Of course, your CRM won’t automate all your sales tasks. Your team will also need to perform certain activities in your CRM, and it’s up to you to figure out which ones and how they’ll perform them. That’s where setting up automated workflows becomes important.
But what is workflow automation, and why should you set up automated workflows for your business? We’ll answer those questions below. Keep reading to find out more.
What is workflow automation?
A workflow automation is a series of repeatable steps that you set to automatically occur in response to specific triggers. For example, in an email marketing workflow, one step might be to send out a welcome email whenever someone subscribes to your email list. You could automate this step using your CRM.
Why use automated workflows?
The reason for using automation workflows is simple: They can make your job—and your team members’ jobs—far easier.
Basically, your CRM can likely handle many of the mundane, day-to-day tasks you’d otherwise have to do yourself. The CRM can do it just as well, leaving you to focus your energy on things the CRM can’t do. That improves the overall efficiency of your sales pipeline.
CRMs already allow you to set up workflows, making it easy for you to repeat certain tasks over and over. But when you automate those tasks, completing your workflows gets even easier.
Of course, you have to take the time to decide which things you’ll automate and which things you’ll handle manually, as well as how the two will intersect.
3 steps for setting up automation and workflows
There are a handful of ways to create the best automation setup. It’s ultimately down to your company’s preferences, but even so, here are three things you can do to boost your workflow’s quality.
1. Figure out what you can automate
The first step of your workflow setup should be to figure out what you can automate. After all, your CRM can likely automate multiple tasks, but it can’t handle everything on its own. So, the question is, what can it handle?
The answer depends entirely on your CRM. Also, you may find that there are some tasks the CRM technically can automate, but that you’d feel safer performing manually. Either way, you’ll want to start by getting an idea of your options. What can be automated, and what can’t?
Once you’ve figured out how to answer that question, you can move on to the next step of your automation setup.
2. Establish a clear pipeline
The next step is to analyze your sales pipeline to figure out the best possible workflow. Look at every part of the pipeline, from lead generation to the final sale, and determine which spots can benefit the most from automation and which require a human touch.
For example, you may find that the lead generation stage works best with an automated approach, while the final sales stage needs hands-on efforts to be successful. Of course, your business may find different results—it varies from company to company.
From there, you can set up your sales pipeline within your CRM. The way that works is that you first define which stages you’ll include in your pipeline—qualification, meeting, pitch, etc.—and then set up those stages in your CRM, allowing you to categorize leads based on which stage they’re in.
You can then automate tasks at each pipeline stage where you found that automation would be helpful. Likewise, avoid automating tasks at stages where it doesn’t seem to help.
3. Design custom automation workflows
The final step is to simply put together your customized workflows. It’s best not to use a cookie-cutter workflow but to take what you learn from the previous two steps and commit the time and effort to develop an automation setup that works best for your team.
Ideally, your CRM should make it easy to build this workflow, automating the tasks you want to automate and ensuring that the automation stays turned off for the things you want to handle manually. You should be able to customize processes, dashboards, and more.
Some of the tasks you may want to automate include:
Assigning leads to sales reps
Migrating leads from one stage of the pipeline to the next
Sending follow-up emails to leads and customers
Nutshell is the best CRM for setting up automation and workflows
Looking for the perfect CRM to automate your sales process? You’re looking at it. Nutshell is designed specifically for small businesses like yours, and it comes equipped with a variety of excellent features, sales automation being just one of them.
Nutshell can also help you generate customized data reports so you can learn more about your audience. Plus, we offer one of the best support teams around. They’ll be ready and willing to help you through any questions or concerns you may have.
Want to see for yourself? Just check out our 14-day free trial to see what Nutshell can do for your business.