One of the biggest challenges of running a small to medium enterprise in 2021 is the ongoing digital transformation of field sales hastened by the demands of the pandemic.
This digital transformation requires promoting your products/services across various digital channels to reach your target consumers. Plus you need a team of sales representatives, marketing managers, product developers, etc. who share your vision for the company and are equipped to handle this digital transformation.
The most crucial aspect of running a successful and functional SME in the modern era is leveraging the right technology. From boosting employee productivity to facilitating customer success, new-age technology lends its advantages to all facets of business operations. It will even help you facilitate collaboration among team members, improve communication within the organization, and bridge the gap between traditional sales methods and the digital space.
The impact of COVID-19 on digitization of SMEs
While many small business owners had already been exploring various tools and applications for digitization, the pandemic has accelerated this trend. As consumers retreated into their homes to protect themselves from the novel coronavirus, businesses had to devise new ways to reach them. Additionally, remote working quickly became the standard for SMEs across the globe.
This, in turn, amplified the need for the digital transformation of field sales, customer service, and other business operations. It’s hardly surprising, then, that 90% of small businesses digitized their operations in 2020. The key areas of digitization included checkout, product delivery, and team collaboration.
Important research has also found that 45% of small business owners will increase their investment in technology in 2021. So, adopting modern technology for your business is no longer a novelty, it’s becoming the norm.
There are a few effective techniques SMEs can use to adopt modern technology to skyrocket sales and revenue. Let’s get started.
Connect with customers better using remote communication
Staying in touch with potential and existing customers is one of the biggest challenges business owners have faced during the pandemic. In the absence of a physical storefront, earning the trust and loyalty of target consumers becomes a herculean task. And it’s just as difficult to convert leads into paying customers in this new configuration.
This is where remote communication tools such as Zoom, Skype, Google Meet, etc. step into the picture. But improving communication with customers isn’t just about using the right software. The key is to master the art of remote communication to acquire and retain customers.
Enable omnichannel communication
Today’s consumers often don’t have the patience or time to write emails and raise tickets. Whether they want to enquire about a product or report an issue, they need ways to communicate on the go. That’s why you must provide them with multiple communication channel options, including live chat, phone, and social media.
Additionally, it’s a good idea to invest in a robust VoIP phone system that integrates with your existing CRM platform. It should also facilitate remote working so that your employees can connect with customers irrespective of their location.
Focus on personalization
As Dale Carnegie once said: “Remember that a person’s name is to that person the sweetest and most important sound in any language.” So, if you want to persuade customers to buy your products, personalize your messaging based on their preferences and demographics.
Key types of data to collect for successful personalization:
- Demographic data – All the data points about a person, such as their name, email, title, and location.
- Firmographic data – A collection of data about a business, such as company name, industry, number of employees, annual revenue, and stage in the sales cycle.
- Behavioral data – Reveals everything about a visitor’s actions while engaging with your website or app, such as pages visited, links clicked, average time on site, and the number of visits.
- Contextual data – Related to a visitor’s unique properties while providing context to their behavior on a website or an app, such as device type, browser type, location, and time of the day.
Once you have gathered the data, use technology that not only stores your customer’s demographic data but also tracks their purchasing history and preferences, allowing you to make recommendations that are tailored to their unique needs.
Of course, this is an essential strategy post-pandemic as well. Personalization helps to set your business apart from the rest in the minds of potential customers, and gives your enterprise an important advantage in an option-saturated world.
The most effective way to improve remote communication with customers is to seek and listen to their feedback. Send them surveys and questionnaires via email, and offer a reward for sharing their opinions. Act on their suggestions to improve your messaging, communication channels, and quality of service.
Don’t forget your employees
Your team members are the ones staying connected with potential and existing customers. Therefore, you must ensure they have access to the right communication and collaboration tools. From Slack and Zoho Cliq to Zoom and Microsoft Teams ‒ choose the right tools to facilitate remote communication among team members and customers.
Equip sales representatives with powerful mobile tools
Are your sales reps spending most of their time performing routine administrative tasks such as data entry and reporting? Do they have to coordinate with various departments to figure out inventory and customer order details? Then chances are they aren’t devoting their time to the most important part of their job ‒ converting leads into customers.
Skilled sales representatives are essential for every SME’s success. But they’ll only contribute to the growth of your company when you empower them with the right technology. In other words, using a feature-packed tool, such as Skynamo, helps facilitate the digital transformation of field sales teams.
Skynamo’s mobile sales app is designed to maximize the efficiency of field sales teams. Using the app, sales reps can easily access customer information, share catalogs with customers, and set weekly goals. They can even place, track, and manage orders from the app, as well as generate sales reports for managers.
Skynamo’s platform can also be seamlessly integrated with most leading ERP systems for automated back-office functionality. Sales reps have access to accurate customer, pricing, order, and stock information on the road with seamless ERP and accounting package integration. Skynamo integrates with all major packages such as Sage, Acumatica, Syspro, Xero, QuickBooks, and SAP ‒ to name just a few.
The era of the digital organization
Most organizations today rely heavily on digital systems and solutions to render internal processes more efficient and to enhance external customer experiences. If your business model is not designed to offer new digital products to customers and thus drive sales, it is highly likely that your customers will opt for someone who does digital.
To adapt your business to the ever-changing needs of customers, it is essential that you adopt a digital organization mindset. What this means is solving problems and creating value through a ‘digital first’ lens while always focusing on customer satisfaction. You should be continually exploring ways to engage, entice, and persuade clients by going beyond customer expectations with advanced technology solutions.
Digitizing your processes can yield many benefits for your business and here are some of these:
- Enable faster decision-making
- Allow seamless performance tracking
- Generate deeper customer insights
- Create more compelling customer experiences
- Automate manual tasks
- Innovate new products and services
Skynamo is designed specifically for businesses with field sales reps
The modern customer is more demanding than ever before. They expect seamless shopping experiences, superior customer service, and delivery anywhere, anytime. Simply put, the average consumer has become digitally spoiled.
Businesses that are reluctant to embrace the digital revolution are bound to feel the full force of this oversight in the years ahead. Those entities who aren’t agile enough to adapt quickly to tech advancements and ways of working with these tools will find it very difficult to stay, let alone be ahead of the pack.
Skynamo can help you meet these challenges head-on today. Unlike other CRM or sales enablement technology, Skynamo is designed specifically for manufacturers, wholesalers, and distributors with sales reps in the field selling products to an existing customer base. Our cutting-edge digital solutions will ensure your customers are kept happy, and our digital tools will empower your sales teams to reach them instantly at the touch of a button.
Looking for ways to maximize the productivity of your field sales representatives? Schedule a demo now and discover first-hand how Skynamo offers real-time overview of your sales activity so you can make smarter sales decisions.