As you’re probably well aware, we’re in the midst of a tight labor market, where talented employees have their pick of where to land. In addition, the economy currently faces a potential recession, making seller efficiency and effectiveness critical to organizational growth. With costs to keep an eye on, and limited resources, it’s more important than ever for organizations to rationalize their toolsets and make smart investments in areas that will yield outsized ROI. And for selling organizations, providing robust digital tools will also be key to retaining talent moving forward, while at the same time providing a better digital experience for customers.
But, before you dive headfirst into selecting and implementing digital selling platforms, you should understand what each one brings to the table, as well as the pros and cons of usage. We’ve surveyed 140 sales leaders from across the globe to get a better understanding of where they’re prioritizing their digital investments this year. Here are three of the top digital selling tools that sellers need to succeed in this tough economic landscape.
1. Content Management
This one may seem obvious, but 32 percent of the sales enablement organizations we surveyed recently do not currently have content management tools in place (but intend to invest in them this year). Content management tools play a significant role in seller efficiency and effectiveness. By surfacing the right content in context of a contact or opportunity, sellers don’t have to waste time trying to find guidance or customer-facing assets as they prepare for customer interactions. And since smart search is a core feature of these platforms, sellers can quickly cut through the labyrinth of files and folders to get what they need quickly. On top of these benefits, these platforms enable sellers to send content safely by creating URL links that can ultimately be tracked, so sellers know when a prospect is interacting with the content and what they are looking at.
2. Conversation Intelligence
Conversation intelligence tools are another area of smart investment that sales organizations are prioritizing. In our survey, 31 percent of respondents did not have a conversation intelligence tool in place and planned to invest in one this year. With a focus on seller effectiveness, enablement groups are leveraging speech recognition and artificial intelligence to record customer calls in order to gain better visibility into staff performance. These tools are useful in allowing managers to hear more customer conversations and discover areas in which to coach their direct reports.
3. Sales Engagement
Lastly, we are seeing significant investment in sales engagement tools that enable sellers to meet B2B buyers’ expectations in terms of digital engagement, personalization, and advisory. Of the respondents to our survey who did not have a sales engagement tool in place, 30 percent plan to invest in one this year.
Tools like digital workshops and solution ROI calculators help simplify and digitize what used to be in-person and resource-intensive interactions. Furthermore, when these tools are integrated with foundational platforms like CRM and sales enablement, activity and outputs are automatically tracked, reducing seller administration and creating better insights across the entire account and pursuit team.
As we start to feel the headwinds of a possible recession, organizations will need to be smart about the capabilities and technology they invest in. These three solutions provide outsized ROI and can help drive throughput and conversions when your overall seller headcount might be flat or even reduced.