As competition creeps in almost every industry, finding new leads can be difficult. But if proper planning is done, the entire process can be made to run on autopilot. Automating your sales pipeline can not only take care of many aspects of the sales process but also save you from wasting vast amounts of time. Automation is not just a luxury anymore in today’s competitive environment. In fact, automation is a necessity for getting a competitive edge over your adversaries. Automation comes with so many benefits that you possibly can’t ignore them. It can greatly enhance the sales experience for companies with a clearly defined sales pipeline.

Regardless of the industry, these five steps can be applied to effectively automate your sales pipeline:

  1. Understand Your Sales Funnel
    Before you automate your sales pipeline, you need to understand the sales funnel for your company. A sales funnel has three general pieces namely, the top, middle, and bottom. Each one serves a different function in the sales process. The top of your funnel helps you to capture leads that may only be casually interested in your product or service. They may not be ready to buy, but they are interested in what you are doing. The middle of the funnel is where you have to nurture these casually interested leads and is the longest step in the process. The bottom of your funnel is where you actually make the sale. These are people who are aware enough about your products and services and are at the point where they are either going to buy or not.
  2. Spoil your potential customers with exciting offers
    Business owners should realize that offers will never fail to benefit them. Offers can help you to draw people to your site. You can also make offers such as free ebook download, discount coupon, free access to webinars and podcasts, in order to collect the email address of people. Make your content so engaging that it compels the lead to become a customer. Understand what your customers want from you and then see if your offers are working. When creating offers carefully consider the demographics of your target customers, the challenges they face and how would your solution be the perfect fit for them.
  3. Create Compelling Calls-to-Action
    A call to action is a clear direction that encourages visitors to take a certain action. Since every page of your website is an opportunity to do something new, use multiple CTAs. Make your CTAs prominent by placing them strategically, so that they receive maximum attention and visual focus.A landing page coupled with a strong CTA can help you capture email addresses and allow you to keep your offers separate from the rest of your main website. Also, make people aware of your products and services by putting all of the information from offers to new products on a landing page of your website.
  4. Drive Traffic to Your Landing Pages
    Find new sources to drive traffic to your landing pages. Sources such as advertising, social media marketing, search engine optimization and blogging to send new potential leads to these pages. As soon as you get traffic, you can very well figure out how the pages are converting and eventually predict your cost of obtaining a lead. This information is crucial to many of the decisions you’ll make for your business.
  5. Optimize Your Conversion Rate
    More web traffic doesn’t necessarily equal more leads. What needs to be done is refining your lead generation process in order to get more leads from the traffic you have on your website and then, get those leads to convert at every step in the funnel. You can optimize your conversion rate through a host of things such as presenting clickable PPC ads, maintaining a high degree of relevance between your ads and corresponding landing pages, and testing your landing page design. All this will help you to optimize your conversion rate rather than just drive traffic to your website.

Your online sales can be boosted considerably by automating lead generation and consistently testing and refining the way you convert leads into sales. Make sure you’re doing it the right way!

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