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10 Essential Things to Look For in a CRM Software

Published on May 8, 2020
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Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is becoming a widely known business solution for every large or small enterprise globally. Because of how beneficial it is, various companies from different industries are venturing to it and it is their top priority to get a hold of the best CRM solution for their end.

The CRM market size has a current value of $120 billion and it gives no sign of decreasing. With so many CRM software available on the internet, you might have a hard time finding the right one for your business. That is why here are 10 essential things you need to consider when finding a CRM software:

1.   Accessibility

There are CRM softwares that can be accessed on any platform and some are not. On-premise CRMs are those systems that are installed offline and can only be accessed on your desktop.

On the other hand, cloud-based CRM are those systems that are created in the cloud and are readily available on any device as long as you are connected to the internet. One benefit of CRMs in the cloud is that you have real-time updates of your data which enables you to have better decisions regarding your business processes.

There are also CRM softwares that are available on mobile apps. This makes it easier for you to get certain data may it be customer information or about your sales process no matter where you are.

There are CRM systems that only work with Windows PC. If you are a MAC user, you should take into full consideration finding a CRM software that can be installed in your device.

2.   Ease of Use

One common problem of CRM users is how complicated their software is. Usually, people who buy a CRM software gets easily persuaded by how sophisticated and jam-packed the features are and not putting in mind if the users will have a high adoption rate.

For example, your sales team might have a hard time navigating the system you have purchased. This will cause them wasted time and effort. Instead of making their workflow to be more efficient, the CRM tool might just slow them down.

So do not get too enticed with a CRM solution that is too shiny and full of features that you don’t even need. Find a user-friendly, simple, and straightforward CRM system.

3.   Reasonable Price

As much as how every dollar spent is important to big companies, small businesses are also tracking where their resources are being used. If you are a startup or SME, you should consider how much you should spend on a CRM software.

When purchasing a CRM software, you should recognize who will be using the system. CRM providers are charging per user who uses their system and the prices differ if you subscribe to a monthly or annual manner.

Ranging from entry-level up to advanced, the prices increase as you use more features of their CRM tool. You need to know at which level your business is and know which features are suitable for you.

Also, you need to know if there are hidden charges when you purchase a CRM software. Ask the provider if they will charge you for the training, set-up, or even maintenance of what you have purchased.

4.   Customizable

Every business is unique and does not run the same way. That is why the CRM software you will purchase must be customizable. Since you have different business processes, the CRM should be able to address what it needs.

For example, you can customize your dashboard and have a summary of relevant, specific data you choose to have an overview with. You can also create custom form fields that help you capture important data only.

When you can customize the system and align it with your key performance indicators, it could run smoothly and make your processes quicker and more efficient. This will provide ease of use for your end-users and productivity can then be boosted.

You should be able to know if such CRM system is scalable and flexible. It should be able to adapt where it lets you customize the system and align it with your company requirements and policies.

5.   Capability of Integration

Having to switch from one application to another to do a certain process might leave you with activities left unattended. This might cause you to give gaps in your customer interaction and decrease your chance of giving better customer experience to your clients.

One example is how social media can be incorporated into the system. You can track your social media marketing campaigns and even easily add your potential customers to the system.

CRM software which can integrate certain external applications is a plus for your business. You do not have to jump from one screen to another every day.

6.   Assistance From the CRM Vendor

When looking for a CRM software, you should research the CRM vendor of that system. You need to know if they are hands-on on their client or will they just leave you after the moment of purchase.

The CRM vendor should help you along the way from setting the CRM up to the implementation period. They must provide you with the right assistance so that you can fully maximize their CRM platform.

As the providers, they should be able to assist you until you are fully functional and can use the system with expertise. It is even better if they will be along with you as your business grows.

7.   Availability of Support 24/7

Aside from the assistance they should cover you with, their customer service team should also be available for any possible queries you might have along the way.

It is also beneficial at your end if they provide knowledge-based centers regarding how to use certain features correctly. With knowledge-based centers, you do not have to wait for a long time so that your issues can be addressed.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs), blog articles, and a community board could also be a source of helpful support from your CRM providers.

8.   Free Trials and Demos

There are lots of CRM software who offer a 30-day trial period. You can leverage on this and get to know which software fits your company best. You do not want to invest in a CRM software without even having to experience the gist of it.

With this opportunity, you can navigate their system, know how the feature works, and experience their interface.

9.   Automation

One thing that most CRMs aim to eliminate is the manual work of processing data in your workflow processes. This will enable you to prioritize more important tasks in your daily activities.

Repetitive tasks ranging from contact management, sending emails, inputting contact information and up to assigning workloads can be done automatically in a CRM system. You can allot more of your time for more customer interaction activities and boost more productivity to heavier tasks.

The CRM software you will purchase should help you lessen your workflow processes and not the other way around.

10. Analytics and Reporting

The CRM software should help you make data-driven decisions through accurate reporting and analytics. This will help you know which processes are working and will contribute to the success of your business, and which are not.

A CRM should be able to provide you analysis about certain processes in your workflow like what is going on in your sales cycle, how your marketing campaigns effort is doing, or see the growth of your revenue over time.

This will help you improve your company and reach your goals even faster.

Conclusion

No matter how many advantages a CRM system offers, if you will not find the right system that is tailored to your business’ needs, then you are merely wasting an investment. Although reviews can help you in your decision-making, it is not enough to be the deciding point.

Finding the right CRM software for your business might be hard since you will be investing a lot of effort and resources into it. That is why by observing these things mentioned above, you will probably get a hold of the perfect CRM system that can meet your business’ needs and be functional in the best way.

May 8, 2020