Even the 50 shades of ‘Christian Grey’ can’t compare to the number of sales tools currently hitting the market. With hundreds of new solutions, a sales rep can feel as though there are 50+ shades of sales enablement tools – making it overwhelming to choose the right one! As noted in a recent Forrester blog, “This area of technology is positively exploding!!!”

Before you even get to functionality, you need to consider the type of tool. Are you looking to boost sales performance? Or, do you want a tool focused on improving sales forecasts? Perhaps you want a tool that increases understanding about customer engagement – so you can get more insight into prospect interests.

No matter what type of tool you’re looking at, the following questions can help ensure that your choice meets the most essential criteria and is up to the appropriate standard.

Does the tool support your other tools?

You shouldn’t have to give up your favorite tools for another one. No tool should disrupt what’s already working well for you. They should fit in right alongside your existing CRM and marketing automation platforms – making processes easier not harder with automatic synchronization between these systems. Additionally, tools should be seamlessly deployed – so you can start enjoying the benefits right away.

 Does the tool give you the information you need, when you need it?

What is it that you want to know and for what business purpose? Answer that, and then consider the type of analytics you need to achieve that end. If you’re a sales rep, you may want to see how prospects engage with your sales content. If that’s the case, you need real-time analytics that allow you to strike while the iron is hot. You don’t want to lose out on an opportunity to a competitor waiting in the wings. If time is of the essence, be sure that the tool’s analytics are capable of giving you the information when and how you need it – delivered, of course, in a pleasing and easy-to-understand format for all of your devices.

Does the tool require too many changes to work well?

Don’t forget to look at how a tool integrates with other tools. You need to determine when a tool’s integration requirements take more time than the value of the tool. How much time can you afford cutting and pasting information between tools – or hunting down information in another tool to insert in your own? All of that can eat up a lot of time – and what sales person wants to be tied up with non-core selling activities all day long? You need to decide whether you want direct integration or are OK sacrificing selling time.

Does the tool deliver the ROI you want?

Most sales reps want to drive revenue. A sales tool that can deliver true ROI can make even an experienced sales professional giddy with anticipated revenues. As you consider your investment, look at the type of expected return. With what tools do you get the most ROI?

The bottom line is you can’t submit to happenstance when it comes to choosing a sales acceleration tool. By considering the above criteria, you can gain control in a situation that may at first appear mind-boggling.

This blog originally appeared here.

Read More: What’s Driving the Next Wave of Sales Tools.