Sales teams have access to more sales tools than at any point in history. The combination of inexpensive cloud-based computing and rapid advances in AI have resulted in an explosion of sales tools designed to help teams find more leads, more effectively nurture those leads, and convert some of those leads into customers.
Of course, with so many tools available, it can be challenging to know which ones are best for your organization. This guide is designed to help you find the best sales tools within a variety of categories.
Categories Of Sales Tools
There are numerous ways you could categorize the hundreds of different sales tools that exist, depending on how granular you want to get with your categorizations. For the sake of this post, we're going to use the following six categories:
- Customer Relationship Management (CRM)
- Sales Intelligence
- Performance Management
- Team Productivity
Within each of these categories, we've listed several of the best sales tools on the market. Obviously, what's right for you and your team will depend on your circumstances, but this should give you a solid understanding of what's available.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Sales Tools
Your CRM is at the center of all your sales activity and plays a critical role in keeping your entire team organized. A good CRM will enable your team to manage incoming leads, track communication history for each lead, assign actions to different team members, automate follow-ups at the right times based on specific triggers, and many other critical sales functions. In light of its importance, you want to be sure that you choose your CRM carefully.
When most salespeople hear the term “CRM,” they immediately think: Salesforce. It’s certainly one of the most popular options out there thanks to its ability to help sales teams get a 360-degree view of their interactions with prospects.
They can see every interaction someone has with the business, automate crucial sales operations, easily collaborate with other reps, quickly fill their pipeline with leads, and capitalize on sales opportunities at all levels of your company.
PhoneBurner has an integration with Salesforce that allows sales teams to do all of this while still enjoying all the best that our power dialer has to offer. You can dial an average of 60 to 80 numbers per hour, leave pre-recorded voicemails, and send outcome-based emails and texts without ever leaving Salesforce.
Like Salesforce, Zoho is another major CRM designed to help sales teams thoughtfully connect with their customers, automate tedious tasks, and get detailed insights into their analytics and reporting. Plus, they have an AI-powered virtual assistant who can help your reps instantly find information they need, like lead and deal predictions, alerts, task reminders, and suggestions for when to contact prospects.
Our native Zoho dialer integration at PhoneBurner means your reps never need to leave the Zoho platform or sacrifice its features to use our power dialer. They can work through their lists, fast, with no telemarketer delay—it’s the best of both worlds.
HubSpot offers an array of services ranging from free online analytics tools to a full-featured CRM. It helps sales teams scale and increase customer engagement, while also offering a suite of tools that help in the optimization, segmentation, scheduling, monitoring, and reporting on campaigns.
The CRM can help improve and scale your entire sales process, including lead generation, prospecting, nurturing leads with content marketing, closing deals, etc. They also provide a comprehensive set of tools for sales teams to measure the effectiveness of their efforts.
Pipedrive is a CRM that focuses primarily on smaller teams and features tools for sales automation, marketing automation, and customer success. The platform has many customizable features and can be integrated with other software in your sales stack.
The CRM utilizes an activity-based selling methodology that uses a "lead score" to determine the best time for salespeople to contact prospects based on their engagement with content.
One of the best things about Pipedrive is the Kanban style view they have which lets sales teams see, visually, where each prospect is within the sales funnel. This makes it easy to easily drag and drop leads from one stage to the next as the deal progresses.
Keap( Infusionsoft) is an all-in-one sales and marketing automation software designed for mid-market and enterprise businesses. Utilizing Keap, companies can manage their entire sales process from lead management and email marketing to invoicing.
The CRM provides sales tools like lead qualification, analytics, and reporting. It can be used to increase sales effectiveness, create customer loyalty, and automate the entire sales process.
Sales Intelligence Tools
Sales intelligence tools help you and your team find new leads, gather insights about prospects, and uncover hidden sales opportunities so you can then make smart decisions about how to interact with them. They can help you qualify prospects, identify decision-makers, create more effective campaigns, and improve your overall sales effectiveness.
LinkedIn Sales Navigator
LinkedIn Sales Navigator offers deep insights about your prospects and their companies, which you can then use to create more targeted campaigns and interact with them more effectively at every stage of the sales process.
For instance, you can easily create a list of every VP of Customer Success at a telecommunications company with 5 to 50 employees in Nebraska.
The tool provides salespeople with contact details, company information, insight into interests, connections, title history, location, etc. so that they can improve their outreach. Additionally, this feature of LinkedIn offers Sales Navigator Maps, which allow users to map the network of a prospect or customer so that they know exactly who to connect with.
Intricately is a sales intelligence tool that can be used to find email addresses of prospects, match emails with public records data, and automatically verify every prospect's identity.
The tool helps users create more targeted campaigns by providing information about company size, revenue, location, etc. It also enables you to schedule outreach at the optimal time for each prospect.
With Clearbit you can enrich your CRM with data about the people behind each lead, improve customer success management, generate more accurate lead scores, etc. It can give you real-time insights into who is on your website at any given moment, including company information, demographic data for lead scoring, etc. It also helps generate more accurate email outreach by verifying emails automatically and building a list of prospects at scale.
Lead Genius is a sales prospecting tool that uses Artificial Intelligence to help you find contact information for key decision-makers, automate tasks like prospect research and updating your CRM, map the influencers within each company, and grow your pipeline through increased lead generation. The company also supports every customer with a dedicated data scientist and account manager to assist with strategy, data optimization, and more.
DealSignal provides 100% verified B2B information that can be used to target very specific audiences and individuals at companies around the world. Their database contains more than 600 million records, with each record having over 100 data points, including things like verified email addresses, detailed account profiles, social media URLs, etc.
Sales Tools for Prospecting
Sales prospecting tools help you more efficiently convert your prospects, once discovered, into qualified opportunities. That way, your team can focus more on developing and nurturing relationships.
Drift is an intelligent chat platform that allows companies to build quality relationships with potential customers by providing a seamless way to connect with visitors on their site. By connecting to the rest of your tech stack, Drift allows you to create personalized experiences for your website visitors based on who they are, how they arrived at your website, and the ways they've already interacted with you.
In addition to being a powerful CRM, HubSpot is also an effective prospecting tool. It provides users with a broad view of the contacts in their pipeline and the details of their interactions, which allows them to prioritize prospects and quickly identify those most likely to buy. It also offers a suite of marketing tools that make it easy to create and optimize lead generation campaigns.
Leadfeeder analyzes your web traffic to determine which individuals and companies positively interact with your content. It also identifies which of your products seem to be the best fit for the interested party. You can then deliver personalized outreach based on that data to generate sales leads.
PhoneBurner is a sales power dialing and workflow automation platform that allows teams to connect with existing prospects, nurture leads, and improve live answer rates. Your reps will be able to power dial through lists of contacts at an average speed of 60 to 80 dials per hour, as well as:
- Drop pre-recorded voicemails at the click of a button
- Automate post-call tasks like outcome-based emails and texts
- Manage contacts and campaigns through the built-in CRM
- Oversee productivity and performance with robust reporting and analytics
If you want to see it for yourself, sign up for a free PhoneBurner account today.
Sales Performance Management Tools
Sales performance management tools help you track sales KPIs to identify areas of improvement and help you measure your team's success accurately. When you have a full picture of how your sales teams are performing, it allows you to celebrate areas of strength while also focusing on ways to improve.
Ambition is a sales performance platform that embodies the idea of workplace gamification. It identifies the most important metrics that have the greatest impact on your business and then incentivizes sales reps to perform well according to those metrics.
It integrates with your existing CRM system to provide real-time visibility into how every team member is performing against the most important metrics. Leaderboards, scorecards, and analytics provide the data you need to hold reps accountable while also celebrating their accomplishments.
Altify is designed to help your team increase sales velocity. It enables you to identify potential opportunities to grow existing accounts, provides data-backed guidance regarding the next steps in nurturing prospects, and creates a unified customer view so that marketing, sales, and customer success are all on the same page.
Sales Tools for Productivity
Sales productivity tools help your team work more efficiently and effectively. They reduce the time spent on mundane tasks so that team members can spend more time engaging with prospects and customers.
Google Workspace is a productivity powerhouse that allows teams to work seamlessly across devices and locations. Users can access files they've stored in Drive, easily provide feedback to teammates directly within documents, and collaborate on spreadsheets, presentations, forms, and more.
Zapier enables you to connect the various tools you use and then seamlessly and automatically pass information between them. This allows you to automate tedious, manual tasks so that you can focus on more important ones.
For example, say you maintain a Google Sheet that contains information on specific prospects. With Zapier, you could ensure that every time you update information in the Sheet, that same information is updated in your CRM, and vice versa.
Sales Closing Tools
Sales closing tools are, as the name might imply, designed to help sales teams close a deal. From streamlining RFPs to making it easy for someone to sign a contract digitally, they’ll help ensure nothing stands in the way of a deal.
Loopio streamlines the Request For Proposal (RFP) process. It provides an easy way to manage the content, due dates, and participants involved in RFPs. Loopio also enables you to automate tedious tasks, create a library of relevant information that can be imported into RFPs, and collaborate with teammates.
In the same vein as Loopio, Better Proposals allows you to streamline the proposal creation process. It enables users to create customized, well-designed proposals from templates so that they don't have to start from scratch. Better Proposals also can automate the follow-up process, as well as create legally binding digital signatures and even process payments from clients.
DocuSign allows you to securely collect digital signatures on documents and then automate the distribution process of those documents. Documents can be created directly within the platform, as can workflows that automate the traditionally clumsy process of gathering all relevant signatures, sending out finalized versions of documents, and storing and organizing those documents.
Optimize Your Process with the Right Sales Tools
Obviously, using the sales tools listed above doesn’t guarantee success. Hustle and hard work are still required. But they can help optimize your sales process. They can help you stay on top of all the moving pieces, give you insight into how to best engage with prospects, and help you find new audiences that you might not be able to otherwise.
These benefits, combined with your hustle and hard work, are where success comes from.