What is Sales Enablement and How Do You Define Its Value?
One of the biggest aims of every company or business is to generate and increase revenue through a large profit margin. But closing deals is heavily dependent upon your sales enablement training program and how you define it. Below is an overview to help you learn what is sales enablement, how to train your sales reps and the content training and coaching they should receive.
How sales training leads to success
In today’s digital world, sales effectiveness can be traced back to the applications and sales training provided to sales reps. At its most basic, this is sales enablement. Further, with digital marketing set to grow by 17% this year, combining your sales training with empathetic marketing practices and personalization tactics can lead to positive ROI when implementing new sales tools.
Sales enablement statistics state that around half of company leaders prioritize improving sales funnel efficiency, while three-quarters want to close more deals. To get ahead is less about the reps you hire and more about the training you provide. The sales team must feel empowered and supported to overcome the barriers that often keep them from closing deals.
Sales software tools are helpful but only if they are properly implemented to solve common obstacles such as reaching the right contacts, qualifying leads, and creating targeted sales strategies.
Overcome common obstacles with training software
In order to get ahead and overcome these obstacles, companies must supply their sales organizations with effective training programs. Common solutions often stop after providing guidance on how to use various apps and other training content. The best sales training programs will help your organization define and achieve your desired success through a robust offering.
Today, successful sales enablement programs integrate with all of the applications and tools that reps use daily. This allows teams to ramp up operations faster, improve their performance, and make a positive impact on the bottom line much sooner. Most of all, sales reps are better equipped to succeed through every stage of the sales funnel.
What is the definition of sales enablement?
So, what is sales enablement exactly? Although the sales enablement definition can vary from one organization to another, it exists as a method for businesses to give their sales teams the training they need to engage customers and ultimately close sales.
In other words, sales enablement is how company leaders train their sales reps. Usually, this includes training software that teaches employees how to use sales-oriented apps and provides helpful resources and content such as sales playbooks. The goal of sales enablement is to empower the sales rep to deepen relationships with customers, improve win rates, and increase ROI. With the right training, reps and teams can create their own value of sales enablement and best practices to be used in future organizational onboarding.
The basics of sales enablement
Sales enablement allows an organization to train sales reps and teams quickly while reducing the learning curve as much as possible. It provides insight into customer habits, behaviors, and other valuable metrics that allow reps and account executives to personalize conversations and close deals. Sales enablement also commonly features walkthroughs on how to use various apps and tools, with directions around spreadsheets, databases, enterprise software, and more.
Effective sales enablement provides guidance on how and when to deliver each piece of content and should train teams in content management. Ideally, content management and training alike should take place in a centralized database or platform, with updates being quick and easy to maintain.
Fostering customer relationships is easier when sales enablement programs focus on teaching reps how to use their CRM tools and marketing automation platforms and provide a personalized approach to in-app learning.
Poor training leads to frustrated employees
Training is a critical part of any digital transformation strategy. Without it, even the best-laid plans won’t succeed. After all, it is the people in a company who make a plan work, and improper training often leads to higher turnover, which can cost a company up to six-to-nine months of an employee’s salary. That is why it is so important to choose the right sales enablement solution.
Ineffective training causes frustration for just about everyone involved. Training software that is inadequate or outdated can lead to context switching, slow onboarding, and difficulty communicating process changes to everyone at once.
Thankfully, there are ways to tell if a sales enablement tool will bring true value to a business. The right training platform must go beyond the simple use of apps and playbooks and deeper into the human side of marketing. This means that digital training is most effective when it takes natural human behaviors into consideration as well.
Think of how sales reps and teams interact. Sales conversations are never exactly the same and rely on studying human behaviors to know how to frame a sales conversation. Comprehensive training software takes this into consideration and combines robust data from customer analytics, sales playbooks and marketing tactics to increase revenue to drive sales. In other words, it goes beyond simple walkthroughs for processes and instructions on how to use customer data and marketing tools.
However, no matter how well you train your reps, sales enablement must happen directly in the application, right where reps are working. This allow sales operations to pivot quickly to new opportunities, perform better, and scale up in real time, as needed.
How to achieve true sales enablement
There is more to sales enablement than simply training reps how to use tools and go through processes. Ideally, sales enablement will also educate users on how to automate processes that make them more efficient. Saving time should be the aim of all sales enablement and that applies not only to onboarding, but to process changes and new sales opportunities. However, many sales enablement training platforms miss this mark.
The goal when implementing any enterprise software designed to increase sales is more than just adoption but true sales enablement. The biggest success is achieved when sales teams have adopted a new sales software and use it to do their jobs more effectively.
In addition to a deeper knowledge or understanding of how to access workflows, when teams use training software to increase win rates, access tips for closing deals and uncover new opportunities, then digital enablement is achieved. Those who know the real value of sales enablement software will become a valuable asset in any organization as they are the ones who often oversee sales training and uncover opportunities for increased sales revenue.
Digital sales enablement programs change quickly, so training must keep pace. The best sales enablement solutions surpass flippant trends and are designed to scale as organizations grow. Within the top training tools, the training content itself must be fast and easy to edit. This allows trainers to design effective sales strategies tailored to each department and customer. Editing training documentation is easiest when it’s quickly accessible in a central platform that requires no technical knowledge. With this in place, teams can quickly identify new leads, trends, and opportunities
Where training fits in the sales funnel
Digital transformation is highly dependent upon the success of sales teams and the adoption of digital programs. Reps need guidance, but with the rise of a remote workforce, that guidance needs to happen directly in-app, right where teams work. Sales training should fully integrate with each app and follow that rep through every stage of the sales funnel.
The sales funnel has four basic stages—
- brand awareness
- building a customer relationship
- creating value
- closing a sale
In every stage, training should guide reps through a tailored approach to each potential sales lead. By inserting success metrics directly in-app and constantly reinforcing how to approach each lead, reps will save time by removing the need for context switching.
Change updates are most effective when presented in real time, containing only the necessary info that reps need to perform their best. The right sales enablement platform will present information in small, easy-to-digest, contextual bits to improve retention of learned material. Otherwise, employees can forget up to 75% of all learned material in a short amount of time. This allows an entire team to quickly learn and adapt to small changes.
Such learning is automated and self-guided, which reduces the need for long and expensive training sessions. This coaching-driven approach can follow employees through the apps that they use, with help and reinforcement always present.
Instant change alerts and other smaller training tools combined with content that is easy to create and edit leads to better alignment between sales teams and their documented goals. Enablement teams can work seamlessly with sales operations to further the efforts of closing deals.
Most of all, true sales enablement provides reps and teams with a deeper understanding of their customers and ultimately positions the sales team for wider success. Approximately 94% of business customers want to work with sales teams who have a unique understanding of their company’s issues. Training reps to fully take advantage of advanced customer metrics and live coaching can greatly improve not only relationships but new opportunities for revenue generation.
Making teams more successful
Taking the time to find the right sales enablement strategy can pay off for just about any organization. By finding the right training methods for a sales enablement team to deploy, your digital transformation implementation has a much higher chance of being successful. When the right training platform is chosen and in-app help is available, sales teams can focus more on developing meaningful relationships with customers and sales leads.
Live coaching and training can also help reps choose the right marketing techniques as well. Unlike marketing techniques of the past, which often relied on catalogs and commercials, digital marketing moves much more quickly, and measures immediate buyer trends.
Advanced analytics help managers understand customer and internal rep behavior and how they engage with sales enablement content. This insight allows marketing content creators to tweak or update training materials and sales pitches based on customer behavior and identify any gaps in sales funnel content.
Choosing the right sales enablement software can mean the difference between success and failure. By considering the importance of teamwork, cohesion, and constant reinforcement, company leaders can easily work top-down to make their sales strategy and sales funnel work for them. The right sales enablement platform will also allow for quick, easy changes, faster onboarding, and saved time. To achieve these benefits and learn how to accelerate learning in your organization, contact us today for a demo to learn more about Spekit.
About the Author
Mel is the CEO and Co-founder of Spekit, a Forbes 30 under 30 recipient, Entrepreneur’s Top 100 Women of Influence, and featured across Crunchbase, Fast Company, Business Insider, and more. She is leading the revolution to shatter the glass ceiling and unleash the full potential of every employee. Learn more ->