Estimated reading time: 5 minutes
- Background information to consider before you buy
- Steps to take before you buy Sales Enablement Technology
- How do you determine the right Sales Enablement Technology for you?
- Sales Enablement Platforms To Consider
- Do you need help evaluating selling platforms?
What are the best sales enablement tools for your business? They all sound the same, so how do you make the right decision?
In this article, we will:
- Background information to consider before you buy
- Share insights on what you want to do before buying sales enablement software.
- Give you an approach to think through your requirements for your sales enablement platforms.
Before we go too far, we know that there is a poor understanding of Sales Enablement and Revenue Enablement in many businesses and parts of the world. If you need a refresher, check out either of our linked articles and then come back.
Background information to consider before you buy
We always begin with WHY, WHO, and HOW.
What business problem are we trying to solve?
Are we looking to improve forecast accuracy?
Perhaps we want to improve win rates?
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?
Consider that not all Sales Enablement platforms offer all capabilities. You may be looking for tools for:
- Sales Operations
- Sales content management
- Content Creation
- Content curation
- Content delivery
- Sales training
- Sales coaching
- Social Selling
- Document automation
- Collaboration and communication
- Project Management
Many vendors create solutions in these areas, calling them all Sales Enablement solutions. Where do you start?
It doesn’t take long to determine the best sales enablement tool for your business might be a bit more complicated than you initially hoped.
Steps to take before you buy Sales Enablement Technology
If you are beginning your Enablement program or stepping back to reassess, do not rush into buying Sales Enablement platforms.
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?
- Have you analyzed your buyer’s journey? Customer’s journey? Your sales process?
- Have you identified pain points for prospects, customers, and your customer-facing teams?
- As a result of this strategy, have you pinpointed what teams you will initially focus on helping in the sales organization?
- Do you know where in the sales cycle you will focus?
- 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, human resources, and other critical stakeholders on the technology teams?
Note: You are not ready at this point to evaluate potential sales enablement tools. Please read through the next section, complete it, and then you are prepared 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 department and sales leaders have access to use.
You may discover many selling tools used by a handful of sales professionals, one or two key sales leaders — a waste.
For each tool, 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?
- How is it impacting sales performance (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 we look across an entire organization, we find tool duplication, tool underutilization, and lack of integration across tools, meaning you are not optimizing your investment.
Dozens of tools lead to isolated sales data pockets from which you cannot make intelligent decisions – a recipe for sub-optimal performance.
This technology sprawl is a problem for businesses of all sizes; you are not alone.
Note: You should perform this analysis at least once a year to optimize your technology investment in selling platforms.
How do you determine the right Sales Enablement Technology for you?
There are dozens of example Enablement RFI templates available (consider using ours), many of which originate from vendors, slightly slanted towards their sales enablement platform.
Before rushing out to download one of those to determine what sales enablement software you want to buy, let’s use the information we gathered above to determine what your business needs in the sales enablement solution you choose.
In addition, consider:
- How much time are they currently selling versus entering data into the customer relationship management (CRM) platforms?
- How much time is your sales force spending searching for content or training?
- How much time are team members investing in creating custom decks?
- Are your sales managers spending sufficient time coaching their teams?
And, yes, this is but a small handful of questions to consider.
Are you looking for a list of sales enablement tools?
Sales Enablement Platforms To Consider
Trust Enablement will be performing an in-depth analysis of all tools in the Sales Enablement Platforms space shortly. For now, we are beginning with a simple breakdown of Sales Enablement Content Creation tools with our State of Sales Enablement Content Insights Report.
As we work through these reports, we will update our list of sales enablement tools to align with those we are reviewing.
For now, that means we will list selling tools related to sales content.
Sales Content Creation Tools
- Data Dwell
Do you need help evaluating selling platforms?
If you need our strategic support in evaluation sales enablement platforms, and selling platforms overall, check out our Enablement solutioning strategy services.
Living Enablement as a practitioner and as a leader. I’ve seen the confusion and frustration that many practitioners live. From working in other areas of the business, I’ve also seen the genuine need for the capabilities that enablement provides.