Creating a sales stack can be broken into seven steps:
Have clearly defined customer profiles
Understand where your leads come from
Define the best method to present your product to prospects
Build a framework to handle common objections
Understand your ideal follow-up timeframe
Define which sales metrics matter most to your business
Know which sales activities drive more deals to close (cold calling, sales emails, SMS, etc.)
As you prepare your business for 2023, it’s time to take stock of your sales software stack and ensure it is stocked with all the stack you need. Wow, that was a mouthful.
But what does this mean, how do you do it, and what software should you be adding to your stack?
Don’t worry. We’re here to help.
What Is A Sales Stack?
Your company’s “sales stack” is the sales software and technology your sales team uses for day-to-day work and needs to communicate effectively and excel at its job.
The goal of your sales team is to close as many quality deals as possible with the least amount of resources—including time and energy.
So with the right sales technology stack in place, sales teams can more easily connect with prospects.
A sales stack typically includes management tools, including:
Real-time sales performance dashboards
The tools that make up a company’s sales technology stack differ based on a business’s overall sales process.
As new sales tools become available, sales reps and managers embrace a wide variety of technologies.
For example, a company that generates a large portion of business from outbound calling might invest heavily in tools that enable reps to dial leads faster, connect with more prospects and log call data automatically.
The Sales Process
A good sales process is predictable and repeatable. A great sales process is scalable.
However, the entire sales process is fraught with challenges that, if mishandled, can undermine not just the productivity of a sales rep, but an organization as a whole.
To build a great process, you need to consider your buyer’s journey and identify essential pieces of each journey stage.
Analyze each part of your sales cycle to define what technology you need to increase performance and boost revenue.
A "Data First" Mindset
When integrated effectively with technology, high-quality data leads to insights that help sales professionals connect with the right prospects and close deals faster.
When high-quality data is integrated with the tech stack, it creates a strategic advantage for sales and marketing teams.
If a sales rep spends too much time calling leads that aren’t good fits, deals don’t close. But this doesn’t necessarily reflect the rep’s efforts.
Instead, despite all the available software, the underlying data hasn’t provided enough high-quality leads. So-called “ dirty data ” is a significant problem for the tech stack.
At least one-third of CRM data is suspected to be inaccurate, and email lists decay at an average rate of 23% to 30% annually.
Modern account planning requires an equally modern approach.
After all, you’re not selling to a single buyer anymore—your sales reps need to identify an entire buying team to secure a deal, and you need the right tools to find those decision-makers and determine the best way to approach them.
Why Are Sales Stacks Important?
While the sales process remains consistent across many industries, companies that focus on employing the right sales tech stack to execute their sales strategy can streamline their operations and separate themselves from the competition.
A sales technology stack can benefit reps by accelerating sales productivity, providing reps with contextual details about customers, and automating tedious tasks.
While a technology stack can be equally beneficial for sales managers, thanks to tools that provide insight into reps’ activities and help make smarter revenue predictions.
Sales professionals are focused on achieving the highest possible return on the time and energy investment of yourself and your team.
With the right sales tech stack, your sales reps will be able to excel at their jobs, and your revenue will continue to increase.
If you’re a sales rep, the right sales tech stack will save you valuable resources at every buyer journey stage.
Get started optimizing your sales stack by integrating a sales experience platform like Walnut into your sales flow.
Sales stacks should increase productivity for sales professionals, provide pertinent details, and automate manual (and tedious) tasks.
Sales Stack Examples
In 2022, we’ve got tools at our fingertips that would have been almost unfathomable at the beginning of the century.
Many SaaS tools can help you drive sales by offering features, including tracking customer data, setting up demos, offering custom discounts, and more.
With so many tools on the market, knowing which tech you need in your sales stack is more important than ever.
Once you have your core sales stack in place, you can start filling in small gaps that help you move through the process quicker and more accurately.
This is where individual preferences often come in.
With the increase in sales enablement software, your business needs to utilize the tools available to challenge the competition and stay ahead successfully.
Lucidchart aligns your revenue team and serves as a dynamic roadmap to help you land more deals and grow accounts quickly.
Lucidchart is utilized in over 180 countries by millions of users, from sales managers mapping out target organizations to IT directors visualizing their network infrastructure.
Sales reps can build account maps to understand their buyers better, and its Salesforce integration helps sales teams take action on their CRM data quickly.
Not only can it build documents online, but it also features pre-approved templates to help you save time creating presentations.
It also works with your existing CRM and your storage and payment solutions to help consolidate your sales stack.
Plus, it can encrypt your site to protect intellectual property.
Building A Sales Stack
When it comes to assembling a technology stack to help reps succeed, many sales leaders invest in tools that accelerate their reps’ performance during various sales pipeline stages.
These stages include contacting leads, giving demos, and closing deals.
When it’s time to build a technology stack, sales teams are faced with hundreds of solutions that offer lofty promises of automation, efficiency, and higher revenue.
But without high-quality data to connect them all, many of those tools can essentially turn into empty boxes that fall short of their goals.
Ask these questions when creating a sales stack:
Which, if any, manual processes can be removed or streamlined?
Is there room for improvement in our engagement with prospects throughout the sales process?
What can we do to improve our prospecting and consistently generate leads? What can we do to maximize our conversions throughout our sales pipeline?
What sales KPIs are we focusing on (activity ratios, lead response times, etc.)?
What tools can help our team improve those metrics specifically?
Once you have a clear view of these questions, you can build a sales tech stack that functions inside the system you already have in place.
Want to learn more about building the perfect sales stack? Read more here.
Sales Intelligence Tools
Sales intelligence software provides sales reps with vital information, like background and contact information, for a lead’s account, or across market verticals.
Our favorite tool for this is LinkedIn Sales Navigator. We know most of our prospects hang out on LinkedIn. This gives us access to all the information we need quickly.
Customer Relationship Management Tools (CRM)
Your CRM will be everything, and many will either integrate with other tools on this list or come with some of the other tools attached.
Sales teams can even integrate Slack with CRMs to enable notifications that ensure you never miss a moment when a file is shared, or a video call is initiated.
CRMs facilitate relationship building with your prospects, speed up your sales cycle, and keep your team organized and goal-focused.
A CRM will store all of your contacts (including leads and customers) and track and review their entire history.
A CRM answers the following questions:
How accurate is the information (data integrity)?
How much information is given to me on each lead?
What is my price per lead, and does that work with my business economics?
How much time will it take me to get X number of leads?
How many leads are actual sales qualified leads, and how many close?
Your customer relationship management software will help you manage your sales, marketing, and services.
Most CRMs will allow you to track all your sales communication, speed up your sales process, and assist with lead nurturing.
Thus, your outbound sales platform needs to integrate with your CRM. Our CRM of choice is HubSpot.
In an active sales process, the volume of outbound sales communication is huge (email, phone, social media, direct mail, etc.).
Lavender is a tool that can help you write better sales emails by comparing your email against millions of others and suggesting new sentences and phrasing. A few platforms address the challenge of managing that volume while maintaining the personal human element of sales, while at the same time preventing leads from falling through the cracks.
When it comes to providing your sales team with the pertinent information for their sales cycle, you need a multi-function CRM like Salesforce.
A multitude of functions is available with the Salesforce CRM.
Bloobirds helps sales teams flow through their sales pipeline, while collecting crucial data and creating competitive insights.
The sales world moves fast, and especially as your team grows, your sales team has so much on their plates at any given moment.
Allow your sales reps to perfect their craft with all the software that offers critical insights on how you can use the tools you’re using better to close more deals and earn more revenue.
Look for tools to help your sales team make the most out of your data by recommending the next steps or automating parts of the sales process.
As a result, they don’t have to check in on ten different platforms every day or log in to see if there are new leads from Facebook.
Instead, your team needs to rely on fast, immediate, and automatic data syncing.
There is great value in reading articles listing all the tools in the sales stack to keep a pulse on the tools and platforms available. However, there is also danger in following suit.
The instant you become too dependent on the tools, you’re at their mercy and risk becoming an automaton- just another cog in the system.
Xant is a sales enablement tool that uses AI to provide bi-directional data exchange on anonymized consumer behavior via a direct CRM integration.
They claim to use patented AI technology to “identify who the real buyers are, how they behave, and how reps should engage with them.”
We don’t encourage automated calling for most organizations because it’s becoming overused to be “spammy” and can turn people away.
We prefer to automate task reminders that alert the sales manager in their email inbox to call specific prospects.
This allows them to make quick calls while traveling or in between meetings. One of the best tools we’ve seen for streamlining this process is the “sequences” tool in HubSpot.
Using Hubspot to manage your marketing campaigns, its CRM is a great way to follow your leads and customers through the funnel.
It has plenty of great features at every plan level and many advanced features as you increase your plan cost.
HubSpot allows you to invite prospects to schedule meetings on your calendar, sync to your Google or Office 365 calendar, send group meeting links, embed meeting links on your site, and set up round-robin meeting links.
Hence, prospects have the option to speak with a sales rep.
It offers many vital sales and marketing tools, its intuitive dashboard is easy to use, and its capabilities are vast.
After using Close.io, Kennected switched to Hubspot.
Klarifi is a visual communication platform that helps your team understand high-level concepts but then drill down to the vital points.
Klarifi allows you to use graphics, words, and direction to communicate ideas based on the idea that people are visual and tactile learners.
You can use it to talk, prepare, and present proposals. The Klarifi interface facilitates training in groups accessible from mobile, laptop, or tablet.
Contractbook is the best, easiest, and most efficient way to get your contracts signed.
By making the entire process simple and automated, you can get your deals signed quickly and ensure that every person and system knows what they need to do.
There are plenty of live chat tools, and the best ones depend on your specific business. Drift is a solid choice, no matter what your particular needs are.
It’s designed to help you create improved sales pipelines. It’s easy to set up, customize, and integrate with third-party tools.
This sales enablement content and training platform helps you coach reps, give them the right content when they need it, and onboard new reps in less time.
On top of that, it helps link marketing and sales, storing all relevant content in one easy-to-search database.
That way, sales reps can find and use the right content when dealing with prospects. It also allows sales managers to give training and coaching effectively at scale.
Organize your schedule with software that makes it easy to plan meetings without wasting time on back-and-forth emails.
Managing the calendar can become a chore when things are going well, and a good percentage of the cold email volume is converting to phone calls, demos, and in-person meetings.
It shouldn’t take multiple emails with a potential client to pin down a time to talk, and errors here can be devastating to a deal.
Software appointment-booking and demo-booking software should be a go-to for all brands, but it’s often overlooked as a tool for your sales stack.
Appointment booking tools can be integrated into your site for demo or sales call booking.
You can also have individual calendars for each sales team member, which they can link to in their email signatures.
This makes it easy for your team to manage their calendars and for your customers to get in touch as needed.
Calendly lets your sales reps send a link to the prospect that shows them the available times to talk.
Kennected understands that scheduling meetings are one task many professionals share, so we thought it best to schedule a user-friendly calendar tool.
Check it out today!
Lead Generation/Management Tools
Lead generation and prospecting tools are tools that can help you find new prospects to reach out to and capture information about contacts you’ve already identified.
If you’re doing sales prospecting via email, make sure you personalize as much as possible by keeping essential data in your CRM.
This allows you to automate without losing personalization.
Personal sales prospecting emails shouldn’t include many images, links, etc., such as a marketing email. Make sure you tailor your outreach to the situation.
The more leads you have, the better, and the more data you have about those leads, the better.
With lead management tools, you’ll:
Focus on the actual needs of prospects
Ensure you’re working in the right territory
SPOTIO’s lead management CRM software will get you focused on the right sales activities with instant access to critical sales critical data and clear funnel visibility.
LinkedIn Sales Navigator
LinkedIn Sales Navigator is an effective sales enablement and prospecting tool that helps you connect with the right decision-makers, gain more visibility into extended networks, and build and nurture relationships with personalized outreach.
Using specific criteria, you can narrow down your search results to the prospects that are best qualified for your business.
Once you start adding prospects to your lists, LinkedIn will add lead recommendations, helping you discover new leads automatically.
Learn more about this tool here.
Outreach is a sales engagement platform that strategizes and automates sales rep communications via four main components: email, social, voice, and text integration.
This popular prospecting tool helps sales reps find new leads that fit the proper criteria.
You can set the job title, field, location, company size, and more for the leads you want, and LeadFuze will generate a list of leads that fit.
This is a great tool to use once you have a clearly defined customer profile.
If you have exact details and criteria for your leads, LeadFuze can help you narrow them down to the right people.
Demo The Product
Zoom provides a platform to host webinars, online meetings, conference calls, and even allows file sharing and screen sharing, all in an easy-to-use interface with a free limited version.
Which Sales Tech Stack Is Right For My Company?
Finding the right sales tech stack for your sales team members is a matter of mapping out your buyer’s journey and identifying your team’s needs to move prospects through that journey efficiently and effectively.
In many cases, using different tools may give you the best reach and the most thorough information.
The less time your SDRs and AEs (account executives) perform secondary tasks, like lead and company research, the more time they have available to reach out or follow up with prospects and close sales.
Find more helpful tips on our blog page.