Data and data insights sit at the core of every effective sales process. The more data we gather about potential customers, the more we can understand their specific needs, and the shorter the sales cycle will be in return. Insights are also handy for identifying key elements such as problems faced by potential customers, the solutions they find most valuable, and how far along they are in the sales process.
There is an enormous amount of data to be collected and processed across the sales funnel, making it more difficult for sales executives to handle data manually. This is where artificial intelligence (AI) comes in handy. Now is the perfect time to utilise AI as an inseparable part of sales, and there are a number of good reasons why that is the case.
Continuous Data Collection and Analysis
An AI doesn’t face the same limitations as human operators or sales executives when it comes to collecting and processing data. It can be configured to perform continuous data collection and sales process monitoring from the start.
“Continuous” is the important keyword here. As an integral part of the sales process, AI can help sales executives monitor sales activities, customer responses, and data from external sources, all for the purpose of gaining a better understanding of the potential customer.
The data can then be processed into insights; at this point, the value of data becomes substantially higher. AI can connect the dots and provide scoring models, relationship-based analysis, and relationship health scores to guide sales executives.
AI for Sales Automation
Automation is the way forward. Sales executives can stop worrying about mundane tasks – such as processing purchase orders and writing sales reports – and focus more on important tasks like relationship building. While logic-based automation is widely available, AI takes automation to a new level.
With the help of AI, automation doesn’t have to be limited to mundane, repetitive tasks. AI can adapt the automation cycle based on situational data. For example, a purchase order can be processed in different ways depending on metrics such as inventory level, production, rate, and others.
Sales automation becomes a powerful tool with the help of AI. More tasks can be fully automated, allowing for sales teams to expand their capacity without growing the actual team. At the same time, AI-based automation increases transparency within the sales team.
On a higher level, AI can be used to directly boost sales performance. AI-driven sales processes are becoming more common. The role of the artificial intelligence is sales activity monitoring. It produces insights such as keywords used in sales calls, effectiveness of sales approach, and even sentiments.
These insights are immensely valuable. By knowing whether a sales executive uses the right keywords – and whether the customer on the other end of the line responds positively to those keywords – better sales coaching can be delivered in a data-driven way.
Additionally, the same metrics can be used to empower strategic decisions. By knowing customer sentiments, for instance, sales calls can be made more contextual. It is also easier to review opportunities and rank the best ones to approach first.
Sales Forecasting as the Endgame
At the end of the day, the biggest reason why AI needs to be integrated into sales processes is its forecasting capability. The increase in data points, the amount of data gathered by AI, and the insights generated from that process lead to more accurate sales forecasting.
That, in time, leads to efficient sales operations like never before. Sales can be fully data- and insight-driven, highly automated, and incredibly contextual.
These are the reasons why your sales team should be utilising AI, and why they need to start today!
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