The primary purpose of any business is to grow and expand; thus leading to higher profits and enhanced success over time. When it comes to the overall growth of a business, sales generally play the major role.
While the business needs to focus on elements like trust and customer relations, the number of sales produced by the internal teams is what makes or breaks the company.
Efficiency is a critical factor when it comes to the sales team. No longer do we depend on manual notes to communicate, but rather use technology as a way to streamline the sales process.
This is where sales enablement technology comes into the picture. We take a closer look at what this technology is and how it can help a business throughout its sales process.
Sales Enablement – Here Are The Basics
Sales enablement is a term that we would see when looking at business strategies that help the brand succeed, but do you truly understand what it means?
The term “sales enablement” refers to a range of strategies, tools, and technologies that can be used among sales teams. When multiple individuals are part of the sales team, there are often different processes and departments too.
Sales enablement consists of strategies that allow these departments to work together more efficiently. In turn, the company is able to build more trust among customers, while also avoiding errors while a sale is being processed.
There are three basic principles that are generally associated with sales enablement strategies. Let’s take a look at these basics:
- Information: Appropriate information of the consumer needs to be provided to the sales agent – regardless of their position or department. The team member can deliver a more personalized pitch or presentation to the client when they have a better idea of their needs, as well as the expectations. The sales enablement system should provide the right content for both agent and consumer. This ultimately helps to drive more sales.
- Content: Agents who are more acknowledged about the products or services being sold have a better chance of sealing the deal. This essentially drives more sales. Thus, sufficient content related to the business, the visions of the brand, and the offers made available to consumers should be offered to the agent. This also includes training material that helps the agent get familiar with the sales content and the products or services they are going to sell.
- Tools: The right software can make a significant difference in a sales enablement strategy. Tools should be provided to sales agents to streamline the process of drawing up reports, opening up a client’s profile, or sending out information that could result in a successful sale – all of which are important in sales enablement.
When the combination of these three elements is covered in the strategy, then the brand has a better chance at growing. The sales enablement system used also becomes more effective. The element provides each member of the sales team an opportunity to be more efficient, regardless of the role they play in the process.
What Exactly Is Sales Enablement Technology?
When looking at the sales content of a company, the technology and tools used play a crucial role. Thanks to advancements in modern technologies, team members are now able to communicate effectively between departments – without having to visit another floor in a building or driving to another location.
Sales enablement technology is a general term that is used to refer to these tools that are used among members of a sales team.
It should be noted, however, that there are certain criteria that should be met before a tool can be effectively classified into the category of sales enablement.
The idea behind sales enablement technology is to ensure relevant information and content is provided to the sales agent. The content provided should enable the sales agent to assist the consumer – based on the individual’s current position within the company’s process content or funnel.
The technology plays a role throughout the entire process – from the moment an offer is presented to the potential consumer, up to the point where they become a client.
Some companies may push things a step further, incorporating post-sale support and functions into the sales enablement strategy utilized. This ensures agents that provide after-sales support can also deliver appropriate services to the client as they gain access to relevant content.
How Does A Sales Enablement Strategy Assist Sales Teams?
Some businesses are not sure if they are in need of sales enablement technology. By understanding how the process works and how it helps the sales team, the company is able to make a more informed decision.
Thus, let’s take a closer look at how the use of sales enablement technology helps the sales team by considering an example scenario.
Capturing The Lead
The sales process starts with a consumer showing interest in a product or service sold by the company. At this point, the individual may only be looking around, or they could be comparing prices and offerings from different businesses.
At this point, the consumer might enter their details for a free report. This already shows the business that the customer is interested in a specific subject – but may not be ready to buy right away.
From here, details of the individual get added to the sales enablement software – and moves toward an initial department. The first department may focus on pre-qualifying leads – this helps the business categorize leads according to the quality (how much interest the person may have in a paid product or service).
The Pre-Qualification Phase
The pre-qualification department may use phone calls or email conversations to initiate communication with the new lead. The specific method of communication depends on the details collected on the landing page, as well as the consumer’s preferences. During the pre-qualification process, the customer is also introduced to the company and provided details about current offers. Sales enablement technology can be used to also deliver personalized content at this point – which allows the sales agent to present details related to the consumer’s interest.
Finalizing A Sale
If the consumer shows interest, they are then sent toward the next department. Follow-ups can also be scheduled if the consumer is only interested at a later date – which can be recorded in the tools utilized and presented to a sales agent at the appropriate time.
The next department may focus on obtaining the customer’s details to finalize the sale. In order to speed up the process, the sales enablement technology loads up the consumer’s full profile upon request – which means the sales agent has less data entry to do, and can often simply go through a few verification questions.
Support After Making A Sale
Once the sale has been processed, the technology continues to play a role – ensuring customers are able to receive continuous support without providing all their details every time they phone in or submit a ticket online.
Must Have Features Of Sales Enablement Technology
Many software and web development companies have created sales enablement technology. A large number of these systems are available to both small and larger businesses, often with a cloud-based backend for extra security and ease of access.
Unfortunately, not all of the tools on the market are able to fully satisfy the entire process or accommodate the needs of a business. With this in mind, there are a few essential factors a business owner should look at before deciding on a specific software suite. We take a closer look at these factors below.
Content Management System As Part Of Sales Enablement Tools
Content is a key factor in sales enablement technology. When implementing a sales enablement solution, it’s crucial for the company to be able to deliver important content to the agent. The agent will then use this information to provide an overview of products or services, and present specific offers to the consumer.
Thus, enablement technology should include some type of content management system. Also known as a CMS, this system should allow staff with higher authority to create content that sales agents can use when communicating with the consumer. Content may include current specials, a full pricing guide, as well as templates that can be used while communicating.
It is also important to ensure agents are able to access consumer data on demand. With this in mind, you also want to make sure the tools you use incorporate customer relations features. These systems should ideally create an initial profile once a person becomes a lead – such as when they show interest in a product or enter their details to download a guide.
The customer’s profile will then be updated throughout the process. If the customer shows interest in a specific product, this will be noted on their profile. A customer relations function also allows sales agents to view customer invoices, payments, and other data that makes the process of providing support more efficient.
Many sales enablement software will refer to this part of the software as the Customer Relations Management platform or department.
When your company offers the consumer access to a specific platform, there will often be a learning curve. When the consumer continuously calls in for support, it takes up space on the agent’s schedule. Implementing a learning management system as part of your sales enablement strategy can make this part of the process more efficient. Agents are able to quickly access data related to the consumer’s problems – and training can be sent to the customer with just a few clicks.
Consultants who are new to the sales team may have difficulty catching up or getting used to the way your business works. Thus, sales coaching should also be considered as a feature when implementing sales enablement technology.
Best Practices For Sales Enablement Technology
The efficiency of sales enablement technology largely depends on the specific tools that you decide to implement. Once implemented, it is important to ensure agents work with the tools in the correct manner.
Here are some tips for best practices related to the sales enablement technology you use:
- Ensure every agent understands their position in the sales engagement.
- Be cautious when setting up permissions and user roles. Limiting access to certain information could add extra steps to an agent’s process when they want to follow up on a sale or process data submitted by a consumer.
- Make sure all steps are recorded on the tool – this reduces the risk of errors and ensures no manual data entry work is needed.
- Choose your tools based on functions and integrations. Setting up multiple tools that integrate with each other can significantly speed up internal processes.
- Provide agents with relevant training tools and resources to help them familiarize themselves with the system. Using a new system can slow down sales agents if they do not know how to operate the platform or navigate through various features.
Business owners often consider the sales enablement strategy to only be a vital part for the sales team. In addition to the sales team, it should be noted that these symptoms also offer benefits for the consumer. Sales enablement provides a way for the sales and marketing team to provide faster responses when a customer has a query. The sales teams can quickly load up a customer’s profile by simply entering a reference, cellphone, or ID number.
The right set of sales enablement software can also give the client easier access to important training materials. This ensures the sales and marketing team has less problems regarding the usage of the system among customers – and can rather focus on adding more sales to their portfolio.
Incorporate Gamification Into Your Sales And Marketing Strategies
Sales and marketing teams need to be motivated to ensure they perform well – and one of the best strategies for this is gamification. Gamification in sales enablement creates a type of scoreboard that displays the statistics of each member of the sales teams. Members will then strive toward achieving top rank – which allows them to be rewarded in the process.
Sales enablement technology offers an effective series of features and tools that businesses can use to succeed. There are different tools that can be used when setting up a sales enablement solution, but understanding the purpose and what to look for should always be the initial step. This allows decision makers to choose tools that promote enhanced efficiency, while also ensuring the needs and expectations of the sales team, as well as the company, can be met.