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If you are thinking of investing in a wholesale CRM, you are not alone. Last year, CRM usage increased from 56% to 74%, and with over 150 vendors to consider, there are a lot to choose from.

Your sales reps may be averse to change or new systems, especially when they’re focused on making their next deal. But with studies saying that the use of a wholesale CRM can increase your revenue by 41%, it’s time to alter their view.

Knowing why your B2B sales reps don’t like CRM solutions arms you with the information you need to make the best decision and change their minds.

So, what exactly are their problems?

1. The decision comes from the top

Typically, a decision to move to a new wholesale CRM, comes from top management. They may want a solution to monitor sales performance or structure an improved sales strategy.  Whilst valuable features, they’re not obviously beneficial to the main users, the sales reps.

If sales reps are forced to use a CRM system that doesn’t ultimately help them sell, they may refuse to use it, or at least be obstructive, not using it to its full capabilities

To avoid this, include your sales force in decision making regarding new sales software. They will know what tools they need to help them reach their targets.

2. Wholesale CRM software is too complex

Sales people worry about not understanding the daunting new technology or investing time in learning a new system. If your software runs natively on a tablet or mobile device, it can be as easy as using any other app.

Find a solution that is cloud based, user-friendly and intuitive. If you begin slowly with the basic software and scale up with functionality, your sales reps will find it easier to adapt.

3. Lack of mobility

The role of a sales rep is to be out on the road, selling. If sales reps are willing to use the software, then discover they can only access it from the office or it doesn’t work off-line they will be discouraged. A mobile CRM is perfect for sales reps in the field, but it must also have off-line functionality, so it is a valuable tool in the field. With off-line functionality, if there is no Wi-Fi, all information is still available, and orders and information taken in the field is synced as soon as the device is back on-line.

Long gone are the days when sales people had to return to the office to update the CRM.

4. Wholesale CRM requires too much data entry

Sales reps time is valuable, and they don’t want to waste it entering endless data that is not useful or relevant in to a CRM just for the sake of ticking boxes. If you limit it to ‘must have data’ rather than ‘nice to have’ data, you’ll be closer to getting your sales team on board and free up their time for selling

Automate data as much as possible. A wholesale CRM database can store all necessary, contacts, activities and sales orders in one place. Sales reps can access it any time, from any place and they don’t have to remember anything. It is all stored in the big cloud in the sky.

5. CRM as Big Brother

Perhaps the biggest issue with B2B CRM software is that sales people feel spied on by management. They don’t see ‘what’s in it for them’. Help your sales team understand they don’t need software to ‘monitor’ them, but to ‘empower’ them.

It’s vital to gain their trust and listen to their needs and complaints.  Be sure to act on their feedback. This will lead to better communication between you and them.

6. Giving away their information

A wholesale CRM system could be viewed as imposing processes that reduce sales reps’ freedom.

Sharing customer information could be associated with giving away their opportunities, even jeopardizing their commissions.

Your role is to explain that being protective of leads won’t help if those leads are exposed to poor service or lack of attention. CRM won’t take leads away, but will help convert them into paying customers quicker and at a lower cost.

7. Hindering their sale

Sales reps want to use sales productivity tools to make sales.

If the CRM doesn’t provide all the necessary information for selling in an easy to access, user-friendly format, then it can hinder, not help the sale.

A good B2B CRM solution will provide them with invaluable insights, remind them to follow up customer queries, and recall their last conversation or most recent sales order.

8. Real-time information is not available

For full functionality, the wholesale CRM you choose must be able to integrate with your ERP.

CRM software has become increasingly sophisticated over the years. It’s now often hard to see where the CRM ends, and the ERP begins. They are now so closely integrated they are almost like one system. This is the ideal, as information can flow seamlessly both ways. Orders and information recorded in the field are instantly synced with the ERP and vice versa. Information is always up to date and reliable.

9. Lack of scalability

Choose wisely and plan for the future. Your sales staff don’t want to be constantly learning how to use a new CRM every few years. The solution you choose must be scalable and able to grow with you.

It’s a large investment in terms of both time and money and not something you want to change too frequently. Like most workers sales reps dislike change, especially when it requires learning new software.

10. Not understanding the benefits

While there’s no doubt that investing in a CRM is worthwhile, convincing your sales team may be more difficult.

Focus on the straightforward advantages

  • Every piece of information can be stored online with easy access
  • Administration is automated as opposed to kept on Post-it notes
  • Sales cycle timings are improved through automation
  • B2B sales information keeps the whole team updated automatically
  • Improved communication with your sales manager and colleagues

For additional reading, see…Mobile CRM for CPG: The Ultimate Guide

About The Author

Stacey Woods
Stacey Woods
Stacey Woods is the Senior Business Development Manager at Pepperi. She has extensive experience in B2B sales and understands the many benefits that can be gained by automating and syncing the different sales channels in a company.