During the first few years of a company’s existence, it is not unusual for information about customers to be scattered in a variety of places.
There might be some things that only the CEO is aware of. In certain cases, some items can be found only in the sellers’ mailboxes. There could also be other information that you may have to look through old invoices to find.
As the company grows, it becomes increasingly important to secure all the information in one place. Your sales team will lose momentum if they can not quickly get hold of a customer’s name and contact information.
If there is rapid growth in the business, it can also lead to lost opportunities. Not because marketing and sales are not doing their jobs, but because they are overwhelmed with unstructured data.
What Are CRM Systems?
The abbreviation stands for customer relationship management (CRM). Just as the name suggests, it is about managing and nurturing your company’s relationship with customers. A CRM system is a digital tool that can help you with this process.
Why CRM Is Important For Operations
If the company’s employees do not have access to accurate and up-to-date information, it also affects the customers.
Looking at it from their perspective, their relationship is with the company. They do not want to interact with a lot of different people and departments.
It also poses a risk that the representatives of your company could be inconsistent with their communication. And that your potential customers need to repeat the same information every time they come in contact with you.
To avoid this problem, all employees whose role involves customer contact need to be able to access compiled relevant information. Examples of these include:
- purchase history
- what the customer has shown interest in before
- current status of the customer
This is where the CRM system comes in handy. They can adapt their customer relationship management strategy and continue the communication where it was left off.
What CRM Means To Your Business
CRM = organized and all in one place.
A CRM system solves many of the challenges that may arise when it comes to growth. It helps you gather all the information about contacts, companies, and business opportunities.
You can access them from one place and the information is presented in a structured and clear manner. Of course, you can also export contact lists, statistics, and reports as needed.
You might be wondering what CRM software to use. Modern CRM systems, such as CRM HubSpot, automatically register all interactions that take place between contacts and your company.
This could be through various channels such as chat conversations, emails, phone calls, social media, and more.
You can see in detail which web pages were visited by the contact, how they found your website, which emails were opened, etc. In older CRM systems, you need to enter that type of data manually.
The best CRM systems automate various activities, such as sending you notifications. This could be when a visitor performs a call to action which signals that it is ready for being contacted. For example, someone downloading a specific file from your website or registering for an event.
The CRM tool helps you create lasting customer relationships. It can be crucial for both winning a new customer from your competitors, and for developing the relationship with existing customers.
What Type Of Companies Use CRM For Sales?
The simple answer is that any company that wants to maintain a relationship with its customers can benefit from a CRM for sales.
In particular, these are companies that need to track their leads over long sales cycles and their customer journey. Examples include software companies, recruitment companies, and brokers to name a few.
They are also useful for companies whose customers do thorough research before purchasing. These customers probably try to evaluate several different suppliers before they are ready for a dialogue with your company.
With that being said, there are many companies that do not fit the description above but can still see the value in using a CRM for sales.
Whether you are a small business owner or working for a larger B2B or B2C company, the CRM system keeps things organized. And this makes it easier to personalize the interaction with your customers and streamline the sales process.
One way to find out whether it is useful for your company to acquire a CRM for sales is to look at the challenges that the tool is intended to solve:
- Is the information about your leads and customers scattered in several different places today? Would it be helpful in having all the information gathered in one central location?
- Do customers regularly interact with several people at your company? How does everyone keep track of where the communication with the customer last ended?
- Do you want more transparency in the sales process and a better way to evaluate productivity? Does the sales team at your company have a structured process to follow?
If you answered yes to one or more of the above questions, then maybe your company would benefit from using a CRM system.
When Is It Time To Invest In A CRM In Marketing?
If you have decided that your company would need a CRM in marketing, then the next logical question is when?
Many companies start by storing their leads and the customer list in some kind of a spreadsheet. It works for a while, but at some point, the system becomes inefficient.
- When the volume of data increases, it becomes difficult to handle it in such a “flat” structure like a spreadsheet. This is especially the case if you want to visualize the relationships between contacts, companies, etc.
- When it becomes too cumbersome and time-consuming to switch between different places where the information is stored. For example, from the email software to the accounting program and then on to a spreadsheet, etc.
- When you face problems with staff turnover. Imagine that one of your employees, such as a salesperson decides to quit. It can result in losing a lot of data, making it difficult to pick up where he or she left off.
Even if you can manage for a long time without a CRM in marketing, it is often better to get one in advance. Don’t wait until you suffer from the shortcomings of a solution that your company has grown out of.