Using a CRM system within your business can have various benefits including increased sales and lead generation.
No matter what size your company is, if you have a strong customer base then you’ve likely thought about implementing a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system into your business.
CRM systems gather customer interactions and information in one place, helping to improve the customer experience and relationship between them and you. Over recent years CRM systems have become practically essential and can provide various benefits to businesses such as organizing customer information, automating key tasks and creating a consistent communication between your staff and customers.
For entrepreneurs who want to improve their levels of customer retention and ensure they’re offering customer service that’s second to none, a CRM system can have various benefits including…
Better customer service
CRM systems were originally developed to help improve customer relations and despite how the technology has advanced, this is still their main function. A CRM system will gather all of the information your company holds on a customer in one place. This includes things such as name, age, gender, purchase history, and previous interactions.
By storing all of this information in one centralised space, any member of staff within your company can access it. This means that they have all the information they need to provide the very best service to the customer, using previous records and notes to offer a personalised experience. Offering excellent customer service and keeping customers happy will then almost certainly have a knock-on effect on customer retention and sales.
CRM systems can also have a great impact on your sales, especially helping to streamline the sales process and in turn offer a better experience for customers and staff alike. Within your CRM system you can build a sales pipeline and create a step-by-step process that all staff can access and track. This helps to ensure that all staff members are on the same page and know exactly where each potential sale is up to.
CRM systems can transform the day-to-day activity of sales staff by automating many of the tasks which can be time consuming such as tracking customer status for retargeting (e.g. when a warranty on a product is due to expire or when a finance agreement is close to coming to an end).
By freeing up precious time and manpower your sales team are then able to focus on closing the deal and providing customers with their full attention. A CRM system also affords sales staff more time which can be used to target and communicate with a wider customer base.
You can also use your CRM system to help inform and improve your marketing strategy too. By utilising the data you have collected and stored within your CRM system you are able to divide your audience into key segments and demographics which you can then use to target your marketing campaigns on platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and email marketing.
When it comes to re-targeting existing and new customers your CRM system can be invaluable in highlighting not only the customers who have slipped through the net who may benefit from e.g. a targeted email campaign, but also at which point you’re losing them. This information can then help you to improve not just your marketing strategy but the customer journey as a whole.
One of the benefits of a CRM system that is likely to have the biggest impact on the day-to-day running of your business is the automation of everyday tasks, helping to improve business efficiency.
Tracking and keeping in touch with customers can be time-consuming so having the opportunity to slash the time this takes can have a major impact on the efficiency of staff and your business as a whole.
You’re no longer spending hours finding the right contact information or searching through records to find previous correspondence, instead, everything is at your fingertips. You can then use the time you’ve saved for tasks that are more business-critical or those that only a human can undertake such as creating content or designing new products.
You can also utilise your CRM system to highlight how your business is performing and what may need to be improved, allowing you to put your focus on the areas that actually require it.
Simple internal communications
A CRM system doesn’t just help to improve the communication between your business and your customers but also between your staff as well. By centralizing all of the information regarding customer service and communication, all staff can be kept up to date at all times. Staff are also able to easily share documents and updates, ensuring that if a staff member joins a communication with a customer part-way through the journey then they can simply pick up where their colleague left off.
A CRM system also allows staff to keep track of how colleagues are communicating with customers, ensuring they create a clear brand tone of voice and ethos. Ensuring all staff are well-informed is essential to the smooth running of any business and a CRM system can help to achieve this.
It’s all well and good having tonnes of data and information on your customers but it’s no use to you if you don’t know how to use it.
Most CRM systems will come with detailed data analytic features which will break down the data for you into understandable and actionable chunks. You are then able to use this breakdown to help inform your next steps and to evaluate the success of elements such as sales pitches and marketing campaigns.
Some of the data available will also include elements such as bounce rates, click-through rates and audience demographics which will help you to not only judge the success of sales and marketing campaigns but also to plan future ones and identify potential opportunities for improvement and growth.
Managing prospective leads
Another benefit that CRM systems can provide your business with is the ability to better manage prospective leads. Lead generation and nurturing leads can be a lengthy process, involving a lot of research and admin before you’ve even started speaking to a potential customer.
A CRM system will automate much of this process, sending you a reminder when it’s time to check in with a client and providing you with all of the information about this particular lead in one place. If you can appear to a potential customer as well-informed on their journey and needs you’ll already be one step closer to closing the deal.
The great thing about using a CRM system to help nurture potential leads is that you can get an almost “birds-eye view” of how the lead is progressing. You can see every single step taken so far and the status of the lead as well as the information you need to plan your next steps. A CRM system helps to ensure that you’re never on the back foot when talking and pitching to potential customers.
The final word
CRM systems have become an essential spend for many businesses, helping to transform how they communicate with customers as well as improving marketing and sales campaigns thanks to the targeted data they provide.
If you’re serious about offering the very best service for your customers then it’s clear you need to implement a CRM system within your business to stand the best chance for success.