If you're in sales, you likely use your Dynamics CRM solution to send sales proposals. And, if you're like most salespeople, you probably view these documents as necessaries, a cost of doing business, etc. Which they are.

But there's more. Seeing proposals as simply a cost may be misguided. Imagine if, instead, you thought of every sales proposal as an investment with ROI attached. Because it's true: every quote you send has investments attached to it.

There was the time invested in creating it, the dollars invested in the rep who created it, sent it, tracked it, and closed it, and there is the massive investment you made devoting expertise and experience to the products and services in that proposal.

So treat it like the investment it is: How much does it cost you to build and send each individual quote? And what kind of return can, or should, you expect from every proposal?

Don't guess at these numbers: configure, price, quote software (CPQ) integrated into your Dynamics CRM solution can help you quickly and completely understand the ROI potential of each quote you send (with built-in analytics on your quote pipeline), and help you ensure greater ROI from your overall sales process.

In this case, faster is better

In this day and age, it's next to impossible to improve your sales practices without new or improved technology. Yes, you must understand sales principles from the OG's (like Carnegie, Ziglar, Welch), but it's business technology that helps make principles into practices and processes, and helps you sell at the pace that's necessary to remain competitive.

Everyone in sales understands faster, but what they may not understand is how the right technology can also make faster = smarter. I.e., with CPQ, you will massively reduce (often by 50% or more) the amount of time and manpower it takes to create, send, and track a proposal. Not only that, but used as part of your Dynamics solution, CPQ also delivers a more accurate (e.g., via centralized product and pricing configuration) and professional (e.g., via proposal templates that build your brand) sales quote, no matter which rep sends it.

And there's another ROI fundamental: ROI from your people. With every rep using the same sales proposal software, you level the playing field and can more accurately evaluate performance, seeing which of your reps is delivering an ROI on your investment in them.

Analyzing ROI overall and in your proposals

You don't guess at ROI: you measure it. And while your Dynamics CRM can give you a deep dive into most parts of your sales funnel, such as lead source efficacy and conversion activities (such as nurture campaigns), the sales analytics tools that are typically built-in into leading CPQ solutions give you granular data on key steps and turning points in your sales quote process, such as:

  • closing rates
  • quote turnaround times
  • response times
  • response totals
  • sales rep engagement

This data, at the individual quote level, can help you drive ROI in real-time as you'll be able to see if (and why) a quote stalled and make the necessary adjustments to help move it across the finish line. For example, if you knew that a product and pricing configuration used in a quote yesterday by rep A helped close a deal, you can make adjustments to your CPQ system and ensure a rep B populates his next quote with that same configuration.

Looking at your sales process as a investment with a return simply makes more business sense that treating it like a capital expenditure. All it takes is a deep dive into the data provided by both your Dynamics CRM system and your CPQ solution.

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