Over the course of our blog series, we first outlined how to attract new prospects and generate leads to your website. Then, we showed you different ways you could convert those website leads into actionable prospects in your CRM.
Today, we're going to look at the most important process in the customer lifecycle— lead conversion. Here, the leads generated by your marketing team are passed on to your sales team to convert them into customers. In this stage, it's important to focus on prompt communication, contextual information, and fast response times.
Dont make leads wait.
Promptly attending to a customer call or email is important, but when it lacks context, your response can fall short. You need to make sure that your sales tools not only give you real-time notifications about customer activity but also help you understand the context of the interaction you're having.
Zoho CRM Plus includes SalesSignals, which can help you out here. It gives you real-time customer notifications, and makes them contextual and actionable. Are your sales reps aware when a high-potential customer has just replied to an email? Are your marketers in-the-know when a high-profile customer visits your website? Are your support agents alerted when an upset customer posts about you on social media? SalesSignals provides you all these details at a glance, so you can act instantly on high-value opportunities.
You have what you need to be where your customer needs you, when they need you—but of all the leads you have, how do you decide who gets top priority?
Firms who respond to leads within an hour are 7x more likely to qualify them. Yet only 37% of salespeople do it.(Source)
Focus on your best prospects first.
Not everyone on your radar is a potential prospect for your business. If your sales team is pitching to people who don't need your product, you're probably wasting your time. That's why it's important to have a system for determining who's hot and who's not.
Zoho CRM Plus allows you to score and qualify your leads in many different ways. For example—let's say that every time a prospect completes a form on your website, they become a lead and earn 10 points. If the form had a job description, and if the customer chose "marketing," they get another 20 points. Visit three or four specific pages on your website? That's 20 more points. Now, if the lead hits 40 points, they're categorized as a high-priority lead and automatically assigned to a special team of sales reps. Scoring leads not only helps Marketing determine which ones to push to Sales, but also streamlines communication between both teams.
So now you know who to focus your attention on and when. That's easy enough when you're just starting out, but what happens when your business starts to grow? As potentials become harder to monitor and begin falling through the cracks, you need to have a standardized sales process in place.
Create a standard sales process.
Many sales teams still rely on manual, disjointed sales processes which often lead to a breakdown in the lifecycle and inaccurate ROI forecasts at the end of the year.
Let's say that you have a certain process you follow on your team—like every time the cost of the potential exceeds a certain amount, you double the discount you offer. It can even be something simple, like getting your sales reps to log updates every time a customer call is made. In the absence of CRM integration, even simple processes like these can get messy, fast.
With Zoho CRM's Blueprint, you can easily bring these offline sales processes to your CRM. With a simple drag-and-drop visual editor, you can specify the sequence you want your sales team to use, decide who can do what, and set conditions and actions that have to be met for certain actions. Blueprint ensures that sales activities on your team happen exactly the way you want them to.
Bonus Tip: Use Sales AI to give you that extra push.
McKinsey found that 47% of sales activities have the potential to be automated by AI. By automating tedious things like, gathering customer information and processing transactions, AI can free up your sales team's time and energy for doing what they do best—building better customer relationships.
Lets take Zoho CRM Plus's AI assistant Zia as an example
Zia suggests the best time and day to contact your prospect and expect a favorable response. This suggestion is calculated from details she collects, like when prospects open and reply to your emails, when they interact with your organization on social media, or when they visit your website pages.
Zia automatically analyzes your sales history and applies logic to predict which deals have the best probability of closing. This allows your sales reps to approach the deal with a better idea of the likelihood of success.
Zia has a real-time chat module, where you can ask her details about record counts, record information, dashboards, and reports. If you're on the move, you can tell her to add new record information directly, without even opening up your CRM.
Zia monitors the tasks your sales reps do on a daily basis and suggests ways to automate the repetitive ones. For example, if your sales reps send an email template, update a field, and add a new task every time they speak with a lead, Zia will detect this pattern and suggest a macro to automate it.
Through efficient handling of your leads and optimal usage of your sales resources, you can easily ramp up your conversion rates. And if you're looking for a tool that can handle all these tasks, and much more, then check out Zoho CRM Plus. You can signup for a free 30-day trial here.
Want to know more about what Zoho CRM Plus does? Drop me a line at firstname.lastname@example.org and I'll get one of our product experts to give you a free one-on-one session.
In our next blog, we'll be highlighting how delivering a project on time plays a major role in the customer lifecycle.