Sales Enablement 101: How to Boost Your Team’s ROI Right Now

Is your sales team performing at its best?

Personnel, expertise and cohesion are vital aspects of creating a top sales team that successfully converts leads into paying customers. Yet you will never get the most out of your teams if you lack the tools necessary for them to streamline their jobs.

One of the most impactful ways you can invest in your team is through sales enablement. But what is sales enablement, and how can you use sales enablement tools to transform your business and take it to the next level?


What is sales enablement?

Sales enablement solutions give your sales agents the tools necessary to do their jobs. 

Enabling your sales team requires thinking about the big picture. Providing them with resources, training and ongoing learning opportunities is a massive part of ensuring your team succeeds.

Your sales enablement strategy stands alone outside of your broad sales management strategy. It is the underlying aspect of your sales approach. Without sales enablement technology, the rest of your sales approach will fall short.

Technologies, such as CRM solutions, prospecting platforms like Crunchbase, and access to cutting-edge techniques are among the concerns of a sales enablement manager.

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Why should you care about sales enablement?

The whole point of adopting a sales enablement strategy is to produce better results. Approximately 76 percent of businesses with an enablement strategy report increased win rates of up to 20 percent. Studies show consistently that enablement strategies in sales yield results.

There are also correlations with better training outcomes, superior customer relationships, and the achievement of broader business goals.

If you’re wondering whether to invest in sales enablement marketing techniques, here are four key areas sales enablement can improve.

1. Sales readiness

Readiness means your team has the skills and knowledge to make the most from every interaction with your leads and paying customers.

Sales readiness lays the groundwork for success via coaching, ongoing learning, knowledge recall, etc. It includes the knowledge needed for reps to market your product or service, such as product details, awareness of the competition, and branding.

Even if a call doesn’t lead to closing on the deal, buyers will come away believing that their time was well-spent. Remember, not closing a deal with Client A doesn’t mean they will not return in the future.

2. Improve employee engagement

Employers are suffering from an engagement crisis. Approximately 70 percent of businesses fail due to a lack of engagement. If your team is coasting, you have a problem.

A lack of engagement arises from many factors, but one of the leading causes is the feeling that their employer fails to invest in them. Sales agents want to perform better and reach new highs in their careers. Would you be engaged in your job if every day, month and year were precisely the same?

Enablement invests in your team to empower them to become the best versions of themselves. Unsurprisingly, more engagement also means a higher chance of retaining the brightest and the best.

Even if you have yet to experience a departure from your sales team, it remains a risk in the modern business landscape. In one study, 37 percent of employees reported leaving their firms due to a lack of career growth.

HR departments worldwide consider retention their highest priority as we enter the post-pandemic world.

These benefits of enablement strategies apply not only to sales personnel, but managers as well. Your sales team relies on their manager to support them through exceptional communication and great coaching.

Show your top talent that you are committed to investing in their career growth.

3. More success with clients

Many salespeople live under the shadow of weekly and monthly quotas. While quotas help motivate people by providing a clear line between success and failure, quotas are also stressful. Provide them with sales enablement tools to give them confidence in their abilities.

Individual sales personnel are not the only ones who require relevant sales enablement content and coaching. Your sales engineers, customer service teams and channel partners need the same support.

For example, if you work with a channel partner, you need to figure out methods of keeping your external reps engaged with your brand. These partners will work with the brands that drive the most revenue. Ignore them, and they will start driving revenue for your rival.

In short, sales enablement technology helps keep your team happy and results in client-facing success

4. Return on your sales tools

Sales tools are the cornerstone of day-to-day life as a modern sales professional. Your team will use various tools daily, such as CRM solutions, engagement tools, communication dashboards and market intelligence charts.

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Data is what gives your organization a competitive edge. The more you know about the market, your leads and the performances of your sales team, the more agile you become.

Get more of the big decisions right by ensuring your sales team has the right tools available and knows how to use them. If your team uses only the most basic features, it indicates a problem with a lack of resources, knowledge and training.

Your sellers need to become experts in the tools your organization uses the most to generate leads and turn them into paying customers.


What does sales enablement entail?

A sales enablement manager’s day generally consists of a varied schedule addressing many aspects of sales enablement.

Developing your strategy for enablement requires a multipronged approach. Here’s what makes up a sales enablement strategy.

Goal setting

The most prominent part of your strategy is setting clear goals. Just like your sales strategy, enablement needs a roadmap to success. Your framework must be specific, measured, timely and more to ensure you have a clear path to transforming your sales team.

You can further break down goals into two categories: short- and long-term. Any objective must fit into the greater goals of the business.


Enablement leaders need to communicate clearly with their teams. What’s expected of personnel should be spelled out clearly and communicated upfront. To improve engagement, you must figure out how to communicate expected results.

Managers need to embrace being able to schedule periods where the focus will be on enablement. It also includes communicating with other teams, such as marketing managers, product managers and regional sales managers.

Time management

Creating an effective enablement program requires excellent time management skills. Remember, enablement will never take priority over core sales and product development tasks.

The big risk associated with an enablement strategy is losing sight of overall organizational goals. Overwhelming your team with too many enablement activities will have the opposite effect of what you want.

Balancing learning, ongoing work and long-term organizational goals is the key to the success of your sales enablement strategy.

Content creation

Sales enablement content is a considerable element within an enablement strategy. Both marketing and sales teams must collaborate to create internal content that makes an impact.

The main elements of content creation within the context of an enablement strategy are:

  • Organization – Begin by taking stock of what content is already available. Audit your company’s materials and identify overlaps, holes and unmet needs. You might be surprised by the amount of content that needs refreshing and repurposing.
  • Content types – You have so many different content types to choose from. Your content needs to suit your audience, whether it’s dealing with new leads or existing customers. Content types such as case studies, slide decks, product demos and more can all play into your enablement plan.
  • Distribution – How are you disseminating content to relevant personnel? If content is scattered and difficult to access, you’re already curtailing its effectiveness. Do you even know where your content is right now?

Managing your content is where there’s significant overlap with your external marketing strategy. You can apply the same considerations and techniques to your company’s content marketing strategy.

Learning and development

How do you adapt your learning approach to different people?

Not every organization is digital native. Not every organization has a multistringed learning program. If someone learns better by reading a training program, they need many content-filled PDFs. If someone learns better through online Zoom classes, you need to account for that.

Consider different learning styles and match up your materials accordingly. No single approach will ever work for everybody.

Identify preferred learning styles by surveying your team directly about how they prefer to learn. Without offering multiple options, you’ll lose out on engagement with your programs.

Digital transformation

A digitized business is essential for the modern sales environment. Digital transformation means leveraging sales enablement tools to impact every part of your business positively. Through the lens of sales team enablement, digitization affects everything from content creation to how you conduct remote training sessions.

Digital transformation is about adopting a broader vision for your business. It’s about reimagining the way you run your organization.

Technology to enable empowerment is crucial, with 57 percent of high-performing sales reps claiming the intelligent use of technology is the key to enablement.

Enablement plan

A comprehensive enablement plan is a blueprint that outlines what your organization wants to achieve through implementing an enablement strategy. It exists within the more extensive companywide system, but it is also an independent living document that must be updated as your team and business change.

Forming one of these plans extends far beyond the sales team. Sales managers will work with customer support, product development and even HR to create a plan that matches the firm’s long-term strategic goals.

Continuing stakeholder commitment

You cannot force an enablement solution on a team that isn’t interested. Stakeholder commitment is about convincing the company leadership of its benefits and promoting the idea to participants.

Everyone remembers the pointless team-building sessions that remain a mainstay of many corporations today. If people are not committed to the plan, they will not give it their best.

Stakeholder commitment improves engagement, generates excitement and increases the chances of achieving your goals.

Build a team designed for success

Obviously, the people driving enablement will significantly influence its success. Your team may consist of several types of personnel. It may also contain multiple enablement professionals working together with your sales executives.

Regardless of how you build your team, courses, programs and other activities should always be delivered by a sales leader. Why is that? They already have the respect of their team. A random professional from outside the team will never command the same level of attention.

Furthermore, relying on your sales leaders to deliver enablement sessions ensures they have the first-hand experience necessary to make it relevant and engaging.

Enablement professionals are a worthy investment, but they should be monitoring and managing your sales team, which will be handling the delivery of the program.


7 sales enablement tools to consider

What are some of the sales enablement tools examples to boost your business?

Enablement tools run the gamut of uses, ranging from content development to sales coaching. Narrow down your shortlist of tools by identifying your greatest needs. Try not to become fixated on adopting too many devices at once.

1. Crunchbase

Chances are you already have a cold-calling strategy to help you reach out to new leads. Finding the contact information of relevant decision-makers can be difficult, as companies usually don’t make this information public.

Reaching out via conventional public-facing channels will usually leave you several tiers away from those making the big decisions. 

No one understands the importance of top-notch sales prospecting tools that get you insider access like Crunchbase does. Offering an all-in-one prospecting solution that simplifies your sales cycle, it’s now easy to get in touch with prospects that match your ideal targets. With advanced search and in-depth data, you can now discover companies within your target market, reach influential figures within companies, and connect with decision-makers. Advanced search allows you to filter your prospect lists by valuable insights, updated in real-time using live company data. 

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2. NerdyData

NerdyData provides your sales team with access to how companies use technology. It consists of a constantly updated database of companies and the type of technology they utilize.

Why is this important for your sales team? If you sell a technology product and find that a hot lead is using a competitor’s product, you could create a customized comparison PDF to illustrate why your product is better.

It’s easy to see why NerdyData could be such a valuable tool. Understanding a lead’s tech stack gives you more information you can use to sell with; by gaining in-depth information like this, you can make informed, personalized decisions.

3. Crazy Egg

Is your content engaging your target demographic sufficiently?

Crazy Egg provides insights into leads engaging with your online content and how they’re engaging with it. It comes with several heat maps and analytical tools to let you assess and evaluate your content marketing strategy at a glance.

You can also run A/B tests on every page to boost visiting times and conversions. With Crazy Egg, you can take your analytics to the next level.

4. SharePoint

Content distribution for internal and external use is an excellent way to manage your enablement content.

Centralize your enablement material and categorize it appropriately using SharePoint, offered by Microsoft. If you’re already a business that lives within the Microsoft ecosystem, SharePoint easily integrates with popular tools like Office 365.

While it can be used without Office 365, this is where it truly shines. Using it alongside Word, Excel and Outlook will help you get the most out of it.

5. Brainshark

Traditional sales training tools are dull and usually act as a box-checking exercise. Brainshark seeks to change that by providing a sales training tool that concentrates on video.

Using Brainshark, you can create targeted sales videos and deploy them across your sales teams. Whether you want to show them how to close more deals or teach them more about the product/service they’re selling, Brainshark allows you to create professional productions that get your reps up to speed.

Optimize your sales training and use the built-in analytical features to get vital metrics on each new release.

6. Typeform

Post-sales feedback is as important as the strategies you use to close deals in the first place. Find out what your customers think about the way you run your organization. Typeform is a simple yet powerful tool for distributing sales feedback forms.

What makes Typeform stand out from other similar tools is its flexibility. This is the last form builder you will ever need to integrate.

Even if you don’t need a form builder, the API can be used to provide your team with a central repository to store feedback from several sources.

7. UberConference

UberConference is determined to do to the conference industry what it did to the taxi and online food service industries. Run internal and external sales meetings via audio conferencing using current lead data and your CRM.

Connect UberConference to your existing CRM system and automatically pull data on the participants in your conference. If there’s a known person on your call, your reps can use that data to develop a personalized experience.

You can also display data scraped from your conference on popular programs, including the cloud-based Office 365.


Sales enablement best practices

In addition to top-notch sales prospecting software, there are additional best practices for success. So, how can managers make the most of their enablement strategy?

No one strategy will work for every business. Your path forward must match up with the way you operate your organization. However, here are six best practices that can apply to any sales team.

Align your team with your CRM

As a sales manager, you need clear insights into everything within your sales team. You need to know each team’s stage in the pipeline. You also need to know how quickly your team is accelerating toward the goal of closing a deal.

Managers and reps alike must be able to manage, update and share the statuses of current deals. Your sales team must be centered around your CRM. Regardless of which CRM you use, everyone should have easy access to the status of leads and prospects and who’s responsible for each task.

It has never been more challenging for salespeople to connect with the right people. Sharing new insights with your team, evolving and ensuring everyone is on the same page can help overcome the modern salesperson’s challenges.

Your CRM is your communication station and the one source of truth within your team that you can rely on.

Any good CRM must be fully customizable and simple to integrate within your current processes. Take the time to research different options because this is the heart and soul of your operations.

Make use of chatbots

Chatbots come in all shapes and sizes. The right chatbot can personalize conversations with your prospects and existing customers. It’s the step that will turn you into a truly 24/7 organization.

The value in a chatbot is in freeing up your staff to spend more time with qualified leads rather than answering the same basic questions repeatedly. Let your prospects get all the essential information they need—every minute of the day—without disrupting your team.

Optimize chatbot placement and performance by putting it on pages where people are likely to have questions, such as your product and pricing pages.

Break the silos between sales and marketing

Content is the driving force behind every single sales effort. Fancy words and convincing tones will only take you so far. Your sales team shouldn’t be viewed as separate from your marketing team.

The right content at the right time enhances your sales team. Break the silos between these departments so you can distribute blogs, case studies and white papers at the right time.

Answering all the right questions quickly will increase your chances of a successful sale. Miscommunication and misaligned strategies directly impact growth. Companies find that close collaboration drives business growth.

Invest in ongoing learning

Ongoing learning, as mentioned before, is beneficial for employee engagement and retention. There’s also the obvious benefit of giving your sales team new skills.

Sales professionals who have the latest tricks and techniques at their disposal have an instant advantage over the competition.

Use the latest metrics to figure out where your sales team is lacking and counter those problems. Drill down into the individual metrics of each rep to find the trends and patterns that can point you in the right direction.

Learn from your team

Ongoing learning is a two-way street. Turn to your best-performing sales agents for leadership. Dig into the data and find out where your agents are excelling.

If someone is performing well with a particular type of customer or when selling a specific service, draw upon that success and replicate it across your organization.

It could be something such as an agent who has a unique cadence when talking over the phone. Repeating that call cadence across your organization could increase the number of big fish your team manages to reel in.

Formalize your processes

Laying out your strategies and processes is one thing. Getting your sales team to buy into them and implement them is another.

Formalize your processes and make sure your team has adopted them. Aligning your enablement plan, sales strategy and more can improve your win rates by generating cohesiveness and efficiency across your organization.


Push your sales enablement strategy forward

Sales enablement is an essential element of the modern sales team. Adopting the right technology and tools is pivotal to achieving the success you want from your sales team.

  • Originally published May 20, 2022