Use Sales Acceleration Tools To Improve SaaS Sales & Increase ARR
A sales acceleration tool is any software solution that helps your SaaS sales teams close more deals, increase contract value, or improve conversion rate. A sales acceleration tool is not one specific feature, but rather a toolbox of different features that are designed to optimize the output of your sales team. Many teams put together a comprehensive set of sales acceleration tools based on the business's needs, niche, and target market.
There's a good chance you are already familiar with sales acceleration tools that find and score leads, automate emails, book meetings or demos, or organize customer data across multiple touchpoints (CDPs). All of these tools address different key moments in the sales process and are deserving of a spot in your sales acceleration stack, but what's often missing is a solution that solves the friction point many potential customers have with buying technology: cost.
Enter: flexible financing.
Having the right flexible financing solution is an essential sales acceleration tool that grants your leads the ease and flexibility of payment options that work for them.
Below we'll delve into the ins and outs of more traditional sales acceleration strategies and why you should add flexible financing to your sales acceleration stack.
With purpose-built software financing solutions, like Gynger, you can quickly expand your sales acceleration toolkit to include flexible financing that provides payment plans for interested clients while allowing you to continue collecting contract fees up-front for increased conversions, revenue, and a flywheel of growth.
Exploring Sales Acceleration Tools for SaaS Vendors
1. Lead Qualification and Lead Scoring
Lead qualification is essential but it is time-consuming. The best leads are those who have the budget, need, and readiness for your software product. Targeting high-quality leads is the best way to increase conversion rate, volume, and velocity. Lead qualification tools typically provide programmatic lead scoring - using known information about each lead to score their viability as a customer for your SaaS products and price range.
Well-scored leads give your sales team the signals they need to focus on the most qualified leads and approach with the right tactics based on identified qualifications. Lead scoring empowers your sales team to skip one of the most time-consuming yet success-determining steps in the sales pipeline.
Lead scoring is not just time-saving; it can also help boost sales performance by prioritizing high-quality leads.
2. Lead Databases
Lead databases are repositories of data about known B2B companies and potential clients. A lead database is like a reference resource for your CRM. When your SaaS's lead tracking system identifies a new B2B lead who may be ready to convert, the lead database supplies the new CRM entry with data you don't have to collect independently. Lead databases include company information and known data about your decision-makers and point of contact. A lead database often pairs with lead scoring tools to create more accurate lead scoring and personalization details when building a selling strategy.
Lead databases provide you with richer information for lead qualification and to better craft a targeted conversion strategy.
3. Email Marketing
Email automation tools are among the first sales acceleration tools to be adopted. Email marketing has become incredibly sophisticated, which takes a lot of the hand-written and send-button-pressing effort out of lead nurturing and re-engagement strategies for sales professionals. Email marketing started with simple engagement email blasts. However, over time, the ability to personalize and program email templates has made this a valuable sales acceleration tool.
Email marketing software can keep track of individual lead and client engagement schedules, can turn templates into personalized messages, and track engagement with email surveys and link click-throughs.
Email sales accelerations tools help boost engagement and have seen a recent rise in AI-driven insights.
4. Estimate Calculators
An estimate calculator that reliably reflects or even prepares final prices is a powerful tool in today's self-directed online world where 70% of B2B decision makers are willing to make a self-service purchase of $50,000 or more. Your SaaS' B2B decision-makers are part of the self-assisting generation of professionals who prefer an information center, a calculator, and often a self-checkout option rather than meetings, demos, and account discussions. This kind of sales acceleration tool is sometimes called "quote-to-cash", meaning that an automatically generated quote can quickly become cash flow for the vendor.
An estimate calculator allows prospective customers to start closing for themselves - testing their own needs and budget in the calculator to determine the value and affordability of your services. If they like the estimate, you may have closed without a sales engagement at all.
5. Research and Data Tools
The world runs on data analytics, with a predicted 90% of companies citing information as a critical enterprise asset, and SaaS sales is no exception. Sales teams can benefit both from larger trend analysis and more personal data diving. Knowing more about the client, their patterns, budget, and their decision-makers can guide your sales representatives to apply the personal touch to connect with clients and successfully close.
Research and data tools vary widely based on your goals.
Some sales acceleration data tools provide long-range insights on buying trends, perhaps predicting client behavior by sector or industry. More personalized research and data tools provide insights on individual clients - their teams and their business strategies - to help sales teams determine when to reach out, the right approach, and even what size of contract to expect from each lead based on the data.
SaaS sales benefit highly from research and data tools with the ability to customize the service to each client's individual needs.
6. Flexible Financing
Flexible financing allows your leads to pay according to their preferences and budget. Investing in SaaS solutions can be a big budget drain, especially for younger companies. Insivia predicts that small businesses spend an average of $260K annually on SaaS, while that number jumps to $2.8M annually for mid-sized companies.
Small to medium businesses, or even larger ones with tight reins on spending, will often hesitate when it comes to the discussion of payment. Flexible financing allows your customers to pay on a plan while you still accept your fee up-front. This works by white-glove connecting your clients to a lending partner.
Flexible financing increases ARR (annual recurring revenue) by enabling your sellers to convert more prospects to customers according to their budget and balance sheet. It speeds up your sales cycle by accelerating how fast your leads can commit and make payment. And it increases ACV (annual contract value) by providing your customers with a way to commit to larger contracts when they would benefit from spending more, but must also balance their ability to pay that amount upfront.
By offering monthly payments, you open your doors for significantly more clients who would not otherwise purchase your software if you required them to pay upfront. Not only does this increase your TAM (total addressable market), but it also opens up a plethora of opportunities to expand into new market segments and verticals.
Benefits of Using Flexible Financing as a Sales Acceleration Tool
Flexible financing through Gynger is a simple process that benefits both business clients and SaaS vendors. Just as your roofer might connect homeowners to a lender for the large up-front cost of a new roof, flexible financing is a now-seamless way to connect your business clients to a payment plan to ease the large up-front cost of committing to a new SaaS solution.
Flexible financing can help you improve your ARR by closing more deals, your ACV by closing more profitable deals, and accelerate your sales velocity. The result also improves your cash flow, allowing you to invest further in sales acceleration technology. It's a win-win situation for SaaS vendors and their clients because both get to handle payment in the way that works best for them. Your SaaS business can accept a large up-front annual payment while your carefully budgeting clients can choose a monthly payment plan through a purpose-built business loan.
Improve Conversion Rate
-> Close more deals.
Flexible financing makes SaaS investment approachable to clients running a monthly budget. Startups and small businesses often have tight margins and cannot easily commit to the annual and multi-year SaaS contracts that would be most beneficial to their operations.
With flexible financing, you can increase the ARR of your SaaS business by closing more deals each year and receiving that valuable annual payment up-front - without the up-front cost scaring away leads who may be timid about spending commitments or without the deep pockets to put a large amount of their revenue on the table.
By allowing your clients to choose their payment plan duration and take charge of their monthly software budget, SaaS companies can close more deals simply by being more financially available. Those businesses that want to pay in credit, pay everything monthly or are uncertain about a large initial investment find a solution that perfectly fits their needs - without impacting your need for an up-front payment in full.
-> Close larger, longer contracts.
Flexible Financing can boost your ACV. Clients often balk at a large quote, even if it's appropriately priced for the scale and duration of their needs. SaaS solutions, while essential, are often seen as a luxury by decision-makers handling the company budget. By breaking up payments into a monthly option with flexible financing, you can reduce the sticker shock on large orders where your customer needs the correctly scaled solution but may be hesitant - or even unable - to pay the full amount up-front.
A monthly payment also makes it possible for smaller teams to commit to much longer service contracts than they would otherwise be able to. Let's say a small business knows they will need five years of platform access and support but may not be able to pay a five-year contract fee upfront. They can commit to a monthly cost based on predicted revenue, and you collect the up-front. With Gynger's flexible financing, you can help clients sign on to larger and longer SaaS contracts.
With flexible financing, you still get the full amount you need to set up large-scale or long-duration contracts while customers feel more comfortable with the terms.
Accelerate Sales Velocity
-> Close deals faster.
B2B sales of the past may have hinged on long meetings, demos, and account-building discussions. However, optimizing your sales and respecting your client's valuable time encourages fast, efficient solutions. Flexible financing can accelerate your SaaS sales velocity by eliminating the need for meetings to handle differences in financing methods. It's in the name of the tool. By offering payment flexibility through a lender partner like Gynger, your clients can commit faster to a monthly plan, allowing your sales representatives to effectively close deals faster with satisfied and assured business customers.
Sales velocity is an essential element of sales acceleration because it is the final goal and result. Once your team can identify qualified leads quickly and close quickly, you are on your way.
Improve Cash Flow
-> Collect payment upfront, even when your customers pay monthly.
When a SaaS vendor closes a deal using Gynger, Gynger pays them upfront while their customer pays us back over 3, 6, 9, or 12 months. Your clients can choose to pay your full up-front fee or they can take out a temporary and very specific business loan through Gynger so that your fees are paid immediately. Flexible financing empowers SaaS vendors with the full up-front payment for each new client and places no financial burden on the company if clients choose to take out a loan to enjoy the benefits of a payment plan.
When secure up-front payment is combined with the increased sales from your monthly paying clients, SaaS companies experience a noticeable boost in cash flow. The increased number of up-front payments will infuse your company with the revenue to continue to grow and invest in further acceleration.
-> Offload payment processing, monthly billing, and collections.
As a bonus, you get to offload your payment processing and the duties of managing a payment plan each time a client chooses to pay through Gynger. Why? Gynger acts as an intermediary, fully accepting the initial invoice for the client's SaaS services. Gynger sends the full invoiced amount to you, the vendor, and then all further payments from the client to equal that amount are handled by Gynger as their lender. SaaS vendors can get paid up front for every customer and let Gynger handle the rest.
In the rare event that one of your B2B clients ceases to pay their bill, you don't have to worry. The issue of collections on a payment plan is handled by the Gynger team so you can focus on how to spend your increased revenue.
How Flexible Financing Creates a Growth Flywheel
A growth flywheel occurs when a growth strategy creates the revenue for further growth. Like a lemonade stand that earns enough for a bigger bag of lemons, Gynger's flexible financing tool drives growth by creating a flywheel effect where each benefit experienced by SaaS vendors feeds into the others. When using Gynger, the first benefit you will notice is an increase in sales and cash flow as flexible financing makes your services more accessible - and makes decision-making easier - for your B2B clients.
After that initial boost in sales, you will have the revenue to invest further into sales acceleration which becomes conversions. Conversions become revenue. Revenue leads to investment in growth. Let's take a closer look at how flexible financing creates a growth flywheel.
The Flexible Financing Growth Flywheel
- A vendor uses Gynger to close more deals ->
- The vendor receives their cash upfront from Gynger ->
- The vendor uses the revenue to invest in growth ->
- Growth enables closing more deals: the cycle repeats.
This cycle continues on and on, thus creating a powerful flywheel that perpetuates itself.
1. Use flexible financing to close more deals
The first step of the growth flywheel is to close more deals, generating more revenue. Flexible financing allows you to close more deals by making your SaaS service price structure more accessible to a broader audience of business clients.
Smaller businesses can commit to monthly payments without the revenue for an up-front annual expense. Companies that only handle their finances on a monthly basis will be able to easily work your SaaS services into their budget. The Gynger checkout experience is also smooth and free of friction, allowing leads to close swiftly with pre-approved financing without having to wait (and potentially lose momentum) waiting on a financial consultation.
This increased financial access allows more leads to commit financially, which means more deals closed and more significant incoming revenue.
2. Get paid upfront
Of course, with Gynger's flexible financing, you don't have to wait on the revenue from those monthly payments. For each new client contract, your company will receive the boost of up-front payment for the year (or longer contract duration) while the client handles their monthly payments through Gynger in the form of a tailored business loan.
This up-front payment structure allows you to secure an influx of monthly-paying clients - but with the cash-on-hand for the full amount of each contract. The increase in closed deals that flexible financing brings when implemented will then create a significant increase in the available revenue for your SaaS vendor business; leaving only the task of deciding what to do with the funds.
3. Utilize the cash to invest in sales and growth
Most businesses faced with a sudden influx of revenue will focus on growth. The natural next step is to use the increased cash flow from flexible financing contracts to invest in further sales acceleration and increase your infrastructure size to cover the increased scope of your audience. This investment only increases your ability to reach, qualify, and convert even more leads, and to close even more annual contracts, thus further increasing your growing cash flow and revenue supply.
4. Repeat the cycle
When you succeed at boosting sales and then use the funds to invest in further boosting sales, this creates a flywheel. This is a business process that perpetuates itself. A flywheel is something that keeps spinning on its own after the initial push. This is the same way that growth acceleration tools like Gynger's flexible financing can create a pattern of increased sales, increased revenue, an investment in increased sales, and the revenue that results, on and on as you continue to hone your growth and SaaS client nurturing strategies.
The cycle repeats because good business sense drives sales managers to re-invest in a system that works. Once flexible financing has grown your sales and cash flow in a single year, why not invest further in sales acceleration for further revenue-boosting results? As your business grows, so too will your ability to hone your sales strategy with the best software toolkit for your brand, audience, and business plan.
Getting Started with Gynger's Sales Acceleration Tool
How can your business gain the benefits of sales acceleration, flexible financing, and the growth flywheel?
Sales acceleration is comprised of a myriad of software tools and strategies designed to boost your sales team's ability to reach, engage, and convert new leads - or ensure repeat business from existing clients. Sales acceleration tools range from lead scoring to email automation and everything in between. Among the most powerful sales acceleration tools in the modern toolbox is flexible financing, the ability to offer your clients a flexible monthly payment plan for your SaaS services without giving up your need for an up-front payment in full for each contract.
Flexible financing makes your SaaS price structure more approachable and accessible for business leads. Increase your ARR by making it possible for a larger number of leads to close every year. Increase your ACV by making the price for larger contracts more manageable for clients on a budget. Increase your sales velocity by helping clients commit more quickly to a payment plan they can handle - and a plan they can pitch to the Execs.
Integrating flexible financing for your SaaS business model is easier than you might think. Learn more about Gynger for Vendors to start closing more deals, faster.