What can we expect in the business world of 2018?
Some say that this is the year artificial intelligence starts driving more business processes (don’t we have that already? robocalls, anyone?).
Others seem to think that this is the year when the bricks and mortar sector finally implodes (yawn: analysts have been predicting this since the dotcom days).
And just about everyone seems to be thinking that this is finally the year that the IoT — the lazily named “Internet of Things” — goes front and center in the customer experience (yep, everyone’s just drooling over the prospect of a web-enabled toaster).
We believe one thing is certain: uncertainty. Which means it’s more important than ever to have the technology that helps keep existing revenue streams flowing and concurrently helps chart courses for new streams. And more and more SMBs are leveraging the power of business quotation software to do just that. Here’s the why and how.
Content is king, context is queen, but consistency rules
Let’s go over @@the components of the successful B2B sales quote@@:
It has the content your customers want: the right products, the right price, the right supporting services.
It has context that resonates: for example, your proposal template’s design and structure suits your target market’s expectations and your brand.
And — perhaps most importantly to growing a business — you have a consistent, repeatable process for creating, delivering, and tracking your quotes.
Why do we single out #3 as being most important? Because the consistency and repeatability that business proposal software enables both empowers reps to increase throughput — and equally, as each rep has the same tools at their fingertips — and helps create measurable, trackable business processes.
And tracking sales is the foundation of growing sales. Your CPQ solution can help here, too.
Leave no sale untracked
Ever wonder how analysts predict business trends anyway? It’s by following the numbers. So if you’re wondering what 2018 holds not for The Business World, but for YOUR business, you better be tracking every pitch, proposal, product, and price that leaves your building and goes into the outside world.
An automated quoting solution has sales analytics tools at its core, which enable you to track the progress of each and every quote. Some sales managers see a tool like this and think , “Great! Now I’ll be able to see exactly what Bob is up to and why he’s not closing as many deals as David.” And that’s true.
But, in our opinion, an equally important insight business quote software can provide is around forecasting. Viewed at a macro level — in addition to the micro level of tracking both Bob’s and David’s pipelines — the sales metrics in your CPQ system can give you a very clear idea on your own revenue trends this week, this month, this quarter, and for all of 2018.
So if you’re focused on growth in 2018 (which we absolutely and safely assume you are), you’re doing forecasting. And if you don’t like the numbers being forecast, you can do something about it (e.g., hire more Davids and fewer Bobs), ensuring that no matter what may happen throughout the world at large in 2018, your business stays steady.
If you'd like to learn more or see IQX for yourself with a free demo, contact us.