How CRM CPQ integration can fuel the growth of your business (2023)

How CRM CPQ integration can fuel the growth of your business (1) Saumya AnandCRM No comments

Trends in the software world are like Star Wars fans—they're everywhere. In recent years, CPQ (Configure, Price, Quote) has joined the party. With reference toERP systemsAndCRM-Software, CPQ solutions have come under the spotlight to make sales teams more effective and productive. And one way to maximize the performance of CPQ applications is to implement CRM-CPQ integration.

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By connecting your CRM and CPQ solutions, or by purchasing a CRM with built-in CPQ capabilities, you can put your sales team on the fast track to success.

What is CPQ, why is it important and how will it benefit your business? Read on to find out!
Here's what we're going to cover in this article:

  • What is CPQ?
  • market statistics
  • CPQ software overcomes sales hurdles
  • Advantages
  • Supply chain challenges
  • How integration contributes to your bottom line
  • Diploma

What is CPQ?

CPQ is a selling tool that removes many of the complexities that salespeople face when creating product listings and provides buyers with a platform to customize products to their needs. It also stores all of a company's pricing and configuration details to ensure accuracy regardless of the unique purchase scenario.

CPQ-Softwareis the fuel that drives sales cycles for any company that sells complex, configurable products and services. The more individual a product is, the more important it is to support sales efforts with a CPQ application that can be scaled across all sales channels.

Without a CPQ tool, landing a sale can be time-consuming. Managers need to know that sales reps are not offering improper discounts and verify that the configurations they provide are valid, which lengthens the approval process.

In addition, it supports sales reps with additional configurations and offers cross-sell and up-sell recommendations. With your pricing and discount rules loaded, a CPQ solution can guide your agents to add line item or bundle discounts.

Most importantly, CPQ software ensures that your offer is ready for the customer. You can add brand-centric themes, formats, cover pages, and custom terms and conditions for a personalized touch.

With CPQ systems, companies can address common sales pain points:

  • Automate the quote creation process
  • Provide insights that increase transaction size
  • Significantly reduce the length of sales cycles
  • Reduce human error
  • Ensure consistent, accurate pricing and discounts for any type of deal
  • Offer multi-currency support
  • Automate rebate and approval workflows
  • Standardize contact, subscription, channel, and partner pricing

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market statistics

  • Despite the COVID-19 crisis, the global CPQ market was valued at US$1.6 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach itAccording to study $3.9 billion by 2026 at a CAGR of 16.3%by StrategyR. Cloud-based CPQ solutions currently account for a 45.5% share.
  • No CPQ provider dominates more than17%share, the market remains highly competitive and fragmented, according to Gartner.
  • 48% of sales teamsAccording to a Salesforce report, respondents are using a CPQ solution as of 2020 and have seen a 10% growth since 2018.

If you're looking for additional insight into why CPQ is so valuable, we've covered that in our articleThe state of the CPQ market.

CPQ overcomes sales hurdles

Buying a CPQ solution is similar to buying a plush mattress - you don't know you need it until you have it. While you may feel that your existing sales operations don't need improvement, your processes may be lacking in shortcomings. Look out for these signs that indicate the need to adopt a CPQ model:

  • Inaccurate sales offers reduce your profits.
  • They use spreadsheets or legacy systems for configurations and pricing.
  • Your sales cycles are too long.
  • Your sales reps perform rudimentary tasks manually.
  • Your customer experience is not up to par.
  • Sales growth exceeds the ability of your team to act.
  • Your product catalog will expand, making it difficult to manage pricing and renewals.
  • You plan to increase your output.

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Primary Benefits

Without CPQ software, offers are created manually and in a time-consuming manner. It usually involves gathering information from different sources like spreadsheets and emails and then putting it together like a jigsaw puzzle.

If a business only needs to create a handful of quotes per month, this approach is fine. But it cannot scale. Eventually, companies reach the point where preparing quotes eats up valuable time that the sales team could spend on more profitable activities.

The ability to unify product configuration, pricing, and quoting in one application that scales across channels is revolutionizing the way companies sell customized products. Leading CPQ providers also offer advanced analytics, intelligent agents, and machine learning to improve sales effectiveness.

More than ever, consumers expect more flexibility and freedom to define what they want from the products they buy – also known as mass customization. Case study: More than50% of Lamborghini vehicles roll off the assembly linehave at least one ad personam function to offer maximum customization.

Today, B2B organizations in industries such as manufacturing and distribution offer configurator tools that allow buyers to customize their products. And in the B2C world, people can customize products ranging from their Apple device to that dreamFerrari.

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Example of a configuration interface supported by a CPQ solution.

This extreme level of customization has become normal. If you want to meet consumer expectations, CPQ strategies are essential alongside effective CPQ-CRM integration.

Before we dive into the integration benefits, let's briefly explain how CPQ impacts the supply chain.

Supply chain challenges

CPQ is particularly helpful in addressing vulnerabilities in the supply chain. Efficiency is a big thing - and often a challenge - in supply chains. CPQ software brings automation to the table to streamline supply chain operations in multiple ways.

First, CPQ can simplify the sales cycle. The complexity of countless variables makes it much more difficult to run lead-to-order cycles using traditional methods. With CPQ in the picture, taking customer needs into account becomes easier and faster.

To facilitate an optimized sales cycle, CPQ solutions can update yoursSupply-Chain-Management-SoftwareFind out in advance what consumables and parts you need to stay ahead of demand. This will prevent problems from occurring when an order is received. It is also possible to include inventory limits in the CPQ, which signals sales reps and customers that resources are scarce and may impact the buying process.

With major product customization comes the need to offer custom pricing. CPQ supports the range of pricing options required in the manufacturing industry. For example, if a business organization needs to order 500 new desktop computers with unique configurations, CPQ systems use rules-based engines to generate a price that accounts for things like discounts based on order size.

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With supply and demand directly impacting supply chains, agility is a critical component of success.Tools for demand planninghelp predict market shifts, but they are not foolproof. With CPQ, companies can offer a range of configurations to prevent products from stagnating when market demand plummets.

In addition to efficiency, customer experience has become an important factor that companies must consider in order to remain competitive. Personalization, driven by the increasing demand from shoppers to control the process themselves, plays a key role.

CPQ addresses the customer experience challenge in several ways:

  • Guide buyers through the configuration process
  • Let them tailor products to exact specifications
  • Delivering interactive shopping experiences by allowing customers to see their customizations in real time
  • Accelerate the sales cycle
  • reduce errors
  • Enables businesses to deliver exactly what customers order at the right time
  • Offering self-service options

Now let's explore the value of integrating your CRM and CPQ systems.

How the CPQ integration helps

CRM applications are a powerful tool in your company's toolbox. However, not every CRM includes CPQ capabilities. Incorporating a CPQ system into the mix can strengthen your customer relationship management. Specifically, CPQ apps enable your sales team to produce more, close more deals, and win more.

How does CPQ achieve this? Let's go through some examples:

Central catalogue

This is where the magic begins. A centralized storage catalog is the engine that drives the increased productivity and efficiency of your sales team. And since one of the main goals of CPQ systems is to cut ties to spreadsheets, this is a key reason for using a CQP application.

The range of product customization options makes it crucial to have a place to easily store this information. CPQ provides a database that automatically tracks configurations and bundles, so sales reps don't have to manually track every price and product, or create quotes from scratch every time.

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Overview of price details in different segments.

Shorter sales cycles

Traditionally, preparing quotes took a long time and prevented sales reps from responding quickly to customer inquiries. In fact, research shows that salespeople only spend moneySell ​​35% of their time. The main culprit? Administrative tasks that take up nearly 15% of a sales rep's time in any given week.

CPQ can solve this problem by simplifying and streamlining the quoting process. And using software to handle these tedious, repetitive tasks pays dividends. Research from Oracle indicates that CPQ solutions reduce sales cycle time by30 % bis 60 %.

CPQ software eliminates much of the manual work involved in preparing quotes. Because sales reps can access pre-built templates and automatically pull information from the catalog, it's much easier to create a complex proposal in less time. This speeds up response times, which shortens sales cycles.

Bigger deals and more deals closed

When sales teams spend less time creating quotes, they have more time to acquire new customers and close more deals. Simple math.

CPQ-Softwarespeeds up order creationby automatically creating offers and orders based on your business logic.

It also provides insights that sales reps can use to increase the scope of a deal. AI and machine learning evaluate selling patterns to suggest guided selling, upselling, and cross-selling opportunities.

For example, in guided selling, the system provides forms and questionnaires to guide customers through the process of selecting exactly the right configuration based on their needs. Sales reps also have access to this information, which helps them make recommendations.

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The guided sales function in CallidusCloud CPQ.

Seamless process

Given the need for more efficiency, it doesn't make sense for sales reps to use a CRM for contacting and tracking leads, only to switch when it's time to send a quote. CRM CPQ integration eliminates the need to go back and forth, creating a seamless workflow that empowers sales teams to work more effectively.

brand consistency

Working from one central tool also improves brand consistency. Sales reps can reuse templates with your company's branding. This simplifies your work and ensures that you present yourself to leads in a uniform manner.

People won't take your business as seriously if you can't maintain consistency in your communication with them. The integration of your CRM and CPQ ensures this.

Improved visibility in the sales pipeline

CRMs are valuable for a variety of reasons, one of which is better insight into your sales pipeline. However, without a CPQ system integrated into your CRM, you lose an important part of the picture.

You can't optimize what you can't fully see. By connecting CRM and CPQ solutions, you gain additional understanding of how the CPQ step feeds into the overall pipeline and how to make improvements that result in higher close rates.

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Less mistakes

One of the biggest benefits of using software is the reduction in human error. Given the amount of detail involved in configuring, pricing, and quoting a product, having the software take care of the complexity can significantly reduce the number of errors your sales team encounters.

One of the valuable aspects of a CPQ is a rules engine. As the name suggests, this is simply a system that allows you to define the rules of engagement, so to speak. You can set rules that make the entire configuration, pricing, and quoting process less error-prone.

A rules engine automates every step of the CPQ journey, ensuring no errors creep into the quotes your sales team sends out. The rules engine not only reduces costly errors on your end, but also prevents customers from submitting an invalid order.

You can set up validation rules, product actions, alerts based on predefined criteria, filtering rules and more. Such a level of control means you can configure various dependencies, attributes, and more based on your specific business needs.

Lower costs

Reducing errors helps lower your overall costs. CPQ software helps reduce costs by significantly reducing the likelihood of user errors such as data entry errors or customers ordering a product configuration that your company cannot create. Fixing errors can quickly add up, eating up valuable time that sales reps can spend nurturing relationships and generating revenue.

The automation that CPQ offers also helps you save time and money:

  • It guides sales reps through the process, which helps new hires onboard faster and reduces training costs.
  • It decreases the number of times a client needs to contact your sales team, resulting in lower spend for each quote generated.

Reporting Insights

Need reports? CPQ has them. WithBI enabledAnalysis and reporting capabilities allow you to drill down into specific metrics for a deeper understanding. Here are a few examples:

  • Monitor the activities of sales reps, e.g. B. the frequency of discounts offered, the number of closed deals and approved transactions
  • Determine the best combination of products and prices
  • Analyze historical prices to identify trends
  • Locate anomalies

Real-time insights allow you to optimize your process so you can win more. Reporting dashboards show you the status and you can use the CRM CPQ data to create custom reports that drive decisions across multiple departments.

Higher customer satisfaction

Imagine a construction company needing to order several types of exterior windows for a new office building. They want to configure the base model to their liking and buy a different quantity for each window size. However, the manufacturer's product and price restrictions are getting frustrating.

Without a CPQ system, this scenario is much more likely. CPQ removes these limitations so buyers can get what they need with less hassle. Automation also protects customers from overlooking required items during configuration and guides them through the process using your predefined rules.

Another way CRM CPQ improves customer satisfaction is by accelerating response times. People don't like to wait. When your sales reps can quickly send a quote based on a configuration, it makes life easier for your customers. And in sales, quick reactions can mean the difference between winning a deal and losing the customer to a competitor.

Why is customer satisfaction so important? Because companies that invest in a great customer experience will benefit.

80% of customersAccording to a Salesforce report, they value positive engagement as much as they do product quality.

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And from the other angle, if you don't provide that great experience, it will hurt your bottom line. Exceptional experiences not only increase sales, but also foster brand loyalty among customers. The same Salesforce report found that 53% of customers feel an emotional connection to the brand they frequently shop from.

Guided Sale

The connection of CPQ and CRM brings another advantage -Guided Sale. As the term suggests, it simplifies the sales process by helping customers navigate the process of purchasing a product or service. In addition, it enables sales reps to search a large catalog of products using a series of targeted questions.

CPQ leverages AI-based capabilities to turn raw data into actionable insights to help customers make decisions. For example, Netflix uses demographic and historical data, behavioral patterns, and other insights to recommend content to viewers.

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A look at guided selling in Salesforce CPQ.

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No matter the size of your business, CPQ tools provide key features that put power in the hands of customers, addressing supply chain pain points and greatly simplifying the quoting process.

And with CRM CPQ integration, your business can improve efficiency, free up salespeople to focus on selling, contain costs, drive revenue growth, and ultimately keep your customers happy.

In order to use the full potential of CPQ, it is important to have an effective CRM system. We put together for freeCRM Comparison Reportto make your decision faster and more informed. Get insights into top vendors so you know the landscape and are ready for your CRM and CPQ strategy.

What do you think are the biggest benefits of CPQ for your business? Write them in the comments!

Saumya AnandHow CRM CPQ integration can fuel the growth of your business
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