“Pretend that every single person you meet has a sign around his or her neck that says, ‘Make me feel important.’ Not only will you succeed in sales, you will succeed in life.”

-Mary Kay Ash

Mary Kay has a point... but this is likely not the type of quote that will play an essential role in determining the productivity of your sales team.

You hired your sales reps to sell and you know that time is money. For every opportunity your rep connects with, they will generate a proposal. The time it takes to do this is time they won’t be spending finding new opportunities, qualifying leads, or fostering relationships, let alone making your current customers feel important. Although quoting is a necessary step in the sales cycle, this is not an activity that allows your reps to shine.

One study of more than 25,000 client proposals found that only 43% of proposals created resulted in won deals — even when drawn exclusively from a pool of well executed and persuasive documents.* This means that regardless of how good your team is at communicating your message, not every quote is going to end in a sale. More often than not, the effort put in here is not paying off in equal proportion.

When you factor in the knowledge that only a minority of the proposals you build will advance through the selling process, it becomes clear that every extra minute spent on this administrative work is a waste of your two most valuable sales resources: your team’s time and their talent.

As a Salesforce user, you already appreciate how automating business processes accelerates productivity and drives sales. If you could streamline the quoting step and minimize time lost on proposals, why wouldn’t you? Quoting tools help you speed things along and prevent errors, further reducing lag in the cycle by eliminating the need to revisit mistakes. Your clients don’t want to wait longer for quotes either and a delay means an opportunity for other vendors to swoop in. Faster proposals improve the sales experience for both your customers and your reps and CPQ (Configure, Price, Quote) products make enabling this process simple to do.

57% of sales quotes produced do not ultimately generate any revenue. Should your sales reps be spending unnecessary time creating proposals that are not always yielding desired results? Even if you do nothing to increase your win rates, cutting time and effort out of your sales cycle gives your team more time to focus on more deals. But just by improving your quoting process — eliminating errors, accelerating response times, avoiding omissions, etc. — your win rates can easily be improved.

Think of it another way: your quoting process has to run as smoothly as possible to maximize your team’s impact and minimize time wasted for them and their customers. On top of saving time on dead end quotes, consider how many more of your proposals might result in sales if your reps were consistently able to deliver these documents as quickly and painlessly as possible with the smallest potential for error. The speed at which you can respond to a customer during the selling process also speaks to the way they can expect to be treated after you've won their business. Make your customer feel important by getting them an accurate proposal as quickly as you can.

Investing in quoting automation is an easy choice to make. Faster sales quotes are better sales quotes. Who doesn’t need more time?

“It is the mark of a truly intelligent person to be moved by statistics.”

-George Bernard Shaw

Want more? Check out our e-book, Quote-to-Cash Acceleration: Winning the Last Mile of Your Sales Process.