If you are in the sales department, odds are that you’ve lately heard the term "sales enablement." Although it’s a new topic, there seems to be a lot of confusion about whether it’s just another passing trend or a particular strategy for improving sales productivity and effectiveness in organizations.
Having said that, we compiled this article to answer the most fundamental questions about sales enablement:
- What is sales enablement?
-What it isn’t
-Why does your business need it?
-How will it help your company grow?
What is Sales Enablement?
There’s no single unanimous definition of sales enablement as it’s still developing and evolving in scope. However, the closest and most accurate definition of sales enablement describes it as the process of providing the sales organization with information, training, coaching, content and tools to help salespeople sell more efficiently.
A big part of sales enablement involves furnishing salespeople with the information they need in the sales process. This information can be in the form of content, tools and system processes. Irrespective of the form the information takes, it needs to be easily consumable and usable across the sales unit (https://www.entrepreneur.com/topic/sales-enablement).
The primary goal of sales enablement is to provide the sales team with everything they need to effectively engage the buyer during the buying process.
To understand this more closely, let’s start by identifying the five elements of sales enablement.
The primary goal of sales enablement is to provide salespeople with the information they need to sell more effectively.
Sales enablement is more about the buyer and less about sales. It is about providing the buyer with the resources they want and understanding when they buyer wants to leverage these resources.
In sales enablement, information is grouped into two categories. First, there are things such as content that sales will avail to the buyers. Secondly, there are things like tools that sales will consume within.
The best sales enablement programs track whether resources are being used correctly across the platform. In this way they are able to optimize future sales enablement efforts by identifying what works and what doesn’t work.
Training and development should be a significant part of the sales enablement program. This is because salespeople must learn how to use the resources given to them (https://www.forbes.com/sites/salesforce/2016/05/02/best-practices-in-sales-enablement-content-mapping-made-easy/#3b6ae6d13463).
What Sales Enablement is Not
People tend to think that sales enablement is sales training. These two terms are often used interchangeably, but they are very different from each other. Sales training is about equipping sales people with the technical and practical knowledge they need to sell products and services. This may include technical specifications, service agreements as well as teaching them to sell in accordance with your organizational processes. Sales enablement, on the other hand, is about enabling the sales people to sell to buyers while efficiently working with the marketing team, and incorporating inbound selling strategies (https://www.entrepreneur.com/topic/sales-enablement).
Why Does Your Business Need Sales Enablement?
Perhaps the main reason why sales enablement is becoming more popular is because of the rise of inbound content marketing. Companies with firmly aligned sales and marketing departments achieve faster growth in revenue, but a unified team isn’t so easy to achieve. It can be really tough to weave these two departments together, especially since they often have competing goals.
Sales enablement, therefore, helps bridge the gap between sales and marketing in a bid to optimize functions and generate more business. It allows your organization to achieve its goals in a scalable, credible and repeatable fashion. One way to put this is that it is designed to democratize the sales unit so that you’re no longer dependent on one team alone to hit the organizational goals.
The best sales enablement models will adequately prepare your sales reps for interactions with customers and help them engage harmoniously, thus increasing sales, offering valuable information and tools, and making everyone in the unit an extension of the brand so as to close sales and generate revenue. It will always ensure that every sales person is always ready to respond to a buyer's needs at any time (https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbespr/2015/10/20/top-performing-organizations-prioritize-sales-enablement-says-forbes-insightsbrainshark-report/#24aabb08488e).
How Will Sales Enablement Help Your Company Grow?
Provide Your Sales People with the Right Data: Sales teams often lose because they are either unprepared or uninformed. To ensure that sales are high, your sales and marketing teams should work together as a unit. When the sales team is also armed with buyer interests, insights and pain points, they can have more successful sales operations. Remember that the foundation of sales enablement is providing the sales people with all the customer information they need.
Maintain Prospects: Many sales teams do not have an effective strategy for nurturing and maintaining their prospects and clients. Usually, they follow up at random to inquire about one or two things without actually offering any value. This is often counteractive and leads to a waste of time for both sides. With sales enablement, the sales team will have the tools they need to continue nurturing and maintaining prospects by providing value and insights based on their specific needs. This will go a long way in boosting sales (https://www.forbes.com/sites/salesforce/2016/05/02/best-practices-in-sales-enablement-content-mapping-made-easy/#3b6ae6d13463).
Build Relationships: Any sales person knows that providing generic information to a random list of leads won’t result in sales and thus they won’t be in a position to build relationships. However, with sales enablement, your sales reps will have all the buyer information they require at their fingertips. As such, they can develop long and meaningful relationships. This increases the likelihood of generating sales and long term clients.
Drive Productivity and Efficiency: One of the most important aspects of sales enablement involves getting your sales team to access tools and technologies that can help them become more dynamic and sell more efficiently. By training them to use the right tools, you can enable them to sell. This will eliminate the need for data entry, and give them insight into the behavior of their target market, thus ensuring they have more time to sell. When you automate these processes, your organization sales are bound to increase (https://www.entrepreneur.com/topic/sales-enablement).
A sales enablement tool that will help your sales team win a higher percentage of sales is ClientPoint. With ClientPoint's business proposal tracking and analytics tools, your sales team will be given insight into how your prospects interact with your business proposals.
If you want your business proposals, quotes, and contracts to stand out and give you the best chance at winning new clients, use ClientPoint Software. It makes creating and formatting professional business proposals, quotes, and contracts fast and easy.