18. October 2019 Blog

The best resources for sales & customer support agents

As a good sales & customer support agent, you should know the importance of constant development by now. There’s no better way to improve your skills than staying up to date with the latest resources on sales and customer service. If you’re looking for some inspiration, we’ve got you covered: Here are the best resources for sales & customer support professionals.

The best blogs & websites on sales and customer support

1. HubSpot | Sales & Service

Hubspot is not only well-known as an inbound marketing leader - it also offers a great pool of resources on a variety of subjects. You can easily access rich, regularly updated content on both sales and customer service, depending on your needs. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been working in the field for many years, or you’ve just started - it features original research and actionable advice that can still take your sales & customer support skills to the next level. 

Must-read: 8 Ways Sales and Customer Service Can Actually Work Together

2. The Sales Blog 

If you’ve been working in sales for quite some time now, the name Anthony Iannarino might ring a bell. Apart from being the author of "The Only Sales Guide You'll Ever Need," among others, he publishes daily insights and thought leadership on his blog. Plus, he also has plenty of other resources in store, which are definitely worth checking out as well. 

Our pick: Advice for People Who Are Young and in Sales

3. Intercom | Sales & Support 

You might already be familiar with Intercom - a messaging platform that can be used by both sales & support professionals. What you may not be aware of, though, is that its blog shares valuable insights and tips that you can benefit from. Yet again - this one also covers a variety of subjects, but you can find plenty of resources aimed at sales and customer service agents. 

Our choice: Keep it fresh: Managing a knowledge base that retains users 

4. Sales Hacker 

As the name suggests, Sales Hacker is a go-to resource for sales reps, managers and executives that want to stay updated on the latest strategies and suggestions for prospecting and selling. There’s a wide range of various content - so you can read, watch or listen to it as you prefer.  

Top pick: Inside Sales vs. Outside Sales: Which Is Best for You?

5. CloudTalk | Blog

Not to brag about it, but we maintain a pretty good blog for sales & customer support professionals as well. You can find it particularly useful if you offer phone-based support to your clients. Still, we cover a lot of related topics, so that everyone finds something for themselves.   

Our favourite: How to provide your customers with brilliant omnichannel support

Interesting sales & customer service podcasts

6. Accelerate! 

It should come as no surprise that Andy Paul’s Accelerate! Is all about… accelerating your sales performance. His interview podcasts are regularly published and very insightful - if you don’t have enough time to listen to the full episode, you can always check out “key takeaways” first. And you definitely should, as his guests happen to be true sales experts. 

Worth listening to in particular: The Truth About Selling, With Mike Weinberg 

7. The Modern Customer  

Speaking of industry leaders - you can also find them in Blake Morgan's interview podcasts. As a matter of fact, all resources revolving around The Modern Customer Podcast share a lot of helpful insights about building customer-centric companies and leveraging technology to one’s advantage.

Top pick: Designing Empathy Into Customer Experience

8. The Advanced Selling 

Every podcast from The Advanced Selling series starts with a short summary, which helps you immediately decide whether there might be something for you in it. The truth is, however, that you’re likely to listen to all of them anyway. Not without a reason, the series hosted by Bill Caskey and Bryan Neale is said to be the longest-running sales podcast. 

Our choice: You Lost The Deal But You Are Not a Loser

Compelling sales & customer service books

9. Customer Satisfaction Is Worthless, Customer Loyalty Is Priceless

This book by Jeffrey Gitomer encourages you to go beyond “simple” customer satisfaction, and aim for customer loyalty right away. If you’re not sure whether you have the right skills for it - worry no more. The “Customer Service Self Evaluation Test” that you can find inside (among a few other resources), will make it much easier for you. 

10. The Effortless Experience 

Matthew Dixon, along with his colleagues, decided to debunk a few common customer service myths on the basis of data collected from hundreds of companies and over 100,000 customers. In their opinion, reduced customer effort is the one true driver of loyalty. They don’t only make this statement, though, but also outline ways for you to improve customer experience.

11. Pitch Anything: An Innovative Method for Presenting, Persuading, and Winning the Deal

The ability to come up with a great pitch often proves to be essential, especially if you work in sales. The author Oren Klaff has his own unique pitching method (which helped him raise over $400 million), which he’s generous enough to share with his readers. Basically, he outlines the key points every great pitch needs to hit, with valuable advice on how to hit them. 

Honourable mention: Free online courses on sales & customer service 
If blog posts, podcasts and books are not enough, and you’re looking for some more structured learning opportunities - try online courses. The ones for free might be hard to find, but there are some ways to take advantage of them anyway. LiveChat, as an example, offers Free Customer Service Training in exchange for your email address. Plus, you can always browse platforms dedicated to e-learning. Skillshare, for instance, offers a whole section on Sales that can be accessed with a free trial. Class Central and Udemy can also surprise you with free or discounted resources on sales. 

Unconventional sales & customer support tools

12. Checking out your website visitors with Leadfeeder 

If you’re looking for new ways to acquire new leads, you might want to check out Leadfeeder. It allows you to identify companies visiting your website, along with the details on how they found you and what they’re interested in. You can, therefore, approach them yourself with a relevant offer, since you know they might already be interested in your products or services. 

13. Understanding how those visitors interact with your website with LiveSession

If you found the idea of identifying your website visitors appealing - try LiveSession to see how they actually take advantage of your site. This tool records every user session so that you can spot potential mistakes and missed opportunities in content, lead capture forms, or pricing pages, just to name a few. 

14. Converting anonymous website visitors into actionable, warm leads with Albacross

If you are working really hard to drive traffic to your website, you don’t obviously want them to slip away unconverted at any cost. Albacross - a B2B lead generation will help you identify and track the users visiting your website. You’ll get the in-depth insights as to which pages they are most interested in, how they interact with your site, and ways they can be contacted.  

15. Scheduling appointments with Harmonizely 

The ability to schedule meetings, consultations and product demos is often important for sales agents. At the same time, scheduling them manually can take a lot of time and effort. Luckily, you can automate the appointment scheduling process for your business with calendar-based tools like Harmonizely, which allow your prospects and customers to book a meeting with your sales reps. 

16. Keeping your sales process in one place with Livespace 

CRM should be in the heart of every sales process, as it helps to keep all communication within your sales team and your customer in once place. With Livespace, you have a chance to better forecast your sales results, introduce new agents to your sales process faster, and even close more deals with the same number of leads.

17. Staying in touch with your customers wit Help Scout 

While on the subject of communication - there’s no better way to manage all conversations with your customers than by using Help Scout. It’s a powerful messaging platform that can help you access every message that was received and sent by your customer support team. This, in turn, helps to keep everyone informed and on the same page. 

18. Offering phone-based sales & customer support with CloudTalk 

Phone-based support is valuable for both sales & customer support agents. If you want to make sure you offer an outstanding service - try CloudTalk. It will help you make and receive more calls, giving your team more opportunities to solve problems and close deals. Plus, you can integrate it with other tools and keep your customer data consistent and up-to-date between the systems once you’re at it. 

Looking for more tools dedicated to sales & customer support? 
Check out our recommendations.

Inspiring sales & customer service statistics  

19. 100 Essential Customer Service Statistics and Trends

Reading long reports can be time-consuming, but it’s an important part of staying up to date with the recent developments in your sector. If you’re looking for a quick overview, though, you can always check the list of relevant customer service statistics and trends. 

20. 200+ Sales Statistics You Must Know

The same applies to the field of sales - if you take a closer look at the collection of sales statistics, you can find valuable insights without browsing multiple reports and save yourself a lot of time and effort this way. 

21. Would you add any resource to that list? We’d love to hear your suggestions!