A well-trained sales rep is one of the most important investments your team can—and should—make. The better-trained someone is, the better they’ll perform. Period. In fact, we’ve found that the top sales training programs improve rep engagement, retention, and productivity.
Your sales reps are the backbone of a great sales program, which is why a tool like sales enablement software is a vital piece to your company’s success.
What is Sales Enablement?
The sales enablement definition is a catch-all phrase with many meanings. It can mean different things to different organizations. However, any good definition comes down to this: Sales enablement helps sales teams ring the bell for more wins by removing obstacles and delivering valuable resources.
All Sales Teams Have Pain Points
According to Gartner sales enablement insights, there are a number of factors that impact sales performance and productivity. Let’s take a look at some of the realities of most salespeople today:
- Customers are more complex. More than 6 people are typically involved in B2B purchases with over 3 different functions represented.
- Products are also more complex. The product portfolio that sellers represent has increased in size by 2.3 times, and only 37% of sellers find it easy to customize their offerings.
- Internal processes are…you guessed it, more complex. Sellers have reported that 16.4% of the sales cycle is spent on internal approvals, and only 24% of sellers can easily calculate their variable compensation.
What the stats above tell is a story of increased difficulty and complexity for sales reps in your average B2B company. Now add the picture above with the new reality of how salespeople develop their skills:
- 58% of sellers develop their skills through their colleagues
- 35% of skills sellers use today were acquired in the last year
- 66% of sellers expect most learning and development to occur outside the classroom
- 60% of sellers expect to learn and develop over the course of their career
Missing or incomplete demographic data on a prospect, a lack of clear direction in the sales cycle, unqualified leads making it too far down the funnel, or misalignment between marketing strategy and sales strategy are all potential obstacles that sales teams face. And this, my friends, is what we’re here to illustrate: With the right sales enablement tools, pain points can turn into (socially distant) high fives!
Why is sales enablement important?
The idea of training new sales reps, or any other customer-facing employee, to align their objectives with the company’s goals is not a new concept. Knowledge of products, brands, and the competitive landscape is imperative to quickly becoming an impactful member of the team. The goal has been, and continues to be, to enable sales teams to close more deals and reach quota as quickly and consistently as possible. Thus, the creation of sales enablement. Still need convincing? Then check out these five benefits of sales enablement and training.
1. A sales enablement plan increases sales engagement and retention
You don’t need to be an expert to understand that sales and marketing misalignment fatigues your team. The stress of hunting for collateral or the right presentation decks can damage employee productivity. Sales enablement training grows revenue and gives your sales staff ownership over their success. A good sales enablement system affords employees a personal sense of accomplishment in their work and gives them the tools they need to do Better Work.
2. A strong sales enablement platform leads to faster deals
From some perspectives, this is the foremost objective for sales enablement initiatives, and it is certainly a desirable outcome. With better data and tools at their disposal, sales teams tend to have snappier access to what they need, and superior intel leads to more purposeful conversations. A study by Aberdeen a few years back found that sales reps were spending up to 43 hours per month researching for info, pointing to a widespread holler for improvement.
3. A sales enablement strategy helps reps build skill sets to deliver phenomenal service
It personalizes, coaches, and provides micro-learning modules to deliver booming and memorable experiences that help sellers master new skills. It combines a modern enablement platform with best-practice methodologies. Sales reps benefit from a digital solution that they can access anytime, on any device.
4. Sales enablement software develops alignment with marketing
The optimal use of supporting content in the sales process is often a key component in the enablement equation. Sales reps are more successful when they can provide prospects and leads with the right materials at the right time. That’s why strengthening the relationship and collaboration between sales and marketing is a major aspect of sales enablement—one with many branching benefits of its own.
5. A sales enablement tool improves company reputation
Each time a rep interacts with an outside party, they’re representing the business and making a lasting impression on its behalf. To put it short and sweet: when salespeople are informed, responsive, and helpful, it reflects well on their organization.
Are you ready to implement sales enablement software?
Sales enablement systems take months to develop; therefore, they are always changing. The future of sales enablement imagined for a company now is in no way the absolute future that it will be. But you have to start somewhere, right? We can help! See how sales teams like yours navigate the ever-changing sales industry with this quick preview.