Organizations right now, whether big or small, are looking for critical tools to ensure smooth business operations. The primary lookout is for a quoting software because no matter which industry you belong to if you do business, you need quoting software for your products and services. Now with several relevant options in place, you as a customer are spoiled for choices when it comes to finding the one that fits your needs. Keeping the current situation in mind, it is crucial for companies to be judicious about their choices and do a thorough evaluation before making the purchase.
Burst the question bubble!
In order to make the evaluation process stringent, you should design the question list with two categories in mind – i) Software-oriented questions ii) Process-oriented questions. This will help to address both sides of the coin and let you find the perfect match.
Software – oriented
This approach will help you understand the software’s features to know whether you really need the tool and how it can help you improve your current sales processes.
Do you really need a quoting tool? Does it meet your requirements?
Companies looking for quoting software tools are definitely swamped with a lot of products and quotes to be worked on at a point in time. And with a manual process in place makes it even more challenging to manage. A quoting software tool helps you upgrade from doc and excel. It automates sales processes to ensure faster quote creation and efficient document management and storage. With multiple leads, customers, and stakeholders to deal with, it helps you plan and prioritize tasks to reduce friction and close deals faster.
But selecting a quotation software tool (or any tool in general) for your organization is an exhausting process. It takes a lot of your time and effort. So it is important that you are sure of the tool you need before making the final purchase. There are times when organizations just opt for a tool due to its extensive feature list without any relevance. This barely adds value to the process, but sure burns a hole in your pocket. Don’t make that mistake! Be sure of what you want and ensure that it fits well with your internal process and people.
Do you have complex products in a tangled set-up?
If you have a lot of products that you sell and purchase from multiple vendors, you will have to keep track of them. Also, there are certain products that are sold in bundles, packages, and kits – so your tool needs to have those capabilities and also support different pricing options. A tool with a built-in product catalog lets you list all your products in one place and configure it to a pricing method when adding it to a price book. This makes it easy for users to configure and price products.
Do you need these ‘sought after features’ in your quoting software?
Yes, you do! Nowadays, almost all the quoting software tools come with a long feature list. But some features are standard and much needed. Listing down some of them for your reference
- Template library – A large repository of pre-configured templates that can be customizable to give your sales team a head start.
- Word-like editor – Author quotes with a user-friendly editor that is easy to use
- Document repository – One place to store and manage all your documents
- Approval workflows – Tool’s ability to let you set approval workflows that trigger notification based on the conditions set.
- User-based management – Manage the document access based on the user role.
- Status tracker – Know where your quotes are stuck in the process and prioritize your tasks accordingly!
Are you looking for a tool that enables seamless collaboration?
Complete reliance on emails, texts, and chat for communication can be time taking. This realization has happened to many people now, with remote working becoming the ‘new normal’ (at least for a while). These situations stress more importance on tools that ensure easy collaboration. A tool with a faster process that enables smooth liaisoning between teams to work on a single quote. You should look for a tool that supports some kind of communication even if it’s a notification of change or allocation of a task.
Do you want a tool with reporting capabilities that provides real-time analytics data?
Teams these days are working from different or remote locations. So a tool with the ability to provide clear insight on document status helps them be on the same page, literally! It will also help in identifying the bottlenecks and prevent the process from slowing down. Real-time reporting of data and insights will help you understand and improve the sales process. This inclusion of reporting features acts as an indicator of a mature and complete quoting software package.
This approach will help you in managing the changeover better from and make work easier for the users.
Is there an onboarding process in place?
Just getting the right tool isn’t enough! Change and transition are difficult in themselves. If the set-up and installation of the software are complicated and extensive, it can result in users losing interest. This may create resistance towards using the tool. A proper onboarding process with sufficient resources like help videos, in-app cues, knowledge base, and appropriate customer support will make the transition easier for the customers.
Does the quoting software integrate with the other tools used by you? Is the UI/UX user friendly?
Seamless integration with a system of record is essential for quoting software. There are companies that have systems of record in place to be integrated with the quoting software. And Bi-directional sync can be the cherry to your cake. Such integrations fetch you real-time data like the price and availability of products or services from multiple distributors through a single sign-on.
Having a quoting software with a smooth configuration experience that will work quickly is of utmost importance. A metric to measure this would be the time taken by a user to start using the product effectively. With a non-intuitive UI/UX it can take longer and that hurts the business. Many users deal with complex products, so it’s important that the UI/UX should be pleasing to the user and is easy to use, functional and secure.
Is the tool scalable as per your business requirement with ongoing customer support?
With scale comes more geographies, currencies and target segments. And the difference in geography, currency, and target segments often lead to companies adjusting their pricing methods and contractual compliances. The tool should be able to adapt to such change requirements as companies want a tool that grows with them. Keep in mind that the quoting software that you choose should have an option to upgrade as per the business requirements. Because changing tools frequently can be a disadvantage as it can hold back the companies’ growth process.
Also, no matter how low maintenance these quoting software tools are, there are certain occasions that ensue the need for vendor support to ensure smooth functioning. From phone calls, chat, email to rich knowledge base centers – it should be able to cover immediate queries and extensive complicated issues too!
Can you afford the tool?
This is one of the most important factors that should be considered and discussed. The price of the tool can be affordable but there might be overhead costs that come with it. This means that the tool might not be complete. Check before signing up if there are additional investments in other systems to complete the requirement. You can also look for a tool that is a “business is a box”. You get a set of tools that work together and adds value to the money spent. The purpose of getting the tool is to ensure smooth functioning and not a cost burden that doesn’t serve the purpose.
If you think this is the tool for you, do you get a free trial or a basic free forever plan?
There are a lot of quoting tools that provide a free trial for a limited period of time. This is done for the convenience of the buyer to let you understand the product better and then make a decision. You can see whether it meets the requirements and is the right fit for your organization.
Also, many companies also have the option of setting up product demos. Don’t hesitate to ask for a demo from a sales representative. This will give you a hands-on glimpse of the quoting software and help you save a lot of time, effort and money that goes into the entire selection process.
Before choosing any product whether it is a car or a software tool, it is important that you know the purpose of your purchase. A lot of time, effort and money go into making such decisions so it is vital that you make the most appropriate choice. Making the wrong choice can lock you in and hurt rather than help the business. So do not hesitate and just ask away your questions to make the right decision.
RevvSales new generation quoting solution lets you create and manage quotes quickly and accurately. You can try it out for yourself. Click here to sign up and enjoy the free trial for 30 days. You can also set up a demo to know about the product in detail.