When starting out, most businesses run all of their notes and client interactions out of spreadsheets and project management software. While this makes sense for smaller businesses, especially ones that operate primary online, it becomes more complicated as a business begins to expand. Once a business begins on the road toward expansion, their actual processes need to be systemized and streamlined. It is no longer sufficient to run everything on an ad hoc basis, especially if they are working with a variety of clients or several different types of customers. This is just one of many reasons why many businesses in the process of expanding need to implement a CRM.
But what is a CRM? Simply put, a CRM is a customer relationship management software, which is used in the process of managing customer relationships. There are many advantages for a growing business to implement a CRM, but we’ve identified four key ones to look at when looking to adopt this important and versatile tool.
Streamline Workflow by Creating a Centralized Contact Management Hub
Floating spreadsheets and contact forms do nothing for you once your business expands. It is much better to have your contact information for potential customers and clients systemized in one place. This way, you can track the history of all of your interactions with a customer or client and share these contact databases instantly across departments. This helps everyone, even those who have not had direct contact with the customer, be caught up to speed on their wants, needs, and expectations.
Better Manage your Sales Pipeline
Another area where a CRM can clearly help your business grow is in sales. Using a CRM, you can view all sales opportunities at a glance and prioritize high-value opportunities. You can also set realistic business growth targets and track key performance indications to better identify areas where your sales team can improve, and where your sales and marketing team can better work together. You can also forecast sales growth to get a realistic assessment of what revenue you can expect in the coming quarter.
Improve Teamwork and Optimize Performance
More than anything, a CRM is a tool for collaboration. What this means is that a CRM can be used for everything from scheduling meetings to monitoring the progression of projects. Using a CRM, your team leaders can more effectively allocate workloads and assess what needs to be done in order to hit revenue targets. This will also give everyone on the team a more holistic sense of how everything is going, and you can even use a CRM to calculate average sales value and lifetime customer value based on collected data.
More than any other tool, a CRM is key to growing a business, particularly one that primarily does business online. As you can see, a CRM has numerous benefits that make it a fantastic solution for all sorts of businesses that need to collect and systemize customer information in a bid to grow. While a CRM does not solve all of the problems of organization, implementing one as a core part of your business is a key step toward creating synergy toward different departments and passing those benefits down to the customer.