Tying CRM to customer service would equip agents with the data they need to take a more individualized approach to sales. The most recent releases in CRM for sales and CRM for service focus on centralizing data from multiple outlets to provide a full picture of the customer and their histories. Customer data stored in the cloud populates dashboards automatically and can be analyzed within the same platform, allowing agents to make insights that are more likely to uncover real need and lead to a sale. These functionalities, once applied, could have significant impact on the sales potential of customer service departments currently failing to use CRM for that purpose.
There are several concerns companies may have when considering implementing CRM within customer service to leverage the platform for sales, however:
- Tone. Customer service is utilized as a platform through which to express and resolve concerns, which is not accommodating to the sales methodology.
- Product. Agents have minimal time to show value in a product and show how it targets the specific needs of the customer.
- Decision maker. Nucleus found it is unlikely to reach a decision maker on the first call, which means the sales opportunity may be indirect.
Tying CRM to customer service will make it possible for agents to work around these challenges while still delivering an individualized sales message. Even the most basic CRM tools will give agents enough information to cater slightly more to the individual needs of the customer, field calls to agents who are most likely to communicate effectively, and avoid wasting time pitching to a non-decision maker. Even if selling through customer service requires longer call times than not selling, Nucleus predicts the decrease in agent productivity will be offset by the increase in revenue brought in through increased sales. The volume of calls and customer interactions for customer service alone connotes a higher success rate than sales. If sales had a 25 percent success rate, for example, customer service would need only a 5 percent success rate to break even.