Having the right Customer Relationship Management system or CRM in place, is something every business strives for to run smoothly.
If you aim to grow and you want to connect with prospects to convert them into clients, then you need the right CRM software to assist your team. The right tool can help you keep in touch with your leads, build strong relationships and win loyal clients.
But how do you know which CRM tool to choose? This six-step guide is here to help you make the right decision for your business needs.
1. There Is no ‘one-size fits all’ policy
You will probably come across multiple CRM solutions, which can all be great in their own way.
What is really important to note, is that no CRM tool is the same. It can vary between industries and is highly dependent on a business’ needs.
What features does your business need? Which tool is best suited to those specific needs and how are these features combined into the CRM solution?
These are the things you need to think about. Getting the right solution in place will help streamline your lead management process.
A report by Nucleus Research analysed the average Return on Investment in CRM case studies between 2011-2014. They found out, that for every 77p invested and spent on CRM, businesses expected to see an average return of £6.70.
Source: Apto, Nutshell
2. Identify business processes
Conduct an analysis on your existing processes and current outcomes.
Following this, specify your desired goals.
How do these compare?
Is there a gap that needs to be filled? Are there visible improvements needed?
Use your analysis to write a checklist of the things your business needs.
Then, consider a customisable tool, which can be tailored to your business requirements.
3. Prioritise user experience
You want your employees to enjoy using your new CRM tool. Having the right user experience means they’re more likely to embrace it. They’re also more likely to use it in the best possible way. Thus, resulting in a better lead relationship and solid business insights.
There is no point using a service which has all the features your business requires at the right price, if your employees find it difficult to use.
If data is not entered into the CRM system and difficulties arise, you will lose critical insights.
With a lack of consistent insights, business decisions can become guess work.
Say you have just hired a new Marketer. Without the right CRM system in place it becomes difficult to gauge the true return on investment in marketing activities. Having access to the right data will help you make informed decisions.
The right CRM system will enable this by providing accurate data and collating vital information into an actionable overview.
4. SaaS and cloud friendly
Traditionally, buying software meant receiving a CD-ROM and installing it on your computer. To install it on another device was difficult and could be time consuming.
Upgrading or changing features may have meant costly licence upgrades and installation processes.
SaaS (Software As A Service) is a software licensing model hosted in the cloud. Generally, these services are subscription based and accessed via the internet.
Choosing a SaaS CRM system means that as your business develops and you change devices, you can still access the platform across the internet with minimal software installation work.
SaaS systems are also typically more scalable that grow with your business. For example, if you have new additions to your sales team, you can easily add new users.
As it is cloud based, it also offers your business enhanced security. Patches are regularly released to fix any security loopholes if they arise.
5. Mobile friendly
Are your sales team always on the go? Does anyone in your team work across different devices including laptops, tablets and phones?
Nowadays, accessibility is a key feature which cannot be ignored. Don’t wait for someone on your team to request mobile-friendly software. Be proactive and make sure it’s up-to-date and compatible with the latest devices.
According to the Aberdeen Group, 24% more salespeople achieve their annual sales quota by having mobile access to their CRM.
Giving your team the tools to work on the go leads to a much more productive and efficient workforce.
6. Can I integrate my existing apps?
Does your business use social media? What about E-mails and E-mail marketing?
Your CRM needs to connect easily to your existing infrastructure. It should adapt to you and your business to compliment your existing setup.
Keep in mind it should be there as an aid to running your business smoothly and make your lives easier. If using the software is cumbersome and time consuming, this should raise red flags and it may not be the CRM tool for you.
So what do we use/recommend?
Hubspot is a great tool which offers a free* CRM for users to try.
It takes away the messiness of endless spreadsheets and documents with clear, concise dashboards.
Connect e-mails, phone calls and social media into one space and have customer activity logged automatically.
Increase productivity within the office by having the ability to communicate in real-time.
*Always check the website
This cloud-based CRM tool offers an adaptable platform for different business models. Users can manage contacts and track all sales activities through a range of features.
The software is accessible across devices and displays clearly structured dashboards with vital sales information.
Salesforce offers guidance to users on how to improve their sales, thus educating users and increasing productivity.
It is always worth conducting an analysis as to what technology your business needs based on upcoming goals.
A CRM tool is there to aid your team in communicating with your prospects, ensuring that it is as seamless as possible and nothing gets missed.
It should also offer a good overview of vital sales information.
Bear in mind, these CRM systems may suit our business model, but if you need help deciding which one may be best suited to your business, ask us here.