Route planning is about more than typing a location into your Google Maps or navigation app to find the shortest route. It's about maximizing sales time by strategically plotting multiple destinations along multiple routes for your field sales reps. To do this effectively, sales and operations teams need a complete field sales planner that can help target the right leads to meet, plan the most efficient route for each day and update records to track progress.
eSpatial is a comprehensive route planning solution designed with field sales professionals in mind. Intelligent route mapping will help each driver save time and fuel, while market analysis tools help you select leads along an optimized route to focus your efforts — all in one solution.
How can route planning help you?
Know your territories
Roll out territories to your field team on clear, customizable maps for easy visualization – ideal for onboarding new team members.
Filter maps by customer potential, size or last visit. Cluster multiple stops together by location to ensure you are visiting the right prospects.
Plan and route
Plan the most efficient route to maximize your time and fill in cancellations. This gives you more time to visit prospects, enhancing customer service.
Update to CRM
After each stop, you can update your CRM in real time with a record of the visit and specific details, without having to actually go into the software.
Oversee the field performance to ensure productivity benefits are being realized for each sales rep and their planned route.
Who benefits from route planning?
A route planner offers numerous benefits to both sales and operations teams, enabling them to find the optimal route for each rep. In the past, manual route planning was a tedious and time-consuming task that resulted in countless inefficiencies and lost opportunities.
eSpatial's route planner allows businesses to maximize sales potential by finding the most efficient path between each waypoint across a multi-stop route. This frees up more time for sales reps to speak with customers, improving customer service and increasing the selling potential of each visit.
To see how a route planner can help your team, here's a breakdown of the benefits for each role:
Field sales leader
1. Bringing in technology to support your team
- Help your field sales team spend less time with administration and more time in front of customers.
- Better up-front journey planning means less expense on travel and more customer visits.
- Empower your field sales team to strategically pursue high-value opportunities.
2. Visualize your field team's performance
- Know which locations your team is visiting and where they've been.
- Monitor how your team's activities align with your strategic objectives. Are they visiting who you want them to?
- See your sales performance data visually so that you can compare and contrast areas or teams.
3. Decide Where your field sales teams should grow next
- Analyze your marketplace to understand where your customers, supply centers, distribution, and competition are based. Use that understanding to plan your winning strategy.
- Share and communicate this knowledge across your team to speed up decision making.
4. Plan and optimize your field sales coverage
- Identify gaps in sales coverage and how they compare with market opportunity. Plan new hires and partnerships to match.
- Push updates of your sales territories out to your field team instantly.
- Report on your sales performance and how it lines up with your plans and strategic objectives.
5. Align support efforts
- Line up your sales efforts with marketing programs, service center locations, or any other business operation.
- Communicate sales coverage with the marketing and operational teams to ensure they align with sales.
Field team member
1. Prioritize the highest potential accounts
Identifying the highest priority accounts when planning your day is key to a successful week. You can choose to visit customers most likely to close by the end of the month or those who line up with your business objectives. Make conscious decisions on what type of customer you want to visit, and then find out where those customers are most densely located. From there you can build an optimal route for the week to maximize your time.
2. Plan your week
Start by creating a map of your call locations for every day. Filter the points to only show the accounts you have scheduled a call with. Each day you can open the relevant map and create an optimized route to ensure you get to see them all. Once you've created your route, you have the option to open each leg in Google Maps for turn-by-turn navigation.
3. Fill in canceled meetings
One of the most frustrating things for salespeople is when meetings are canceled, especially if they have traveled to be there. With eSpatial Mobile, you can make the most of cancellations by identifying other accounts nearby that may be able to see you instead. All of their contact information from the CRM will be available right there for you.
4. Quickly update your accounts
Once you've finished your day of sales calls, you can then quickly update fields such as "Status" or "Last Visited Date" right from your map. This means that your data is up to date for the next day and your manager can see what you have been doing without you having to do a bunch of paperwork.
1. Integrate field sales activities with sales territories
Roll out territory updates directly to the field sales team. This way you can quickly make changes knowing that your users are working from the latest information. Align and balance your territories to make sure you're getting the most from the field sales team.
2. Easily report on field sales effectiveness
Show the location of your customers, distribution and competition as well as your field performance all in one place. Not only is it easy to understand, but it's all in line with the same data being used in the field. Sharing is also simple. Print, publish to the web, or send to PowerPoint for easy internal decision making.
3. Integrate with Salesforce or another CRM
Line up your field toolkit with your CRM via API, a managed sync process to your CRM, or use the field tool as the system of record. This will let you know that your sales team is seeing and updating the right pieces of data in the right places — all at minimum effort for everyone involved.
4. Easy onboarding
Our world-class onboarding team are experts in achieving your data objectives. We'll help you to work through the challenges of data loading and data management, all to get your organization up and running in no time.
Why start route planning?
Route planning with eRouting helps you meet more clients by making better use of your time with the route optimization feature. You can create, edit and share route maps on your PC, Mac, tablet, or smartphone. This allows you to adjust direction on the go if a client cancels or you have extra time to squeeze in another stop.
- Bulk add your points and create a route map in seconds.
- Add start times and meeting lengths for an accurate ETA.
- Open step-by-step instructions in Google Maps.
- Edit your planned route map on the go with the eSpatial app.
- Save and share your route maps with your team.
Save time on field sales planning
With eSpatial's free trial
1. Combine tools for a complete field sales planning solution
Route planning is great for maximizing efficiency, but the true power of eRouting comes from its full suite of features. Route planning pairs naturally with features like filtering and drive-time analysis, which together create a complete field sales planner.
Many field sales reps plan their week based on instinct. They consider which clients they haven't seen in a while and choose a few others to visit based on their knowledge of the territory. eRouting helps document this knowledge, taking appointment targeting to the next level. By recording the date you last visited each client, you can instantly see areas that need attention with color-coded pins. You can also choose to filter and prioritize by sales potential so that you're getting the most return for your effort. Once you've narrowed down the clients you need to visit, planning the day is only a few clicks away.
If you're out in the field and an appointment cancels, you can use eSpatial to make the most of that time. Using a drive-time buffer on the mobile app, you can check for clients nearby that may be available for a drop-in visit. The drive-time buffer will help you ensure you choose a visit that you can reach without being late for your next appointment. Then just edit your route on your smartphone.
2. Save office and driving time to maximize sales
Not only does route planning save time on the road, it saves time in the office as well. When combined with filtering, intelligent route planning can cut down the time it takes to plan your week. Rather than sifting through lines in a spreadsheet, mapping allows you to instantly see where your high-value clients are and who is due for a visit.
Once you've selected these leads, there's no need to enter each address in the order you'd like to visit them, as you would do on other platforms. Instead, you can easily select all your locations and eSpatial's intelligent route planning will find the most efficient route. If all your planning for the week is done in one day, you can create and save your route maps ahead of time.
3. Share your itinerary and directions
In some cases, office staff help support field sales reps by booking appointments and assisting with planning. eRouting route planning makes this easy. All the client information is available in one place, ensuring everyone is on the same page. Maps can be shared publicly or privately and can be opened directly on a mobile device. The sales rep can then open the direction in Google Maps for turn-by-turn navigation.
How to create a route from your map
1. Sign up and create a pin map
2. Analyze and target
Decide which clients or leads you'd like to visit. It can be helpful to use filtering or color coding during this process. For example, here we have color-coded the pins based on their estimated potential value. Now we can look for areas with a high number of red, high-value leads.
3. Select your appointments
Once you know who you'd like to visit, select the Routing button in the Control Panel on the left side of your screen. Once in routing mode, use the Add or Multi-add buttons to select them.
You can create a round trip or set separate start and finish locations. You can also click on Times to set the day and time you plan to leave, as well as how long you plan to spend at each stop. Next, select the Optimized box and click Get Route.
4. You've created a route
Congratulations, you've created your first route map! You can now save and share this map, as well as access it on your mobile app. eSpatial also allows you to open the turn-by-turn directions in Google Maps for live navigation.