The global sales force automation software market size was valued at USD 7.29 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.3% from 2020 to 2027. The growth can be attributed to the increasing adoption of cloud sales force automation (SFA) software. Increasing demand for sales forecasting applications in the banking, retail, and IT and telecom sectors is anticipated to foster growth. Moreover, the use of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and deployment of cloud technology are the factors anticipated to foster growth. The market has been subject to several new developments in recent years. Technology, such as artificial intelligence is gaining tremendous traction and is projected to drive transformation across the sales automation process. For instance, AI is building practical value for sales management by automating, expanding, and supercharging the way deals are conducted.
The most important use cases of AI in SFA software are predictive lead scoring, which offers each sale lead a score demonstrating the probability of it converting into an opportunity, forecasting, and smart recommendations for all the product or service categories for all the business sectors. These features are enhancing the capabilities of the software and are projected to boost the demand over the forecast period.
Sales force automation is a technique used in business where specialized software is used to automate the tasks that are done by humans. Moreover, SFA software is similar to customer relations management (CRM) software. However, SFA is more specialized than CRM which is designed specifically for the process of direct sales to companies. The advantages SFA have over CRM is that it includes special features such as processing of orders, information sharing among sales personnel, managing client contact information, control and reordering, inventory monitoring, sales projections, tracking of orders, and employee evaluations.
SFA software collects a large amount of data from multiple customer touch points and this data is accessible via several devices in a cloud deployment. Thus, data security and piracy is a concern hampering the growth of the sales force automation software market. Moreover, governments are implementing rules and regulations such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to strengthen the regulatory framework. This, coupled with the launch of updated automation solutions from the key players, which include two factor authentication and other security checks, are projected to resolve data security concerns, propelling the market growth during the forecast period.
The cloud segment dominated the market with a share of over 60% in 2019. The utility of cloud has helped enterprises in bringing together all the customer information on an integrated platform incorporating lead generation, marketing, sales, customer service, and business analytics. Moreover, the flexibility, scalability, and security aspects of cloud technology have also helped in promoting the growth of cloud technology. In addition, large businesses are investing heavily in setting up their cloud-based automation solutions, which is too driving the growth of the market.
Furthermore, with the availability of pay per use, pay as you go, and subscription-based pricing model for cloud deployment, the demand from small scale organizations is on a rise. Cloud computing is aiding businesses to be more effective and the consolidation of both clouds and analytics is helping enterprises to process, store, and interpret their data to better meet their customer’s needs. Cloud computing and analytics has the exceptional potential to derive insights with respect to productivity, customer behavior, and customer experience over the forecast period.
North America accounted for the largest revenue share of over 50% in 2019. Increasing investments from large organizations for sales automation is primarily driving the growth of the regional market. Furthermore, the close affinity to the key players and easy access to artificial intelligence-based sales force automation solutions is driving the market growth in the region. The availability of cloud-based software, which offers more customizing options along with improved data security and privacy measures, is driving the demand in Europe.
The growing retail, banking and financial services, and IT and telecom sectors in Asia Pacific are offering new growth opportunities for the key players. With the availability of artificial intelligence backed sales force automation applications, large enterprises across industries in the region are aggressively investing in the software. The “Made in China 2025” initiative of China and India’s “Make in India” program is likely to bring in significant investments in IT, technology, and innovation. Furthermore, SMEs and startups are progressively investing in SFA to customize and combine customer communication from various channels into one single integrated solution.