Keeping an overview of the sales process at all times
How does your company manage the flood of data from potentially interesting leads? With Microsoft Dynamics 365 (CRM), you can map the entire sales process from a fleeting contact to a lead to the sale and after-sales.
Dynamics 365 (CRM) includes many functionalities and mappings of processes that can actively support your company’s sales process.
Leads are usually generated from a variety of sources. Whether newsletter, website or social media, the data can be automatically imported into Dynamics 365, thus reducing the manual effort. Once this data is entered into the system, it is important to process it accordingly.
There are different approaches to this. We recommend that our clients have a process in place that directly assigns new leads to the right person and sends them a notification. Thus, the responsibility is directly regulated and the lead can be edited as long as it is still current.
Of course, D365 also offers many other useful features:
- Connection to a form on your website
- Connection to your newsletter tool (e.g. Mailchimp)
- Automatic assignment of the account manager (based on predefined criteria)
- Classification of leads according to potential (cold – hot)
- Definition of various mandatory criteria in the creation
- Checking the duplicates for good data quality
- Filing of all activities and contact points
- u. v. m.
From lead to sales opportunity
The lead has been created, the activities have been filed and regular contact has been established as well as concrete interest. This is when you qualify the lead and add it to the actual address database. During qualification, the user can directly select which records to create. This allows him to enter a contact, a company and also a sales opportunity directly in one step, saving valuable time. All documents, notes, files and also activities are transferred to the new data records and a complete documentation is created. Likewise, it is now possible to precisely evaluate the individual lead sources and sales opportunities and thus optimize the sales process.
Useful functions in qualification:
- Inclusion in the address database as a company and contact
- Automatic creation of an opportunity
- Transfer of all activities, documents and notes
- Seamless tracking of lead origin
As soon as the lead has been qualified, it can be found in the address database and can also be managed there. Once this has happened, we are talking about companies and contacts, which are stored in different data sets. This splitting of the data sets, which are nevertheless linked to each other, creates new functionalities. These can be used for management. It is thus possible to manage different locations and departments and to map these in hierarchies or to store different addresses.
The sales opportunity
A sales opportunity in Dynamics 365 means that the customer has expressed an interest in buying and therefore a potential sale could take place. Opportunities, as mentioned above, can either originate directly from a lead or be manually captured and assigned to a company and/or contact. Thanks to this flexibility, all sales opportunities can be managed in one place. Within this data set, it is possible to map your own sales process with individual points or to fall back on the predefined process from Microsoft. By using and mapping the process in the process bar, all sales opportunities must go through the same phases. This allows for more accurate conclusions such as expected revenue, potential close date, and probability. In addition to mapping the process, you can also store the products in which the customer is interested. Likewise, the associated price list can be linked to the conditions and thus the value of this sales opportunity can be calculated automatically.
The most popular features in sales opportunities:
- Automatic or manual creation of the sales opportunities
- Recognition of similar sales opportunities for reference
- Generate multiple sales opportunities
- Mapping of the own sales process
- Definition of key points for the various sales phases
- Linking with the product database
As the sale becomes more concrete and the customer shows a clear interest in buying, an offer can be generated directly from a sales opportunity. In this step, all stored information such as prices or products are automatically transferred to the offer. With the creation of the offer also begins the corresponding process. This can define clear processes for the creation of offers, e.g. review process and versioning.
In the offer, the user himself can still make adjustments to the products, additional services or even to the discount and thus adapt the offer according to the discussions and agreements. As soon as the offer is ready, it can be sent to the customer. Here you have the possibility to store Word templates with your own logo and the presentation of the offer and to download the offers automatically as Word files. If you want to go one step further, you can have the offer generated as a PDF and send it directly via Dynamics 365.
Functions in the preparation of quotations:
- Defined quotation process and clear procedure
- Versioning and review documented within the offer
- Transfer of products and information from the sales opportunity
- Customization of products, texts and discount levels
- Change of address for the offer
- Creation of a Word file based on a template
- Sending the offer as PDF
As soon as this step is taken, the interface to the ERP comes into play in most cases, as production planning and invoicing are done in it. This is also, in our eyes, the latest time to leave “CRM” and move into ERP.
To ensure that salespeople still have an overview of the status of the order, the invoice and the products sold, it makes sense to not only play the data from the CRM to the ERP, but also back. This allows the processes to be handled in the ERP, but the information is also available to CRM users for subsequent orders and evaluations.
The sales process with Dynamics 365
Every company works a little differently and the processes differ from each other. This means that they cannot be transferred 1:1. However, the key points are mostly similar and you can already use many functionalities from the standard Dynamics 365. So there is no need to build a completely new process, module or entity. By choosing the standard solution, your company will benefit from regular innovations and updates.
Therefore, we recommend that you first look at the standardized sales process within Dynamics 365 and try to couple it with your company’s current process. Small changes or adjustments to the data or process steps can be made without any problems.
We are happy to advise you. We evaluate which approach makes the most sense for your company and how you can further optimize your existing processes.