What sets the top salespeople apart is how they use CRM. If you are not using a Customer Relationship Management system to its full potential, you are undoubtedly not closing deals as quickly as you could. You may have two switched-on sales reps doing excellent work. But if one is consistently ahead, this could signify that they are not leveraging the CRM system equally. So what are the real sales pipeline hacks to closing more deals more quickly?
What you will learn in this article
- Why sales team get held up in the sales funnel
- 5 hot CRM hacks to close deals more quickly
- How a small business can apply them
- Why time-saving equates to more productivity
- How to get started with CRM
What causes sales pipeline blockages?
Most salespeople are laser-focused on winning the prize. However, this can often be at the expense of not fully utilizing all the CRM tools they have at their disposal. Every organization, regardless of size, has a standard sales process they follow. However, often this process involves, for example, a lot of repetitive and time-consuming tasks. These are tasks salespeople dread as they eat into their selling time. But this doesn’t have to happen.
Admin tasks, the bane of the sales team’s life, can be automated by CRM software, leaving them more time to generate sales.
5 hot CRM hacks to close more sales more quickly
Here, though, are 5 great CRM productivity hacks for you and your sales team to use and win more deals.
Automatically fill your pipeline with new deals
Sales teams thrive on deals, but not the admin tasks that go with them. Unfortunately, their urge to strike while the prospect is hot sometimes comes at the expense of remembering to update information. CRM can help here by automating the process of deal creation. That way, you reduce the number of tasks, but you will also ensure no follow-up actions get forgotten. Automation takes the manual drudgery out of converting leads to contact and creating deals for each. With these details taken care of, you and your team can concentrate on talking to leads in the pipeline.
By adding deals straight to the pipeline whenever they are qualified, you obtain a much clearer picture, including:
- Expected close dates
- Probability of closing
- Revenue forecasts, etc.
This enables you to manage your opportunities – and time – much better.
Advance deals faster
A typical sales department is a hectic place. The day is punctuated by an endless round of emails, phone calls, meetings, and demos. There’s precious little time left over frequently for doing deal updates and advancing them to the next stage.
Again, this is another task where CRM can take the strain. You can work smarter by having the CRM trip an automated workflow when a rep completes a task. For example, suppose you mark a demo task as being completed, the CRM can trigger the next steps and generate a new task for you to follow up with the lead and close the deal.
Improve collaboration and productivity
Closing a deal will often involve collaboration between team members and other departments, such as finance or the legal team. Collaboration between teams can be tricky and time-consuming, the process being a drag on decision-making and productivity. Collaborating is essential to close deals, but it doesn’t have to be a pain. CRM has instant messaging and collaboration tools to make the entire process swifter and pain-free.
According to InsightSquared, the average sales rep spends over six hours per week hunting around for documents to send to prospects. Yes, six whole hours. When time is literally of the essence, you want all your documents to be instantly at hand. With a CRM system, each user has storage space to keep and share documents. From here, documents can be shared with other team members or attached to emails or records. Handily, most CRMs are compatible with Google Drive, Dropbox, and other cloud storage providers.
Instead of relying on muscle memory or the Jedi Force, the visual CRM pipeline lets you see instantly where you should be applying your powers. You quickly see which deals need your attention and put your time to the best use.
If your deals are obscured by general pipeline clutter, you can use the CRM system to segment them to home in your active deals. You can also view deals by stage, get their value, and address any bottlenecks. Viewing deals in this way will also let you see prompts about what you should do next.
Why less time = more productivity
Fundamental to any drive to improve sales performance is efficiency gains. You can achieve greater efficiency by doing two things:
- Shortening the sales cycle
- Increasing your sales velocity
And the way to do this is by fully exploiting all the tools you have in your CRM system. Remember that CRM is more than contact and record management; its curiously unsung attribute is automation. And it’s this automation capability that takes a machete to human intervention in admin tasks. Taking humans out of the loop in sending emails and keying in contact details frees up significant chunks of time that can be better spent elsewhere.
How to get started with CRM
Being a small business is no obstacle to benefiting fully from CRM. First, however, you must select the correct type of system. In the case of small businesses, this is a cloud-based CRM system. These are affordable, easy to implement, and can be scaled up with minimum fuss to cope with your changing business demands.
To save time (there’s a theme here), you should limit your research to cloud CRM providers as their offering is by far the best option for small companies.
Shortening your sales cycles and boosting productivity are crucial to closing deals. So too is leveraging the full potential of CRM. Contact us today. We are the cloud CRM specialists for small businesses and will help you get the most from our system.