Do You Need a CRM System?
Technology has changed more in the past 3 years than in the past 30. If you are like most businesses owners, you are too busy running your company to keep up. This, however, can leave you at a disadvantage. As more businesses adapt technologies like CRM Systems, they become more efficient. This could put you behind your competition if you do not adapt.
What is a CRM System?
A CRM, or Customer Relationship Management system can organize your sales pipeline and make sure that no potential sales fall through the cracks. It can also keep track of your customer service, fulfillment and even customer retention processes. This can save a budding business time and money tenfold over the cost of the system and the time it took for setup and training.
You Have a Sales Team
Whether your team is making cold calls, receiving leads through the phone or web, or outside knocking on doors and networking, a CRM is a must have tool for the sales professional and sales manager.
It is one single place to hold all of all your company’s leads. They can be added one by one, imported in a spreadsheet, or automatically generated through a web to lead system. After assigning leads to your team, you can at a glance see the status of the leads, how many times they were called, and what the result has been.
Reporting can be a huge time saver for most managers. Instantly see what team members are being the most proactive and closing the most deals. You can even tell at what stage in the sales cycle your leads are converting, being neglected, or becoming dead leads.
Your Customers Buy From You more than Once
Staying in the fore front of your customer’s minds is they key to getting recurring business. A CRM system can be set up to automatically send out emails at certain points of a customer life cycle and certain points after the sale. It can also alert employees to make follow-up calls. It can even be connected with a payment processor for automated billing.
You Want Referrals
Doesn’t everyone? The great news is that a CRM can not only reach out to your current customers via reminders to your staff or email, but you can keep track of which customers are giving you leads so that you can thank them.
You Have a Mobile Workforce or Salesforce
Most CRMs can connect with any mobile device and Outlook. This enables you to keep in touch with your customers while on the go, in the field, or even from your favorite beach bar.
Tips for a Successful CRM Launch
Know What You Need
Before beginning the quest to find the perfect system, have the following information ready.
- Ask yourself what your goals are. What processes do you need to simplify?
- Determine your typical sales pipeline. What stages do you leads go through to convert to sales?
- How do you get your leads? Understanding the best way to get the proper data for your leads into your system is vital.
Do Your Homework
Remember that when you are shopping for a system, the first people at the CRM company that you talk to will be in sales. Research different platforms online and read reviews of each one in addition to talking to their representatives.
Customize Your System
Most CRMs can be used as is, but if you want your employees (and yourself) to really embrace it it will probably need to be customized to match the way your company walks and talks.
Hire a Consultant
Many 3rd party CRM consultants are available to help you determine what will work best for your business. They can help you decide which system to go with, customize it to suit your needs, train your people and maintain it.
In short, a CRM system can help you keep up with your competition, close more sales, and keep more customers. The key is taking the time to get the right system in place and customizing it.