7 Best Practices for CRM Automation to Drive More Revenue

Jun 25, 2024
Ashley Wilson
Table of Contents

Customer relationship management, or simply a CRM system, is a must-have for managing a company’s interactions with current and potential customers. However, as much as they’re useful, they can also be a colossal time suck.

Your CRM can easily become a place where your sales team loses hours and hours to manual customer data entry. These manual tasks not only invite errors and inconsistencies but are also a revenue killer. The problem? Your CRM isn’t automated.

When your CRM isn’t working efficiently, you’re losing precious time that could be spent on strategy and sales. The good news is that you can change this easily by automating your CRM workflows and finally putting an end to tiresome administrative tasks.

So, to help you get the most out of your CRM system, we’ve put together a practical guide on CRM automation. Here’s what it covers:

  • What Is CRM Automation?
  • Benefits of CRM Automation
  • CRM Automation Examples
  • 7 Best Practices for Automating Your CRM Platform
  • Frequently Asked Questions

What Is CRM Automation Exactly?

CRM automation is the process of using technology to automate and streamline repetitive tasks within your customer relationship management system. This can include automating data entry, transcribing sales calls, managing the sales pipeline, and sending follow-up emails to prospects.

Benefits of CRM Automation

Automating your CRM can really move the needle in selling more. And that’s because it solves your biggest bottleneck—the time your team spends on mundane tasks rather than moving more leads (and doing it faster) through the sales cycle. Other benefits include:

Relief from Cumbersome Admin Tasks

According to Salesforce, 45% of sales teams say that excessive administrative tasks are their biggest sales challenge. Admittedly, sales reps spend 64% of their average week on non-selling activities such as administrative and service tasks, internal meetings like pipeline reviews, and traveling.

Source: Salesforce

With automation, you can free up sales reps’ time to focus on more important things like lead generation and nurturing.

Better Data, Better Decisions

As per the LinkedIn Global State of Sales Report, nearly half (45%) of sales reps struggle with dirty and incomplete data. CRM automation can ease this pain by keeping your data clean and up-to-date, cutting down on human errors and guesswork. This way, you can focus more on selling and less on data management.

High-quality data and insights improve:

  • Sales velocity
  • Close rates
  • Time spent per lead

And, at the strategic level, reliable data helps you make operational decisions that drive growth.

Higher Customer Engagement and Satisfaction

Access to more comprehensive data through CRM automation allows you to personalize customer interactions and address issues more quickly.

With CRM automation, every customer interaction becomes an opportunity to build deeper connections, leading to higher engagement and long-term satisfaction.

CRM Automation Examples

Enough of the theory; you’re probably asking what sort of sales processes can be automated. There are many examples, but we’ll give you a couple:

  • Data Entry Automation: Use automated workflows to capture and enter customer information from web forms directly into the CRM, reducing manual data entry and errors.
  • Call Transcription and Sentiment Analysis: Automatically transcribe sales calls, analyze customer sentiment, and feed insights into the CRM, enabling sales teams to understand customer emotions and engage with them accordingly.
  • CRM Backfill Automation: Automatically update and enrich outdated or incomplete CRM records with the latest customer data from various sources, ensuring the database remains current and accurate for better decision-making and personalized customer interactions.

7 Best Practices for Automating Your CRM Platform

1. Audit Your Current Revenue Processes

The reason you’re looking to automate your CRM is because something is just not clicking. So, before you do anything else, take stock to identify inefficiencies.

Where are the manual interventions happening? Where do you experience the most delays? What activities are your sales reps spending most of their time on?

Conduct a thorough audit of your revenue processes, from lead generation to customer support. Talk to your sales department to gather information about the activities taking up most of their time. Of course, don’t forget to zero in on hard data as well.

As you conduct your audit, make sure to document all the information. Better yet, map out your existing processes against the customer journey to better understand where the bottlenecks are and identify high-value gaps where automation could make the biggest difference.

2. Define Specific Goals for Your CRM Automation

Once you know what you have to fix, it’s time to set goals. While your goals will be specific to your organization, in the table below we give you some ideas:

Goal Sales Activities to Automate Benefits
Increase Lead Conversion Automate lead scoring, follow-up emails, and lead nurturing Faster and more accurate lead prioritization, leading to higher conversion rates.
Improve Sales Productivity Automate data entry, task assignments, and meeting scheduling Reduces time spent on administrative tasks, allowing sales teams to focus more on selling.
Accelerate Sales Cycle Automate proposal generation and approval workflows Shortens the sales cycle by speeding up document preparation and approval processes.

Of course, setting the goals is one thing. You also need to consider the deployment strategy and agree on other important details, such as:

  • Success metrics for CRM automation
  • Scope and prioritization of automation projects
  • Budget and resource allocation
  • Stakeholder roles and responsibilities (who will manage and oversee the process)
  • Timeline and milestones

3. Develop a Framework for a Successful Automation

Next, you need to develop a framework that will enable you to automate your CRM in a logical and effective way. Think of it as a plan for how you will implement your automation.

Here’s how to do it, focusing on three key areas:

Sales Workflows

Start by identifying which tasks and processes can be automated. Look for repetitive tasks, like sending follow-up emails or updating customer records.

Take an example of sales calls. Traditionally, during a call, reps spend a significant amount of time taking detailed notes, logging customer interactions, and addressing objections.

This entire process can be streamlined with AI-powered tools that automatically transcribe and analyze call notes. They can also pick up signals, such as if a customer is unhappy or mentions a competitor.

After the call, these AI-generated notes are automatically logged into your CRM, providing a clear and actionable summary without any manual effort from your sales team.

Automating these workflows helps your team focus on more strategic activities and improves overall efficiency.

Data Hygiene

Data is another big consideration in the sales process. Poor quality data costs organizations an average of $12.9 million every year. Plus, it leads to poor decision-making.

As you know, a lot of data is generated and captured during sales cycles, often manually by your sales representatives.

Identify your data inefficiencies and seek better ways to automate them. The ultimate goal is to have clean and reliable contact information that updates as prospects progress through the sales pipeline.

Sales Activities Visualization and Access to Insights

For effective CRM automation, having clear visuals and quick access to insights is essential. Your sales managers will certainly appreciate tools that show real-time data on sales activities, deal stages, and team performance. Having visual dashboards helps you see the big picture at a glance and identify any bottlenecks needing attention.

Besides, instant access to insights, like customer behavior trends and sales metrics, allows you to make swift, data-driven decisions and adjust strategies as needed.

4. Customize Your CRM’s Automation Features

A good place to start your CRM automation is your very own CRM system. Most CRM platforms like Salesforce or HubSpot come with various automation tools like workflow builders and email marketing automation.

Customize these tools to match your business processes. Set up workflow rules that trigger specific actions based on predefined conditions. For instance, you might want an automatic welcome email to go out when a new lead is added or a task assigned to a sales rep when a lead hits a certain score. Customizing these features means your automation works smoothly for your unique sales process.

5. Integrate Your CRM with Other Tools

Another great tip for getting the most out of your sales CRM is to connect it with your sales and marketing tools. Think about it – you want your systems to work together seamlessly, sharing data without any hassles. This can save your team a ton of time jumping between apps and give you a clear, all-in-one view of your leads and customers.

Most CRMs come with built-in integration options, or you can use tools like Zapier to make the connections you need.

6. Leverage AI-Powered CRM Automation Tools

Now, if you want to take your sales automation to the next level, you need to tap into AI-powered CRM automation tools. 

These solutions open the doors to a more efficient sales process. They do so by incorporating advanced features like predictive intelligence, automated lead-to-cash processes, and next-step analysis.

For example, our tool, Momentum AI, makes Salesforce automation easy and efficient for sales and revenue teams. It automates tedious tasks like summarizing sales calls, updating CRM records in real-time, and ensuring data hygiene

Momentum AI integrates seamlessly with various tools in the sales stack, including Zoom, Gong, Salesloft, Chorus, and Dialpad. Unlike Zapier, which offers general automation, Momentum is specifically designed for sales workflows, making it a perfect fit for your needs.

Not only that, but it also provides valuable insights into your competition, product feedback, and potential customer churn. This means sales teams can make smarter decisions and tailor their approach to each customer more effectively.

What’s more, it offers real-time coaching and deep insights into customer behavior and competition. This helps sales reps stay organized and make better decisions on the fly. Compared to the basic features of a native CRM, Momentum AI is purpose-built for high-performing sales teams.

7. Optimize and Adapt

Lastly, following the rollout of your CRM automation, evaluate your processes to ensure they’re delivering the desired results. CRM automation isn’t a set-it-and-forget-it deal.

What most RevOps teams do is simply measure the outcomes, such as automation efficiencies, improved data management, or better lead qualification processes. However, you should also gather feedback from your team members who have firsthand experience using the automation features.

Both the data and qualitative insights can help you keep your CRM automation effective and aligned with your goals.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. What Is CRM Workflow Automation?

CRM workflow automation is the process of using technology in your CRM system to make things run smoothly without manual effort. It sets up rules and triggers to automatically handle tasks like sending follow-up emails, updating customer information, assigning tasks to your team, and generating reports. This means less repetitive work for you, fewer mistakes, and better customer interactions and sales efficiency.

2. What’s the Difference Between CRM and Marketing Automation?

The main difference between CRM and marketing automation is the different activities both processes focus on. CRM automation manages and optimizes processes related to leads, prospects, and customers. Marketing automation, however, focuses on marketing campaigns, content assets, and social media management. Both processes work hand-in-hand to drive overall business growth.

3. How Does CRM Automation Improve Customer Experience?

CRM automation enhances customer experience with quick, personalized interactions. It logs all customer info, helping sales reps know the next step and keep customers engaged. Furthermore, it provides an always-on experience to customers through the use of automated emails and AI chatbots that handle inquiries even when service reps are busy. This ensures fast, caring service, boosting customer loyalty and satisfaction.

Ready to Leave Repetitive Sales Tasks Behind?

CRM automation is a powerful tool that can help you improve customer relationships and enhance your sales team's productivity. Most importantly, it allows you to shift your focus to sales activities that directly impact your bottom line.

Get Momentum AI to extract valuable data from sales calls and automatically feed it to Salesforce CRM. With AI call notes, MEDDIC autopilot, and smart follow-up emails, your sales team will spend more time on deal-making, not admin tasks. 

The best part? Our tool brings together accurate customer data from across your entire sales and marketing tech stack, allowing you to keep your teams updated on what’s happening with deals and opportunities.

Try us out at no cost and see for yourself.