Sales enablement has come into its own in the last decade. Once something implemented by only a handful of companies and early adopters, enablement is now a staple of sales organizations everywhere, reports show that sales enablement adoption increased by 343% over the last five years.
Despite its prevalence, there are still misconceptions about what exactly sales enablement is, and myths about enablement persist in the sales community. This can be a problem; if a company doesn’t understand enablement, they won’t be able to use it effectively to help sales departments and increase revenue.
With that in mind, let’s look at some common sales enablement myths.
- Sales enablement is a product
There are a lot of companies out there claiming to sell sales enablement, and this can lead to some misconceptions — if you invest in this or that software, you will be sales-enabled, and can expect greater revenues.
The truth is, sales enablement is not a product or a technology. Instead, it’s a strategy for supporting your sales team with the resources they need to close more deals. While these resources may include technology, they also include coaching, content, and other tools that help your team sell more effectively.
- Sales enablement is basically just training
Sales enablement and sales training do share some characteristics, but they are not the same thing. Sales enablement is about getting information to reps when they need it, and helping them do their jobs. Coaching, for example, falls under the enablement umbrella. Training covers many types of training, from onboarding new representatives to compliance training. One way of looking at it is to think of sales enablement as an umbrella. Some training and learning falls under the enablement umbrella. Others do not.
- Every organization needs a dedicated sales enablement role or team
You may worry that if you don’t have a sales enablement team, you can’t offer enablement to your sales team members. Because sales enablement is a strategy, not a role, this is not the case. Various departments can take on parts of enablement. As long as your sales team is receiving the support they need, your company is providing sales enablement.
- You don’t need enablement for day-to-day sales activities
Those who are new to enablement may think that enablement should only be used to provide help to reps who are engaged in big deals or projects. After all, a rep who is working on a product launch needs more help than the rep who is just doing their daily sales activity, right?
That’s not the case. The rep with the product launch might need more help, but the other rep still needs enablement. All salespeople can use the help of enablement to improve at their jobs. And because enablement is a process, the same tools and strategy can be used to help both reps - the one working on the big deal, and the one who isn’t.
- It’s impossible to measure the ROI of sales enablement
Leadership tends to be more excited about the money their sales team generates, not the money spent on the team, and they’re often keen to know just what the impact of sales enablement has been.
It may seem difficult to measure sales enablement because it covers such a broad variety of tools. Choose Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) at the beginning. These might be the number of RFPs responded to, or the number of deals closed, the amount of time it has taken to close a deal, or even the number of times a certain piece of sales content has been accessed and used. All of these metrics can be used to show the impact of your enablement efforts.
The importance of enablement
The goal of sales enablement is to make your sales team’s job easier; to provide all sellers with the tools and information they need to effectively engage buyers throughout the entire sales process. This means getting rid of common time-wasters, like searching for information that should be at their fingertips, and cutting out the parts of their jobs that automation can do for them.
Sales enablement tools like Ombud’s platform can make that process smoother by removing some of the hurdles faced by your team, and giving them more time to do what they do best: ask for the sale.