By:
June 21 2018

How to offer a superior customer experience with smart CPQ

So, how do you create an experience that wows your customers?

Well, it starts early, with the buying situation and how you sell your products.

Let's look at an example that most of us are familiar with - buying a TV.

Do you remember when a TV was something with an 'on/off' switch and a couple of channels? If yes, then I'm guessing that the evolution to smart TV hasn't passed you by.

The TVs of today are less box and more interactive media experience. They have a huge number of settings, integrated Internet, their own app marketplaces...if you read the manual thoroughly, you can probably microwave your popcorn in time for your Friday night movie.

As well as everything your new TV can do, it must also be compatible with your sound system, your iPad, and that new gadget you will be purchasing next year even though you don't know you need it yet. (...Bear with me, I'm setting the scene...)

Buying a complicated product like a modern TV demands a great sales rep.

You should not only get the TV you need today but also the one you will be grateful you purchased tomorrow.

Imagine, for example, if the last TV you bought didn't have HDMI. A sales rep that didn't offer you HDMI would have provided a bad customer experience, causing you major problems in the future. For your next purchase, you would simply go to someone else.

What makes a great sales rep?

A great sales rep doesn't jump in and sell features and functions. They start out by getting to know you and gathering information about your needs. In the case of your TV, that's your current home entertainment setup, how your family uses the TV, as well as what you may need tomorrow.

That's what sales rep Sally is doing here. She asks these kinds of questions:

  • What kind of shows and movies do you watch on your TV today?
  • Do you watch TV via your smartphone?
  • Do your kids play a lot of video games on your TV?
  • Do you enjoy the act of setting up your home entertainment system?
  • What room is the TV going in? What's the room like?
  • Do you need to link up with other gadgets in your home?

And what makes for a not-so-great one?

At the other end of the spectrum is Tom. He asks:

  • Do you need xVid.34?
  • Is your home entertainment system NICAM-compatible?
  • Do you need AirPlay?
  • Do you want a 42” TV?
  • Do you need HDCP compatibility?

If Tom was helping you in the store, I can imagine you would get frustrated and perhaps feel a bit stupid for not knowing what xVid.34 or NICAM is (let alone whether you need one or not). You may have known you wanted access to Netflix, but since you didn't understand Tom's techy questions, here you are without easy access.

What Tom focused on was product features, and asking which ones you want, rather than on how he could make you a happy customer.

Sell with your customer in mind

Sally, on the other hand, based her questions on your needs (current and future). She deducts clues from your answers and matches them with the technical specification you will
actually need.

If you watch a lot of YouTube-clips on your iPhone and don’t like to play around with settings, Sally knows to offer you the easy-to-use TV with AirPlay, enabling seamless streaming between your iPhone and TV. From this, she also knows you need an AppleTV-module. Additionally, she knows your TV should definitely be xVid.34-compatible since, most likely, you will connect the next generation X-Box your kids will crave when it arrives.

Basically, Sally makes her selections based on your needs and creates an optimized offer for you.

If you are interested in knowing why you should choose xVid.34 compatibility, she will explain it to you. If you still do not want that feature, she will tell you what you will miss out on.

It's time to ”Sallify" your sales system

What kind of experience do you offer when your customers look into purchasing your products? Do you offer a Sally experience or a Tom experience?

A smart Configure Price Quote solution is a Sally in a world of Toms. CPQ  is a sales configurator that can help you to ask the questions that your customers can actually answer. The solution then translates that input into a product configuration that you can actually produce.

Using smart configuration, you can build the knowledge into your system and put your customer at the centre of the buying experience.

Do you want to put the Sally-factor into your sales process? Get in touch we'd love to talk.

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