Short for Customer Relationship Management, CRM is a tool that helps businesses improve and deepen their relationship with the customer, which, in turn, grows the business. Depending on who you ask, CRM can mean three things:
A combination of these three elements of CRM can help businesses drive greater success by becoming more customer-focused.
CRM solutions were initially introduced as deal and contact management tools for sales teams. Now, CRM software are used across functions, industries, and company sizes to stay customer-centric, make data-driven decisions, and build customer loyalty. Using CRM software is the easiest and most efficient way to find new leads and manage your relationship with existing customers.
A CRM can store customer data like contact details, how often they engage with your brand, on which channels, past purchases, service requests, etc. Different teams can easily access such critical information from across functions to manage their customer interactions efficiently and always provide excellent customer experiences.
Put simply, a CRM system helps you organise data so you can have all the relevant information that you need to find new customers, win business deals, and nurture relationships with them. This complete customer view helps keep your customers happy and your business on the growth track. CRM systems can also be integrated with other business apps - like document signing or payment portals - that make customer relationship management easier. In fact, today’s modern CRM systems are extremely intelligent: automation helps streamline repetitive tasks and crucial processes, analytics can increase the predictability of customer behaviour and sales, and insights help fulfil unmet needs.
A CRM solution can act as the heart of your organisation. You can use it to consolidate all your data and create a 360-degree view of your customers. Cloud-based and Artificial Intelligence (AI) powered CRM solutions are very popular. Cloud-based CRMs enable you to create a digital twin of your organisation, seamlessly work from anywhere, and easily integrate with other tech solutions and tools. Add AI to this mix, and it can help you improve business process automation and gain deeper insights into your customers.
Here’s how CRM solutions can help businesses:
1. Better bottom line
CRM systems have a proven track record of improving bottom lines by increasing lead conversion rates, deal sizes, sales productivity, customer satisfaction, etc. These solutions can provide actionable insights and the tools to automate actions and processes that ensure faster decision-making and customer servicing.
2. Increased customer loyalty
Happy customers are likely to become repeat customers, leading to more business. They are also more likely to refer you to others, giving you the opportunity to expand your customer base. Loyal customers are also easier to cross- or upsell to, further fuelling your revenue streams.
CRM technology helps you keep track of all your customer activities and conversations, enabling you to identify their needs at any given moment and fulfil them. And by helping you have more contextual and personalised interactions, you can make customers feel special at every step of their journey with your brand.
3. Improved customer support
When your teams have access to all the information they need, taking care of customers becomes easier. This improves service quality and increases customer satisfaction.
4. Better data management
You can make the best use of data when it is not locked within siloed legacy systems. A CRM solution helps keep your data up-to-date and makes it accessible to all team members.
5. Improved efficiency
The right CRM solution can increase your teams’ output by helping them save time and effort on manual tasks through digitisation and automation. Having clearly defined and smoother processes mean your teams can focus on high-value tasks, such as building stronger customer relationships and effective business strategies.
A CRM software can ensure due processes are followed every time, so your teams continuously perform better and deliver consistent customer experiences. With the right features and CRM tools, you can give your teams the means to do more with less. This is particularly beneficial for small businesses that may have limited resources and reach.
6. Smoother collaboration
A CRM solution can help unify your entire organisation around a single source of truth. This means, whichever team or department customers reach out to, your teams will have all the relevant information at hand to address customer needs. A CRM solution can also make it easier for different teams to seamlessly share information, collaborate with multiple stakeholders, and get things done faster.
7. Deeper insights and predictability
Generating and storing data is only one part of the process. A CRM solution with analytical capabilities can help you predict trends, forecast sales, and anticipate customer needs with speed and accuracy.
CRM solutions can make your business more profitable by helping you optimise your resources and time. CRM solutions can increase efficiency by digitising important business processes like managing inventory, data entry, accounting, processing orders, etc.
A CRM solution doesn’t just help digitise crucial processes; it can also help your teams make data-driven decisions. Sales teams can grab more opportunities and accurately forecast revenue. Marketing teams can get deeper insights into campaign performance and what customers are talking about. Service teams can better predict service needs and proactively provide solutions. By connecting the dots between the right data and teams, a CRM solution can improve the overall productivity and efficiency of your employees and business processes, in turn, increase your profitability.
One of the most important elements of maximising the benefits of your CRM system is data. With access to complete and quality data, a CRM solution can provide accurate insights and help streamline important business processes.
Here’s what you can do to optimise your CRM solution:
Having a CRM software, strategy, and processes is imperative for any business’s survival today. Salesforce Customer 360 is a one-stop solution for all your business needs. It can unify your entire organisation – from sales and service to marketing and IT – on a single platform. It comes with a built-in AI engine that makes it smarter, faster and can help you take customer relationships to the next level with richer, deeper customer insights.