Changing well-established business processes or tools always gives pause for thought. This is particularly true when such a significant business decision also involves financial investment. If you have arrived at this point in your business, chances are high you are considering Customer Relationship Management solution. You are likely pondering too about its impact on marketing, sales, and your workflows. And worrying about Return on Investment. If so, this article will help you identify the 7 sure signs your business needs a CRM.
What you will learn in this article
- The 7 warning signs your business needs a CRM
- What CRM can do for you
- Important CRM considerations
- The CRM benefits
- How to get started with CRM
7 telltale signs you need a Customer Relationship Management solution
Low productivity and/or efficiency
Manual processes involving numerous spreadsheets and shuffling paper are always going to be painfully slow. However, today, there are much faster and more efficient ways of achieving things.
How CRM can help – A CRM system replaces all your manual processes by automating data entry and routine tasks. Instead of teams working in blinkered information silos, they are sharing a single shared platform. Not only are you looking at improved efficiency across the board, but it’s also not unreasonable to expect significant improvement in sales. According to various estimates, this could be a 40% rise in sales per team member.
Collaboration between departments is breaking down
Sometimes, individual departments focus so tightly that they begin to lose sight of what anyone else is doing. If they lose track of other departments, they also fail to see the impacts on your business. In the worst-case scenario, customers and leads find themselves bounced about your organization and misinformed. This is usually because no one is certain how to handle their request.
How CRM can help – A CRM system gives everyone a central point of insight into the lifecycle of any customer and lead. The entire history of interactions has been logged, so staff will know precisely how to address issues. In addition, CRM systems have a ton of collaboration features such as file sharing and team dashboards. This gives all the users the visibility required to tackle customer requests.
Sales staff will sometimes shirk responsibility for a customer ‘falling through the cracks.’ Worse still, a business opportunity gets missed because no one took ownership of the customer, and they didn’t get contacted.
How CRM can help – A CRM system is a centralized database. It logs and provides every single interaction with a customer or lead. This allows you to see who, where, and when you sold a client short on customer service. The purpose is not a digital blame game but the means to see where you can make improvements.
Insufficient data analysis
Everyone in business wants to know their customers are happy and taken care of properly. But often, you don’t know as much about them as you could.
How CRM can help – A CRM system’s central proposition is its ability to help you better understand your customers. It does this via built-in reporting functions and data analysis. Using these tools gives you a much deeper understanding. For example, you can shed light on customers’ shopping and seasonal buying habits, demographics, preferences, how they interact with your company, and their preferred communication type. Plus, a lot more besides.
Poor customer satisfaction levels
Customer experience that is anything less than outstanding is an open invitation for clients to head for the exits. If your customers are not delighted, it won’t be long before your competition signs them up. If you have detected the following, it’s time for a Customer Relationship Management solution:
- Low levels of customer satisfaction
- A spike in the volume of customer complaints
- Negative responses to customer questionnaires and surveys
How CRM can help – A CRM system can help you take a highly focused approach to customer experience management. The best CRM solutions, for example, allow you to engage with customers via their preferred communication channel. For instance, some customers may prefer to be contacted via social media networks and text rather than by email or phone call.
Losing out on sales opportunities
If you track leads manually, you will likely lack a defined process for nurturing leads. As a result, you will almost certainly be missing out on sales.
How CRM can help – A CRM system, especially when integrated with marketing software, follows pre-set rules to remind agents to follow up. And because all the customer’s data and interactions are centrally stored, the agent can pick up seamlessly to nurture the lead and add value to the relationship.
Rapid business expansion
If you see a spike in business growth, it’s a warning to invest in a Customer Relationship Management solution.
How CRM can help – A CRM system will let you streamline business processes and give you actionable insights to ensure you are making informed business decisions.
Getting started with CRM
By now, there’s a very good chance you want to take the next step. And that’s selecting a suitable CRM solution. Small businesses are highly advised to look at cloud-based CRM to save a heap of time and energy. This is because it is an affordable option for small businesses and can scale up as required with a minimum of fuss. With the field cut down a little, next, you want to arrange a free trial or two. This isn’t a biggie, as CRM providers will be delighted that you want to give their platform a spin. Free trials are usually around 14 days, which should be enough time to assess whether a platform will work for you.
Small businesses are sensitive to changes in the marketplace. Probably more so than larger companies whose size means they are better able to ride out choppy waters. If you nodded to any of the seven CRM hazard warning lights described above, it’s time. Time to embrace CRM. Do yourself a big favor today, contact us. We are the cloud CRM specialists for small businesses. We’ll make CRM implementation easier than you may imagine.