tony.shepherd@christiandopplerconsulting.com +44 7592 542603

“Sales stack” is jargon for the technology/software salespeople need to do their jobs and communicate effectively with prospects. Having the right tools in your stack is the best way to support your reps so that they can do their best work.

To determine what you need in your stack, start by looking at your sales process. Some businesses use an Inbound Sales Methodology to help frame their sales process. It views each action the salesperson will take (Identity, Connect, Explore, Advise) in relation to where the buyer is in their process (Awareness, Consideration, Decision).

The Inbound Sales Methodology

The result of meeting the buyer where they are — with an approach tailored to their needs — is that that prospect moves from stranger to opportunity and finally customer in a frictionless way.

“Think through every part of your sales process, and identify where you could streamline processes or make your reps’ lives easier with the right technology.

To help you get started, I’ve pulled together a list of the top types of technology that should be in every sales team’s stack. Do you see any gaps in your stack?

Sales Stack

Your CRM is the backbone of your sales team — and likely your company. CRMs facilitate relationship building with your prospects, speed up your sales cycle, and keep your team organized and goal-focused. CRM, or customer relationship management, is a strategy companies use to track customer relationships from pre- to post-sale. A CRM database is software that stores information on client and prospect interactions with employees. Marketing and Sales touchpoints (including email, phone, website, live chat, and social media) are tracked, providing customer-facing employees with detailed context on a client’s activity and feedback.

Pretty important, right? That’s why it’s crucial to choose the right one. When selecting a CRM, ask yourself:

  • Why are we investing in CRM?
  • What operational business challenges do we need to solve?
  • What processes do we lack that we should implement?
  • How many people do I expect to use the CRM?
  • How much customer information do we have?
  • What other software that we use that the CRM should integrate with?
  • How much budget do I have?

Sales Enablement and Automation

Sales used to be incredibly manual. Today, it doesn’t have to be — more than that, it shouldn’t be. When you’re reviewing each part of your sales process to identify gaps in your sales stack, make sure you’re looking at what processes you can automate. Your CRM might be able to help out with some of this automation.

Before buying a standalone piece of software, check in with your CRM support person to see if there’s a feature you can add to your existing software. Here are a few areas where sales enablement can help your team sell better:

Email

There’s a reason email is the primary medium of communication salespeople us. In fact, 86% of business professionals prefer email to any other type of communication at work. This means it’s prime optimization real estate.

For example, Sales Hub offers email sequences, which allows you to personalize and automate follow-up emails to your prospects. Create email templates within your CRM and customize them to reduce your response time. And track your email performance easily for faster optimization and improvement.

Prospecting/Lead Generation

Prospecting is where most of a rep’s time goes. This makes it another great candidate for automation. Use an email template that has a scheduling link and allows your prospects to opt into a meeting on their own terms.

Live Chat

Is a prospect hanging around your pricing or features page? Engage with them in the moment using direct messaging. Just make sure you use filtering criteria to ensure your chatbots are giving you the most qualified leads possible.

Content

Content is a powerful tool in a salesperson’s arsenal. A well-targeted case study or timely blog post can give a champion prospect what they need to convince a wary executive. To make sure you’re making the most of your best use cases, track usage in your CRM and use that data to identify and reach out to potential case study or blog feature customers.

Reporting

Standardize what KPIs your team will be held to and automate the tracking of those numbers in your CRM or reporting software. Common KPIs are:

  • Client acquisition rate
  • Number of calls
  • Number of emails
  • Upsell/Cross-sell rates
  • Average deal size
  • Conversion rate

Keep track of this information and be ready to pivot or optimize your strategy as the data suggests.

Scheduling

Kiss back-and-forth emails goodbye and make scheduling meetings a breeze with the right appointment scheduling software or app. Giving prospects the ability to schedule meetings when they want makes it painless to get a meeting on the books — and less likely you’ll be ghosted.

Demo

Maybe the perfect pitch doesn’t exist, but the right presenting software can get you pretty close. Make sure it’s user-friendly (i.e., doesn’t require a designer to tweak the spelling on one of your slides), easily shareable, and compatible across devices. It’s also important to think of presentations outside just the slides you’ll be sharing. Video is a salesperson’s best friend and pretty great for your company as well — since they don’t have to have huge travel budgets to get you face to face with prospective clients.

Closing/E-Signature

Knowing when someone has received your contract, read it, and signed it can shave valuable time off your sales cycle. Using an e-signature tool allows everyone to sign digitally, so you waste less time waiting for buyers to … well, spend 10 minutes trying to remember how to use their office printer/scanner.

Team Communication

Most of this list has been focused around your communication with the customer — which is how it should be. But it’s important not to forget technology that streamlines your communication with coworkers.

It’s no secret most salespeople live in their inbox, but there are tools that can make communication, knowledge sharing, and competitive or objection analysis much easier among teams.

Your tech stack should be as unique as your business. Analyse each part of your sales cycle to define what technology you need to increase performance and boost revenue.

Does your team need a boost? Give them the skills they need to transform their approach to selling. Christian Doppler Consulting’s focus workshop will inspire and motivate your team at any career stage.