The best, most successful sales representatives have advanced communication skills, creativity, and persistence. As if that isn’t enough, in today’s competitive climate they also have to manage the complex task of configuring product offerings and providing quotes.
Without standard templates, and with pricing data scattered across numerous documents or platforms, these are processes that can be time-consuming and labor-intensive. Salesforce’s CPQ software is a strategic solution that helps companies address this issue and helps you automate and scale the process.
However, transitioning sales reps from manual processes to automated Configure, Price, Quote (CPQ) procedure is a significant learning curve, and the process of change will have its hiccups.
At OMI, we have spent over 20 years pioneering innovative solutions that help our clients harness the full power of the Salesforce CRM platform. From offering consulting services and assisting with implementation to developing customized Salesforce solutions.
We’ll walk you through each aspect of Salesforce CPQ in this post, and how you and your sales teams can make the most of a powerful, game-changing solution.
What is Salesforce CPQ?
CPQ is a tool that enables sales reps to generate quick and error-free quotes. It is built on the foundation of SteelBrick – a quote-to-cash software company Salesforce acquired in 2015.
The solution works off a backend that has all possible variations, such as discounts and service levels, and thus significantly reduces the time it takes to produce quotes.
When CPQ is integrated with Salesforce CRM, it grows beyond merely being a quoting tool to also provide insights into customer data, the ability to identify upsell opportunities, and streamlines the internal processes of approving pricing.
What Teams Should Use Salesforce CPQ?
CPQ enhances processes in a diverse range of use cases. It, of course, is particularly suited to the needs of sales teams, who routinely deal with the process of pricing products and generating quotes.
However, it can also help those that need to perform tasks in order management, finance, and other departments. Any team that needs to accurately, consistently, and quickly be able to manage complex pricing and order processes will find the solution hugely beneficial.
How to Use Salesforce CPQ?
CPQ operates on three fundamental steps that the sales process will typically have to cover: Configure, Price, and Quote (CPQ).
This is all about setting up the product according to a customer’s needs. When a customer requests a product, the sales team uses CPQ to input the specifications. The software’s dynamic guided selling techniques allow for real-time adjustments. The software ensures that teams can tailor products to meet specific customer needs by altering various aspects or features as required. This functionality minimizes the potential for errors, as the system provides precise guidelines for product configuration.
Here the software applies pricing logic to determine what to charge the client. This includes functionality that accommodates a variety of discount types – like volume-based, distributor-specific, or discretionary, and others. You can also manage and update warranty information, and set discount expiry dates.
After pricing has been approved, customers can review the terms and conditions of the quote before the final version is generated. This is an interactive process that lets customers request modifications to specific aspects of the contract, which are then sent for approval. Once approved, the finalized quote is distributed electronically for signature. At the same time, the software notifies the relevant team members, ensuring that the whole process, from the company’s team members to the client is streamlined.
Salesforce CPQ Features & Capabilities
Salesforce CPQ offers capabilities for the creation of product bundles of various features and options according to your clients’ needs. You can integrate essential options into the bundle you configure, and accessories or related products as well for upselling and cross-selling opportunities. The software also enables dynamic real-time modification of bundle components during the configuration process.
Pricing and Discount Management
The platform also provides for the handling of diverse pricing scenarios, with options like contract pricing which provides margin calculations to the end user, it provides cost and markup pricing, and block pricing, with tier-based discounts. This ensures a range of flexible, real-time pricing options for bundled solutions.
CPQ simplifies the quote management process by generating quote documents and offering integration with e-signature tools. Users can customize quote templates, with different sections like the header, quote line, footer, and quote terms.
Companies can also benefit from the automation capabilities of the platform. CPQ uses Industries Foundation Document Generation to create proposals from the information on existing quotes. The proposal can be used as a sales pitch, including information about your organization, details about the solution’s benefits, product and service pricing, terms and conditions, and a call to action for the client.
There are further automation possibilities with the generation of renewal opportunities, providing an accurate pipeline projection for timely follow-ups by the sales team. This feature assists in maintaining customer relationships and ensuring recurring revenue.
Salesforce CPQ Pricing
Salesforce offers tiered pricing models to meet various business needs.
- Basic package: $75 per user per month. Offers essential configure, price, and quote functionalities.
- CPQ Plus: $150 per user per month. Adds more process control and automation.
- Pricing for the integrated quoting and billing, and the comprehensive package are available on request.
Salesforce CPQ Benefits
Salesforce CPQ offers numerous benefits, enhancing efficiency, accuracy, and profitability in sales operations:
- Reduces Wasted Time: By automating administrative tasks, Salesforce CPQ allows sales teams to focus on their primary objectives.
- Improves Quote Efficiency and Accuracy: Salesforce CPQ integrates with the Salesforce CRM, providing data necessary to generate quick, accurate quotes, even on mobile devices.
- Allows for a Customer-Centered Sales Process: The platform facilitates access to comprehensive customer data, ensuring that quotes align with customer needs.
- Upselling and cross-selling are made easier: The platform’s access to detailed customer and pricing data simplifies the identification of upsell and cross-sell opportunities.
- Offers Oversight and Transparency to Sales Managers: By consolidating price and customer data into a single interface, Salesforce CPQ enhances control over the quoting process and reduces error risks.
- Increases Revenue and Profitability: The platform’s efficiency, transparency, and accuracy can drive revenue growth and profitability.
Salesforce CPQ Drawbacks
Salesforce CPQ, despite its benefits, requires that you keep a few things in mind to avoid potential problems:
Demands High Data Accuracy: Salesforce CPQ’s effectiveness hinges heavily on precise data. Incorrect proposals, and the consequences thereof, may result from data inaccuracies, something that an experienced partner like OMI can help to ensure data accuracy in your workflows.
Significant Learning Curve: Transitioning from manual processes to Salesforce CPQ can be challenging. OMI’s expertise can ease this process by providing guidance and training.
Underutilization Risk: Salesforce CPQ can be underutilized. Without a Salesforce implementation partner to help you fully exploit CPQ’s full potential, especially its new product and promotion features, you risk underutilizing the platform and losing potential revenue.
READ ALSO: The Complete Salesforce Implementation Guide
Harness the Power of Salesforce CPQ with OMI
We’ve covered quite a bit here – Salesforce CPQ’s benefits and challenges, how it can increase efficiency, improve quotation accuracy, align your sales operations better with customer needs, and ultimately, bring about revenue growth.
However, to actualize these advantages, you will need good data management, you will have to surmount the learning curve, and ensure you are fully using the solution’s many capabilities.
With over 20 years of CRM experience, OMI will help you overcome these obstacles and experience the full benefits of Salesforce CPQ – enhanced efficiency, reduced expenses, digital evolution, and a market edge.