The use of customer relationship management (CRM for short) software has increased at a rapid rate over the last few years, and it’s not showing any signs of slowing down.
In fact, revenue for this software is expected to reach more than $80 billion by the year 2025. If you’re not on the CRM train yet, now’s the time to climb aboard.
Not sure what CRM is? Not sure why it matters for your business?
Read on to learn all about this exciting new technology. You’ll also get some helpful tips on finding the best small business CRM.
What Is CRM Software?
Customer relationship management software is all about making it easier for businesses to manage their relationships and communications with current and potential customers.
As the name suggests, this software allows you to build and manage customer relationships in a way that helps the business grow and run in a more efficient way.
CRM software often includes a variety of tools to help with communications, sales management, and productivity. They make it easier for you to navigate your way through all phases of the customer lifecycle, from finding new leads to following up with existing customers.
Benefits of CRM Software
There are lots of reasons why you may want to invest in CRM software for your business. The following are some of the greatest benefits these programs have to offer:
The right CRM software makes it easy for you (and your employees) to stay in touch with customers. The better you are about connecting with your target audience, the more inclined they’ll be to remain long-term customers.
Using a CRM can help you avoid having anyone fall through the cracks. It helps you learn more about customer needs and the specific problems you can solve for them, too.
CRM software also helps all members of your staff to collaborate in a more effective way.
For example, it simplifies communications between your marketing and sales team members and gives them access to information they can use to perform their jobs better. The easier it is for your employees to work together, the more inclined they’ll be to actually do so.
If you want to avoid wasted time, CRM software is a must. It helps to streamline communications between team members and clients. This, in turn, allows you to solve problems faster.
It also saves you from accidentally repeating information that the client already knows. CRM software documents all previous communications, so you can review them before you dive in and avoid going over old information.
What business owner doesn’t want to save money? With the right CRM software, you can keep more money in your business’s bank account.
Remember, time is money. If you can save time by using a CRM software, you’ll be able to save money, too, since you’ll have more free time to use to come up with other ways to make your business profitable.
Using a CRM can also lower customer attrition risk and the costs that come with losing a customer.
How to Find the Best Small Business CRM
In order to reap the benefits of a CRM, you need to make sure you’re using the right one. Here are some tips that will help you choose a great CRM for your business:
1. Know Your Business Needs
Start by thinking about your business’s specific needs.
In which areas are you struggling the most? Do you have trouble with client communication? Do you have an easy time reeling them in but a difficult time converting them into long-term, repeating customers?
Once you know which specific aspects are holding your business back, you’ll be able to find a CRM software that helps to solve those problems for you.
2. Consider Your Options
Keep in mind that there are different types of CRM software out there.
For example, there are operational CRMs that help with salesforce, marketing, and service automation. There are also analytical CRMs that provide more tools for data collection and analysis, as well as collaborative CRMs that streamline internal and external communication efforts.
Each type of CRM has its own strengths and drawbacks. It’s up to you to decide which one is the best fit for your business.
3. Review Software Features
Once you’ve settled on a type of software for your business, you’ll need to pay special attention to the features it has to offer.
The following are some essential features you may want to look for, regardless of the type of CRM you’re choosing:
- Collaboration tools
- Top-notch security
- Accessible support
- Ability to customize
Once you find a CRM that meets these basic requirements, then you can branch out and look into other special features.
4. Consider Pricing
Of course, you have to take pricing into account, too. The upfront cost of CRM software might intimidate you a little. Remember, though, that’ll it’ll end up paying for itself down the line when it starts helping you save time and streamline your campaigns.
Keep in mind, too, that there are free CRM apps you can use when you’re just starting out. Using a free app might be a good idea to help you get the hang of things before you commit to a more comprehensive program.
5. Take It for a Spin
Whether you decide to use a totally free app or want to invest in a CRM software program, it’s a good idea to look for ones that offer you a free trial.
This is a risk-free option that helps you decide whether or not the program you’re considering is the best CRM for your business.
Start Looking for a CRM Today
Now that you know more about what to look for in a small business CRM, it’s time to start your search.
If you keep these tips in mind, you’ll have a much easier time finding a CRM that works for your business and helps you stay organized and on top of all your marketing efforts.
Do you need more advice on choosing a CRM or handling other aspects of your business? If so, we’ve got lots of helpful business articles available on our site. Check them out today.