The goal of any sales team is to increase turnover, regardless of the type of business, size and industry in which it operates. However, it is very difficult to grow without taking into account the social and technological changes that are emerging in sales organizations.
Digitalizing a sales team is far from limited to putting at your disposal a new tablet with a multitude of new apps. The aim of the digitalization of the sales team is to equip them with the necessary tools to develop their work effectively and at the same time, a resource for the sales management to take objective decisions skillfully.
Having a rapid reaction to any situation is essential to address any matter affecting the company, but in the case of sales trends deriveding from the digital age this is much more necessary because it has changed the entire sales process. Therefore it is mandatory.
By the same token, the role of sales teams has changed. That is the reason why it is key to train the sales team communicating the true value of the digitization process. At the end of the day, these tools must help them to anticipate the needs of the clients, to increase the volume and the profitability of the sales, and to provide custom solutions, working from concrete data and not so much on forecasts.
1. Agility and automation
It is key the sales force assumes the process of digitalization as an opportunity to maximize its sales and not just as a control mechanism from the company’s management. To reach this goal, it is essential to incorporate new technologies that optimize your work, reduce time spent on secondary tasks and provide reports, summaries and data on customers that allow you to obtain a deep analysis of your work. And nowadays, reaching the goal of increasing sales means making these sales meaningful.
This means that it is not enough to put the products on the shelf. Nowadays we look for loyal customers and supporters, and that will only happen if we are able to generate added value. To do this, we need to provide specialization and customization and this will only be possible with a full knowledge of our potential and repeat customers from the analysis and interpretation of all data collected.
This is to say automating certain tasks on one hand and enhancing data analytics on the other. This las point thanks to the incorporation of systems that give us a closer view of the customer, getting the right information at the right time.
2. New roles, new opportunities
Traditionally, the sales team has been the department in charge of identifying customer needs in order to develop solutions and, in the end provide them the customer. In the digital age, these first two phases of the process would ideally no longer be the responsability of the sale team, or, at least, they should not invest much time in them. The objective is to bring together technological and human resources in sales transactions.
This means, technology takes care of reports and sales monitoring, … and, thanks to this, the sales representative can focus their activity on proposing new sales and troubleshooting-driven strategies. In this sense, it will be essential to have a deep knowledge of the product, as well as the use of the emotional intelligence in order to connect and empathize with the client
Obviously, the emotional intelligence of the sales representative also plays in their favor, making them salesmen-advisors. Their experience in dealing with customers should make them leaders in which customers can trust, enabling them to influence stakeholders and their decision-making processes – especially if they are complex.
3. Visibility and transparency
Another strong point of technology is that it makes information available to a large number of people. Digitalization is essential to reorganizing business operations. Tools such as ‘ Big Data ‘, traceability devices and the introduction of algorithms in pathways, allow us to improve the visibility of the actions of the sales team vis-a-vis management leadership and, at the same time, to streamline response time and decision-making.
Another interesting aspect of the digitization process is that it allows us to evaluate the work of our sales force beyond the specific turnover figure. In other words, it is possible to give visibility to other indicators such as the number of surveys carried out and feedback from them, the recurrence of visits or the potential of certain routes, beyond current sales figures.
4. A global process
Although traditionally the areas of marketing have taken on the responsability adapting to digital transformation processes, the reality is that today the adoption of such strategies should be carried out in all processes and departments, even outside of the sales team.
The implementation of a successful digital pathway will depend not only on the implementation of new digital platforms, but also on changing the perception of organizations, so that they realize that, in order to achieve their business goals, their interests must be aligned with those of their potential customers, and underpinned by the digital economy.