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What are the differences between CPQ and CRM?

3 min read
what is CPQ

System integration is essential for well-functioning organizations that want to continue growing and increasing revenue. The software you choose to support business needs must be able to work together, or you open the business up to significant risk. But there are a lot of choices out there, and it’s common to question whether one type of solution can do the job of two.  

Confusion escalates again when corporate jargon gets tossed around. Soon there are so many acronyms in your head that keeping them organized is impossible. One such pairing is CPQ and CRM. 

Configure, price, quote (CPQ) software is a tool designed to empower sales, partners, and customers to configure complex products and offerings with efficiency and accuracy. CPQ allows organizations to provide personalized prices and quotes for each customer using codified product and pricing information. This expedited process allows sales teams to boost their win rates and create a better buying experience for their customers.   

For most complex quote configurations, CPQ boosts effectiveness by giving sales the power to create the best quotes possible with accuracy and speed. CPQ software puts everything they need at their fingertips by aligning your revenue lifecycle from stage one. Complex product, pricing, and business rules are centralized and automated for real-time collaboration. Sales can maintain one price book, discounting structure, and quoting process across all channels. 


What is CRM? 

Customer relationship management (CRM) is a software database of existing and potential customers. Conga's solutions can be connected with various CRM tools, providing the best solution for optimizing business workflow processes all within your CRM. With a CRM, you can compile data with an omnichannel mindset, pulling in data from the website, phone, email, and marketing efforts. You can learn more about prospective clients and their needs, increasing customer retention and boosting sales growth. 

CRM software covers direct contact with customers, such as sales and service-related operations, forecasting, and the analysis of consumer patterns and behaviors, from the perspective of the company. 


How CPQ complements CRM  

In 2019, the CPQ application market grew by 15.5%, to an estimated $1.42 billion, according to Gartner®. That’s because a CPQ solution can be the difference between winning and losing a deal for industries with complex products, services, and channels. CPQ picks up where the CRM ends by making complex product, pricing, and business rules available to sales reps and partners in real-time. As a result, they always have the information, guidance, and tools they need to quickly and accurately configure, price, and quote a deal. CPQ also directs the behavior of reps and partners to achieve stronger business outcomes. 

CPQ continues the buying process of an opportunity. Once an opportunity is created, sales can utilize their CPQ solution to configure the appropriate solution and create a quote to be sent to the opportunity for approval and sale.    


What is the difference between CPQ and CRM? 

These two types of solutions cover different parts of the revenue lifecycle. While the ability to work together could accelerate your time to close, one does not replace the other. With your CRM solution, you can track and manage the customer journey, storing key data points and records of service. CPQ comes into the process once the customer journey has already started. This software gives you the power to generate customized quotes based on the information from your CRM. Plus, if your CPQ and CRM are integrated, you can share data between the two systems to save time on manual searching and input.  


Benefits of integrating CPQ and CRM 

CPQ implementation can solve for excessive deal cycle times, manual errors, out-of-date information, and a lack of visibility in the sales process. CPQ software can have an immediate effect on the customer experience—driving higher revenue growth. Having an automated CPQ solution in place closes CRM gaps and meets the needs of both the company and their customers. When it comes to complex quoting and configuration, CRM software is simply not sufficient.  

Attempting to process and create complex quotes using manual solutions like Microsoft Word or Excel creates speed bumps in the process and leads to unnecessary risk, while simultaneously creating the potential for errors. Manual quoting is messy, inefficient, and ultimately slows down the revenue cycle. CPQ solutions enable you to quickly search and select products and services, allowing for accurate configuration regardless of your product complexity.  


Conga CPQ allows businesses to master their entire quote-to-cash (QTC) process to sell more intelligently, drive revenue more effectively, and outsell competitors more frequently. With our CPQ solution, you can eliminate manual processes and drive better selling behaviors throughout your revenue lifecycle. Generate pricing for quotes, proposals, invoices, and renewals faster and more accurately, relieving your team from time-consuming manual work. Configure cart, discounting, bundling, promotions, and more—ultimately leading to bigger deals and higher win rates. 

See more on our CPQ product page if you’re ready to transform your revenue lifecycle processes and provide a seamless buying experience for customers. 

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