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The (negative) impact of too many sales tools

By: Salesloft Editorial


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It’s no secret that revenue teams are struggling to live up to the revenue part of their name lately. 

Over 60% of organizations are missing their quotas. Sellers face a daily battle to close every opportunity and renewal, and prospects regularly don’t show up to meetings, or worse — back out of committed deals. With so much on the line, you can’t afford to waste precious time and money juggling dozens of single-purpose sales tools. So what do you do?

Your sales organization needs a way to get more out of its team, time, and tech. And we’ve got the tips you need to achieve exactly that. Read on to learn about how the current tools of the sales trade can negatively affect your business’s costs. Once you know how to transition from multiple point solutions to an efficient sales engagement tech stack, you’ll be able to navigate a safe path through this rocky economy.

A landscape teeming with tools

Back in 2021, organizations spent $4.3 billion on technology for their revenue teams! If you’re reeling from that number, we are too. Unfortunately, nearly 40% of SaaS applications duplicate other solutions or are going unused, meaning thousands of dollars down the drain for businesses like yours.

Think about it like this: If you’re using one selling tool for email, another for call recording, and something else for forecasting, you’re likely dealing with added costs, integration headaches, implementation meetings, and time consuming training.

Your reps are feeling this tech swirl firsthand, too. 

Representatives interviewed for our Forrester-commissioned study, The Total Economic Impact of Salesloft, noted that working with various tools without any unifying process resulted in confusion about which tool to use or what process to follow. The result? According to the findings, “low adoption” and “a lack of understanding of success attribution or opportunities for improvement in the sales process.” 

The TL;DR: An alphabet soup of tools doesn’t help you reps close deals.

OK, but what does it all cost?

To understand if (and how) multiple tools are affecting your sales processes, start by calculating the cost of your current sales technology. You can create a simple spreadsheet to figure this number out by first listing all your current tools, and then including what you put into — and get out of — each one. Include info like:

Sales technologies

Write a complete inventory of your sales stack. Include vendor, price, contact information, implementation cost, and average onboarding time for each tool.

Support time

Get estimates from the RevOps team on how much time they spend troubleshooting and supporting integrations.

Key features

List all the features of each technology. Then poll your team on which ones they use — or don’t use. Provide an environment that allows for honest feedback from your team.


Pull the stats to identify user adoption — who’s using what? (More on that later.)

Yes, soft costs add up

For a more complete cost analysis, make sure to include soft costs. These costs don’t always have a numerical value, but still contribute to the impact your technology has on your organization. Here are some questions to help you identify — and quantify — your revenue team’s soft costs:

  • You only get value from sales technology once your team knows how to use it and puts it to work. How many opportunities are lost while reps onboard?
  • For existing reps, what steps could be eliminated from the sales workflow if one technology could do the work of many?
  • How many screens do reps flip between as they work during the day, and how much time does that take?
  • What revenue-generating activities are not happening when teams are focused on technology issues?

Crunching the numbers

Once you’ve input this information into your spreadsheet, and you’ve determined what value your sales team gets from each tool, it’s time to measure your usage adoption gap. While the stats you pulled are on tool adoption are important, it isn’t just the percentage of logged-in users on your team. What adoption really boils down to is activity — how many actions do average users complete on the tool each day? You can determine a tool’s adoption gap by subtracting the average number of opportunities created by team members who don’t use a certain sales tool very much from the average number of opportunities created by the most active, loyal users of that tool. Here’s the formula more simply:

Avg # of opportunities created by top adopters –  Avg # of opportunities created by non-adopters = Adoption Gap

If the difference results in a positive number overall, you can safely conclude that the tool in question is enhancing your reps’ performance, and it might be worth it to offer a refresher to non-adopters so that all your team members can use the technology with the same success.

If the difference in the opportunities created ends up being net zero, or even negative, however, you have a few options to explore. First, you might try reevaluating how the tool is being used. Maybe your top-adopting reps aren’t applying the tool as intended. Otherwise, it’s reasonable to consider cutting this tool out of your sales stack. 

Let’s face it, the market is competitive and unpredictable right now. It’s no wonder that so many organizations want to believe in the promise of tools to help them amplify their revenue teams. But these technologies are not an end-all be-all to achieving your team’s goals. And unfortunately, the investment of money, time, and resources can still prove ineffective.

When a tool isn’t serving your sales team the way it should, it’s wise to consider cutting it. The health of your revenue organization is at stake. Plus, the overlap of key features can be consolidated into fewer, easier-to-use tools that are more likely to enhance rep performance, and save you on costs both tangible and implied.