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What is Sales Enablement and Why Should I Care?
What is Sales Enablement and why is it so important to your sales revenue growth? Sales Enablement is the information, content, and tools that enable your sellers to hit their goals in a scalable, predictable and repeatable fashion while creating a consistently exceptional customer experience.
Updated Oct, 2023
What is Sales Enablement?
The practice of Sales Enablement literally "enables" your sales team to sell more, sell it more effectively, and more efficiently by providing the sales team with information, content, and tools they need. Such as well defined processes, relevant sales content for every stage of the sale, combined with the training, coaching, and technology to make it all seamless to the buyer.
- In any organization, Sales Enablement aligns salespeople with the buyer's journey, ensuring consistent customer experiences and improving the win rate.
- A structured sales process and understanding the buyer's journey are pivotal for sales success.
- Relevant sales content, technology tools, and regular training are essential components of effective Sales Enablement.
65% of salespeople can't find content to send to buyers, while 95% of buyers say they buy from someone who gave then relevant content at each stage of the buying process - Gartner
6 Key Components of Sales Enablement
Defining the Sales Processes.
Forbes highlights that 72% of high-performing companies have a structured Sales Enablement process. It's essential for sales teams to have a mapped process, from lead qualification to product delivery. Sales enablement software, like HubSpot and SalesForce, can assist in visualizing these steps
Documenting the Buyer's Journey.
Every buyer has a path that they take, understanding what questions or concerns the buyer has at each stage is critical to removing objections. The better job your sales team does removing these objections early will result in higher conversions to sales and more revenue. If you've already gone through the process of Sales and Marketing Alignment, your marketing team should already have this mapped out and the content developed to share with the sales team.
The Awareness StageThis stage is where the buyer first becomes "aware" that they have a problem they need to solve. Imagine a homeowner noticing a small water stain on their ceiling. At this initial stage, they recognize there's an issue but aren't sure about its extent or cause. They might think, "Is this a simple leak or a sign of a bigger roofing problem?" When they search for terms like "ceiling water stain causes," you want to provide information about potential reasons, from simple pipe leaks to more complex roofing issues, guiding them to the next stage of consideration.
The Consideration Stage.In the consideration stage, the buyer explores possible solutions to their problem. Provide information about all available options, including those you sell and those you don't, to push them towards the decision stage.
The Decision Stage.This is where the buyer will decide what the best option is to solve their problem, overcome their challenge, or achieve their goal. You'll want to be able to provide the information that makes the case for why your solution and your company is the best choice for the buyer and move towards the close.
The Delight Stage.Once the buyer has purchased your product or service, this is your chance to really shine. What information or outreach can you provide that will help the buyer get the most from their purchase? The better job your team does in the stage, more customers will return to buy again as well as refer you to their friends, family, and coworkers who might have the same problems, challenges, or goals.
Creating Relevant Sales Content.
Content is king. Content empowers the buyer by allowing them to self-educate and move at a pace that's comfortable for them. Having relevant sales content for that answers the questions and provides helpful information each for stage of the buyer's journey and sales process can make or break your sales teams ability to convert leads and close deals.
For each stage in the buyer's journey and steps in the sales process, make a list of what questions the buyer might ask, what information you'll need to deliver, and how you set up expectations for the next step. Since 42% of salespeople feel that they don't have the right information before making a sales call (Zippia), having the relevant content and information at their fingertips at the very second they need it, is a game changer.
Implementing Sales Technology Tools.
Having the right sales technology and sales enablement tools will turn Sales Enablement from a "good idea" into a constant practice for your sales team. A good sales enablement platform, like CRM software (Customer Relationship Management) from HubSpot and SalesForce, not only become a great place to house and quickly access prospect, customer, or company data but are usually couple with powerful sales tools.
Beyond accessing the contact history of a prospect or customer, you can build sales email templates, build sales playbooks with scripts and qualifying questions, map your sales processes, and automate communications and tasks, as well as quickly access all of the great sales content housed in the document library.
Setting Up Reporting and Analytics.
To truly enable your sales team, provide them with data-driven insights through individual and team report dashboards that highlight relevant KPIs. This allows salespeople to track their performance and helps managers identify weaknesses or breakdowns in the sales process. Read on Analyzing HubSpot Marketing Data
Training and Coaching.
The success of a sales enablement program hinges on its adoption. Most sales technology implementations or process improvements fail because they never get properly adopted across the organization. As a result, only 37% of a salespersons time is actually spent selling according to a recent study by SalesGig. To get the most out of the investments you made in new sales processes and sales enablement technologies, your sales team will need to be properly trained on how to use the tools.
Try not to overwhelm them by feeding them with a shovel, instead take it a bite-sized step at a time. More importantly, reinforcing why they should use the tools through regular coaching, will help drive the adoption your company needs for success.
Why is Sale Enablement So Important?
A robust sales enablement strategy is important for businesses that want to do more than just survive but really thrive and grow. For these businesses, having a dedicated sales enablement team ensures that Sales Enablement isn't just a choice, it's a necessity. It helps businesses develop the internal business culture that focuses on the success of their customer's before their own.
84% of salespeople at businesses that have adopted professional sales enablement strategies achieve their sales quotas, whereas only 55% at companies with average strategies and 15% for companies with weak strategies achieve their goals. - Research conducted by Aberdeen
3 Key Benefits of Sales Enablement
Increased Sales Revenue.
With a consistent, streamlined sales processes, sales reps can prioritize deals more efficiently. They can now channel their efforts towards deals with a higher potential for closing. This considerably reduces the length of the sales cycle, increases the sales velocity, and improves conversion rates. This not only increases your revenue but improves your margins because of the ROI improvement on your marketing spend.
Shorter Sales Cycles.
The average sales rep typically spends nearly ⅔ of their time on non-sales-related activities. A well-executed Sales Enablement strategy helps them to get that time back. Doubling their active selling time could very well double their sales results.
Sales enablement best practices also help your sales reps to share the right content with the right prospects more quickly. Sales reps that have access to the knowledge at the moment they need it are better prepared to deliver messaging that sells your value and moves sales forward, faster. If your reps don’t know something they’ll be able to learn it in the moment, remember it for future use, and be fully prepared for the opportunity at hand.
Consistent Customer Experience.
If a customer senses a disconnect between what a company says in their marketing promises and the experience that they actually deliver, it can damage the customer’s perception of the brand. If a customer has a bad brand experience they are likely to go online and share their experience with anyone researching your brand. Conversely, when a company has a clearly-defined brand promise and delivers on it consistently, the positive goodwill generated with customers is very powerful.
Those customers can deliver strong testimonials to their friends and family about your company and drive a healthy referral pipeline for new business. To sum it up, consistency brings loyalty and loyalty drives revenue.