Sales Enablement Glossary and FAQ

Find answers to commonly asked questions about sales enablement.

What is sales enablement?

Sales enablement is the ongoing process of maximizing revenue per rep by ensuring sellers convey the right concept using the right content throughout each stage of the buying process. The essentials include content, skills training, knowledge, coaching, and tools to effectively sell your product or service. These tactics must be integrated, driven by a unified strategy, and enabled by sales enablement technology.

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What is sales onboarding?

Sales onboarding is a systematic process designed to welcome, train, and engage new sellers into an organization. Sales onboarding covers the essential topics a salesperson needs to understand to do their job effectively. Skills covered in sales onboarding training can include company and product knowledge, industry insight, compliance and regulatory information, and selling skills. When done well, sales onboarding engages sellers and puts them on a faster track to meet sales targets and, ultimately, ensure success for the organization.

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What is everboarding?

Everboarding is an advanced onboarding methodology that recognizes that learning is an ongoing process that requires multiple exposures to content over time. By providing a steady stream of bite-sized learning over time, you increase learning retention. With everboarding, you continually share best approaches to sales reps in the field, deliver bite-sized learning that sellers need to succeed in today’s dynamic business environment, and reinforce learning with quizzes and flash drills. The ultimate goal is the same as traditional onboarding: connecting people, making sure they have a great experience, and ultimately training and retaining the best employees possible.

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What is sales training?

Sales training is an ongoing process that helps sellers improve their skills, knowledge, and performance to drive behavioral change and maximize sales success. Skills must be learned, absorbed, and applied on the job. When done right, sales training can help organizations increase win rates, grow accounts, shorten the buying cycle, build pipeline, increase average deal size, and more. Modern sales training programs are designed for hybrid sales teams and are personalized based on the seller’s experience and skill set.

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What is sales coaching?

Sales coaching is a system that involves ongoing, one-on-one interactions between a sales manager and their direct reports. These sessions are tailored to the individual and are designed to help the seller develop good habits, increase performance, and achieve goals. Effective sales coaches create a learning environment in which sellers feel motivated to learn and grow in their roles. Whether delivered virtually, in-person, or a mix of both, this type of coaching gives sellers the knowledge and confidence they need to achieve personal and team goals while contributing to the success of their organization.

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What is AI-powered coaching?

Developments in AI technology have opened up efficiencies for sales managers to automate simpler coaching tasks. AI-powered coaching allows managers to define specific conversation triggers in the form of words or phrases, which can automate delivery of pre-defined learning or content to the seller. For example, a manager may select “regulations” as a phrase to avoid in a conversation. When mentioned by a seller, AI coaches can automatically share advice, learning, or content related to why they should not be talking about regulations with a buyer. This helps managers provide always-on guidance to their broader team, while reserving more time and energy for highly-personalized and face-to-face coaching interactions.

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What is virtual selling?

Virtual selling is a selling experience mediated by technology. Sellers communicate, collaborate, and connect with prospects from any location using the technology of their choice, including computers, tablets, or mobile phones. Integrating virtual selling with online tools and techniques allows sellers to nurture prospects, share information, conduct demos, and host meetings without the need to meet in person.

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What is a digital sales room?

A digital sales room is a dedicated, secure online space created by a seller for a specific buyer. It serves as a hub for centralizing all content, video conference recordings, correspondence, files shared with prospects, and more throughout the sales process. It allows buyers and sellers to exchange information, share content, communicate, and align.

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What is asynchronous communication?

Asynchronous communication is communication that is not simultaneous, live, or in real time. The seller interacts with buyers through text message, email, video, voice mail, or digital sales room.

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What is synchronous communication?

Synchronous communication is communication that happens in real-time. The seller interacts with buyers live through a webconference tool, phone call, Facetime, or in person meeting.

What is inline video feedback and in-video interactivity?

Inline video feedback and in-video interactivity occur when a viewer clicks on the content within the video player to add comments and engage in discussions right within a video timeline. This allows sellers and employees to communicate and add commentary during specific moments in the video.

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What is conversation intelligence?

Conversation intelligence is the evolution of voice transcription technology. Beyond simply capturing voice and converting it into text, conversation intelligence focuses on analyzing sales calls and extracting insights such as topics discussed, questions asked, pace of speech, filler words used, competitors mentioned, and much more. These insights allow sellers, sales managers, and marketers to understand how to optimize buyer interactions to increase chances of successful outcomes.

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What is sales content management (SCM)?

Sales content management is the creation, organization, distribution, and management of customer-facing sales assets and internal sales training content. Creating a logical sales content management structure makes it easier to maintain, update, and retire pieces of content as markets, messaging, and products change.

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What is a learning management system (LMS)?

A learning management system is software designed to facilitate, manage, and track learning activities, both virtually and in-person. An LMS is almost always exclusively designed for formal learning such as HR compliance, standard onboarding, and product education.

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What is agile content?

Agile content is time-sensitive content that is created quickly and often has a short shelf life.  Examples include win/loss reports, competitive intelligence, sales call best practices, and other intelligence captured from the field. Agile content is typically created by anyone with an insight to share, such as sellers and subject matter experts.

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What is formal content?

Formal content is content that is created over a course of weeks or months, involving multiple drafts, reviews, and polish before it is officially published internally or externally. Typically created by a central function, such as marketing, sales enablement, human resources, and instructional designers.

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What is a SCORM file?

SCORM is a specific file format that packages an entire formal course, including content, layout, and quiz questions, into a single file that can be imported into an LMS. SCORM files are useful because they are platform agnostic. These files are created with SCORM creator tools.

What is just-in-time (JIT) learning?

Just-in-time learning is agile content that is delivered in the flow of how sellers work. JIT learning supplements traditional, formal content with agile content curated by peers and subject matter experts. With information at their fingertips, sales reps can quickly and easily get information to prepare for a meeting, to send to prospects, and find answers during a buyer meeting.

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What is microlearning?

Microlearning is educational content delivered in small, highly focused chunks. This type of learning focuses on content that is “need to know” instead of “nice to know.” Microlearning can be used as performance support, where the learner accesses content at the moment of need, and it can also serve as support for longer learning to reinforce concepts introduced during formal learning sessions. Studies find people learn best and are more likely to recall learning when they can process information through small, manageable chunks.

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What is channel partner enablement?

Channel partner enablement is the process of equipping your channel partners with the skills, knowledge, and content to engage buyers and win deals. It includes onboarding, training, coaching, and content delivery and collaboration. With a cohesive, AI-powered, channel partner enablement program, you can engage and motivate your partners—and help them sell more of your products and services—by equipping them with the relevant information they need right at their fingertips.

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What is sales certification?

Sellers are awarded certification after they complete a sales training program or assessment. It shows that the seller has a specific skill set or has reached a standard of professional knowledge in an area of sales. This may include specific skills, such as negotiation or objection handling, knowledge of the product or service they are selling, or a proven understanding of a particular sales strategy.

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2021 forrester report sales enablement