An Integrated Sales Solution Means Better Customer Service, Improved Profitability

Note: Kate Visconti is presenting at the upcoming Webinar: Proven Methods for Extending Your Salesforce Deployment to Improve Sales and Revenue Effectiveness” Wednesday, June 10 at 9 am PDT

If you are a sales or sales operations leader, you are more than likely aware that you are operating in a buyer’s market. Unlike the cyclical changes in buyer and seller advantage we often see in markets such as housing, the buyer advantage in B2B sales unlikely to change any time soon.

Armed with more resources and data sources than ever before, B2B customers have become increasingly sophisticated buyers in recent years and often have strong and well informed opinions on what they need and what you can offer before your reps even begin to engage with them.

In this climate, the customer experience is key and it starts from day one of the buying cycle. In order to empower your sale teams to both meet high buyer expectation and your own organizational and business goals, you need an integrated sales solution that unifies marketing, sales, and critical back-office functions to improve sales performance management.

With its growing ecosystem of powerful marketing and transactional sales tools, Salesforce CRM and the Salesforce platform has created the infrastructure needed to build a fully realized sales solution and all in the cloud and improve customer satisfaction and sales performance management.

The strong foundation provided by Salesforce is allowing companies to build out a fully integrated, closed-loop opportunity-to-revenue or lead-to-cash process on a single cloud platform.

Why Lead-to-Cash?

With customer experience management in focus, lead-to-cash offers an integrated, tech­nology solution that automates all aspects of the sales cycle into a seamless workflow. From lead management software and configure, price, quote (CPQ) tools, to invoicing/collection systems and a fully functional customer relationship management implementation, sales teams can quickly advance opportunities in their pipeline from lead to customer.

All too often, we see how disconnected a company’s sales and marketing function is with back-office software. The result is an inefficient process that could leave customers marginally satisfied, and countless missed revenue opportunities. For example, sales reps may not know about the types of products and services they can bundle into a new quote or newly minted promotions they can offer. As well, they may experience delays handing off information to a separate system or business unit. This impacts both customer experience and revenue growth.

A Simplified Approach for Enterprises

In order to increase customer satisfaction and maximize profits, the sales solution must empower reps to propose appropriate product recommendations with accurate pricing. A true lead-to-cash approach includes built-in CPQ tools. A CPQ tool provides greater control over product catalogs and related pricing rules. Reps can quickly and seamlessly manage the full suite of products for sale.

Many companies create large, complex product catalogs that mystify even their most seasoned sales people. An integrated system helps drive recommendations based on customer interests, thus shifting the focus away from reps simply selling what they know. With access to guided selling and pricing guidance tools, reps rapidly identify products that offer the greatest value to the customer and deliver higher profit margins. Sales people confidently suggest bundled solutions, offer the latest promotions, and drive upsell and cross-sell opportunities.

Getting from the Drawing Board to the Field

A streamlined Lead-to-Cash process requires a team effort with executive alignment to carry it through to fruition across a journey to enable Sales, Marketing, and Finance to work together.

Drawing from our hands-on experience with SaaS sell-side tools and the Salesforce platform, Acumen Solutions has developed a framework for building an integrated lead-to-cash solution on Salesforce.

To get a first-hand look at our framework, including best practices and lessons learned that can apply to a variety of multi-solution deployment scenarios, check out our Webinar with PROS: “Proven Methods for Extending Your Salesforce Deployment to Improve Sales and Revenue Effectiveness” Wednesday, June 10 at 9:00 am PDT.

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