Choosing the right CRM or customer relationship management system can seem to be a big choice for your business, especially if it is the first one you have made. With so many different CRMs out there, you may be wondering which one is right for your company, what features you want, and how much you will pay for a new CRM system as an enterprise, a small business or a start-up.
CRM stands for Customer Relations Management. This system helps make sure that your customers and contacts stay satisfied by giving them the information they need when they need it. The purpose of CRM is to make sure that all communication lines are working properly between your company and its customers. If you use a good CRM, you will also reduce your need for human interaction with your customers because CRM systems give you great analytical reports that tell you what your customers are saying about your service and products and how you can improve them.
Following are a few important questions you should consider before opting for a CRM solution. These questions will help you find the right CRM software for your small business.
1. For what purpose are you going to use CRM?
As we have seen, CRM’s have several applications in several departments, including sales, customer service, marketing, IT, HR, finance, and others. For instance, the sales team may need CRM for tracking communications, managing sales collateral, scheduling calls, and more, whereas marketers might use CRM for audience segmentation, email automation, and social media integration.
Thus, knowing the purpose behind using CRM is very critical. Before choosing your CRM software, you must identify who in your company needs the CRM software; thereby, it becomes easier for you to make the right choice.
2. Whether should you go with a web-based or a stand-alone application?
One of the most common types of CRM software is called web-based CRM. Web-based CRM software gives your employees a way to log into your CRM data at any time, from anywhere, using any Internet connection. The good thing about using web-based CRM is that your employees do not need to install anything on their computers to access your CRM data, which means they can be more productive. Web-based CRM software also lets your employees set up a customized workflow that lets them easily prioritize tasks and collaborate on projects without having to deal with the hassle of downloading and uploading anything onto their computer.
Another choice you will face when deciding what is the best CRM for your small businesses is whether you should go with a web-based or a stand-alone application. Stand-alone CRMs are great because they allow you to access your CRM data from any location, but web-based CRMs give you the ability to access your data and work with it no matter where your employees are located. This is specifically crucial for businesses that have locations in different parts of the country. For example, if you had employees in a northern state and a southern state, you would not want to have to make all of the changes to your CRM software when you travelled across the country.
3. Whether should you opt for email marketing automation services?
It is crucial for small businesses to decide whether they should use email marketing automation as part of their web-based CRM software solution. If you want to control the flow of communications within your company, this feature can be invaluable. It allows you to quickly organize your communications and respond to any customers or employees that you may have overlooked in the course of your daily operations. Most email marketing automation services will also let you schedule automatic emails to be sent out at designated intervals, which can further reduce the amount of time you are away from your office and be more time-efficient. This type of software is also best if you want to run some targeted campaigns in order to market your products or services.
If you’re looking to grow and expand your business and take advantage of the opportunities offered by the internet, ecommerce CRM software is the way to go. In this type of CRM solution, your customers’ information is automatically stored on the server and sent out automated emails. Instead of setting up an in-house email campaign, this solution is much more beneficial if you have a large number of customer records to manage. Also, many ecommerce CRM solutions offer comprehensive email campaigns that can help you send out information to all of your customers and prospects at one time.
4. Which integration capabilities to look for?
Deciding on the integration capabilities is another aspect to consider when choosing a CRM solution for your small business. For example, you can integrate your CRM with social media marketing apps and sales tracking programs available on the iPhone and Android. Integrations allow you to connect your marketing app to your CRM so that all of your customer and prospect information is available within one centralized location. In addition, most integrations allow you to import and export contact records from your CRM into any major applications popular on smartphones. While integration capabilities are a great add-on, opt for the ones you truly need.
By combining your CRM with an effective marketing platform and a comprehensive social media marketing platform, you can start taking advantage of the growing consumer demand for convenience. CRM software is designed to streamline processes and provide businesses with greater control and visibility over their data. By streamlining processes and connecting your CRM to social media, it will be easier than ever before for you to get started building your brand and increasing sales. If you haven’t already taken the step, now is definitely the time.
O-Desk ( erstwhile O-Lead ) from ONPASSIVE would be the right choice for your small business. The perfect lead management system lets you engage with your customers via different channels.