3 Sales Enablement Tools For Your Sales Team
September 26, 2022
Companies today are spending more on sales technology than ever before.
A reported 67 percent of sales professionals use between 4 to 10 digital sales tools, which increased over the last three years–according to a survey conducted by GetAccept. Gartner reported a 5 percent increase in sales tech budgets from 2020 to 2021 and dubbed 2021 as the time of “sales tech mayhem.”
So, sales professionals use more digital tools than they ever have.
They use separate tools for lead management, prospecting, scoring, forecasting, content management, project management, training, demos, and more which can be overwhelming for sales reps. An excess of tools can disrupt a user’s workflow and reduce productivity.
There are many sales enablement tools, but your sales team doesn’t need 10 different tools in their sales enablement toolkit to excel at their jobs. To bring down the total number of tools your sales team uses, you need software that covers more than one aspect of sales enablement. Narrowing your focus to just three sales enablement tools will help you increase efficiency and save money.
What are sales enablement tools?
Sales enablement tools allow you to see the sales cycle, the customer journey, and more and implement changes to the sales process as necessary. Some organizations use multiple tools to track sales results, each with a different function, while others find an all-in-one solution that serves as a dashboard for the sales funnel.
In addition to visibility and tracking, it’s important to have an all-in-one learning solution. This allows you to create training to improve your sales results and track your performance.
Types of sales enablement tools
There are a variety of different sales enablement tools. Some software solutions bundle multiple types of tools into a single package, while others offer stand-alone solutions.
Some of the categories of sales enablement tools include:
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software. A CRM helps to manage and track all of your relationships and interactions with customers and prospects. A CRM can help your sales reps spend less time on non-revenue generating activities.
- Sales Management Software. Sales management tools offer visibility into the sales pipeline so you can forecast future sales, see and address problems, and more.
Sales Analytics Software. Analytics allows you to track sales KPIs to coach individual sales reps and improve your overall sales process.
- Sales Intelligence and Prospecting. Prospecting tools allow your sales reps to find and connect with ideal leads. These tools include social media sales tools, social listening software, and more.
- Learning Solutions. You need to train your sales reps on the new strategy when you want to change your process. An all-in-one learning platform can help your sales enablement team train reps in an engaging, effective way.
- Content Management Solutions. You create a lot of sales content for your reps, so how can you ensure it gets used? A content management tool can help you organize assets to make it easy for reps to find and use appropriate resources.
When your sales enablement team has the right tools, you’ll be set up to help your organization succeed.
Why are sales enablement tools important?
Sales enablement tools can help your team be more effective and drive results. When you use manual processes or simply don’t have data—there’s no way to identify and address problems within the sales process.
For example, you can’t coach sales reps to improve if you don’t have software that tracks their results. You also can’t train new hires effectively without an all-in-one learning platform. You’ll struggle to improve your sales process if you don’t have visibility into your pipeline, and your sales reps can’t use sales content to nurture leads if it’s not organized and easy to find.
You must understand your team’s key responsibilities and ensure you have the tools to execute these functions. As your enablement team grows, you may add additional tools to help you make improvements in new ways.
What are the three most important sales enablement tools?
1. A sales intelligence tool
Steady growth in the sales intelligence industry–an estimated $3 billion industry expected to grow to $7 billion by 2030–indicates that companies find it helpful in boosting their sales team performance. The right sales intelligence data helps you accelerate sales cycles by identifying decision-makers and reaching out to them at the right time to close the deal.
To find and analyze data about your industry, you need a sales intelligence tool that identifies prospects, understands their attributes, and recognizes their intent. To do so, that tool needs information about your prospects and buyer personas.
Some sales intelligence tools have databases of their own, while others work with your CRM to study data related to your customers and then search the internet for similar profiles. In either case, these tools help you find new prospects and insights about them. Those insights can help you formulate a strategy to reach out to your leads at the right time.
For example, suppose your persona is a senior digital marketing manager. In that case, your sales intelligence tool will crawl the internet, collect publicly accessible data, and give you a list of senior digital marketing managers that can benefit from your product. The tool will also tell you if some of them got promoted recently, switched companies, got funded, posted on social media about a problem that your product can solve, and so on. This way, you reach out to them, knowing exactly how to start the conversation.
Sales intelligence tools also use AI and machine learning to analyze data and provide insights. As these technologies evolve, you can expect better insights and results. LinkedIn Sales Navigator or ZoomInfo are examples of sales intelligence tools.
2. A content management tool/central knowledge base
When looking up sales enablement tools examples online, you always come across content management tools. One of sales enablement’s most significant functions is ensuring the sales team has all the materials they need to talk to prospects at any stage of the funnel. This means creating customer-facing content that sales reps can share with prospects and use in their conversations.
Since marketing owns the creation of sales content such as whitepapers, case studies, webinars, demos, infographics, etc., the marketing team needs a way to share those assets with sales. With 35 percent of sales teams unable to easily locate the information they need, having a content repository or a central knowledge base will make it easier for both marketing and sales to coordinate their efforts.
Besides your standard assets for the top-, middle-, and bottom-of-the-funnel prospects, sales sometimes need personalized content created especially for one prospect. But 42 percent of marketing teams cannot quickly produce custom sales content. Ideally, your central knowledge base should come with collaboration tools, so sales can place requests in advance, giving marketing a heads-up for upcoming meetings and demos. Furthermore, marketing can use sales intelligence to anticipate future needs and create content in advance.
Guru works well as a content management system (CMS). It comes with a content editing tool that allows you to create and manage content within the platform. You can also capture important information from your Slack conversations or any website (through a browser extension). And you can use content organization features such as collections, boards, cards, and groups to keep your content assets organized. It is another piece of the puzzle when it comes to sales enablement tools at your organization.
3. A sales training and development tool
Your training and development tool needs to cover three types of learning: general sales, product/market-specific sales, and resources. With those types of training in place, your sales team can start building relationships based on trust and close more deals. The problem is sales reps forget 70 percent of what they learn in sales training within a week. Sales reps need to learn in the flow of work, so they understand how to take a lead from the top of the funnel to the bottom.
In short, you need to develop a continuous learning culture, and a learning management system (LMS) can help you do this. This is the third and final of the top sales enablement tools you need to take your sales team to the next level.
Traditionally, sales training is broken into three distinct areas:
- General sales training. To teach sales skills every sales rep should have, such as active listening, emotional intelligence, communication, and more.
- Product or market-specific sales training. To help your team learn about the industry, niche, prospects and their needs and problems, product features that solve those problems, information on competitors, and more.
- Resource-specific training. To cover all the digital tools and assets your sales reps use for their daily activities and interactions with prospects and customers.
How to use an LMS as a sales enablement tool
This training is necessary, but reps forget essential skills when training is lumped together. This is why you need sales enablement training throughout the year, delivered through a learning platform.
An LMS serves as a unified platform for all your training material where you can deliver training, plan new learning programs, and track learner progress. LMSs are so effective for training that 70 percent of L&D departments use them.
You need to get sales leaders, product managers, and L&D leaders involved to create all three types of training. You’ll need an LMS that integrates with your existing tech stack, especially your CRM. Without CRM integration, it will be difficult to measure your training results.
You will also need an LMS with course authoring tools and analytics to create courses and measure learner engagement, plus the ability to import courses and content. These capabilities allow you to create sales certification programs and deliver training without leaving your learning ecosystem.
WorkRamp gives you all the options you need to integrate with your human resource information system and your CRM, create new courses, import courses and learning content, create learning paths and certification programs, and train your sales team.
An All-in-One Learning Platform like WorkRamp works well with your other sales enablement tools, giving you all the features and capabilities you need to train your sales team.
Is your sales enablement tech stack getting the job done?
Defining success and being able to measure it will help you determine the effectiveness of your sales enablement program. Once you have deployed the three sales enablement tools, start measuring adoption rates.
Are your sales reps using the three tools you have deployed? If your sales reps consistently use the sales intelligence tool, the knowledge base, and the learning platform, you are on the right track.
If adoption is not an issue, measure your average sales cycle length, number of reps achieving quota, and average deal size. All three of these sales enablement KPIs should show improvement as a result of your sales enablement initiatives.
If you focus on the areas of greatest need, you’ll only ever need three sales enablement tools: a sales intelligence tool that handles data acquisition and analysis (Outreach.io), a central knowledge hub to manage customer-facing content (Guru), and an all-in-one learning platform where you can create sales training courses and programs, import courses from other vendors, and track learner engagement.
Want to learn more about how WorkRamp can help you drive better sales outcomes? Contact us to schedule a free, personalized demo.
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Fara RosenzweigHead of Content Marketing
Fara Rosenzweig is WorkRamp’s Head of Content Marketing and brings over 20 years of content and brand experience. Her love for storytelling has earned her an Emmy Award, and she’s been featured in many publications. When not wordsmithing or talking about learning and development, you’ll find her globe-trotting while logging miles for her next half marathon.
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