Online catalogs for B2B salespeople

There was a time when “cloud catalog” made most people think of SkyMall. But times have changed, and—unless you’re still in the market for a brass umbrella bucket, desktop hotdog cooker, or any of the other “gems” SkyMall generously shared with the rest of us—that’s a good thing.

Because one of the best tools for B2B sales is an online catalog used to populate your proposals, a dynamic, cloud-based repository where your products and pricing are configured and centrally administered to ensure both accuracy and consistency in every quote you send.

If you’re still thinking about an online catalog and CPQ as a “nice to have,” here are a few reasons why it is now most definitely a must have.

Cloud catalogs 1

It’s not just about organization—it’s about configuration

Why do we organize? So we know where things are when we need them—and an online catalog as part of your automated sales proposal solution helps keep your “product house” in order.

But organization delivers an even greater benefit on the product/pricing configuration side of things, allowing you to create bundles with proven value-adds for customers, to position and reposition upsells and upgrades for each proposal and/or sales rep, and—in essence—to learn from what has worked and what hasn’t.

Best of all is that a dynamic cloud-based catalog—accessible by all reps—enables you to quickly share these kinds of learnings across your enterprise.

Imagine a rep assembling a proposal for a home security company. They go into the catalog to select a product they have seen sell in the past. And what they find waiting for them is that product PLUS two new upsells that two other reps have made work in similar circumstances—a win-win: more value for your customer, and more revenue for your company.

Cloud catalogs 2

How a cloud catalog can impact your bottom line

@@Wondering how a cloud-based catalog delivers rock-solid B2B benefits?@@ In addition to information sharing and improving upsell paths, it’s as simple as productivity. But there’s a catch to being truly productive with an online catalog—the cloud-based catalog must be embedded in your quoting system.

It’s no secret: salespeople typically don’t like having to learn new software. Many of them will say, “Hey, I use this email template to write sales proposals, this spreadsheet to keep track of products and pricing, and I earn plenty. Why change?”  But when you can show them how a little automation can mean a lot more in commissions—i.e., sell it to your salespeople!—you can immediately impact your bottom line.

So for your online B2B products and pricing catalog, the key is to introduce it as part of a system that will automate one of the most time-consuming parts of their jobs—creating, sending, and tracking quotes—rather than something they must use in addition to what they already use.

In this context, the benefits of an online catalog will be quickly apparent to even your most old-school salespeople, and the benefits to your business will just be beginning.

If you'd like to learn more about this topic or see IQX for yourself with a free demo, contact us.