With the standard products and services from years ago, pricing was straightforward, and it was quick and easy to listen to a customer’s needs, determine a suitable solution, and quote a price for that solution. But as the yearning to stand out against peers and the desire to offer bespoke solutions in order to gain new customers and additional market share has proliferated, the ability to customize price offerings has also needed to evolve.
Today, the pricing process is still most commonly completed using traditional tools such as Microsoft Excel. Microsoft Excel is easy to use; almost everyone is familiar with it, and it’s customizable. It allows you to Configure, Price, and Quote (CPQ) your prospects and customers.
Maybe you have advanced your CRM or specific pricing tool to capture key product and service requirements and export the information into a Microsoft Excel quote form for transmission to the customer. It’s nice, but does that help you stand apart from your competitors? If you’re pushing technological advancements as one of your organization’s benefits, does providing a quote on a Microsoft Excel form convey your innovation? Or do you need to think about a CPQ evolution?
“But I don’t want yet another plugin!”
There are pros and cons to yet another plugin, and the right answer for you depends on how you plan to move forward. How complex are your pricing customizations? It may be possible to program your CRM or Marketing Automation system to accommodate your pricing process without a plugin. Certainly, you’ll need some customizations to fields, behind-the-scenes formulas, and flows, but programming a pricing process that offers drop-downs or check boxes to select product or service options can result in a robust CPQ offering. You’d want to ensure someone’s responsible for maintaining pricing formula accuracy as you update your offerings, but it’s something your Marketing Automation partner can assist you with. And perhaps, with some tweaks to your website quote request form, some of your more simple customer pricing requests can be automated–no Business Development person is required. This saves your Business Development team for the more complex consultative selling opportunities, where the big bucks live.
Alternatively, submitting to a plugin that integrates with your current CPQ process, whether it be through your CRM or otherwise, will accommodate much more complex pricing requirements. You’ll also have the added benefit of a dedicated team, your CPQ vendor, being responsible for plugin evolution, security, fixes, and support. The output for customers will be professional-looking, lending itself to promoting your technologically advanced organization.
Either option, after implementation, will reduce the time required for your Business Development team to generate quotes for customers. Either will shorten the time-to-revenue for your organization, which is most certainly a win. So, which direction do you choose?
Measured Results Marketing can assist you here. Allow us some time with you to understand your current CPQ process, and we can recommend the most cost-effective way forward for you. Now is not the time to spend money unnecessarily, and our experience with the available systems will prevent you from oversubscribing to a system with bells and whistles you’re not likely to use. We can help you professionalize your CPQ process, stand out from your competition, and offer more compelling, professional-looking quotes to your prospects and current customers.
Our recent webinar focused solely on CPQ process improvements and inefficiencies. We got together with a select group of HubSpot Users and Deal Hub to discuss the process. Check out the recording!