If you've spent time in the business world, you've been exposed to hundreds of acronyms. One you've likely heard a lot is CRM, which stands for customer relationship management. But in today's connected world, where customers are more empowered and connected than they've ever been, what exactly does it mean to manage your customer relationships?
On the most basic level, a CRM solution helps you organize the customers who keep your business running — no matter where they are in the customer life cycle. A CRM solution gives you access to the information you need to target your marketing, close your sales, and service your accounts.
CRM solutions are the backbone of the modern business. With technology progressing at such a staggering rate, the complexity of managing a business continues to increase. A CRM solution helps you manage everything from your marketing to your next product launch in a single, unified system.
No matter how much technology changes society, business will always revolve around great customer relationships. Those relationships have grown more complex as customers connect on new channels and in new ways.
A CRM system is your business’s nerve center for all of these touch points. It pieces them together into one cohesive view of a customer relationship. This allows your business to have 1:1 interactions with customers with the same level of intimacy as mom-and-pop shops of the past.
There was a time when the departments of a company were segregated into a series of disconnected silos. But this creates major problems such as scattered data, fragmented customer information, and a disconnected customer experience.
The modern consumer expects a seamless experience with your business. When a customer calls you for support, she expects you to know that she’s the same person who mentioned you in a tweet last week. Delivering one cohesive user experience on the front end requires a cohesive CRM system on the back end.
The bottom line: connecting with customers delivers success. The numbers to support this are astounding. By connecting on a deeper level with your customers, Salesforce customer relationship survey data found that a company will experience an average of:
Technological innovation is exploding in every industry. Companies are leapfrogging each other as they develop new tools and new products to better meet the needs of their industry. But all of this innovation requires a solid foundation.
A CRM solution provides a solid framework of data and technology that companies can leverage to develop new tools and products. This core structure ensures that a company keeps crucial information and important relationships at the heart of everything it does.
But in order to keep up with this breakneck pace of business innovations, companies need to be prepared to move quickly without sacrificing the quality of your customer relationships. Not only is a CRM solution a tool to enable companies to close deals and satisfy customers, CRM also helps businesses deploy at a 55 percent faster rate than those with a CRM solution, according to Salesforce research.
See how Salesforce CRM transformed Zero Motorcycles into a truly customer-focused company:
A broken sales process means that your salespeople will not hit their targets. Without communication and connectivity embedded into every step of your sales, your salespeople are missing out on opportunities to close deals. Without lead routing and alignment with the marketing department, there is not enough pipeline. Limited (or no) mobile access makes selling outside of the office cumbersome and time-consuming. A lack of automated processes means sales reps are bogged down with minutiae and busy work they don't need.
How can a CRM system help grow your sales? Salesforce customers reported greater forecast accuracy, lead conversion, win rates, and sales productivity, totaling up to a 32 percent average increase in sales. CRM enables your reps to sell faster, sell smarter and sell from anywhere, leaving them more time to do what they do best: connect with prospects and customers.
CRM solutions are the backbone of established companies and growing businesses alike. If you haven't yet, it may be time to consider a CRM system to help you collect and organize your business data in one place, use it to connected every part of your company, and pave the way for future growth and innovation.
To learn more about how cloud CRM systems like Salesforce can transform your business, check out these additional resources:
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