5 Signs Your Organization Isn’t Ready for a Mobile Sales App, and How to Fix It
by Robin Tinker, on Feb 24, 2015 2:36:33 PM
A quick Google search shows you how many articles exist that list the signs of a mobile-ready organization. In my experience, however, it’s much easier to work with the alternative. If you recognize that your organization isn’t ready to go mobile, it can be easier to make the changes necessary to be ready for the future. Here are five common traits many organizations have before they’re ready for a mobile sales app.
Why isn't Your Company Using Mobile Sales Apps?
1. Your sales team is resistant to the idea of a mobile sales app. New technology and new ways of doing things can be scary, especially when your livelihood depends on meeting a sales goal, or if you’re given commission as an incentive to sell. There’s that old standby: “But this is the way we’ve always done it! If it isn’t broken, why fix it?” What they might not recognize is the sales process using printed materials and brochures is an inefficient, outdated, and expensive way of doing things. To remedy this problem, salespeople need to understand how a mobile sales app will make their jobs easier.
The key selling points to address when convincing your sales team to go mobile are efficiency, ease of use, professionalism, and increased sales. Mobile sales apps make your sales team more efficient in many ways, including the ability to send email follow-up with links to the materials they want. Many sales apps, such as Modus, can send activity information to a CRM, saving the rep even more time. There’s also the fact that mobile sales apps are much easier to use than traditional materials and help avoid the dreaded digging through your bag for a brochure or flyer (only to discover it isn’t there).
2. You don’t have the capabilities to build or maintain your app. This challenge is a fairly common concern among organizations that are putting together a mobile sales strategy. While the solution to this problem may seem simple, settling on the right option can be troublesome. An organization doesn’t have to have a mobile design and development team in house to develop an easy to use, professional looking app. There are companies out there that will build and customize an app for you, and there are other companies, like Modus, who have built a platform that allows you to build your professional app. This process is often faster than developing an app in-house, and can be more cost effective.
Overcoming this obstacle is mostly about research -- knowing your options and communicating with the IT department. First, find out what you are looking for in an app, what your internal capabilities are, what the internal timeline will be and what your budget is. Once you’re familiar with these factors, choosing the right solution is simple. You can start soliciting bids or simply sign up for a free trial of Modus to better understand how it will work for your team before you make a decision.
3. iOS, Android, or Windows 8? Many IT departments are partial to Windows products while iPads still remain the dominant tablet in the marketplace. Luckily, good sales apps are available for Apple, Windows, and Android devices. Find out which platform is the easiest to use for your team, and which will be easiest for your IT department to maintain.
4. You don’t have the budget for a sales app. An off-the-shelf platform will be cheaper, easier, and faster to deliver than building your app. If you haven’t replaced the laptop computers your sales force is using now, you will be soon. Whether you go with tablets or hybrid mobile devices, you still need a well-designed sales app to leverage the advantage mobile offers. If you have resellers with their own mobile devices, your sales app will unify your brand and gain share of mind. The total initial cost may seem high, but, compared to replacing print sales-kits, it is extremely economical, and the cost can be amortized (spread) over a period of years.
4. There’s no executive level buy-in. Selling a new idea to an organization’s leadership team can be tricky, especially when it’s something your organization has never done before. However, changing their minds is especially easy if you plant the seed early and often and can show them that the program will pay off in the end.
To build the business case, remember to explain how the sales app will help increase sales, improve the sales process, eliminate redundancies between marketing and sales - and ultimately help you create better and more impactful content for your prospective clients. Real-time usage analytics will provide new insights on sales and customer engagement. As you can see from this infographic, the benefits of mobile are quite clear.
This list isn’t exhaustive. There are many considerations to keep in mind while guiding your organization into the mobile sphere. It is, however, important to make sure these five basic considerations are top of mind. After all, how can a sales organization succeed as a mobile enabled team if their business plan does not account for it, or if they can’t agree on an operating system?