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The achievement of your revenue goals in business-to-business selling is dependent on the number of projects you generate and decide to pursue, their size, and the probability of winning. Without first optimizing these factors, even the best CRM system will hardly impact your bottom line. Only by combining an ideal sales process with flexible software tools to support it, can you achieve real improvements in sales effectiveness.

Identifying areas for improvement

Sales opportunities are lost for many reasons. A systematic analysis of losses helps identify the key issues in the sales process. Common problems include selling to the wrong people, focusing on product functionality instead of customer value, and failing to identify potential risks early. As a result, discounts are often used at the end of the sales process to compensate for deficiencies.
To illustrate potential benefits, let’s look at a E250 million (approx. U.S.$ 296 million) IT services company. Through the optimization of their sales process and by moving toward value selling, they increased revenues by E12.5 million (approx U.S.$14.8 million) annually, and increased margins by reducing discounts.

SAP CRM Opportunity Management

CRM Opportunity Management, the flexible software solution from SAP, does much more than just manage information, it guides sales people through all phases of the sales process.
The “Sales Assistant” provides system users with a checklist of activities to ensure that an ideal sales process is executed. A graphic representation of all individuals involved in the buying process and their relationships provides the account team with a solid foundation to develop a winning strategy and action plan. SAP CRM Opportunity Management provides a user-definable catalog of questions to ensure that project risks are identified early. This guarantees that sales resources are not wasted on projects without budget, appropriate customer priority, or other prerequisites for success. Powerful analytical functions support sales controlling and help your organization learn from wins and losses. The Opportunity Pipeline, for example, visualizes short- and long-term revenue potential, while the Win/Loss Analysis helps identify mistakes to be avoided in the future.
SAP CRM Opportunity Management can be customized to support the way your sales department works, so your employees see the solution as a tool for achieving their objectives – not just more administration. This user acceptance maximizes the effectiveness of your CRM implementation.
All modules can be adapted to support your specific business requirements and selling practices. A best practice example is supplied with the standard configuration. This example was worked out together with SAP Partner Infoteam Sales Process Consulting AG (Kloten-Zürich, Switzerland) and is based on Infoteam´s sales methodology “Winning Complex Sales”.

Expectations realized

By successfully combining software with sales methodology, SAP customers can now maximize their sales potential. The probability of winning sales opportunities increases and margins improve while reducing costs and shortening the sales cycle. This helps to meet management’s expectations of an investment in CRM.

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