike by:
- Providing greater visibility into where customers are in the sales cycle, allowing you to re-engage them at the right time
- Allowing sales teams to spend more time focusing on customer engagement and experience
- Increasing renewal rate and reducing time to revenue
Automate your sales process to increase win rates and earn more revenue
Thanks to our increasingly digital world, sales teams aren’t only competing at the level of product and service offerings. They are also competing when it comes to ease and efficiency throughout the sales process. Errors, friction, and delays due to a cumbersome process can drive even the most loyal customers away while eating away at internal efficiency and effectiveness.
Customers today are looking for a seamless journey with the companies they decide to buy from. With an end-to-end automated sales workflow, your business can increase win rates and accelerate your sales cycle, all while creating an experience your customers will love, making them want to come back time and time again.