• Cherry Yang

Airtable Sales CRM Fundamentals – Developing Improved Collaboration through Interactions Tables

Updated: Sep 24, 2021

Improving sales data greatly benefits both the sales team and the management team. It helps your sales team focus on the most promising sales activities that yield results, without duplicating tasks or losing track of important information. As a sales manager, it provides day-to-day visibility on your team allowing you to easily support your team as they identify areas for improvement in your sales workflow. Furthermore, clear data allows your sales team to tap sales opportunities, understand risks, and forecast results.

Airtable is an excellent tool for building a comprehensive sales CRM database. It is a powerful, intuitive, and visually appealing way to ensure every step your sales team takes counts. Our previous tutorial helped you set up a company table. We continue the series by setting up an ‘Interactions’ table.

Interaction Fields

The first step to creating an ‘Interactions’ table in Airtable begins with a single-select field titled ‘Date’. We recommend following the ISO date format (YYYY-MM-DD) as it is easier to sort the dates later.

The second field is the ‘Contact’ – this should be a linked field to the ‘Contacts’ table that we built in our last tutorial. If you missed it, check out our blog and video to create a ‘Contacts’ table.

The next field will be a single-select field for the ‘Representatives’ on your team so that you can keep track of who was interacting with your sales lead.

The fourth field, following ‘Representatives’, will be the ‘Type of Interaction’. This field, a single-select field, generally consisting of call, email, and in-person meeting options.

Please remember to customize this CRM database according to your company’s needs. For example, if you are a remote company, the options may be limited to call and email only.

This field is also a great opportunity to include non-traditional sales touchpoints such as video-chatting tools, conferences, or social media channels.

Next, we suggest moving the ‘Notes’ column to the end of our current fields. Ideally, you’ll want your sales team to make these notes as detailed as possible. When a sales team records comprehensive sales notes, it benefits your company in multiple ways:

  • Improves team collaboration.

  • Avoids duplicating work

  • Guides your teams to ask the right follow-up questions from sales leads

  • Ensure everyone is informed when connecting with your sales leads

Interaction ID

Now that we have set up all the necessary fields, we need to modify the primary name field to create a specific interaction ID so that each interaction can be uniquely identified and referenced. Do this by changing the primary ‘Name’ field to selecting a formula field that includes the date and interaction type.


We specify the date format so that it can be understood easily. Otherwise, Airtable presents a date format that is difficult to decipher. You can read more about the date formats that can be used here.

Interaction View Only

If all the tables are linked correctly; you will see all of the relevant interactions for that contact in the last column in the ‘Contacts’ table. The next step is creating easier access to these interactions and notes. To achieve this, we create an interactions-only view within the contact table.

Begin by creating a duplicate view of the grid view and renaming the view to ‘Interactions’.

This will be the working view – hide all the columns and toggle ‘interactions’ on.

Step 1: Most Recent Interaction

As a Sales Manager, you’ll likely want to see the most recent interaction date with a client. In our example, we notice that Dan had an interaction via email on 30th July and an in-person meeting on 31st July.

To pull the notes from the most recent in-person meeting, the first step to the process is to create a ‘Rollup’ field titled ‘Most Recent Interaction Date’ on the Contacts table Navigate to the Contacts table, Rollup based upon ‘Date’ and insert MAX (values) into the formula field.

Click on ‘Save’ to save the column setting.

Step 2: Most Recent Interaction

The next step is to return to the interactions table to create a new ‘Lookup’ field titled ‘Helper – Most Recent Interaction Date’. Configure it to the ‘Contacts’ table and rollup the ‘Most Recent Interaction Date’. This field allows us to pull the most recent interaction date based on the contact, rather than all sales interactions within your base.

In the quoted example, we notice that even though the sales team emailed Dan on 30th July 2020, Airtable now recognizes the last interaction date as an in-person meeting on 31st July

Step 3: Most Recent Interaction

Continuing on the interaction table, we will use a formula to determine which interaction is the most recent. To do this, we will create a formula field. The formula will compare the most recent interaction field (that we created in Step 2) and the most recent interaction date.

If both the dates are the same, the column will be marked as true. If it is not, then we will mark the column as false. Only the interactions that happened on the most recent date will be true.

If ({Helper – Most Recent Interaction Date}=Date, “TRUE”, “False”)

In our quoted example, the most recent interaction is the in-person meeting that happened on 31st July.

Step 4: Most Recent Interaction Note

In this step, we return to the ‘Contacts’ table, and create a ‘Lookup’ field called ‘Most Recent Interaction Note’. We will configure this to the ‘Interactions’ table and pull the ‘Notes’.

We will add a condition where the interaction field created in Step 3 – ‘Helper – Most Recent Interaction’ contains the word ‘True’.

Multiple Methods to Review Notes

Once you have added the interactions functionality to your Sales CRM database, Airtable lets you adjust row height according to the note length, making your note more legible.

In case your sales notes are lengthy, increasing row height can at times be counterproductive. You can always shorten the height, and alternatively, view the in-depth notes by clicking on the linked ‘Interactions’ table on the ‘Contacts’ table. This displays a pop-up with interaction details.

Begin the Right Way

Congratulations! As we reach the end of this tutorial, you are one step closer to an effective CRM database with Airtable. AirOps has designed more easy-to-understand Airtable tutorials to equip your CRM with key functionality. You can continue with our series by visiting here to view our “CRM for Killer Sales Teams” playlist on Youtube.

About Us

AirOps Consulting is a full-service database and automation consulting company. We help our clients build low code databases and automation using Airtable, Zapier, and custom scripts. Most importantly, we enable clients to harness the power of their data and improve efficiency with better systems. Book your initial consultation today!

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