What is the Definition of CRM?
A CRM secures data from every interaction between your business and clients or vendors. The software routes this data to the right silos in your business to leverage. Your team enjoys up to speed data on every lead, client, and 3rd party. Management can analyze the subsequent sales data as well. This allows your business to capture information across every sales channel and funnel it into one place.
What Does a CRM System Do?
A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system manages customer data. It informs a team about sales management, marketing campaigns, social media interactions and facilitates team communication. A CRM provides an omni-channel software platform to capture, organize, and analyze every point of communication between your business and clients. This in turn delivers the following:
Increase Customer Lifetime Value
You can safely rely on your CRM to capture all points of contact between you and a single client. In turn, this allows you to provide better support to your client. As an analogy, think about when you switch insurance providers and doctors. The old provider had a long running list of your health history. They know how to deliver the best service as a result. If you switch providers, then your data is lost. It’s hard to provide continuity in service without that background info. A CRM solves this between you and your clients.
Offer Better Customer Support
As mentioned before, there is no lapse in service when using a CRM – even if your team experiences turn over. The client’s data remains the same, regardless if your team rotates in an out of a siloed position.
Improve Products and Services
Your CSR’s see the purchase patterns of clients. Consequently, they know how to upsell those customers. This improves the client’s experience when your products synergize together to provide comprehensive value to the client. That also translates into better experience of service.
Benefits of CRM
Improves Customer Service
As mentioned, A CRM system manages contacts and aggregates lead data to build profiles of everyone speaking to your company. This offers quick access to info which CSR’s can use to understand customer behavior like purchasing decisions. Customers can pick up where they left off with your team at any time. Your team can accurately address issues with less effort. As a result, the brand enjoys improved customer loyalty.
Increase in Sales
A CRM streamlines your sale process. Here’s a shortlist of how that looks:
- Constructs a formal sales pipeline
- Automates daily actions
- Analyzes sales data
- Cohesion in communication platforms
Altogether, your team will secure more deals by building a simple, established sales process, that delivers best brand message on the best sales channel at the best time.
Boosts Client Retention
Business owners know client retention plays a critical role in regular revenue. New clients cost a lot to acquire. Subsequent churn rates for losing these clients will determine a company’s success. CRM tools like:
- Sentiment analysis
- Automated ticketing
- Customer support chat
All dramatically improve your retention by letting human agents defuse problems. Leverage a CRM’s analytics tools to evaluate a customer life cycle and show you when churn occurs. Address those pain points and retain more clients.
CRM’s cast a large net for data. More importantly, it makes data intelligible and relevant to your business needs. Sales data, Finance data, and Marketing data flow into CRM to become visible metrics. The net benefit is customer acquisition, customer retention, and better data management.
Optimize System Efficiencies
Having all your major day-to-day business functions in one place makes for better workflow, easier collaboration between team members, and better project management.
Centralizing communications into one platform provides for better efficiency. How? your team can collaborate easier. They will complete projects quicker. Automation resolves repetitive work. Dashboards and data offer insight towards areas of opportunity. You can see clearer and move quicker to grow where you need to.
Knowledge Sharing & Collaboration
Incorrect information and poor communication can waste a team’s time. Collaborative CRM tools can streamline your teamwork by letting you build a knowledge base, establish best practice workflows, and allowing for frictionless communication between team members.
Are employees text clients personally? Do they each have their own Gmail based account? Do they take phone calls on their cell? Which communication platform do you operate on with clients? How can you keep an eye and ear on your points of contact with clients? A CRM solves all of this. It captures text, call, email and chat conversations. Nothing is ever lost. This transparency allows everyone to know who:
- Who assigns tasks
- Who completes task
- Who’s a point of contact and when
- General visibility behind every contact.
A CRM platform allows everyone in your organization to gain visibility on your business processes, fostering more mutual understanding and collaboration.
The Basics of CRM
A solid CRM strategy provides an all-in-one solution for managing your team’s voice, chat, and email touchpoints. They track leads, customer needs, offers, and conversions in one place, and help with optimizing your website and running ad campaigns.
That improves the systems behind your business and dramatically increases visibility on your team, customer base, and to the broader public.
CRM Task Automation
Keeping track of all that data makes task automation one of the most significant advantages provided by today’s CRM platform. For example, phone calls within your CRM platform automatically generate data in real time for:
- The date
- Who made the call
- Status of the lead
- Nature of the call
- Follow up plan
You can automatically track old and new customers and schedule follow-ups, with a centralized base for contact information.
Click to call, cross-platform functionality makes customer support possible even from remote locations.
In turn, your business enjoys more agility and possibly less overhead as well.
Email integration streamlines the sales systems. For example, CSR’s can work from their inbox, organize leads, set appointments, synch contacts, all into to your CRM system.
Who Needs CRM?
The short answer? Any e-commerce brand can benefit from CRM.
Owners running a start up can use it for sales, marketing, service, support, managing a community group etc.. Everyone can benefit from better organization, centralized task management.
In general, companies are distributing responsibilities that are more remote based. Consequently, it makes to invest in a tool that clearly packages all your sales-flow systems into one place. This automation allows your company to punch above its weight. It eliminates repetitive tasks so that your humans can do what they do best.
The 4 main types of CRM software
All CRMs put leads and deals front and center. Any CRM lets you track potential customers and clients as “leads,” add info as you work on convincing that customer to use your product or service, and then turn that lead into a “deal” once they’ve decided to buy your products or services. CRMs help you log the steps, tracing the interactions that led from the first contact to the finalized deal—and they’re crucial for working together in a sales team that otherwise would struggle to know exactly where the deal stood at any given time.
Generally, CRMs can be broken down into four types:
In practice, most CRMs are all-in-one tools and can pull in various features from each type, but understanding these differences will help you get a sense of what CRM features are most important for you.
Common CRM Terms
Let’s learn the lay of the land – what are some common CRM terms?
- Contact: Contacts are people. Just like in your address book, you’ll store the names and personal info of your customers and clients (your contacts).
- Lead: Leads are contacts who might want to do business with your company in the future but still need to be nurtured quite a bit before they get there.
- Opportunity: Turns out that lead was really interested, and you think you’re going to be able to sell them your product or service. Now they’re an opportunity: someone actually likely to buy your product.
- Quote: You’ve worked with a contact, turned that lead into an opportunity, and now you’re almost ready to make a deal—so you’ll give them a price and the service or products they’ll get for it.
- Deal: Everything worked out, and you’ve sold your product—or perhaps it didn’t, and the opportunity fell through. You’ll track both of those with deals (won and lost).
- Profiles: Typically, these would be the people inside your own company that use the CRM software.
- Campaign: If you use your CRM for marketing, campaigns are your outreach efforts. Each campaign will list the contacts and companies most crucial to that outreach plan, along with results, notes, and more.
- Tag: Similar to tags in Gmail or metadata on your photos, tags give you a way to add extra info to a contact, deal, or anything else in your company’s CRM. This extra data gives you more ways to filter and sort through your CRM.
- Activity: Activity in a CRM typically refers to anything that’s happened in the app—new deals, contacts, opportunities, or perhaps just a message from your colleagues. Activity is usually listed in a feed, so you can review it easily.