Customer Resource Management (CRM) software is a vital tool for any business that deals with clients or customers. It is especially relevant in the retail arena, as customers are the central point of such businesses, and customer related data needs to be integrated with other data like sales and inventory to ensure the best service.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software
CRM is important whether you are a small business or a large enterprise. When you are dealing directly with customers you need and build a relationship with them for repeat business. You must also provide excellent support and send them targeted promotions according to their likes, dislikes, and buying trends.
Choosing the CRM software
A CRM application can integrate lots of modules for different needs according to the number of users and the salesforce management complexity.
Large enterprises usually have a robust IT infrastructure, development team, and trained professionals to manage resources efficiently. For these businesses, an in-house proprietary CRM system or a CRM application is the best choice.
For small to mid-size businesses, CRM in the form of SaaS or cloud-based service would be ideal. This eliminates the need to invest in a lot of hardware and networking infrastructure. The service provider will set up the necessary storage and databases for you in their own facility.
Cloud-based solutions are scalable and you can expand your database as your business grows. Just be sure to spend some time in researching CRM solutions before you choose the SaaS provider.
Many CRM services also have other modules for handling inventory, sales, accounting etc. They are built to optimally work with each other, sharing data and processes without compromising security.
Even if you purchase other modules from a different vendor, these solutions all have APIs that let you smoothy connect with each other. You can be assured of good integration across departments so that the data can be organized and analyzed according to different needs, to benefit the overall business operations.
CRM software classification
While you can choose the CRM according to your business size and current needs, ensuring scalability is also important. You should determine your main goals and choose your CRM Software accordingly.
For instance, if you want a solution that can help your sales and support teams, choose a Salesforce CRM. Pipedrive is a good example of a sales CRM. These analyze leads and select prospective buyers. They can facilitate targeted emails, phone contacts and other campaigns along with after sales support and service.
An operational CRM helps you keep track of all customer data including contact details, buying patterns, inquiries about products or services, feedback, and other related data. This helps determine which products the customer would be interested in next. Create targeted emails and other strategies for repeat business.
There is campaign management CRM software that helps you design, track, analyze and report on the effectiveness of marketing campaigns. Collaborative CRMs let you share customer-related data across different departments to help streamline processes and devise better business strategies.
Bitrix24 is a collaborative CRM tool, It enables the organization to collect and collate customer information across various departments like marketing, sales, technical support etc.
For deeper insights into your customer base, go for Analytical CRMs. They can access data from various sources like your salesforce data and customer data, determine the main demographics of your customers, their major preferences etc. These can be fed into Campaign Management CRMs to design better marketing strategies.
Things to remember
When purchasing your CRM Software, be sure that they are mobile ready. Social media capabilities like the ability to integrate with social media APIs to track customer activity and information on these websites is also extremely important.
Most CRM Software combine different capabilities in a single solution. Just go through the features and functionalities offered in the CRM suites that you shortlist, and choose the best one for your needs.