Everything from the proposal process to quoting customers becomes easier with configure, quote, price (CPQ) software. But your software of choice might not last forever.
Given the sudden changes in technology and software advances over the last decade, the software you’re using might well be out of date; and if it is, that could be hurting your sales. Updated CPQ software can save your sales and proposal processes.
Many companies stick with the CPQ software they purchased when they started, but that’s a mistake. Outdated material can result in disparities in sales, upheavals in relationships, and sales bundles that can erode your revenues.
Here are 10 signs your CPQ solution has reached the point of no return and you need to get something new.
1. Sales Under Pressure
Does your sales floor feel a lot of pressure to understand the product details, communicate prices to customers, and close deals? Updated CPQ software could be the solution to this problem.
The right program can make it much easier to look up product details, prices, and configuration data for sales people. It also eliminated mistakes in the sales process.
Up-to-date CPQ software uses predictive analytics and forecasting algorithms to come up with accurate, real-time data that can be used during sales negotiations without fear of inaccuracies.
2. Wasted Time
Time is a huge factor in nearly every sales deal. It can be wasted when sales staff have to wait for approval to close a deal with a potential customer. You might take several days to get approval on a pricing option, which gives the customer ample time to find a better or quicker deal elsewhere.
With proper CPQ software, you won’t have to risk losing these deals as you wait for approval. CPQ packages come with the option to automate approvals and accelerate the sales process. Your sales team can make deals more efficiently and customers will be pleased with their experience.
3. Drawn-Out Proposal Processes
Effective proposals are essential for many sales. If your processes are slowing down and you’re losing bids, it’s probably because the CPQ software you’re using isn’t up to snuff.
When you’re writing proposals, it could be taking too much time to fetch quotes and data using rudimentary means. CPQ software speeds up the process and empowers you to send out proposals fast enough that you won’t lose deals based on time alone.
4. Configuration Doesn’t Match Complexity
Some companies face issues with their configuration managing to keep up with the complexities of a potential deal. Accuracy in quotes and configurations is a challenge when the product pricing and other data are out of date.
The software has to be able to reflect the approval process precisely, identify acceptable discount thresholds, and generate the most current bundle offers at a moment’s notice. Old, under-equipped CPQ solutions can have a difficult time keeping up with complex proposals.
The information becomes too outdated for the program to deliver accurate results, and sales processes suffer. New software that updates automatically and offers round-the-clock support poses fewer limitations, so you can guarantee quicker and more accurate agreements.
5. Missing Data or Problems with Analytics
As mentioned before, you can’t operate with any missing or outdated data in your software. If you’re using a program that’s missing essential data or the information can’t be easily extracted for analysis, you won’t be able to manage sales deals very effectively.
Without an automatic process, extracting and analyzing data requires hefty manual labor to complete. This increases the chances of data entry mistakes, a need for data re-entry, and limited analytics.
There’s no point in having CPQ software if it doesn’t make things easier for your team. When a non-automated system is consuming most of your sales people’s time, you’ll make fewer sales and expand the risk of mistakes.
6. Channel Partners Are Left Out
When vendors and other companies partner with yours to sell their products, the sales process becomes even more complex. Professionals may struggle to memorize your company product mix, cross-sells, bundles, and up-sells, let alone those of your vendors’ product lines.
Without good CPQ software, it’s too easy to make mistakes or leave out some of your channel partners entirely. Armed with the automation of updated CPQ software, on the other hand, you’ll know your channel partners are covered in all sales deals.
This widens the product field to meet customers’ needs better and allows you to expand your channel partner program and facilitate growth.
7. The Use of Outdated Tech
Many sales reps waste countless hours on Microsoft Word, Excel, or even Notepad trying to work out price quotes and product configurations when they make a pitch. This might have been the only way to do it a decade ago, but outdated tech is now slowing your entire process and setting your company up for mistakes.
It also creates a lot of problems for the back office team, who have to decipher your system and filter the quotes in order to approve them. It eats a lot of time and often means lost sales.
Your company must embrace the latest software technology and install brand-new CPQ software that will handle configuration and price quotes with precision. Every sales person and management figure will be on the same page, which will speed up the process and avoid costly confusion.
8. Rising Costs
The price of your CPQ software is an essential consideration that many companies take for granted. When you sign up for services of this kind, it often comes with a fairly low monthly price that’s raised by increments over the next few years.
Before you know it, you’re paying a lot more for your software than you once did, or anticipated, and it’s challenging your bottom line. So it’s time to look for new software solutions that fit within your budget.
Chances are, if you reevaluate your options, you can find a software service that offers that same amenities at a lower cost.
9. Costly Mistakes
One thing that could cost you the most in the sales process is errors. It’s easy to make mistakes in this situation because a lot of monotonous repetition is involved. But such errors can be very expensive.
Researches show that updated CPQ systems may actually reduce mistakes by 40 percent. Automating the sales, proposal, and configuration process reduces the margin for human error and makes it easier to trace a goof before it turns into a disaster.
10. Too Many Products
As your company grows, it will likely expand its product lines. This is wonderful for your company’s health, but it’s harder on your sales people, who must now memorize details and prices for a broader array of products.
This can lead to more mistakes, wasted time, and a bad customer experience. If you update your CPQ software to allow for more products, all your quoting and configuration needs will be addressed. There’s no need to memorize dozens of new details, and there will be far fewer inaccuracies as a result.
Contact iQuoteXpress Today
We know how important it is to have a quality CPQ program integrated with your business, which is why we strongly stress an updated version. Our CPQ solution offers you the configuration and quoting efficiency you need to improve your sales.
For a free, no-obligation online demo of our software, contact us today!