CPQ stands for Configure, Price, Quote and is often associated with software designed to speed up the provision of complex quotations. For any organisation engaged in the manufacture, sale and distribution of complex products or services, the time needed to prepare accurate sales quotes can mean the difference between winning and losing business.
So let’s look at the component parts of CPQ to determine its real value to sales leaders.
In a global consumer market we’re all used to making demands based on our feelings at the time of purchase. As a supplier of those goods or services the key to attracting that customer over and over again is its ability to respond to what they want – making quality product, creating an easy interface to buy and exceeding service levels.
In the business to business environment things don’t change all that much, but organisations must respond quickly to demand offering the customer unique combinations of their product or risk that customer finding a new supplier. A sales team that can quickly AND accurately determine the exact configuration of product as demanded by the customer will be more successful.
Many organisation will have a list price or a base price for their products but few stick to this. Instead they use price to be more competitive. A sales team needs to offer some flexibility but still operate within the boundaries of what is acceptable margins – perhaps on the basis of volume pricing, promotional bundles or specification. Without accurate and consistent pricing that can easily be accessed and applied by all an organisation can see its margin eroded, upset its loyal customers and lose future business opportunities.
Developing and monitoring price lists with rules attached to them gives an organisation the confidence that its sales team is remaining competitive whilst respecting acceptable profit margins.
We all know the frustration of asking for a price and then waiting days or weeks for it to come through. A sales team that cannot produce an accurate quotation quickly could lose that opportunity altogether. CPQ software can take the complexity of the configuration, coupled with the right pricing computation and deliver a professional looking quote quickly.
At Ardent we talk to many manufacturers who cite that they lose business because of the time it takes their sales team to develop accurate, but often complex quotations. As a Microsoft Dynamics Gold Partner we have teamed up with one of the world’s leading CPQ software specialists to offer Experlogix for Dynamics. Our aim is to make it easier for organisations to do successful business together.