Increasingly, computers and networks are providing the basis for sales force automation. In many companies, the sales force is being outfitted with internet based notebook computers that connect them to Web browsers, and sales contact management software that connect them to marketing websites on the Internet, extranets, and their company intranets. Characteristics of sales force automation include:
• Increases the personal productivity of salespeople.
• Dramatically speeds up the capture and analysis of sales data from the field to marketing managers at company headquarters.
• Allows marketing and sales management to improve the delivery of information and the support they provide to their salespeople.
• Many companies view sales force automation as a way to gain a strategic advantage in sales productivity and marketing responsiveness.