Using sales automation effectively
Once you’ve documented your sales process, automating any manual or repetitive tasks is the logical next step as this streamlines and improves the accuracy and efficiency of your sales team. It can also ensure that your hard-earned leads don’t slip through the net while achieving consistency across the whole team.
Effective automation of the sales process has improved the ability of salespeople to communicate with their customers and frees up time to concentrate on more productive tasks.
Beware of over automation in sales
Any sales tool that can increase productivity and help to build relationships with buyers gets a big tick in the box from us — but over automation in sales processes is a real cause for concern in some organisations.
Despite advanced automation technology making our lives easier, selling a service or a product is still a very human-centric process, and automating every single step of the sales funnel could result in an over-engineered process. This runs the risk of alienating customers who will recognise that all their touchpoints with your company are automated and impersonal.
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It’s easy to over automate a sales process, so business owners should periodically take the time to review each step in the chain and strip back any automation that doesn’t provide a tangible benefit or efficiency.
By undertaking this exercise you could also make savings on the amount spent on automation, or repurpose that budget on more lucrative sales enablement methods.
Over automation of sales can also have a negative impact on your sales team. If their only interaction with selling to customers is clicking buttons, they could start to disengage with the whole process. For their own personal development salespeople need the opportunity to talk to customers, handle objections and perfect their pitch on a daily basis.
It’s also easy to forget that there is a prospect behind each lead if there is a heavy reliance on automation—meaning your team could be missing out on the opportunity to develop a business relationship and nurture that person on a human level.
Too much automation can even cause anxiety in some salespeople as they try to determine when is the right time to ‘push the button’ and move a prospect to the next stage in the process, rather than use their experience and instinct to do so.
Whilst automating every step of the sales process can give you clarity and consistency, it should be balanced with empowering your team and giving them the flexibility to manage their own pipelines, allowing them to grow and remain engaged.
And it’s not just your sales teams who need to be engaged with your business. An over-reliance on automation can also be recognised by a customer who may resist a ‘robotic’ journey through your sales process, causing a leaky funnel and low conversion rates.
What are the signs of over automation in sales?
Reviewing your sales processes regularly can help you to identify any areas of the pipeline that are over-engineered.
Make sure that after reading your sales process documentation that you can explain how it works. If you can’t, or if some of the steps are so reliant on automation that you don’t know what is happening ‘under the hood’ it’s time to step back and re-evaluate what you really need.
If you’ve noticed that your team stops following the process after another automation step is added, or feel they don’t understand how the tasks and actions flow, this is another red flag that you are suffering from automation overload.
Automate your process the smart way
The most productive way to implement automation into your sales process is to identify any manual or repetitive tasks and apply automation to those.
If you are unsure where to begin, or recognise that you’ve over-engineered your sales process and need some help to refine and streamline, then we are here to help.
Our team utilises automation and integrations to build a six-step full-stack sales system, allowing you to become more productive and efficient. Automation exists to make your sales teams lives easier—not to replace them.
By implementing automation intelligently, you’ll leave your team members free to do what they do best and add value to your business as it scales. Book a discovery call with the Tribecto team for advice on which areas of your workflow would benefit from sales automation.