March 24, 2022
With the rise of different digital advertising channels, the sales process evolves with them. The sales tools that we had 30 years ago and the tools we have now play a huge part in defining the differences in sales strategies.
Newspapers vs. search engines, telegraphs vs. smartphones, television vs. social media, and so on. However, without the old, we wouldn't have the new. Credit where credit is due, but let's not get stuck in the past and move along with the digital world.
In this article, you will find out what there is to know about sales technology, its benefits, and tools.
What is sales technology?
Sales technology consists of a wide variety of software tools that help sales teams automate everyday activities. Sales tech promotes the automation of certain tasks which will be listed in the next section.
AI-based tools, such as CRM, sales intelligence, and sales analytics solutions, are inseparable from successful and streamlined sales processes. It alleviates much of the menial work required to proceed to the main task: selling.
The most beneficial types of sales tools
At this point, you should already be aware of the benefits that the sales stack offers. However, it can be easy to get lost and confused in the wide variety of options. Here is a list of the most valuable choices.
Customer relationship management
CRM is undoubtedly one of the most important parts of sales tech for your company. Without this sales automation platform, you would be buried in the manual work of managing customer data and lead information. This tool should be the primary choice upon which all the other complementary tools are implemented.
The main reason behind it is that CRM logs all the emails, calls, and other website interactions for leads, prospects, and customers. If you had to enter all the data manually, it would consume a huge amount of resources that could be spent elsewhere.
Not only does it track past interactions, but it also provides you with the ability to plan ahead. You can easily see the conversations you've already had with a prospect and check what you should do next to get closer to finishing the deal.
Having a CRM platform eliminates, or minimizes, the occasions where sales professionals need to check their spreadsheets and emails. Furthermore, prepared email templates provide you with the opportunity to implement personalization at scale.
A customer relationship management system lets you track transactions and see the returns of sales efforts. Sales professionals no longer need to manually calculate and waste time checking how much money they made. Modern sales technologies do that instead.
Considering all of the aspects mentioned above, it's clear that a CRM platform is not a luxury but a necessity in terms of a smooth sales experience.
Tools for lead enrichment
It's not a surprise that generating and qualifying leads is a challenge that most sales professionals face. They can't sell to everyone who has indicated an interest if they don't meet the company's criteria. Manually researching the leads consumes a lot of valuable time and resources, yet it's not guaranteed that the time spent will bring an opportunity.
To prevent this unnecessary waste of resources, lead enrichment tools should be considered. Lead enrichment is the process of gathering the data on your leads minus the manual work. One tool that is exceptionally good for enriching leads is Coresignal's public web data. Company data? Check. Employee data? Check. APIs for convenient collection of data? Double-check.
In other words, with our company data solutions, you can easily automate the process and mitigate a huge load of tedious work while qualifying leads. Filter the required information by industry, size, or location and see if the lead consists of the ICP parameters in your company.
Less time researching leads means more time delivering sales pitches. Download the free sample below and see the value we can bring you.
AI-powered communication tools help reduce the time spent on answering the same questions about a specific problem. A chatbot can be implemented into the website with prepared answers for frequently asked questions.
It's capable of supporting customers 24/7 and replying to elementary queries that have simple objective answers. It eliminates the need for salespeople to engage in repetitive tasks and allows them to focus more on increasing revenue.
However, live chats with actual human beings for more complex questions are useful, too. It increases the speed at which the leads are contacted. For instance, according to a survey of 433 companies, the ones that had the fastest response times had a live chat integrated into their websites.
The fact is, people demand it and they expect to receive live customer support before engaging in an action. And AI-powered bots are not always properly equipped to understand or answer certain questions.
The takeaway is, chatbots are useful in terms of basic queries that could provide you with a lead, but at the end of the day, human interaction is the final factor that will define whether you make a sale or not.
Benefits of upgraded sales technology
Enhancing your sales technology has its price, but it also has its benefits that compensate for the investment. Here is a list of several benefits.
Motivates the sales team to operate more effectively
Motivation to do a job is one of the key aspects to avoid burnout by a hurricane of tedious tasks. One example could be call-logging.
One of the main tasks of sales reps is making sales calls to prospects. However, a big part of that is taking notes on every call. Naturally, it consumes quite a bit of time that could otherwise be spent on increasing revenue. Modern sales tech helps with that. The sales teams no longer need to log the calls, take notes all the time, and stress over the idea that they might have missed something. There are various call logging tools that do the work for you. It reduces stress and saves time that can now be used on more important parts of the job the sales rep actually enjoys doing.
Also, the sales reps who have time to improve their skills have a chance at becoming sales managers or sales leaders one day. On the other hand, those who are constantly stuck doing menial tasks that could be automated are lacking that time and missing out on opportunities to grow.
Enhances the sales process via automation tools
Sales automation tools, as mentioned before, alleviate a great deal of manual struggles. As research shows, around 60% of all occupations have the ability to automate at least a third of their everyday activities. The figure includes sales as well.
Here is a list of the sales activities that could be automated:
- Data entry
- Call logging
- Taking notes
- Examining candidates
- Follow-up interactions with clients
- Approvals and updates
- Lead enrichment
After having eliminated the manual work for the aforementioned aspects, sales teams can now focus on the more important aspects of their job and start increasing revenue growth more effectively.
Provides the sales teams with a competitive advantage
Companies are realizing that sales technologies are necessary to keep up with the customer demands and the ever-increasing pace of the industry.
For instance, according to research conducted by MIT Technology Review, 59% of business leaders believe that sales and marketing teams will be using AI tech stack to improve performance by 2022. For comparison, in 2019, the number was 33%.
It shows a significant growth that will most likely sustain the pace. It also implies that sales technology provides a competitive advantage that is necessary to keep up with the competition.
However, automated processes that instantly respond to queries and collect more customer data on the potential lead can barely be called for comparison with sales reps who still use sheets and research the leads manually.
For instance, there are tools that could be integrated into the customer relationship management platforms that qualify potential leads according to a predefined set of criteria.
If a new lead comes to your website and makes an action, those tools will either qualify or ignore the lead based on its information. This way, sales reps do not need to identify all of the leads themselves and can only focus on those that have the potential to bring profit.
All in all, even though sales organizations can work without employing upgraded sales technology, it limits sales performance greatly. Furthermore, marketing and sales teams cannot fulfill their true potential and close more deals.
59% of business leaders believe that sales and marketing teams will be using AI tech stack to improve performance by 2022. For comparison, in 2019, the number was 33%.
How to select a sales technology?
Every company differs in scope and budget. Let's see some aspects to think about when selecting a sales technology.
Integrations with other tools
Multiple tools that aren't in sync with each other could cause more harm than good. Navigating between different platforms and trying to gather some insights might be confusing.
Therefore, selecting a tool that has the ability to be integrated with your lead capture forms and project management tools is essential.
After all, the main purpose of sales tech is to make your life easier, not burden it further.
Keep in mind that free solutions are good but they're accessible to everyone. Which means little to none competitive edge. It depends on the scope of your operations, but if you're looking for tools, it probably means you need them at a premium.
Purchasing a tool is also a commitment since many providers look for recurring subscriptions. You might get a cheaper deal by committing to an annual subscription as opposed to a monthly one. Hence, you need to know exactly what you're looking for and have a clear purpose for what you're going to do with it.
All in all, sales technology allows for a bunch of upgrades that will keep your sales team happy, more motivated, and more efficient. Reducing menial work enables modern sales teams to focus more on actual sales opportunities and spend resources on increasing revenue.
Automation is a great thing that alleviates a lot of the burdens and allows the business to prosper at a faster pace. There are many tools that companies can consider, therefore, it's important to set the priorities straight and shoot for the sales tech that would be the most beneficial to the business.
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