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How technology can boost your sales team’s performance

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The sales profession is not for the faint of heart.

The pressure in this job is unrelenting: ambitious monthly targets, competitive colleagues, demanding managers and ambitious personal goals are constantly driving salespeople to win bigger deals.

The last thing they need is to have their time and energy sapped by inefficient internal processes.

Unfortunately, most sales professionals are wasting valuable hours and missing out on big opportunities due to unnecessary challenges that can be easily avoided.

Here are some of the most common issues facing sales teams – and how the right technology can help resolve them.

Admin is the sorry reality of most jobs – and sales is no exception. However, these tasks should support, rather than overwhelm the main mission of a salesperson which is, simply put, to sell.

In our cross-industry survey of 283 sales professionals, we found that 11 percent struggle with burdensome tasks such as preparing for meetings and compiling sales reports.

A further 17.3 percent bemoan manual data entry as a big pain-point. The problem with admin is two-fold: firstly, it must be done and secondly, it usually must be done while sitting at a desk.

The latter is an enormous frustration for salespeople whose very job often involves getting out of the office and in front of their customers.

The right technology can help lighten this administrative load significantly. CRM software can manage important customer information.

Data analytics platforms allow salespeople to stay firmly on top of ever changing customer behaviours, needs and buying patterns, so they are always ready for critical meetings. Access An average salesperson’s week is jam-packed with various meetings as they check-in with existing customers and hunt for new deals.

As they move from one audience to the next in quick succession, they need to stay up-to-speed on their proposals to each prospect and not confuse important details.

However, 33% percent of salespeople battle to acquire timely information to help them sell and 11.3% are frustrated by their inability to access information while out of the office.

Salespeople need their company’s support to close sales or go after a new deal – and this can pose a problem for employers that don’t offer mobile access to company or customer information.

What’s more, should a customer call or email and not get a timely response because their contact is out of the office, it can cause undue friction in the relationship.

Modern technology enables flexible working, allowing your employees to do their work from anywhere, at any time.

Your salespeople can access all the information they need from whatever mobile device they use, keeping them equipped, responsive and ready for any customer interaction.

Decisions Interestingly, many salespeople make important decisions without having strong supporting evidence at hand.

Forty percent rely on the pre-existing relationships that they have with their customers to inform their choices and 6 percent go with their ‘gut-feeling’ in times of decision-making.

Unfortunately, 49.5 percent also battle to identify which customers are falling in sales in time to step in and offer new opportunities.

There’s a clear link between these stats: good instincts are useful, but relationships can be flighty, and gut instinct unreliable.

Customer analytics platforms and CRM software can analyse customer trends and present actionable information based on data-driven insights.

Your salespeople will be alerted in good time if a customer’s buying behaviour dips or spikes, allowing them to respond with relevant cross or up-selling opportunities.

Technology is, of course, only as good as its user. If your sales team is carrying some dead weight, no software in the world will help.

Regardless of the tools they have at their disposal, salespeople need to be driven and persuasive deal-closers, always on the hunt for new business.

The right technology can alleviate much of the unnecessary pressure that holds a good salesperson back from becoming a great one.