The Best Practices of Sales Automation in 2020

By Aptivio | Updated July 27th, 2020

Sales automation can be an effective way to improve sales and productivity, but not without knowing the best practices to properly integrate it into workflows. Sales teams go further when using automation and digital sales playbooks to fuel their efficient growth.

What's inside this article:

What Is Sales Automation?

Sales automation uses digital tools to complete time-consuming tasks usually done by salespeople. Automation encompasses a lot of different tools, types, and techniques. Successful automation can mean increased sales and more productivity so it's worth considering for sales managers. Combined with an autonomous sales prospecting tool, sales automation can elevate any sales team.

Know the Tools of Automation

There are several ways to automate the sales process using any number and combination of automation tools. This list highlights the best types of automation which you can read more about in The Ultimate Guide to Sales Automation.

  • Prospect automation
  • Lead management
  • Communication automation
  • Document management
  • Automated research

Position Your Team for Success

Knowing the best practices of sales automation ensures that once you decide to use it, you position your team at the best possible start. Consider using accurate sales intelligence when establishing a new method in your sales process too. Sales narrative features and other automated tools offer new insights for salespeople and are key to strong sales teams.

Purposefully Automate Your Workflow

Knowing your purpose is a best practice of sales automation. Without knowing why automation is distinctly beneficial to your specific team, then you would just be automating for automation's sake. Having a more streamlined sales process or supplying salespeople with easy-to-use tools are perfect reasons to automate. To further equip salespeople for more informed selling, provide them with a digital sales playbook powered by artificial intelligence.

Sales Automation Comes With Many Benefits

Still looking for the benefits that fit your needs? Here's a longer list of reasons why sales automation helps teams do more.

Make an Automation Plan

After realizing your team's specific purpose for automating, you'll need to outline your individual automation plan. This step doesn't have to be daunting. With the help of comprehensive articles that can guide you in the right direction, you are already starting the next best practice of sales automation—making a plan.

Introduce Sales Automation

Have an open dialogue with your sales team to introduce and gauge interest in adopting sales automation tools into current workflows. Be curious about their perspective and ready for questions. Take this opportunity to also consider what else salespeople may benefit from, like intelligent market monitors that find new clients automatically.

Automate Tasks, Not Relationships

Best practices for sales automation means automating certain tasks and retaining expert salespeople. The promises of automation have been proclaimed for years, but not without some hesitation over impersonal relationships or job loss. Neither is true if automation is used correctly—to replace time-consuming tasks that are better done with digital assistance.

Think Client-First When Automating

Ultimately, what serves your client will serve your business, so keep that in mind when implementing sales automation. Complementary autonomous tools that offer customer account insights are an excellent addition to other types of automation and CRMs. These tools help sales teams stay informed about clients, sell efficiently, and manage churn risks.

Let Salespeople Do What They Do Best

Expert salespeople know how to cultivate meaningful relationships and automation shouldn't change that. One of the most important practices of automation is ensuring it helps, not hinders. Do this by implementing sales automation for repetitive tasks and processes that usually occupy salespeople. Match automation tools with a digital sales playbook and salespeople are positioned for their best chance at success.

Sales Automation Should Seamlessly Integrate

Like all things worth doing, adopting sales automation shouldn't be more difficult than it is impactful. Seamless integration into current CRMs and other autonomous tools is a must. Salesforce, MS Dynamics, Oracle CRM, and HubSpot have each made sales automation tools readily accessible to users.

Decide What Fits With Your CRM

Depending on your CRM, there are different sales automation tools currently available for use. As a best practice, start with the tools already offered to you. Salesforce has Sales Cloud for monitoring growth or HubSpot has email automation software for perfecting communication. Starting with these convenient features built into your CRM is a good start for sales automation.

Make Sales Automation Work for You

Ensuring your team is introducing and implementing automation wisely is another best practice to keep in mind. Can automation be considered a new addition to the sales team like any new hire? According to this article about artificial intelligence, it should. It even suggests the different phases AI tools should master—assisting, monitoring, and coaching employees.

Use Sales Automation to Best Serve Clients

A best practice of any sales approach is centering the client. That's why sales automation should always be used to better provide for the clients you serve. Because salespeople can focus on relationship building more and time-consuming tasks less, sales teams can offer a better client experience. Read here for a more detailed explanation about sales automation and successful customer relationships.

Small Businesses Benefit From Sales Automation

Automation may initially seem too overwhelming or costly for small sales teams working on limited budgets, but there are sales automation tools for every company size. In fact, automating certain repetitive tasks like inputting data entry or organizing contact information can free up key salespeople with limited resources. Consider pairing basic automation tools with an intelligent market monitor to fuel efficient growth in teams of any size.

Sales Automation Helps Large Teams

Just as for small businesses, larger companies can find their automation tool best fits. This can depend on the industry and there are common best practices for each one. So from enterprise software to corporate banking, consider how sales automation can fit into your team and current CRM. For a more in-depth consideration, read the [Best Types of Sales Automation Teams Should Use] (https://aptiv.io/best-types-of-sales-automation-teams-should-use).

Let Machine Learning Do More

Sales automation tools that use machine learning can do even more for your sales team. Artificial intelligence is at the core of advanced automation tools. Another best practice is to use machine learning for its unique qualities. Active learning features get more intelligent with continued use so it makes sense to take advantage of what it, and no other tools, can offer.

Automation Matters in the Future of Work

Why focus on the best practices of sales automation? Because automation is here and becoming a natural part of all businesses. This blog post about artificial intelligence accurately describes how the future of work will still depend on the very human skills of empathy and interpersonal knowledge to work in conjunction with automated tasks.

Aptivio's Understanding of Best Practices of Sales Automation

At Aptivio, we use billions of company behavior data points to determine the best sales indicators for opportunities and risks. Assessments like this are one of the most influential types of enhanced sales automation that can be integrated into your CRM. We understand what it means to use automation to improve productivity and sales performance.

Our Intelligent Market Monitor for Sales creates a simple dynamic digital sales playbook. It separates the important signals from the noise and discovers the complex relationships in markets that would otherwise be missed. Ready to learn more? Get started for FREE today!

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