The sales process is full of repetitive, administrative tasks, from data entry to task management. Sales force automation software automates many of these administrative duties so sellers can spend less time clicking around a CRM system and more time working with customers.
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Sales force automation makes the sales process more efficient—helping companies sell more and sell more quickly. The best SFA systems use artificial intelligence (AI) and unified customer data to prompt sellers to take recommended next-best actions.
Effective sales force automation systems do the following:
Sales force automation software makes the sales process more efficient for sellers at every step of the customer journey. From activity tracking to sales reporting, here’s how sales force automation works.
First, the advantages of sales force automation. Basically, it gets salespeople sell more in less time by doing the following:
Today’s sales force automation tools give sellers a single, customizable view of accounts, opportunities, leads, and contacts that they can browse with powerful search capabilities.
AI captures and analyzes clean, comprehensive customer data to provide guided recommendations to sellers.
Augment customer records with CRM and back-office systems data that’s collected and enriched with verified, third-party customer and company data.
When systems are easy to use, sellers benefit from better data and more actionable insights about performance. Powerful business intelligence can be leveraged to build a deeper understanding of pipelines, opportunities, and critical sales metrics.
For sellers used to the traditional way of doing things, implementing a new system can change processes and create a more challenging workflow for organizations to navigate.
Automating email responses and check-ins with customers can make the customer service experience a less personal one for the people involved.
Upgrading sales force automation can require extra technical support and manpower.
Integrating sales force automation into current systems can be an expensive operation that hinders an organization’s ability to close deals.
So what is the difference between sales force automation and CRM? They are closely connected, but they are not the same, even though you may see the two terms used interchangeably. Specifically, sales force automation software is designed to increase sales. It supports the sale of products or services, with a goal to make the entire sales process more efficient.
On the other hand, CRM deals specifically with the management of customer relationships, with the goal to improve the overall relationship between the company and its customers.
Sales force automation helps sellers take the next-best action by using machine learning and comprehensive, account-level data. It automates and simplifies data entry and supports mobile interactions, giving sales teams more time to engage with customers and prospective customers.
CRM software manages your relationships with customers, but it isn’t just one solution. To effectively manage, analyze, and improve customer relationships, you need a comprehensive set of solutions that supports every step in your customer’s journey. Such an end-to-end solution should include a sales solution (encompassing SFA, partner relationship management, incentive compensation, sales forecasting), a customer service solution, and a marketing automation solution, as well as an AI-enhanced customer data platform (CDP) that combines online, offline, and third-party data sources for a complete, dynamic customer view.
The best sales force automation software reduces the barriers to entry, is a tool that sellers want to use, and makes selling a more efficient, more fruitful endeavor. Features to look for include: