Italian auction house Aste33 leverages Zoho CRM to increase revenue by 20%

"Zoho CRM has proved to be a versatile product with excellent integration capability and scalability at the most affordable cost in the market. Frequent updates to enhance the stability and customization of the tool adds value, along with its integrations with external applications."

Andrea Massarotto Founding board member, Aste33

The company

Established in 2016, Aste33 is an Italian auction house which deals with the sale and divestment of movable and immovable assets mainly derived from insolvency procedures, bankruptcies, and estimate agreements. The company deals with immovable assets such as residences (villas, cottages, apartments, etc.), land (agricultural, with building potential, etc.), and commercial (warehouses, shops, etc.), as well as movable assets, like machinery for industries, tools, motor vehicles, antiques, boats, and more.

Aste33 has also been managing private auctions through a reliable and verified procedure which guarantees transparency and competitiveness. The company manages the entire sales procedure from estimating the value of goods to post-auction assistance. Its aim is to bring supply and demand together to create the best conditions for selling.

In 2020, Aste33 established its online platform, which allows its customers to carry out telematic auctions—meaning users can participate in auctions and win assets even when they aren't physically present. This innovative approach has made it feasible to make purchases at auction electronically and gave Aste33 a competitive edge. Aste33 manages about 1,200 properties and receive assignments to sell movable assets from 250 bankruptcies annually, with an annual turnover of one million euros.

The challenge

The management team at Aste33 was planning to step into the world of digitization when they realized they would need to replace some of their legacy systems to enhance their business process. They required a solution which could orchestrate the entire business process and ensure every application communicates with the others. Being that the auction world is a complex one, it was paramount that Aste33 adopt a tool that would provide a highly professional service to all the parties involved at every stage of the sales process. This is where they were introduced to Zoho One.

The time period between an order date and an auction date is so short that Aste33 needed a powerful CRM solution to pull potential buyer's data, organize it, and present it to the sales team to follow up, assess whether the auctionee is suitable, and facilitate the entire sales process. The major pain point Zoho CRM addressed was the integration between Aste33's website and its administrative management system to avoid any disruption in the flow of data and contacts.

"An auction house thrives on contacts and relationships; therefore, grouping them and managing them optimally was the first challenge"

Andrea Massarotto Founding board member, Aste33

Why Zoho?

Aste33 was ready to start hunting for the most compatible solution for its business. They evaluated Zoho, along with the other alternatives such as HubSpot and Salesforce, but moved ahead with Zoho due to its excellent integration capabilities, which enabled them to easily integrate all existing business processes across Zoho One's applications. Aste33 was also impressed by Zoho's cost per license, which was the lowest among all the other options. Zoho's scaling capability also enabled them to envision an expansion of the business.

Implementation with Cloudnova

Cloudnova is a Zoho Advanced Partner based in Italy which specializes in CRM, inbound marketing, and marketing automation. They've been with Zoho since 2011 and are fully conversant with Zoho's suite of business solutions. Read more about Cloudnova here.

Cloudnova has played a critical role in implementing the Zoho One suite for Aste33. From the start, the Cloudnova team was well aware of Aste33's complex business processes and knew they needed to handle this implementation with utmost diligence. The process started with learning about all the business processes involved, from receiving orders to post-auction support. Cloudnova developed a structured process that would enable Aste33 to better manage these business processes. The first tool implemented was Zoho CRM, which served to manage all of Aste33's contacts, followed by Zoho Survey for collecting all relevant information from prospects, SalesIQ for assisting website visitors and potential prospects, and Zoho Campaigns for managing email marketing campaigns to draw in potential bidders. Upon completion of the implementation, Cloudnova also arranged various Zoho training sessions for the Aste33 team.

The solution

Aste33 has a unique sales process which involves order placement for the auction, finding potential purchasers, communicating and understanding their requirements and matching them with the auction lot, educating about the auctions process and updating the potential buyers with all the developments, conducting auction, preparing logistics, and post-auction service. The company needed a solution that could streamline these different sales stages and facilitate smooth auctions.

Once an order is received, the auction lots are listed on the website, which is integrated with Zoho Survey. This integration allows the team to collect prospects' requirements and helps map those requirements within the CRM. The whole process of extracting the leads from the website and pooling them in the CRM is automated using workflow rules. Zoho CRM and Zoho Survey's integration has ensured a smooth flow of data without missing any details. Zoho Survey's questionnaires collect prospective buyers' detailed requirements, which enhances future communications with them. The workflow rules create follow-up tasks and activities for the respective sales members, which enables them to follow up without missing on any communication.

Aste33 has also integrated SalesIQ with their website and CRM, which further enables the team to capture all communications that have occurred over chat while assisting customers and to store that data in the CRM. This enables the entire sales process and keeps the team well-informed about all developments with a prospect.

Zoho Campaigns and its integration with CRM have enabled the team to communicate with prospects much more efficiently by keeping them informed about auction dates and sending updates via email.

"It is our greatest relief that all contacts arriving from our digital contact points (social, site) are not lost, but managed within our database," Massarotto says.

The sales team uses Zoho CRM to keep track of prospects and their requirements so as to serve them well during auctions, the invoice team uses it to send invoices and close deals, and the marketing team uses the platform to collect and analyze campaign results to plan their next course of action. Zoho CRM dashboards are used by all teams to achieve better visibility into their performance. The sales team uses a dashboard to analyze the success rate of the auctions, which enables them to enhance the process further.

Reports empower the finance and sales teams to analyze the profits gained from auctions, analyze business health, track the team's performances, and so on.

  • Industry type Real Estate
  • Employees Below 50 Employees
  • Type of business Privately held

Features that helped us

Integration Workflow Reports Dashboard

Looking forward

Aste33 plans to expand its private auctions and position them as a new way of selling movable and immovable properties. It believes Zoho CRM has a pivotal role to play in this expansion by serving as a fulcrum of all the marketing and sales activities for private auctions. One of its goals is to increase its pool of potential clients and convert them into loyal, long-term customers. This can be achieved by creating a series of activities aimed at having regular follow-ups with its prospects. Using Zoho, Aste33 intends to create a system which allows the entire auction process to be managed completely online—a real standout on the Italian landscape.

As of now, Aste33 has achieved a 20% increase in revenue after implementing Zoho CRM and is proud to have made the right choice.

Share your Zoho CRM success story!

Complete a quick survey, and we’ll get in touch with you soon.

Submit your story