​​​​Sales teams and their software stack

Some professionals in sales are true wizards and always crush their goals. Do they have special skills that other members of your sales team do not have? Is it talent? Do they have a magic wand? For answers, we look at the Sales Statistics Study from last year. 

The secret of top performers in sales

I have to disappoint you. There is no magic. No secret script. There is not even a special talent. What do top performers do differently compared to the average sales rep in your team? They simply create more output.

Take a look at this quote from the study:

82% of the top performers spend 4 hours or more on sales-related activities everyday.

The chart below shows the difference between top performers and other reps in your team.

Summarized, top performers spend the most time on sales. They are focused, work more effectively and simply provide more output. So what are the other people in your sales team doing? They struggle with their approach and are distracted by operational stuff that does not contribute to the bottom-line.

Sales teams should focus on productivity and output

What can you learn from this research? Focus on output and sales productivity is everything. There is a reason why the phrase ‘Sales is a numbers game’ was coined. The next question of course, is what you can do with this information? You can always ask your team to work harder…fortunately there are better alternatives.

What you will read this in this article

Based on two practical examples, this article will show you relevant tools to boost your productivity and sales output. The goal is to help your sales team save time, fill their pipeline faster and close more deals. And as always, we end the article with the next step you can take today to get closer to the ultimate sales software stack.

Please note that we omitted organization-wide productivity tools such as Office 365 and Google Workspace. Marketing software is also out of scope for now, so you won’t find them in the examples below.

Best practice sales stack for SaaS companies

About the SaaS sales team

Imagine you offer an innovative chat solution that you sell internationally. Your target audiences are fast-growing startups and software companies. Customers spend on average €75 per month and your customer lifetime value (CLV) is € 5.000. You have secured a significant investment this year and have just hired a team of 8 young sales professionals. Below you will find the tools to support and scale your sales operations as a SaaS.

Essential tools for SaaS sales teams

  • Close CRM – Complete CRM for remote sales teams.
  • Ocean.io – International company database focused on software companies.
  • Lead Genius – LinkedIn plugin for B2B contact and company data.
  • Companda – See which companies are visiting your site.
  • LinkedIn Sales Navigator – Get access to LinkedIn’s complete database.
  • Calendly – Appointment planner for (business) meetings.
  • Zoom.us – Sales calls via video calling.
  • PandaDoc – Make professional proposals and have them signed.
  • Process Street – Standardise your internal processes.
  • Bigtincan – Online training and onboarding for your sales team.

The CRM

In this example we opt for a less well-known CRM system. Compared to, for example, Hubspot, Salesforce or Pipedrive, Close is made for remote sales teams that thrive on cold outreach. In addition to the standard features such as managing contacts, pipeline and reporting, this solution offers a few special extras. Features like call coaching, the power dialer and leaderboards are features that will make your SaaS sales team very happy.

Sales software for prospecting

We choose Ocean.io to support the prospecting phase of the sales process. Ocean is an international database of companies and it allows you to compile company lists based on advanced filters. In addition, you use LinkedIn Sales Navigator in combination with Lead Genius to find and sync contact data with your CRM.

With a sales team of 8 people, you need a significant volume of prospects to fuel your outreach efforts. That is why you use three extra tools to prospect relevant companies. The first tool is Webscraper.io. It allows you to conveniently collect public data from websites and transfer it to your outreach CRM.

In addition, you do a test with TechTarget. This is a database similar to Ocean.io with one important difference. The company list is enriched with ‘Buying intent’ so you can see whether the companies in your list are actively looking for your type of solution.

And of course we should not forget our own solution. With Companda, your sales team easily creates lead lists based on anonymous website traffic. The above tools will make sure that your sales team will never run out of prospects.

Sales software for outreach

Ready for the outreach phase in the sales process? In this phase, your sales team approaches prospects via a combination of LinkedIn, email and phone. For this you use your existing LinkedIn Sales Navigator and Close CRM license. You also add this tool to your sales stack: Calendly. This makes booking appointments with your sales team a breeze. You preferably do your sales meetings with Zoom because of the native integration with Calendly and the CRM. You follow up successful sales meetings with a proposal and for this you use PandaDoc. This allows your team to quickly create personalized proposals so they have more time to reach out to more prospects and closing deals.

Sales software for collaboration and learning

Software in the collaboration and learning category also has a huge impact on the performance of your team. With 8 young professionals in your team, you will have to make sure their onboarding is well organized. That is why you choose Bigintan to automate the onboarding of new colleagues. With it, your team can follow online training that will improve their product knowledge and sales skills in general.

An additional tool that we recommend implementing is Process Street. This standardises your processes using interactive checklists. E.g. What are the procedures for preparing demos? How do you onboard a new customer? What is the process for creating and sharing quotes? In addition, this tool offers an internal knowledge base where your team stores their learnings.

Bonus tools for SaaS sales teams

  • Web Scraper – Collect public data from websites as .csv files.
  • TechTarget – Database of companies enriched with ‘Buying intent data’.
  • Clearbit – Enrich your CRM with relevant company data.
  • Hyperise – Personalise images and video for sales outreach.
  • Fireflies.ai – Translates (video) calls into text, directly within your CRM
  • Octopus CRM – Automate your LinkedIn activities.
  • Lavender – Get real-time suggestions to improve sales emails.
  • Consensus – Publish interactive demos of your software.

Increase productivity even more

Do you have the essential tools in place? Then checkout the following solutions to take the sales productivity of your team to the next level.

With Fireflies, conversations and video calls are automatically converted into text and added as a note to your CRM. Use Clearbit to automatically enrich data in your CRM. This way, your sales team no longer has to manually update records before they reach out to prospects.

Are the number of software demos increasing at a rapid pace? Then create interactive demos that your prospects can view on their own without the need for a sales professional. Finally, you use Octopus CRM to help you automate LinkedIn activities.

Improve efficiency

How many replies does your sales team get via email? See if you can improve conversions with Lavender where your team gets real-time suggestions on how to compose effective sales emails. And do you have time to spare? Do you really want to set yourself apart from the rest? Then you do a pilot with Hyperise. This allows you to personalize images and video for your sales outreach, which increases conversions. With these tools you increase the efficiency of your sales team.

Best practice sales stack for an agency

The agency sales team

You run a digital agency of 40 people that develop apps, websites, webshops and online campaigns. You focus on the larger consumer brands. Customers buy annually on average for €100.000, the customer lifetime value (CLV) is around €350.000. Your sales team consists of 3 experienced account managers. Below you will find the tools to support and scale your sales operations as an agency.

Essential sales tools for agencies

  • Hubspot CRM – Complete and user-friendly CRM.
  • Revergy – Map out complex DMUs and discover sales opportunities.
  • LinkedIn Sales Navigator – Get access to LinkedIn’s complete database.
  • Hunter.io – Retrieve business email addresses with the Chrome plugin.
  • Companda – See which companies are visiting your site.
  • Calendar Hero – Appointment planner for more than two people.
  • Zoom.us – Appointment planner for multi-person meetings.
  • PandaDoc – Make professional proposals and have them signed.
  • Loom – Create a personal screencast quickly and easily.

The CRM

Your sales team mainly focuses on expanding existing clients to grow the business. Your account managers want user-friendly software in which they can manage their deals and contacts easily. Features such as an attractively designed dashboard, a handy mobile app and a clear pipeline will make your team happy. Hubspot CRM ticks all these boxes and is a great solution.

Sales software for cross- and upsell

Your team generates revenue through cross- and upsell. Within larger organizations, the secret for great sales is to be referred into other departments and teams. Your sales professionals use Sales Navigator, Hunter.io and LinkedHub to find and sync contacts with the CRM. Every quarter you have an internal session with your sales team to see where opportunities lie with existing relationships. You map DMUs of your existing network and identify opportunities for cross- and upsell using Revergy.

Sales Meeting Software

Is a contact ready for an (online) meeting? Then you make sure that your creative colleagues also join. Because more enthusiasm means more deals. That is why you use the appointment planner Calendar Hero so you can easily pick the right day and time to get together with a group of professionals.

Deal Closing Software

You have an agency, so your proposals have to look awesome. For this you use PandaDoc to quickly draw up attractively designed quotes. Before sending the proposal, you record a short video with Loom making a screencast. During this short video you walk through the proposal and you explain all parts of it. This way you increase the connection with your customer and increase the chance of winning the deal again. You use Companda to see which customers are visiting your website. This way you and your team know when it is time to close the deal or spot another opportunity.

Collaboration Tools

Of course you use Microsoft 365, Google Workplace or a similar solution. But because you have a small and autonomous team with experienced account managers, you don’t need many extras. A weekly sync is enough to keep your team running smoothly.

Bonus tools for an agency sales teams

  • Google Alerts– Get notified when a company is in the news.
  • Sendoso– Send personalized gifts from your CRM.

Two extra tips for improving account management?

Ask your team to set up Google Alerts for the bigger customers they want to expand. Once set up, your team will receive notifications when your customer is mentioned in the news online. This way you always have a great reason to reach out at the right time and stay connected to your customers.

Another tool that will help you create valuable customer relationships is Sendoso. With the click of a button you can easily send your clients gifts such as a gift card or merchandise with your logo. Super nice!

Your next step after reading this article

Would you like to improve your sales stack but you don’t know exactly where to start?

Use our Free template

We have created a handy template based on the Sales Stack from Gartner to help you choose the right software for your sales team. It takes all the different phases of the sales process into account.

Are you looking for extra sales tools to complete this template? Then check out our previous blog with a list of 41 sales tools.

Over to you

Which tool do you recommend for increasing your team’s sales productivity? Any other thoughts? Please share them in the comments. I am looking forward to our conversations.

Author:
Alex is CEO and founder of Companda. He loves to help your business grow by asking questions and sharing his own experiences.

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