Your business is growing, and spreadsheets are getting frustrating to manage. You know you need a CRM, but there are hundreds of CRMs and hundreds more features available. How do you decide which is the best for your business?
This guide will walk you through how to evaluate a CRM, from how exactly it will help your business and how to map your needs to core features. By the end of the guide, you'll know how to choose the best CRM for your business needs.
What is CRM
CRM, or customer relationship management, is a strategy companies use to track customer relationships from pre- to post-sale. A CRM system is software that stores information on client and prospect interactions with employees. Marketing and Sales touchpoints (including email, phone, website, live chat, and social media) are tracked, providing customer-facing employees with detailed context on a client's activity and feedback
What are the benefits of CRM?
The benefit of having a CRM system is having a central database for all customer information.
A business's most valuable and important asset is its customer base. At many companies, knowledge about customers is stored in many places -- the CEO's brain, a sales rep's inbox, an accountant's records, or even a spreadsheet.
As your company grows, it'll become harder and harder for your sales team to hunt down information about customers and prospects. It rapidly becomes painful to find answers to basic questions like, When did I last speak with a prospect? How should I prioritize my leads? Which customers are ready for an upsell? Hunting down those answers takes time away from what your sales team should be doing: Selling.
Businesses often run off of spreadsheets, but that only works for a while. The spreadsheet gets bulkier as your team grows and quickly becomes difficult to manage. Salespeople will forget or choose not to enter details about their calls and emails to save time, and it becomes nearly impossible for managers to accurately forecast or get visibility into team pipelines. The result? Less organization, more confusion, and fewer closed deals.
CRM systems are designed to solve these problems. By organizing all lead and customer information in one place and automating data entry, CRM software makes it easy to run the sales process smoothly.