Why a Robust CRM is Important for Small Businesses

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Customer relationship management (CRM) software is a great resource for those wanting to boost customer satisfaction, nurture potential customers, and follow-up strategically.

At its core, CRM software enables marketing automation for the entire life cycle of your customers, including integration with social media and email. It is usually used by the customer-focused side of businesses to maintain contact with customer needs and quickly respond. So, if you work with a lot of customers, a CRM is your team’s best friend. Not only will it help you manage your customer data in real-time, but a good CRM makes your customers’ experience fluid and effortless.

While CRM systems are not a new concept, it can be new to small businesses. This can cause confusion and the assumption that all CRM systems are created equal. It’s important that businesses understand what a robust CRM system is and whether it makes sense for them.

CRMs are more than a rolodex of names, addresses, and history. A robust CRM is one that weaves a total picture of people and their connections to organizations, grants, gifts, funds, products, loans, sales, committees, strategies, initiatives, events and more. Another discerning factor that makes a CRM robust is its ability to track communication and provide customized opportunities for further engagement.

Now that you have a better idea of what makes for a robust CRM system, here are three significant signs that your business needs one:

  1. You deal with duplicate entries - Using spreadsheets, paper files, and personal email can result in duplicate and out-of-date records with limited accessibility by other staff members. CRMs are housed in a fully integrated software which allows you to update a single contact across multiple platforms, resulting in universal access to contacts and no more duplication.
  2. You spend a lot of time copy-and-pasting - With a robust CRM, tracking communication such as emails, phone conversations, events, and appointments can be done with the click of a button, instead of time-intensive activity tracking.
  3. You’re tracking minimal information - Some businesses opt to use a field specific management system, often leaving out important details. A CRM system should easily allow you to paint the full picture of your businesses interactions, clients, sales, events and more.

If any of these three signs sound familiar, your business can benefit from a robust CRM system.

CRMs have evolved to more than anything we could imagine when it was first introduced. In fact, it is becoming increasingly necessary to have an efficient and flexible CRM system in your organization from the start. In a constantly changing organization that is evolving and growing the number of clients, network connections and employees by the day, a relationship management platform is the only way forward.

Management of interactions is one of the most important functions of a platform like the Salesforce, one of the premier CRM systems available. As a startup grows so does its client list, and it becomes almost impossible to keep track of everything manually. More importantly, a CRM system actually keeps track of all the important data points needed for a business to succeed. Managing various aspects of a business like the where they exist in a sales funnel and follow up on offered services is a major part of a CRM system as well.

In today’s fast-moving lifestyle, it is important to incorporate the idea of supporting multiple mobile platforms in every field. A CRM system actually helps keep track of this, and with mobile apps, not only can the employees share their contacts and details into a single platform, but the workload can also be configured on the go as needed through the integration of a cloud platform.

The right system is about more than just organizing your customer information. When you collect and apply the right data to your business development and customer management processes, you give yourself the opportunity to develop more revenue and better margins. Here is how investing in the right tools can help your business reach its potential:

  1. Stronger Sales - Keeping on top of your customers' needs and wants allows you to be more responsive to automate regular orders and generally deliver more sales from each customer.

  1. More Effective Customer Communication - With a CRM, you can effectively track your customers' needs, as well as your communications with them. You know what they have ordered, what needs they have, and what patterns emerge in your relationship with them, so you can direct communication accordingly. Higher customer satisfaction is also a benefit here - when you do more in less time, your customers appreciate it. Happy customers buy more from you.

  1. Better Data Security - A strong CRM system maintains sensitive customer data safely in encrypted, cloud-based servers.

  1. Enhanced Internal Communication – A main benefit of having a CRM is that it allows you to have a single contact across all platforms. With this, everything will be accessible in one place and everyone working within the system can update information quickly and efficiently.

  1. More Effective Reporting - Your CRM system does more than direct you. When you run reports through a filter of accurate data, you get the reports you need to build your relationships and your business. Having access to not only more but the correct data on hand means you can prioritize and make decisions quickly and efficiently. This allows for stronger, data driven decision making.

  1. Better Profit Margins - All of these benefits come down to one essential fact. Getting more from your time and your business development costs. The less manual work you must do to complete the process, the stronger your profit margins become.

Your business’ success depends on many factors, but the way you manage your client/customer database is critical. It allows you to track and understand current customer behavior, as well as to grow effectively and efficiently. As your business grows, an effective customer relations management (CRM) system can give you a tremendous boost toward your goals.

Contact BabylonSolutions today for an assessment of your CRM needs!