What are the best sales enablement tools for your business?

Choosing the right sales enablement technology does not have to be complicatedWhat are the best sales enablement tools for your business?

Given the poor understanding of sales enablement, it likely feels challenging to answer that question.

Are you considering sales operations tools? Sales content management, creation, curation, and delivery tools? Sales training and coaching technologies?

Are we attempting to answer the question for our inside sales reps or our outside sales team? The channel? Perhaps for our marketing teams, sales managers, or customer success?

It doesn’t take long to see that determining the best sales enablement tool for your business might be a bit more complicated than you originally were hoping.

In this article, I want to share my thoughts on when it is the right time to consider buying technology and how you go about narrowing down the choices for your business needs.

Finally, I want to ask the reader to share your thoughts on the best enablement software you have used.

And yes, this guide is a work in progress. I will be spending more time here as finding a great sales enablement tool for your needs should not be so difficult.

A quick note

When I say Sales Enablement Technology, I include Revenue Enablement Technology as well.

While Revenue Enablement is being rapidly adopted, people are still searching more often for sales enablement, and I want to ensure they find our articles easily.

When do you buy Sales Enablement Technology?

If you are beginning your Enablement program or stepping back to reassess, do not rush into buying a Sales Enablement platform.

Yes, you will want one eventually, but it is far more important to first work through the following.

  • Do you have a Sales Enablement Strategy in place?
  • As a result of this strategy, have you pinpointed where in the sales organization you will initially focus, where in the sales cycle, and for what scenarios?
  • Do you have a clear picture of all sales tools used in the entire company, for what purpose, and how you want data to flow through each?
  • Building on the last point, do you know where you want to pull reporting data, the correct information you require to guide your efforts and align with IT, Operations, and other critical stakeholders on the technology teams?

Pro Tip:  You are not ready at this point to evaluate potential sales enablement tools.  Read through the next section, complete it, and then you are ready to begin your journey to identify the right Sales Enablement Software for your business.

How well is the existing technology stack working

As you consider this question, keep in mind that you have likely identified dozens of powerful tools that your sales teams and sales leaders have access to use.

You may have discovered that many are used by a handful of sales professionals, one or two key sales leaders, but not being used fully.

For each tool, step back, and determine and document the following:

  • What problems is the tool helping the business solve?
  • What is the current cost?
  • What % of the team is using it?
  • What value is it creating now (ROI)?
  • Does it integrate with other pieces of your tech stack?

You are likely to identify many tools that can be consolidated, tossed out, or optimized to take advantage of a broader set of features than you currently are using.

Too often, when you look across an entire organization, you find tool duplication, tool underutilization, and lack of integration across tools, meaning you are not optimizing your investment. The result, dozens of tools leading to isolated pockets of sales data from which no intelligent decisions can be made.

How do you determine the right Sales Enablement Technology for you?

There are dozens of example Enablement RFI templates available, many of which originate from one vendor or another, slightly slanted towards their solutions.

Before rushing out to download one of those to determine what sales enablement software you want to buy, let’s use the information we have gathered above to determine what your business needs in the sales enablement solution you choose.

You likely know the answers to these questions already if you have developed your strategy and enablement charter and analyzed existing tools and business needs, but let’s start with the following questions.

  • What programs are most important for my sales enablement teams to start? (Sales training, coaching, onboarding, sales content, etc…)
  • Is this need for teams primarily in the field and looking for mobile apps or back in the office emailing and making phone calls?
  • How much time are they currently spending selling versus entering data into customer relationship management (CRM) system, creating custom decks, and so forth? And, do I need to adjust any of that?
  • Back to sales data, does this need to feedback into existing business intelligence solutions for higher-level decision making, back to sales managers for real-time adjustments, or simply back to the sales enablement program managers to guide the enablement program?
  • Am I purely working to impact the buyer’s journey, or am I also looking at the customer’s journey?

And, yes, this is but a small handful of questions to consider.

As noted, this is a work in progress, expect many more iterations to come in the near future.

What is your favorite sales enablement technology?

Submit your nomination.  We will then add the technology to our Product Review area.