CPQ software demystifies B2B sales complexity

Configure price quote software can automate processes and reduce errors on complex sales, if you get the configuration right.

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Have you ever received a bill full of errors? In a restaurant, that error might be fixed in a few minutes. In complex business sales, fixing those errors could take weeks. Errors in quotes and invoices is one reason why so many companies have created vendor management offices.

CPQ (configure price quote) software promises to ease the selling and buying process for complex sales. Making life easier for sales representatives is part of the story. Sales managers and executives also have the potential to benefit. In fact, the drive to increase management control was a key driver for customer relationship management (CRM) software. However, the traditional approach to CRM and related software has a critical problem: Sales staff are often unwilling to participate.

Recent research has found that sales reps are less-than-enthusiastic CRM users. Hubspot reports that sales reps spend over five hours per week manually entering data into CRM systems. Furthermore, many customer records have incomplete contact information in CRM systems. Incomplete contact details mean that managers cannot save deals if the sales representative leaves the firm. Jeb Blunt, author of “Fanatical Prospecting,” points out some struggling sales reps avoid picking up the phone because they are overly concerned with CRM activities.

[Related: -->How CPQ Systems Boost Sales Automation and CRM]

The two products described below illustrate the capabilities of CPQ software. Each takes a different approach:

Apttus -- AI enabled sales technology: Founded in 2006, Apttus has rapidly become a popular choice for complex sales solutions. Known for its partnerships with Salesforce and Microsoft, Apttus’s products integrate successfully with common business products. If your company sells complex products such as subscription software, industrial goods or hardware, Apttus may be an excellent choice. The company’s long partnership with Salesforce may come under strain in the future because Salesforce has acquired SteelBrick, a competitor to Apttus.

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