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What is a CRM and how can it help your business?

Updated: 5 days ago

What is a CRM?

If you're like most business owners, keeping track of customer interactions and sales data is a daunting task. But what if there was a way to make it easier? A CRM (customer relationship management) system can do just that, by tracking and organizing customer data so you can more effectively manage relationships and sales opportunities. Wondering if a CRM is right for your business? Keep reading to learn more about what CRM is and how it can help you take your business to the next level.

CRM Reporting

What are the key components of a modern CRM?

A CRM is designed to help businesses manage customer relationships in a more efficient and organized way. By tracking customer data, businesses can better understand their needs and pain points, identify sales opportunities, and automate repetitive tasks such as lead generation and follow-ups. In addition, a CRM can also help businesses engage more effectively with existing customers.


Some key components of a CRM include:


  • Contact management: A CRM will store contact information for your leads and customers, so you can easily keep track of who you need to follow up with.

  • Lead tracking and management: A CRM can help you track which leads are most promising, so you can focus your sales efforts where they'll be most effective.

  • Opportunity management: By tracking opportunities throughout the sales pipeline, a CRM can help you close deals more quickly.

  • Reporting and analytics: With a CRM, you can generate reports to better understand your sales data and identify areas for improvement.



Enterprise vs Small / Medium Business CRM.


What Is an Enterprise CRM?

CRMs can be extremely useful for businesses of all sizes, helping deliver accuracy, precision and speed, which in turn provides an edge over competitors. An enterprise level CRM will help large businesses win customers, keep supply chains profitable, while also helping translate new concepts into revenue-generating products or services.


While there are a large number of benefits a CRM can provide marketing and sales teams within large organisations, some key strategic benefits include helping to keep tabs on strategy ROI, understand individual performance, revenue and sales metrics (cost per lead, cost per acquisition, revenue per lead) to determine strategy, and using data to drive new growth opportunities, new products and major policy changes.


An Enterprise CRM usually has all imaginable tools to fully automate company processes and land every department on one page. As a rule, this type of software requires strong technical skills in order for it to be set up successfully, but once running there are often many opportunities with customisable features available that can give a business exactly what they need to run efficiently and effectively.


It may seem like a daunting task to adapt large-scale software, but it can be worth it if done successfully. Customised CRMs can provide large businesses with more ways to assist in achieving increased KPIs and ensure employees can focus on customers and clients rather than being given routine, time-consuming tasks.


What is a Small-Medium business CRM?

CRM software can transform a small to medium size business (SME) who tend to work with fewer resources. More efficiency and systematisation means a SME can achieve much more with the limited time and resource they have available.


The best CRM for small businesses is a tool that has a low price point, easy to operate and is ideally installation-free. Small businesses usually don't have the time or resource to deal with long and complex implementations, often having very little technical capability, let alone an IT department.


Many cloud based Software as a Service (SaaS) based CRM's today offer free core CRM functionality with the ability grow with the business. Easy to implement, you only pay for what you use, which changes over time. The key for a small business is to find a CRM that is intuitive to learn, has highly-responsive support and great training resources.



How do CRMs help achieve higher productivity and sales?

When you manage your business relationships better, it helps you achieve higher productivity and sales.


A CRM gives you a 360-degree view of each customer so that no matter what team they’re talking to, everyone is on the same page. This helps avoid the back and forth between teams, confusion, and missed opportunities that can happen when customer information is spread across different software platforms.


Productivity improvements quickly become obvious including the ability to track customer interactions, keep contact information up to date, having the ability to set tasks and reminders to follow-up contacts at critical moments, build automated workflows and email sequences to fast track tasks and keep in touch with contacts. You can also automate much of the quoting and contractual side of deals you are looking to close while adding complimentary cross-sell and up-sell offers.


Can CRM be used for better insights into performance?

In addition to the benefits mentioned above, a CRM can also be used for better insights into performance.



A CRM can help you track your progress over time and see which activities are generating the most leads and sales. This information can then be used to improve your sales processes and make sure you’re focusing your energy on the most effective activities.


Additionally, a CRM can help you track your customer satisfaction levels and identify areas where you need to improve. This information is valuable for both sales and marketing teams as it can help them adjust their strategies to better meet the needs of your customers.



Can a CRM really provide a competitive advantage?

The more you know about your prospect, the more likely you will be able to deliver a rewarding buying experience that provides real value. By tracking what content customers are engaging with such as videos watched, blogs, web pages, emails, and downloads, along with other key information such as geo-location, company size and industry, you gain a distinct advantage over your competition.



A few key CRM terms you should know before discussing with an expert.

Now that you know the basics of CRM, it's time to learn some of the key terms you'll need to know to get started. Here are a few of the most important CRM terms you should know:

  • Contacts: A contact is an individual who could be a potential customer, client, or partner. In a CRM, contacts are typically connected to companies.

  • Leads: A lead is an individual who has been identified as a potential customer for your product or service. Leads can come from many sources, such as online forms, trade shows, or referrals from existing customers.

  • Deals: A deal is a sales opportunity that represents a potential revenue opportunity for your business. Deals are typically organized into stages to track their progress through the sales pipeline.

  • Workflows / Journeys - Workflows, also sometimes called journeys, are sequences of automated tasks that are triggered by certain events. For example, you might create a workflow that sends a welcome email to new leads and another workflow that sends a discount offer to customers who haven't purchased in a while.


Key features of modern CRMs you should look out for:


Marketing features of a modern CRM

  • Landing pages are web pages that are designed to capture lead information, such as name and email address. Landing pages are typically used in conjunction with lead generation funnels and campaigns, such as online ads or email newsletters.

  • Email marketing tool to enable businesses to send highly targeted mass email campaigns to their contacts and track the results.

  • Contact forms that allow website visitors to submit their contact information, such as name and email address. This is essential for top-of-funnel information gathering.

  • Marketing automation capability that enables businesses to automate lead nurturing, email marketing, and other repetitive tasks.

  • SEO tools with the ability to track keyword rankings, analyze website traffic, and generate reports.

  • Marketing analytics and reporting features that give businesses insights into their marketing and sales data. This includes the ability to generate reports, track KPIs, and identify areas for improvement. The ability to generate custom reports is also important.

  • Social media marketing tools include the ability to track social media mentions, schedule posts, and measure the results of social media campaigns.





Sales features of a modern CRM:

  • Sales automation includes the ability to automate repetitive tasks such as lead generation, follow-ups, and appointment scheduling.

  • Predictive lead scoring uses artificial intelligence to score leads based on their likelihood of conversion. Businesses can use this to prioritize their sales efforts and focus on the most promising leads.

  • Email sequences - a series of automated emails that are triggered by certain events, such as a lead subscribing to a newsletter. Email sequences can be used for lead nurturing or for sales follow-ups.

  • Appointment scheduling allows businesses to schedule appointments with leads and customers without the need for manual input.

  • Email templates that can be used for sales or marketing purposes. Email templates can be customized with placeholders for contact information, such as name and email address.

  • Deal pipelines are used to track the progress of deals through the sales process. In simple circumstances, Deals are typically organized into stages, such as "new," "contacted," or "closed." They help to identify bottlenecks along with predicting and tracking future cashflows.

  • Customizable sales reports generated from a CRMs data that can be used to track performance, KPIs, and areas for improvement.

  • Email tracking and call recording allow businesses to track interactions. Having the ability to see which customers and prospects have opened emails and viewed attachments is invaluable! Having the ability to record calls is also a bonus!

  • Integrations. One of the most important features of a CRM is its ability to integrate with other software. This includes email marketing tools, accounting software, and website platforms.


Client Service features of a modern CRM

  • Ticketing system to track and resolve customer issues. This could be integrated with your email inbox so that all customer queries are logged in one place.

  • Live chat support to allow customers to get help in real-time. This is particularly useful for ecommerce businesses.

  • Knowledge base or FAQ section to allow customers to find answers to common questions. This is a self-service option that can save businesses time and money.

  • Customer survey tools to collect feedback and understand customer satisfaction levels. This is valuable data that can be used to improve the customer experience.




The best way to get started with a CRM.

The best way to get started with a CRM is to find one that fits the specific needs of your business. There are a few different factors to consider when choosing a CRM, such as price, features, integrations, ease of use and support. Once you've found a CRM that meets your needs, you can start adding your contacts and leads into the system and begin tracking your sales data.


If you're looking for a CRM to help take your business to the next level, HubSpot CRM is a great option. With its powerful features and easy-to-use interface, HubSpot CRM can help you close more deals and better manage your customer relationships. Plus, it's free to use - forever!


Contact us if you would like to discuss further.




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