In today's sales landscape, it's no longer enough to just be confident in your product and its features. Consumers are looking for a more connected, more personal experience - even in the B2B space. For sales leaders, this means building teams and processes that can focus on the customer journey, instead of one-off transactions. For this to be possible, sales teams need data. The good news is, most sales teams agree. The latest Salesforce State of Sales report found that 81% of teams believe a connected view of customer data across the customer journey is important.
The key to achieving this holistic view is the data - at minimum a record of past transactions with prospective clients and current customers. But how can sales teams take the data they have to the next level?
Have a storage system
This storage system doesn't refer to the disorganized filing cabinet in the corner of your office. A customer relationship management (CRM) system like Salesforce allows users to manage their emails, log activities, add notes from calls, and create follow up tasks. It just so happens that these things are also what reps say they spend too much time on. With everything contained in one online place, individual users are more organized but perhaps more importantly, data can now be easily shared and updated between all team members.
Streamline the process
Though many might imagine the day-to-day job of a sales representative as phone calls, handshakes, and meetings, reps only spend 1/3 of their time actually selling. While it's inevitable that every job has some time dedicated to smaller tasks, 9% of a salesperson's day goes towards administrative tasks and another 8% is reserved for manually entering information in a CRM. Adding new applications or processes, like a computer telephony integration solution that allows for automated call logging and call note templates, can help reduce the time spent on processes and tasks. As a bonus, using standardized templates increases the reporting capabilities for a sales team, as opposed to individual notes that can only be categorized manually.
Break down silos
Once a sales team is up and running with the tools they need, they're well on their way to keeping up with the customer journey. However, for business buyers, there's more to a business relationship than just the initial purchase. It's likely that future interactions will take place with customer success and support teams as questions or issues arise, and they'll receive outreach communications from marketing. Without shared information across these teams, it's impossible to understand the full customer journey. Indeed, 75% of business buyers feel that connected processes across these teams are very important to winning their business. Organizations that have multiple teams using the same processes and CRM will gain the ability to see a full customer view.
Read the full Salesforce State of Sales report for more information on the data referenced in this post, and for more insights on sales performance.