Making CRM an Integral Part of Your Small Business Team

The modern customer is well informed and does not think twice before switching brands. The message is clear, businesses can no longer view their customers as just cash cows. To win their customers, modern businesses need to understand them better. A customer relationship management software helps them exactly do that. CRM for small business stores and helps analyze important customer data, thereby, enabling sales and other teams take better decisions.

A CRM software is a goldmine of strategic data that your teams can use to customize customer experience. Studies reveal that CRM, on an average, helps increase revenue by more than 40 percent per salesperson. The Sun is clearly shining, but are businesses making hay?

Where businesses go wrong

Success stories may lead you into believing that organizations are getting the most out of their CRM. The reality, however, is different. A recent study reveals that 43 percent of the businesses with CRM are not using even half of their system correctly. So, where are they going wrong? The problem with many businesses is that they just want to jump on the bandwagon, but are not ready to get involved in the process.

Lack of CRM focused strategies is one of the most common reasons why businesses fail to make good use of their CRM. To serve its purpose, your CRM system more than just a tool must be an integral part of your teams. We, in this article, take a look at some steps you can take to achieve this objective.

1. Align CRM with your business goals:

A CRM system more than just a technical system is a powerful tool that can help accomplish a number of business objectives. Many CRM teams lose sight of this fact and focus on the technical aspects. To get the most out of your system, you need to ask yourself what are the important goals that your CRM can help achieve.

Whether your business objective is to streamline your sales cycle or reduce the cost of acquiring customers, by coming up with a clear strategy on how your CRM can help achieve these goals, you demonstrate the tool’s value.

2. Get experts on board:

Implementing a CRM system is a major leap. When you are ready to take the decision, you will hear voices resisting change. To ensure these voices do not grow into a cacophony, you need experts by your side. Implementation experts will not only help you set up the system but will also educate your employees about the benefits of CRM. When your teams realize the true potential and value of CRM, instead of resisting the change they will rally behind it.

3. Talk to your employees regularly:

Never forget that CRM is just the car that will take you to your destination, your employees are the ones behind the steering wheel of the car, implementing your CRM strategies. Without their co-operation, no tool, no matter how effective it is, can produce desired results.

To ensure your teams are invested throughout the implementation stage and afterward, talk to them regularly. To give them an opportunity to state their opinions or discuss any problems they are facing, conduct regular meetings. Involve your employees in every step.

4. Create a supporting framework:

As a business owner, you need to realize that you cannot do everything yourself and need helping hands by your side. Create a support team that comprises of members from different departments. The objective of the team should be to communicate CRM strategies and policies to their respective teams.

They must communicate to every team member what’s expected of them. Rather than serving just the management’s mouthpiece, this team should also relay employee concerns to the top brass.

5. Choose your account administrator wisely:

The account administrator heading a CRM team performs a number of important tasks such as managing bills, creating licenses, and selecting users and deciding their authorization levels. The administrator’s role is very crucial in keeping the system together. An error of judgment or a wrong step taken by the administrator can create problems for other team members pushing them to stop showing love to the system.

Choose your administrator carefully. Look for a person who is not just technically sound but has a good head on their shoulders. The person should be capable of making decisions under pressure.

6. Monitor your system:

You have implemented your CRM system. Six months down the line, you find that everything is going according to the plan. What next? Can you just sit back and relax? NO. As is the case with other systems, you need to monitor your CRM system continuously. To identify bottlenecks and loopholes, conduct regular audits. Talk to your vendors and teams at regular intervals. If your employees do not find a particular feature useful or consider it too complex, think about tweaking or getting rid of it.

To make the best of your free CRM software, you need to make sure that your employees consider it a team member. To achieve this objective, follow these tips. Instead of not letting your employees know what’s going on, adopt a transparent approach and share updates regarding important developments regularly.

Apoorv Bhatnagar is a Digital marketer at Freshworks Inc. He generally writes about software that improve your marketing, sales or hiring process.