Inside sales automation—real examples to try out with your team
As salespeople, we want to give ourselves the best shot at closing all opportunities, along with building meaningful relationships with our clients. But sometimes the meandering admin tasks involved can distract us from the real goals at hard, both carving away at time and our energy. Sales automation apps can take on the grunt work of repetitive and routine tasks using highly sophisticated machine learning and artificial intelligence systems. The time savings at nearly every stage of the sales process, from prospecting, to connecting, to researching, presenting and closing can be hugely beneficial—and our team knows it. In a recent report,…
As salespeople, we want to give ourselves the best shot at closing all opportunities, along with building meaningful relationships with our clients. But sometimes the meandering admin tasks involved can distract us from the real goals at hard, both carving away at time and our energy. Sales automation apps can take on the grunt work of repetitive and routine tasks using highly sophisticated machine learning and artificial intelligence systems. The time savings at nearly every stage of the sales process, from prospecting, to connecting, to researching, presenting and closing can be hugely beneficial—and our team knows it.
In a recent report, 53% of employees stated that they could save up to two work hours a day through automation—that’s 240 hours per year.
We have a world of apps at our fingertips that can help automate everything; tools for customer relationship management, accounting, easily making beautiful sales and marketing documents (hello, Qwilr!), file storage, project management, and more. The key to leveraging your business apps most effectively is ensuring that each app doesn’t stand alone, rather, they pass information between each other.
Apps like Zapier can facilitate this important connection between your apps—easily automating everyday workflows. You can start a workflow (known as a ‘Zap’) from an app by picking a ‘Trigger’ and the Zap will complete the action. Take this simple example:
1. Gmail – The Zap is triggered when you get a new email.
2. Dropbox – For this Zap, you have chosen the action to be copying any attachments into your Dropbox.
3. Slack – You’ve also chosen to receive a notification in Slack when the new file arrives in your Dropbox.
This is just one example of how you can automate sales workflows and enable your team to focus on their most important work—forging connections, building relationships, and closing deals.
Common workflows that can be automated
Thinking about sales automation in the context of your workflows is the easiest way of finding time warps that can be replaced.
The possibilities are endless when it comes to automating your sales workflows with Zapier. Here are just some of the ways you can do so:
Your sales workforce put in the hard yards when it comes to prospecting. When it comes time to really kick the sales process into gear, automation can take care of a lot of the heavy lifting.
Personalize documents at scale
Consider all of the ways we collect information on leads; be it through Google Forms, SurveyMonkey, or Airtable. With Zapier, you can create a Zap that takes this information and instantly creates personalized, beautiful Qwilr pages.
Nurture your leads
Continue to cultivate strong relationships with your leads using a Zap that combines beautiful Qwilr pages with online marketing channels such as Targeto, Chatfuel, and Intercom—creating a sophisticated online marketing system.
Integrate with your CRM
With your preferred CRM software, Zapier can automate document creation or kick off your sales process by creating a new lead when a page is first viewed.
Automate project management
Zapier can seamlessly interact with project management systems and automate processes such as creating tasks and updating projects. For example, once a Qwilr page is accepted, a card can automatically be created in Trello.
You may be at the finish line, but wrapping up your win is part of winning the marathon. Make the final stretch as easy as possible.
Notify wins to your team
Staying updated on wins is good for morale. Get instant notifications from your favorite communication apps the first time your Qwilr page gets viewed or when it’s accepted.
Simplify accounting and payment process
No one wants to celebrate closing a deal by drawing up an invoice. With Zapier, you can create a Zap that generates an invoice using your favorite accounting platform when a Qwilr proposal is accepted. You can also automate other accounting entries such as purchase orders, receipts, or manual journal entries.
Archive important documents
Keeping a record of a winning proposal is important for reflection, and luckily we no longer need a physical filing system to do so. Create a Zap that automatically downloads PDF files of your accepted Qwilr documents into your preferred storage app for safe keeping.
It’s widely accepted that acquiring a new customer is significantly more costly than keeping an old one, so given that, customer retention is an important part of any sales process. Every business’ client retention strategy could stand to benefit from a dose of automation.
Collect data for analytics
Managers especially can benefit from this Zap; integrate your Qwilr data in central dashboards along with data from other sources to give you a single full view of your business.
Engage your customers
Post-sale, staying top-of-mind with your customers is highly valuable. You can do so with a Zap that enables you to keep your customers engaged by following up with relevant content packaged in beautiful Qwilr pages.
Keep track of customer records
Build a record of customers that accept your Qwilr page and save time from flipping through each accepted document one-by-one.
By combining multiple Zaps, you can free up much more time by automating your business workflows (note though that you’ll need a paid Zapier plan for this). These manual processes are automated to allow you to focus on growing your business and building client relationships rather than managing repetitive day-to-day operations. For example:
Get richer notifications straight to your team
Combining Qwilr, your CRM (like Hubspot), and communications (like Slack or Gmail) will let you push important info straight to whoever needs it. Here’s how it works:
1. Qwilr – Zap gets triggered by an accepted proposal.
2. Hubspot – A contact’s details are extracted, including the owner of the lead within your sales team.
3. Slack – A notification is pushed to a channel of your choice, which includes data on the proposal that was accepted, the contact details from Hubspot, and a specific callout to the sales owner of the contact to make sure they immediately follows up with the accepted proposal.
Kick start multiple workflows to make sure deals are actioned immediately
A single zap can trigger different systems like your CRM, project management tools like Asana, as well as messaging apps like Slack. Here’s an example:
1. Qwilr – Zap gets triggered by an accepted proposal.
2. Zoho CRM – A contact’s details are updated to show that the deal is won.
3. Asana – New tasks are created and assigned to the team to start working on the project.
4. Slack – A notification is sent to different channels to announce the win and remind key team members of the next step.
Automatically create proposals specific to a lead
Zapier also lets you automate more complicated workflows that require specific criteria. For example, you may want to create a different Qwilr page depending on the customer’s industry. Here’s how:
1. Sugar CRM – A new lead is created and ready to be sent a proposal.
2. Zapier Paths – Checks the industry of the new lead.
3. Qwilr – Creates a page using a suitable template for the lead’s industry. For example, a media industry lead should get a more striking proposal, while government leads should get a more conservative and formal page.
4. Gmail – Sends an email with a link to the Qwilr page to the relevant internal approver.
5. SMS – Zapier sends a text to the approver for good measure, just in case the approver didn’t see the email.
Automation is your secret weapon when it comes to building an effective sales process. No matter the size of your team, building automation into your sales workflows can boost productivity, save money, and give your team more time to focus on creating lasting client relationships.
Get started with Zapier, or get a a crash course on sales automation in one of our Qwilr classes.