Building a sales technology stack to achieve your business’s sales goals can be overwhelming. The extreme proliferation of software technologies makes it challenging to sift through and identify the appropriate RFP solutions that best enable your sales execution strategy. With robust tracking and powerful data analytics, software technologies play a vital role in virtually all aspects of the marketing and sales cycle — if used skillfully.
What is the Sales Tech Stack?
First, let’s lay out what a sales tech stack is. A sales tech stack, aka sales stack, is a collection of sales software and application programming interfaces (APIs) that a business uses to track all key sales activities. This can include customer profiles, transactions, communications, financial data, and related information.
How Do You Begin Building a Sales Tech Stack?
In building a sales tech stack, be meticulous and tactful when acquiring new technologies. Avoid being tempted by flashy technological bells and whistles that won’t add value to your company’s sales efforts or bottom line.
To build the best tech stack for your team, start by gleaning through your current sales process and business goals, noting where improvements could be integrated.
Break down that process by:
- Reflecting on your current state to identify technology gaps
- Focusing your business goals to strategically align technology, process and operations
- Evaluating solutions that will streamline the sales process and improve engagement with prospects and customers
Build a Better Sales Tech Stack for Your Sales Team
Step 1: Reflect on Your Current State
The first step in building a better sales tech stack is to evaluate the tools your team is currently using and how each fits into the sales process. Most technologies facilitate:
- Customer Relationship Management
- Marketing Automation
- Sales Enablement
- Content/Digital Asset Management
- Marketing Resource Management
Chart your existing technologies and how they fit into your current sales enablement process, overlaying your forward-looking objectives. This step will not only help you visualize the synergies between the current process and technologies, but it will also help you identify gaps that need attention.
Step 2: Focus on Goals and Strategic Alignment
Using the map created in Step 1, define and evaluate your sales enablement plan and prioritize your sales goals — don’t fall into the trap of letting the software dictate your goals.
Simultaneously, start scrutinizing your process to uncover repeatable steps that add little value. In other words, where could your team use the most optimization, and where is productivity the worst? What is taking up most of your time? Where are your pain points? You may find that many steps can be streamlined or eliminated to increase efficiency and effectiveness.
With your goals and productivity in mind, start identifying technology vendors that align strategically and provide immediate impact. Most importantly, don’t try to do too much, too fast. Keep it simple and pick only one or two solutions to start.
Step 3: Evaluate Solutions
Strategy, customer engagement, and efficiency are all important to sales execution, but the ultimate goal is to boost marketing ROI, revenue, competitive advantage, and customer satisfaction.
Here is a list of questions our experts considered when designing RocketDocs 2.0, which we believe to be important when determining which solution is best for you:
- Does it improve your ease of use, both in utilization and adoption?
- Does it integrate with Microsoft Office?
- Does it integrate with a CRM?
- Is it customizable?
- Is it secure?
Be cognizant of synergies — and also feature redundancies that may overcomplicate your marketing and sales enablement process. Your stack may include both multi-function platforms and specific point solutions. The advantage of multi-function platforms is that they may be more cost effective, offering multiple point solutions and simplifying the number of vendors you manage. From there, you may choose specialized point solutions that easily plug in, and bridge gaps in your marketing tech stack.
Once you narrow down your top picks, work with stakeholders to start constructing a cost-benefit analysis that will help you objectively weigh the benefits, such as cost/time savings, enhanced productivity, and increased customer conversions, against the negatives, such as financial investment, implementation resources, and time to be fully operational.
Use a Sales Tech Stacks to Empower Your Team
As you roll out new technologies, develop a thorough understanding of all their capabilities. Before adding something new, exhaust all options within your existing technology set. Depending on your tech stack complexity, it may make sense to work with your technology department to develop comprehensive procedural guides to define the process and ROI for each system.
Choose subject matter experts for each new solution. For example, if you use RocketDocs for RFPs, on-demand sales materials, and security questionnaires, choose experts from your marketing, sales, technology/security, and compliance departments.
Continually optimize and get feedback on processes and systems from your internal users and customers. Lastly, measure results. You can’t improve if you don’t measure.
Building the right sales tech stack may require some work, but the process will help fine-tune your sales strategy, customer engagement, and business scalability.
Through tactful reflection, focus, and evaluation, you can develop a sales tech stack that will unite stakeholders, provide valuable insights, and increase win rates. We’ve created a PDF Guide: Developing a Tech Stack that Optimizes Sales Enablement.