The secret to growing your business is revealed! No, it does not lie in superior marketing tactics. Businesses triumph on the basis of customer satisfaction. Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon, is right when he says, “It used to be that if you made a customer happy, they would tell five friends. Now with the megaphone of the internet, whether online customer reviews or social media, they can tell 5,000 friends.”

Technology also requires the adoption of the latest tools to perform daily business tasks. A solid Customer Relationship Management System (CRM) is one of those tools. If your business invests in the satisfaction of customers, your profits will hit the roof. We have outlined the steps for you to consider before choosing a CRM for your company. Take a look:

Goals

First, it is important to identify the needs of your business. You and your teammates must understand the problem you are going to solve with the CRM for your company. Your business will evolve and grow in the future, and the CRM of your choice must accommodate this growth. The ideal CRM will keep a steady pace with the growth of your business. When business is initiating, you will have fewer leads which must be attended in the best way to increase customer retention. Over time, the leads will increase, and follow-up must be prompt for every type of prospect.

Can the CRM manage the addition of new leads while tending to the older ones? Find a CRM which is dynamic, simple and supports the nature of your business.

The most common goals for a company needing a CRM solution are:

  1. Lead tracking
  2. Closing rates tracking
  3. Productivity and profitability
  4. Managing customer relationships
  5. Sales pipeline template
  6. Tracking lead activity

The process of implementation

Any new software or service that is introduced in the company needs proper implementation. There are people who need to be trained and logistics which need to be set for the CRM to function properly. In some situations, you will need a company or service for the implementation, while in other situations there might be in-house changes you will have to make. There will be a period of training and testing, and standard practices will be written. Even if there are no costs involved externally, you will have to invest in educating the staff about the new system. Thus, choose a CRM which is easy to deploy and takes the least time to learn. Your team members are already booked with their current obligations at work, so you can’t involve hefty training sessions which disembark them from their responsibilities.

In any case, there will be members who will resist the change. History is full of examples where humans resisted their own progress in so many ways. There are moments when new technologies that could be beneficial for humanity . . . very often end up being opposed by the same groups that might benefit from those technologies,” says Calestous Juma, in his book, “Innovation and Its Enemies: Why People Resist New Technologies.”

Your sales team may feel threatened, and it will be your job to familiarize them with the benefits of CRM technology.

Flexibility and mobility

In the sales world of today, mobility and flexibility are the keys to success. Your team is busy and may need multiple devices to stay in touch with prospects at any hour of the day. Once the new CRM is implemented, the team will access this system from mobiles, laptops, desktops, and tablets. Look for a CRM took which is more responsive to any device it is opened in. Most salespeople need easy solutions, and the CRM should provide those easy solutions without much complication. The platform should update automatically and fix any updates according to multiple devices.

The best way to check this specification is to avail the free trial before you proceed to buy. Only buy a product once you know everything about it. Don’t get too impressed by all the good things a vendor is saying to you. Try the system and see how you feel about the features. Most of the vendors offer free trials and free templates on their websites to showcase the nature of their work to prospects.

Automation

A tool which makes selling and customer management easier will also streamline all your tasks together. This will lead to a boost in profit and productivity. That’s where you should implement automation. Automation is a great way of reaping more rewards while putting in the same amount of effort. Repetitive manual procedures can be taken care of by automation, so you and your team can invest this time in better endeavors.

Some processes which the ideal CRM can automate include invoice generation where invoices are made every month and sent to relevant contacts for approval, lead tracking and follow-up. Automation will save your sales team, accounting team and all other connected teams from doing the same work every day. Think about the new campaigns you and your team can create with the free time!

Reporting and documentation

While all the features are tested and the personnel is trained, you should not forget the phase of documentation. If you find a nice CRM which is simple and fits the needs of your business, you should spend some time in finding out its documentation capabilities. This feature alone can help you stand out from your competitors. The feature of customizing reports based on the unique customer data of your company can help your marketing and advertising efforts. You can find out new opportunities through this valuable data. Business owners think that their processes are effective, but data speaks otherwise. It will be good to create user personas and target demographics for future endeavors.

Compatibility

This is becoming less of an issue as the SaaS world is evolving, but sometimes you need to be conscious of the effect of a system on the greater business fraternity. If you have third-party vendors who use specific applications, the CRM should be able to work with those applications with the least hassle. If there is a flaw in coordination, the CRM provider must be able to provide a third-party API which can combine those applications in one place. Make sure you check these things before processing the payment.

Last word

Choosing a CRM is a great step to take for your business. It is also an important process. The steps mentioned above are going to guide you in making the right choices. However, you must perform ample research about vendors and their client portfolio. Don’t go after names, go after the platform which fits the requirements of your business model in the best way.