Time is critical for your field sales team. From guiding prospects through the sales process to engaging with leads and providing customer service, your reps spend a lot of time on sales activity. However, without an efficient route plan, it's easy for travel to get in the way of performance.
Route planning software is essential to any field sales business, enabling operations teams to develop the optimal route plan for each rep. More than mapping software, a true route planning solution connects with the rest of your systems to provide your team with complete visibility into daily routes, sales calls, client data, territory management and much more.
Line up every sales stop
Each field rep needs to hit multiple stops along their daily routes, but plotting this out with traditional sales mapping software and a long list of customer contacts is beyond tedious.
Modern route planning software automatically plots your leads, customers and prospects according to each territory, allowing you to interrogate performance and prioritize high-value clients. From there, you can divide and conquer, allocating each region and sales route to a specific field rep based on strengths, experience and client relationships.
Feed sales data directly into your map
Upload your historical sales data and client information into your routing map to instantly generate a comprehensive view of all your prospects. Filter these by attributes like location, priority and last visit to ensure each sales rep visits a set number of high-value leads. Then, you can confirm your schedules and create individual itineraries with specific appointment times and addresses.
With your customer visits mapped out, it's time to switch to territory management. Using eTerritory, you can design, align and visualize each sales territory on a map. Then you can optimize each area for workload, sales potential or any critical metric that grows revenue. Optimizing territories before routes is crucial, as it determines the region each rep must cover and identifies the best hotspots of high-value clients.
While developing and outlining your field sales territories, it's important to clearly define the boundaries between regions. With territory management software, it's easy to identify and manage areas of overlap and avoid any potential conflicts this might cause within your sales team and among customers. Additionally, you can add intentional territory overlap to have multiple reps with different products visit your customers, by using a points-based territory alignment.
Map out multiple routes
Once you've drawn your territory borders, the true sales route planning begins. Rather than manually entering addresses into a consumer-level app like Google Maps, use an all-in-one route planning solution. Simply choose the stops for each rep and powerful algorithms automatically generate multiple optimized routes.
Visualize multiple stops
Visualizing pinpoints on a map is one thing, but route planning software, like eRouting, provides multiple detailed views, from whole territories down to individual routes. In addition to visualizing each rep's routes, you also get data, like average drive time and heatmaps. These insights enable you to identify and address any coverage gaps to boost sales productivity.
Collaborate on planning weeks ahead
As you create your perfect sales route map, you'll want to ensure that everybody is on the same page. A sales route planning solution makes it easy to collaborate with your team and reps by sharing interactive maps to collect feedback and plan weeks in advance. Beyond plotted points, you can also communicate details like route itineraries, scheduled appointments, directions and much more.
With a centralized platform, all of your reps and office staff have access to a single source of data, making cross-collaboration easy and efficient. Customizable permissions also enable you to control how much the recipient is able to interact with your maps when you just want to share results. Plus, reminder notifications can automatically alert your team whenever you share important information.
Optimized Route Planning
While a predetermined, strategic route plan is essential to sales performance, any field rep can tell you that the day doesn't always go as planned. Whether it's an unexpected traffic or weather delay, or a last-minute reschedule or cancellation, field sales reps have to deal with a lot of disruptions.
To overcome these unforeseen yet frequent challenges, your team needs route planning software that comes with optimization features. But what's the difference between planning and optimization?
- Route planning generates the fastest route for multiple stops, so your reps know what to expect before they start driving.
- Route optimization enables drivers to adjust their routes on the go based on changing schedules and other factors, while ensuring you maximize selling time and minimize travel.
Meeting start and end times and add any appointment notes they may have taken. This data is automatically sent to operations teams to keep track of drivers and monitor sales performance.
With route optimization software, like eRouting, you can:
Find the most efficient routes
eRouting uses your sales, client and territory data to generate the most efficient route for each field rep. Set these route plans to prioritize high-value leads based on client heatmaps and data from your CRM. With this information in place, the eRouting recommendations engine calculates the optimal route between priority clients for each rep, saving you time and energy.
Maximize available selling time
Route optimization features allow drivers to minimize travel time and maximize sales productivity. When a meeting goes over time or a schedule change occurs, your reps can adjust their routes to stay on track for the next appointment. eRouting even enables each rep to add one more call per day with dynamic re-optimization capabilities.
Boost sales productivity
By saving more time for sales activity, route planning software can have huge benefits for rep productivity and sales performance. More face-to-face time with customers means better service, higher engagement and a greater likelihood of buying.