Losing a sale is a tough part of doing business. When you do, you might wonder: where did things go wrong?
Perhaps you’re not providing a fair estimate of the products or services you offer, which can be a major deciding factor in whether a customer chooses to do business with you. Or maybe they don’t understand the value of what you’re providing.
Quotes and proposals are an essential part of doing business — you need to make sure they meet potential customers' expectations.
That's why having an excellent quoting system in place is so important. Without one, you could be losing out on potential sales. This blog post will discuss the importance of a sales automation software and explain why your business needs one.
A quoting and proposal management system can do wonders for your technology services business. It will help you streamline your sales process, keep track of customer interactions, and make it easy to compare different proposals. In short, a well-designed system can keep you organized, save you time, and open the door to more business opportunities.
Quoting and proposal software automates and streamlines the proposal management process in the sales cycle. When paired with CRM, accounting, e-signature solutions, and so on, the entire sales process becomes more efficient. The combined use of one or more of these tools is frequently referred to as sales automation.
Quoting and proposal software gives you the ability to swiftly produce professional and impressive sales documents that can win business.
Another highlight of most quoting systems is the inclusion of dedicated proposal landing pages with e-signature, which are 18 percent more likely to be approved than traditional marketing proposal templates that require a physical signature.
Because of this expediency, quoting and proposal systems allow sales teams to spend more time building relationships and less time on paperwork.
Here are some of the key benefits of using quoting and proposal software.
Quoting systems allow salespeople to get instant access to the most up-to-date information on their company's pricing and inventory. More robust platforms will have automation features that collect data about activities and operations, which can be automatically filled in later so that you don't have to spend time entering duplicate data into proposals.
Most proposal management systems provide a library of professionally designed sales and marketing templates. These templates not only look fantastic, but they also eliminate time-consuming formatting and optimization procedures by giving you a complete document that only needs minor edits before being deployed.
You may need product quotes from distributors or vendors at some point in the sales cycle. Suppose your quoting software is integrated with your supplier's inventory systems. In that case, you can quickly get the data you need, including product descriptions, photos, and real-time inventory levels, by simply clicking a button. If you can then automatically input that information into a proposal template, the time spent crafting your proposals will decrease dramatically.
Having "lockdown" pricing means you can include all the pertinent details of your prices in one place and prevent them from being altered outside the software interface. This feature prevents undue discounting and ensures that all proposals are generated with the same pricing parameters.
Additional policies can be set up to require approval for discounts or quotes that exceed a certain percentage or have a total value greater than a designated amount. These are essential features for businesses that want to maintain control over their margins and pricing structures.
Some tools also allow prospects to specify the quantity of a product or service they wish to purchase, with the pricing automatically updated according to their choice. This enables easy upsell opportunities because the sales proposal template provides the prospect with all the information they need to make a buying decision – without the sales rep even being involved.
The true test of any proposal management solution is the ability to integrate with other business applications that you may use. Advanced quoting and proposal systems should be integrated with various business tools, including CRM applications, accounting software, e-signature solutions, and more.
By integrating their system with these products or services at the backend level, vendors can automate many processes that would otherwise require human intervention—further increasing efficiency in your organization.
This level of integration also ensures that data is shared seamlessly between systems, eliminating the need for duplicate entry and saving time and frustration for users.
The ability to e-sign your proposals eliminates the need for printing, signing, and faxing documents. This reduces paper use and postage costs while improving response time due to faster delivery of proposal documentation.
E-signatures also provide a legally binding method of proposal acceptance. The courts recognize electronic signatures on sales proposals as secure, valid agreements that eliminate confusion surrounding terms and conditions or "I agree" buttons. E-Signatures can even be used to sign business documents such as NDAs (non-disclosure agreements) between you and another party.
Providing your customers with the option to sign proposals electronically makes your business look more professional and reduces the time a prospect has to spend before acting on a proposal.
A proposal management system can do more than help you create proposals. By integrating with other business applications and providing e-signature capabilities, you can streamline your sales process and improve your bottom line.
Take the time to evaluate the different software on the market and find one that meets the specific needs of your technology services business. Doing so will help you save money, increase your sales volume and streamline administrative tasks.