Ensuring that sales teams have access to the right information and content to prepare, present and share with their prospects and customers is a critical capability of every sales-focused organization. While desktop computers are still used in some situations, the continued adoption of the smartphone and tablet by sales people, which utilize the power of mobile apps, is having a big impact on win rates and customer satisfaction for companies of all sizes.
In 2016, to take advantage of this opportunity, more and more businesses of all sizes began to adopt sales enablement apps like our Bigtincan Hub. Getting the sales team using an app that automatically delivers the right content to the right people at the right time and location was an obvious next step in driving sales productivity, now it’s 2017, and it’s time to continue to deliver on that momentum, and deliver new features and improvements to help sales teams win more often in this increasingly competitive economy.
As we work to achieve this goal, several major trends emerge that dictate the evolution of sales enablement apps. The first is one that sales people continue to push for – overall user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) design improvements. While these are not standalone feature themselves, if users find features difficult to access or don’t enjoy using them, it can degrade the overall app experience, and affect app adoption across the sales team.
Sales enablement apps need to embrace the consumer-facing user experiences that sales people are familiar with, such as apps like iTunes, Facebook, Instagram and Hulu. And it’s not just social and media apps that we have to model this new user experience requirement on. A study by SNL Kogan shows how important the UX on an app is for customers choosing their banking provider. A powerful and easy to use UX on a sales enablement app can have the same impact, not just helping salespeople win more deals, but could also be critical in their recruitment and retention.
Once we solve the UX experience requirements, the next major trend we’re seeing is an increased focus on reliability. Sales people are increasingly relying on sales enablement apps to prepare them ahead of meetings and support them through presentation capabilities to better demonstrate the product or service they are selling. If the app is seen to be unreliable in any way, a sales person is less likely to utilize it in the field. One way to achieve this is through push-updates that occur automatically, without affecting the app’s performance, even if that means taking it offline. The bottom line is that sales people are quick to judge – just one failed attempt at a customer presentation due to network or app issues can kill a sales enablement deployment.
One final trend that we see driving the evolution of sales apps is the potential of artificial technology to help guide the selling process towards improved success. With prep-time in the field at a premium, sales people need the help of smart apps that are able to provide knowledgeable instructions on what to do next in a sales process. This trend can be seen in the rapid advancement of AI-based apps in the consumer world and the enterprise world, as more AI-powered enablement tools, such as Bigtincan Hub, are introduced.
As we continue on in 2017, UX and UI, reliability, and intelligence or sales AI capabilities should be the key requirements of sales enablement apps that will drive adoption demonstrate success in growing the bottom line.