The Importance of Route Optimization for the Sales Team
Every sales staff needs to maintain a swift flow of sales to achieve consistent business growth. A company’s field sales team needs to travel several miles each day to meet clients at their locations, and the number of clients they serve depends on how their routes are planned.
This goal can be challenging without an efficient and quick sales route. Inefficient travel routes may lead to wastage of time and fuel expenses.
Also, the employee will get tired due to long hours of drive, poorly planned routes, and clients will be forced to wait, making them more stressed and disappointed.
Hence, increasing the efficiency of travel routes provides businesses with a lot of benefits, including an increase in steady sales, better organization, and greater productivity. Route optimization software can help your sales team identify the fastest and most efficient routes and plan their sales travel accordingly.
This leads to a drastic reduction in fuel expenses and the time field sales reps spend behind the wheel gets minimized.
According to a survey by MarketsAndMarkets, “The route optimization software market size is expected to grow from USD 2.95 billion in 2018 to USD 5.07 billion by 2023, at a CAGR of 11.4% from 2018 to 2023.”
What is Route Optimization?
Route optimization is a method of improving routes for better efficiency, time-saving, and cost-effectiveness. It helps the sales team to increase productivity, complete deliveries, attend meetings on time while taking into account many factors like employee schedules, available hours, traffic stops, distance, ETA’s, and much more.
An effective route optimization software must update in real-time, utilize location-based data, share routes with others, integrate with sales force management software.
Why is Route Optimization Important for Sales?
What if you get an option to save time and money and get more sales at the same time?
In recent times, there are few technologies that can offer you the opportunity to both save time and earn money together. Yes, that’s exactly what route optimization does. Route optimization helps in creating the perfect and efficient routes for your sales team every time.
It offers a wide stretch of benefits for the sales reps, such as more time to sell, better customer service, and morale.
For outside sales, the potential to get to clients quickly and accurately is important. If your sales team is targeting to get more sales, then they can’t afford to take the slowest routes.
The route optimization software is a way to swiftly plan routes on a professional level. It incorporates advanced location intelligence-based data technology to take into account anticipated traffic and route modeling.
Route optimization makes sure that the sales reps not only get to their customers as quickly as possible but also use the most fuel-effective travel. This software is highly advantageous for the sales team working in the field.
Route optimization makes route planning faster and more accurate, no matter how complicated the routes are.
How Route Optimization Benefits Sales Team
When we talk about the benefits of route optimization in the sales process, there are many that can be listed out. To start with, it makes sure to be highly efficient travelling between multiple tasks and meeting locations.
However, to be more precise route optimization is not about taking the shortcuts between two task points. Instead, it helps the sales team in taking the quickest and the easiest route that takes into account traffic jams, tonnage, no-entry zone, and other route factors to ensure that the sales employee reaches his meeting location in the shortest possible time at a lower cost.
Saves Time and Better On-time Performance
Route optimization helps in saving travel time and resources by getting the sales staff to their destination in the fastest manner possible. Thus, it significantly cuts down travel time and thus maximizes the number of daily tasks completed by the sales team.
Route optimization improves overall fleet productivity by allowing deliveries to be completed more swiftly. Fast and efficient deliveries not only increase the sales team’s on-time performance but also help in satisfying the customers without keeping them waiting for deliveries and services.
When the task or delivery time of the employee reduces, managers can assign them more jobs to improve the sales bottom line.
Cuts Fuel Cost by Saving Miles Travelled
When it comes to sales expenses and reimbursement one of the major contributors to transportation costs is fuel. Also, fuel costs are continually rising these days, so optimizing routes is a key way to reduce expenses.
Route optimization software helps the sales team in reducing the time spent on vehicles on the road. This means fewer miles driven on the road, and less time is taken, which naturally brings down the cost of transportation.
Instead of wasting fuel on long traffic jams or backtracking for orders, route optimization will display the most cost-efficient route to each destination of sales staff and prioritize routes with the nearest task locations. As the distance travelled is minimized, automatically fuel efficiency improves.
Since route optimization helps in finding traffic congestion on the way, fuel wastage on account of excessive idling is also reduced.
And when we sum up the total money spent on fuel expenses by each employee, on a monthly or weekly basis, this can add up to considerable savings to the company’s account.
Improves Sales Productivity and Profitability
The benefits of route optimization stretch across sales team activities in the form of better delivery, sales productivity, reduced operational costs, enhanced customer experience, and more. Route optimization helps in increasing the number of drops and pickups, tasks performed, targets achieved allowing the sales personnel to attempt much more sales targets and daily task completions in much less time than pre-optimization.
This, thereby, enhances the sales employees’ productivity, making each sale or delivery trip more profitable than before.
Besides, by incorporating route optimization software into the supply chain model, as a company, will be empowered to save many hours and money spent on manual labor, manual dependencies, and the opportunity costs thereof. Route optimization is the simplest and easy way out for any company planning for greater revenue, better time savings, and an effortless flow of sales processes.
Enhance Customer Satisfaction and Experience
When we discuss business and sales, obviously we have to look up to our immense competitions with whom we have to play really hard to win. Also, we need to keep in mind that if one company fails to meet customer expectations, the customers have tons of other options to instead reach out to.
Route optimization will support the company’s response to increasing customer demands, improve service levels and build a competitive advantage.
With Route optimization, sales employees can keep their customers intact, and let’s improve customer service by offering precise ETA’s, efficient and on-time deliveries, and shorter turnaround times. This results in a better customer experience overall.
As the sales staff plan and optimize their routes accurately beforehand, they can spend more time serving customers and improve overall customer satisfaction. Moreover, handling sudden client meetings becomes easy as it is easy to modify the route to include more waypoints and reach before time to get prepared.
Finally, in the long run, this means satisfied and happy customers, customer retention growth, which directly has a positive impact on sales growth.
A Better Alternative to Manual Route Planning
Are you still using the manual method to optimize your routes pen, paper, or google maps? If your answer is yes, then you are possibly losing something big due to an old route planning system. You might hire the best professional who might, perhaps, manually optimize the best and most efficient routes for your sales team to follow for deliveries and meetings.
However, what will happen to these routes when there’s a sudden blockage or a last-minute contingency like a traffic jam owing to an accident or public event?
In such difficult situations, a manual route planning application can easily lead to errors, delays, staff, or incorrect deliveries lagging customer satisfaction. However, this could prove to be very expensive for the company in the long sales run.
Instead, it is better if you embrace today’s automated route optimization software solution that will streamline your daily route plans and save you a significant amount of time and money. Route optimization makes a real-time, on-ground, end-to-end visibility of the travel and routes you take.
It helps sales employees to focus and drive their operations on location intelligence factors like GPS tracking and real-time traffic situations.
Having intelligent and reliable route optimization software is the core of a good sales force management solution. It is one of the most needed features in an SFA solution that must be given more importance right from the beginning.
The effective route optimization software is sure to assist the sales team in many ways that can support them in increasing their sales plans and ensure a smooth operational flow between sales routes. Efficient and time-saving routes are sure to impact the overall productivity and profitability of the company.
It will have a direct impression on the performance of the sales, customer satisfaction levels, and the ease with which the business is operated.
With the various advantages that route optimization offers, companies can afford to invest in one. By finding the best one for your sales team, you can build a better business culture and a happier sales team.