If you are researching CRM solutions, you will often see the phrase ‘cloud-based CRM’ being thrown around. But what exactly is it? And what’s the difference between cloud CRM and the regular sort? In this article we will not only answer these question but also discuss why you should choose a cloud-based CRM.
What you will learn in this article
- What is cloud CRM
- The cloud CRM benefits
- Cloud CRM versus in-house solutions
- 7 great reasons cloud CRM is the best option for small businesses
- How you can get started with cloud CRM
What on earth is cloud-based CRM?
Cloud CRM is where all the data, storage, and software are hosted online by the CRM provider. You, as a small business customer, access everything via an internet connection and web browser. They are also often referred to as SaaS (Software as a Service). It is also interchangeably known as online or web CRM.
Cloud CRM differs substantially from in-house solutions. This latter form of traditional CRM involves the software being installed on an organization’s servers on-site. While this may sound like a better solution, it comes with considerable downsides, especially for small businesses.
What are the benefits of cloud CRM?
There are several compelling technical and pricing benefits in cloud CRM’s favor. So let’s see what cloud CRM has to offer. These benefits include:
- Lower costs
- Ease of use and better team collaboration
- Data security
Cloud-based CRM vs in-house CRM
- Everything is held securely online
- You pay a fixed rate
- No extra maintenance work
- No updates or backups required
- Users can access the system from everywhere on any devices
- Lower costs as the providers can get economies of scale by hosting multiple clients
- You can pay monthly or quarterly and cancel at any time
- You need dedicated local servers on-site
- Capital cost to buy servers and ongoing running costs
- You are responsible for the server software and maintenance
- All updates and backups are your responsibility
- You need to set up special security measures to allow employees to access the system when they’re out of the office
- Costs are higher as you are paying top dollar for all the server hardware
- You pay considerable startup costs and are tied into a contract
For small businesses, it’s no contest. Cloud CRM is easily the winner when it goes head to head with traditional in-house CRM.
7 great reasons why small businesses should select cloud-based CRM
While on-site CRM sounds like you have more control over your data, there are significant downsides in initial costs, running costs, and security worries.
Turning to the cloud, by comparison, makes much greater sense for small businesses. This is because most lack the resources and skill sets required to create, maintain, and operate a data center on-site. So why is cloud CRM a no-brainer for small businesses?
Most cloud-based CRMs are a breeze to set up. If it is browser-based like many are now, you log in as you would do for any other website. Other CRMs involve a simple software download, and you are good to go.
Small businesses need to be agile. This involves being away from the office a lot. You can access cloud-based CRM at any time. All you need is an internet connection.
Cloud CRM is far more affordable than any solution that involves buying and hosting servers. This traditional CRM is outside the reach of small businesses because of the IT staff you need to dedicate to the task. In contrast, cloud-based CRM is subscription-based, and all the messy backend stuff is taken care of by the CRM provider. This leaves small businesses to concentrate on running their business, not servers.
Enhanced team collaboration
All the people that need to access customer data can access it from one central point. Instead of working in a restricted information silo, all the departments across your company can obtain the big picture. This makes it far easier to be coordinated and collaborative. Access to real-time info between marketing, sales, and customer service simplifies business operations and makes it easier for you to think and act strategically. The other beneficiary is the customer in terms of improved customer experience and satisfaction.
Cloud CRM is more responsive to company growth than on-site solutions. If you experience periods of rapid growth – or an unexpected downturn – a CRM system on the cloud can be either ramped up or throttled back to suit. It’s just a matter of changing the subscription package.
Cloud CRM has been designed to appreciate that businesses use a variety of apps and tools for their day-to-day operations. As such, cloud CRMs are purpose-built to be integration-friendly. You can connect up all the tools you need, including email, productivity software, AI tools, and other online office tools you may use.
This is a big one today and not something you can afford to skimp on. Some cloud CRMs, including Samdock, have you covered with a suite of built-in security and privacy tools to ensure your sensitive customer is safe and secure. You also get data backups, offsite data storage, and compatibility with the European Union’s GDPR laws.
Getting started with cloud CRM
If you have now ditched the idea of an on-site CRM solution, press on with your research into our cloud-based option. Having your CRM on the cloud is the most cost-efficient and effective solution for small businesses to harness customer relationship management.
When small businesses compare cloud CRM with in-house solutions, there’s a clear winner. And that’s cloud CRM by a knock-out. With the advent of cloud CRM and high-speed internet connections, there are no longer any obstacles for small businesses. They, too, can leverage the power of CRM systems in a cost-efficient way that makes sense for small enterprises.
Before you do anything else, contact our support to see how a cloud-based solution can work for your specific business. Or try out our free trial to convince yourself.