The idea of sales enablement is thrown around a lot in sales these days but don't stress if you're still a little confused by it. Is it just another industry buzzword or is there some substance behind it, delivering real benefits to your sales team and business development? We tackle sales enablement and why it's become such an important factor for every successful sales team.
What is Sales Enablement?
Sales enablement is the process of providing your sales team with the information, content and tools to help them sell more effectively and efficiently. It's about providing your team with the right knowledge and tools to successfully engage the buyer throughout the buyers journey. At it's most simple, it is a strategy designed to help increase your team's conversion rates and it will allow your sales team to focus on the selling and not the slow, tedious parts of their role.
All that seems kind of broad so you're probably still wondering exactly what types of tools, content and information your sales team may need. In recent years the emergence of technology has been a driving factor in the sales enablement Every organisations buyers journey will vary so what your sales team needs to succeed will be different to the company down the road.
Here are a few examples of tools and content, some which we use here at Neighbourhood every single day.
Sales Enablement Tools:
- An effective CRM such as Hubspot Free CRM
- Communication tools such as Slack
- Data visualisation tools such as Databox
- Meeting tools such as Zoom
Sales Enablement Content:
- Sales scripts
- White papers
- Email templates
- One-pagers (to highlight a deal or offering)
- Detailed product sheets
- Case studies
- Sales presentations
- Marketing content
Content shouldn't just be for marketing. If it is being used in your lead generation strategy, the sales team should be across it to give them better context to nurture leads and to close deals.
Why is Sales Enablement Important?
Sales enablement is important because it prepares your sales team to conduct a more effective sales process which results in better sales results. A well planned sales enablement strategy equips teams with the training, coaching and content they need to be successful.
It removes the complexity of sales and allows your team to get back to the basics and simple side of selling. You don't wash a car without water, you don't go to the footy without a beer, so why close deals without the right tools and resources?
Over 75% of companies using sales enablement tools indicated that sales increased over the past 12 months, with nearly 40% reporting growth of more than 25% (Source - Highspot)
In some companies not utilising a strong sales enablement strategy, sales reps spend up to 43 hours every month searching for information. Damn, 43 hours every month is a lot of wasted time, if only there was a practice which aimed to give your sales team all the information and tools they required... Do you see the importance of clear sales enablement processes yet?
What Makes a Successful Sales Enablement Plan?
There's a pretty major different between a successful sales enablement plan and throwing together a few tools and content and thinking you're making your sales team's lives easier. Without a proper strategy you could be hurting your sales teams' results.
To help you to start strategising and to see what makes a successful sales enablement plan, here are a few sales enablement best practices:
- Have clear inter-departmental communication and where applicable a SLA agreement between sales and marketing. This makes communication easy and builds a team, not individuals.
- Give your sales team regular and useful sales training for new processes and tools.
- Clear reporting and analysis to allow your team to understand the areas to improve.
- Regular reviewing, assessing and improving of your sales enablement strategy.
The wrong tools and content can have a negative affect on sales so before you implement a process, ensure you've done your due diligence and thoroughly understand your buyers journey and your business's processes. You can utilise all the best technology and have the top training but if it doesn't help your sales team more effectively sell or equip them with the knowledge they need then you're just going backwards.