The Sales Management Strategy: Leveraging CRM for CPQ
We’ve heard the lament of the sales group: I enter leads. I enter activities. I enter opportunities. But what happens to that data when I want to present actual numbers to my prospect? How do I link my opportunities to my quotes and renewals? What products are being developed for me to sell? What technology is “hot” for my leads right now? What products or services can I add to my quote to make it more productive for my prospect? How can I customize a quote to pass along a discount to my resellers?
This is where CRM and CPQ can become a powerful and integrated tool.
While your sales people are attending conferences, creating business relationships, optimizing and growing the bottom line for your company with your CRM, having a CPQ application at their fingertips to generate a quote is a necessary tool in this day and age of instant gratification. And what more gratification can you provide than delivering a customized quote in a matter of seconds, all without printing a single piece of paper?
CPQ offers “hands-on” quoting without resorting to the inconvenience of calculators, paper, or excel spreadsheets. With CPQ you don’t need to worry about tracking multiple versions of quotes, or think about hand-offs to quote and proposal writers. Simply choose from a picklist and default fields can produce a quote — within seconds. Additionally, all of this can be done within your CRM tool and link to your opportunities, contracts, and renewals. No more wondering if that pipeline report has every quote – including the ones in desk drawers.
A CPQ tool can be implemented in a manner of weeks. The tool uses your existing products and calculates quotes that can be related to those accounts, opportunities and activities to forecast actual dollar amounts. In addition, you can focus on those leads in your pipeline that could benefit from your services by strategically analyzing how to position your quotes for optimization. By being able to generate quotes, select products and discount options within a few keystrokes, customizing a quote solution while enforcing corporate style guidelines has never been easier for your sales team.
This holistic view can also provide insight into discount methodology, as well as a reporting snapshot of quoted products; popular products sold and renewed assets. Your sales team can find the data they need within seconds – without placing that potential customer on hold while searching for the latest version of an excel sheet and hoping someone didn’t delete the latest formula. Because let’s face it: Decimal places matter in this business (and your sales team shouldn’t have to worry about whether Larry the Sales guy uploaded his latest formula on v.188.8.131.52).
Imagine having at your fingertips, the ability to forecast what items you believe will propel your opportunities by knowing what your clients are interested in buying because you were able to invest development in your most highly quoted products and renewals.
This is what CRM and CPQ can provide to you in a matter of weeks. Your Operational Sales Managers (and Larry) will thank you.