Circumstances in 2020 have significantly changed the way work is done in organizations. According to a recent Gallup poll, 9 out of 10 remote workers want to maintain this way of working to some extent.
However, for salespeople who are not used to remote selling, this can prove challenging, as it is very different from person-to-person or traditional selling. However, remote working can bring many benefits in the process, provided it is practiced correctly. It can improve the sales process, increase your team's productivity, and fill your sales pipeline without having to leave your desk.
In this article, we will show you how a remote sales team can optimally manage and monitor its marketing and sales processes.
Powerful strategies to increase the efficiency of remote sales teams
With fewer and fewer face-to-face contacts, it's critical for the sales team to stay connected and productive in a remote work environment. Below are some best strategies and practices you can implement to increase the performance and efficiency of your remote sales team.
Set clear goals and expectations
If employees are scattered across different locations, a sales manager should communicate sales goals and processes so that salespeople are always aware of their daily work and team goals.
Setting clear expectations gives remote workers a variety of guidelines to follow, such as sales goals, specific online procedures for identifying leads, procedures for cold-calling prospects, methods for closing deals, and procedures for when problems arise. According to a Gallup survey of German workers, such practices encourage remote workers to take extra initiative and perform better.
Another option is to conduct feedback sessions with sales reps to assess their performance, identify opportunities for improvement, and create a development plan. Also, organize frequent meetings via video conferencing to ensure your sales department stays informed and connected.
Invest in the right tools for your remote team
Several digital tools have now been developed to help remote sales teams optimize their data, in addition to increasing productivity and motivation. Investing in such tools can help sales reps automate complex or repetitive tasks so they can focus on more important tasks.
An efficient CRM system is important for remote teams to get an overview of their current sales activities and visualize the sales process. Some of the best remote CRMs are Salesforce, Pipedrive and HubSpot.
Project management tools enable your employees to keep track of projects and stay informed regardless of their location. Trello and Basecamp represent good examples of suitable project management software here.
Collaborating across different geographic regions and time zones is not easy. Google Workspace, Miro, and Podio are some of the best collaboration tools for sales reps.
SeaTable is another best-in-class collaborative information management application. The no-code application has solutions for marketing, sales and project management that help remote sales teams capture, structure and evaluate different types of information.
Remote sales teams should also invest in a virtual private network (VPN) for added security, accessibility and control. Employees can even implement VPNs on their Android device or iPhone to monitor their sales operations from anywhere without compromising quality.
Use of KPIs and performance metrics to measure sales results
Keeping an eye on your sales process will give you an idea of what is working and what is not. Performance indicators show whether each team member is on track with their assigned tasks.
Sales teams can adjust their strategies to achieve more success for their business. Remote teams should also share reports to determine if prospects are stuck at a certain point in the pipeline.
They should also look for sales goal reports to see if salespeople are meeting their goals and performing as expected. Win rate reports can also help the sales team determine ROI per lead by seeing the number of deals won across all prospects.
Automate wherever possible
According to recent sales statistics, about 71% of salespeople waste most of their productive time on manual entries. Sales automation and artificial intelligence are making salespeople's jobs easier.
Sales process automation helps the remote sales team perform better by keeping them in the workflow and saving their valuable time and energy. Managers can effectively scale their sales team and decide where to direct effort for optimal results.
Leaving recorded messages, completing automated daily stand-up reports, and automatically sending outreach and follow-up emails using tools can help sales reps spend more time on the important tasks, resulting in higher productivity.
Build trusting relationships
When employees don't spend their working hours in the same place, it naturally takes longer to build trust within a team. One way to do this is to promote effective teamwork among sales employees by clarifying roles in the sales process and providing regular feedback.
More communication to avoid misunderstandings is another good approach to building trusting relationships in remote teams. Employees should send regular updates, respond promptly to messages, and be available at important times every day.
The remote sales team should also use internal communication tools to take its camaraderie to a new level. Such tools promote transparency by facilitating conversations across levels and teams and knowledge sharing.
Promote social interactions in remote teams
It is said that engaged employees are more productive than those with little contact with others. Moreover, in a remote work environment where there is almost no human contact, it is easy for employees to become less social.
To this end, it is important to take preventive measures to encourage workers and reduce factors that frustrate them. In addition, you should share common successes with team members and offer them support so that they can achieve great successes themselves.
Also, a good idea is to encourage your employees to spend time together outside of work, or set aside a budget for team-building activities. The interactions that take place during these activities can improve communication skills and help prevent burnout. In addition, you can make meetings more productive and create good team relationships.
Managing a remote sales team takes a lot of time, effort and coordination. If you follow the practices described in this article, you stand a good chance of growing your business, making more sales and building a good relationship with your employees.