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Posted By:  Ecommerce Exchange on 09/09/2017 in CRM

6 Reasons Your Business Needs CPQ

6 Reasons Your Business Needs CPQ

Configure, Price, Quote (CPQ) software is used to accurately define the price of goods or services across a large and continually changing range of variables.

CPQ was once a standalone category that could be added to Sales Force Automation (SFA) for companies that needed it -- but almost every company needs CPQ, because without it many are reduced to relying on spreadsheet apps that often collapse under their own weight.

In his column on CRM Buyer, industry analyst and researcher Denis Pombriant identifies these benefits of CPQ applications.

1. Fast, Convincing Proposals
CPQ helps you think faster and clearer, so that you can be one of the first vendors in the sales cycle to put a proposal before a customer. CPQ lets you propose quickly and with confidence, knowing that your proposal will be complete and compliant with your catalog, price list and other business rules. It also gives you the ability to reconfigure quickly, which often is needed.

2. Lower Risk
Standardized quotations take the risk out of giving the house away with an errant quote, making it possible for reps to do their own quoting, thus reducing cycle time. Rather than having sales managers review all quotes -- a time-consuming process -- CPQ enables vanilla quotes to speed along while alerting managers to those that need review.

3. Accelerated Revenue
Faster and more accurate quotes help ensure that your offer will be on top of the stack when decision time comes.

4. Better Billing
CPQ enhances billing, when the two systems are well integrated, by providing an exact itemized list of purchased goods and services for your billing system. Exact copies of quotes can go to the billing department automatically, so that when they are accepted and a deal closes, there's no wasted time producing an accurate bill -- and far fewer disputes too. For multiple-part deals, CPQ provides clear itemization of what's promised and what's already delivered.

5.  Visibility Through Analytics
A database of quotes is fertile ground for assessing concretely what works well and what doesn't in your sales process, thus helping in the never-ending quest to improve it. However, that's another big data problem unless you have a system that can provide the analytics. Bonus points for a CPQ solution that is integrated with your overall CRM, for a deeper view of the sales process, not just the close. Analytics also can flag for review those quotes that stray from accepted rules.

6. Cloud-based, Mobile First Platform
If you're lucky enough to be using a modern CPQ tool, your quotes can be available on multiple screens -- from the CFO's desktop to the sales manager's phone -- thanks to modern cloud infrastructure. This ubiquity enables better team selling and faster closes no matter where your team is operating.

Read the entire column on CRM Buyer.

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