Simply put, every organization out there wants to close more sales, but in most cases, sales aren’t where you want or need them to be. According to a 2016 Sales Benchmark Index report, more than 80% of CEOs feel like they have an inefficient sales process. Most of them think that their company makes it difficult for them to meet their quota, requiring them to do tons of administrative work and not providing them with the right tools. So the question is – what can companies do better to support their sales team, so they can close more sales? Or better yet, what tools they need to provide in order to free up their salespeople?
1. Customer Relation Management Software
If you don’t already know, Customer Relation Management is a strategy for managing all your business’s interactions and relationships with your potential and current customers. Basically, good CMR software enables your team to focus on your company’s relationship with individual customers. Today, more than 90% of organizations with 11 or more employees use CRM software, according to BuyerZone’s State of B2B Lead Generation report.
More importantly, a good customer relation management software can help your team stay organized and completely focused on their tasks. First-class tools like Pipeliner CRM provide transparency into the entire sales process. The user-friendly dashboard displays everything from lead generation to contact management. In addition, it is also compatible with both Mac and Windows and offers an app for iPhones, iPads, and Android-based devices.
2. Lead Management Tools
While CRM software will help you attract and stay in touch with your leads, there is quite a long way between a lead and a sale. If you want to transform your prospects into full-fledged customers, you will have to close manage and nurture a relationship with your leads. Manual lead management is, naturally, time-consuming and at times, mind-numbing. So if you want to get the job done faster, and convert prospects into revenue as quickly as possible, you will need a set of lead management tools.
Of course, small companies that desire an easy-to-implement and use marketing automation platform, there are popular software solutions like HubSpot. However, if you’re going to set your marketing plan early and you’re shopping for something a little more advanced, consider purchasing Oracle Eloqua. This software will equip you with best in class lead management and enable you to engage the right audience at the right time. With Eloqua, you’ll be able to take the time to fully develop your processes and best practices.
3. Project Management Software
Every team out there is regularly forced to juggle multiple projects and people cannot simply rely on their memories to keep everything organized. After a while, trying to keep it all together in email is practically impossible. So if you want your team to deliver projects on time and within budget, every single information needs to be written down, every document shared and every deadline carefully plotted.
Once you finally outgrow email, you’ll need a tool that will allow your sales team to manage their projects, and boost their productivity.
Thankfully, project management software is there to help your team stay organized and track their projects from start to finish using an advanced to-do list and a plethora of helpful add-ons. Here is a useful project management tool comparison including some of the most popular ones today.
4. Communication Tools
Regardless of their location, a large majority of today’s customers wants to have what they want on the go. For instance, mobile shopping reached record number during Black Friday 2016, with more than 60% of sales coming through mobile, according to TechCrunch. So in order to keep up with consumers’ needs, organizations are investing more money than ever in communication tools. Furthermore, the modern workforce also wants the ability to receive, transcribe and record calls, so no wonder communication software is in such high demand.
Skype and Google Hangouts are popular as ever, and they can definitely help your sales team communicate with both colleagues and consumers. However, if you have more complex needs, and your organization requires an HQ, multipoint conferencing offering, you should definitely look for something like Blue Jeans. On the other hand, if you’re working on a limited budget, it would be wise to seek out some more economic alternatives, such as GoToMeeting.
In addition to all of these tools, organizations have to start investing in the development of their sales teams. Larger companies should definitely gather their regional teams together every six months and encourage them to share best practices and provide them with additional development programs. This will not only help retain top employees but also turn mid performs into top ones.