John runs a travel agency which organises international tours for families. Like most start-ups, his business started with a skeleton structure with only a handful of employees. However, with years the business grew and managing clients efficiently from around the world became a challenge. So, he started looking for a CRM system that’ll help him convert more leads into sales and maintain a healthy relationship with all his customers and leads.
But, finding a simple CRM that will bridge the gap between marketing and sales was no easy task! With several CRM options in hand, he became overwhelmed pretty quick.
Does the story sound familiar? Well, you are not alone!
Today, there are a number of options available when it comes to CRM software. So, the question remains, how do you choose a CRM system that fits your business as snuggly as a mitten?
Here are 6 questions you need to ask yourself before purchasing a CRM software for your business.
Every business has its unique traits! As a business owner, you should be looking for a system that meets all your requirements. Purchasing an off the cart product may not be sufficient here. Thus, the first thing that you need to ask is whether the system in question is flexible enough to accommodate your unique business requirements.
While most CRM systems offer customization option, you need to look for a robust, feature rich CRM that can be completely tailored to fit your needs.
Well, a CRM for small business can be amazingly feature rich, but it has no value if your employees are not ready to use it on daily basis.
Surveying your landscape before you make the purchase decision for CRM system is crucial. After all, there’s no point investing your time and money into a program, that is not user-friendly. Here, you must take into account the tech savviness of your users. Are your sales reps ready to use the CRM on regular basis? Is your marketing team enthusiastic enough to draw intelligence from the CRM you are purchasing?
More often than not, teams take time to adjust with any new system and thus, it is best to look for a simplistic CRM that offers all necessary features.
While buying a CRM, one of the major confusion is whether to go for a cloud-based application such as Zoho or an on-premise system.
A cloud-based CRM saves all your data on a hosted server. This is your best choice if you are looking at getting a CRM for small business. With a cloud-based CRM, there is no need to invest in technology; you can simply log into your account and access your CRM online. With no headache for running and maintaining the system, cloud-based CRM offers much flexibility.
On the other hand, an on-premise CRM is housed on a physical server kept in your office or premises. The biggest challenge of an on-premise CRM system is to run and maintain the server on your own. Here, not only you have to invest a significant amount of money to build the infrastructure, but also will have to hire technical experts who can update the server and ensure data security on regular basis.
Keeping in mind the pros and cons of the two types of CRM applications, it is wise to go for the cloud based one, as it offers much flexibility and requires much less investment and man-hours.
The primary task of a simple CRM is to manage customers and leads. However, when utilized properly, a CRM can be used to create seamless coordination between teams (especially between marketing and sales), create automated reminders for important tasks and can become a powerful co-ordination tool across the organization.
So, before you zero down on any CRM, it is essential to note down the functionalities you are expecting from the application. A powerful CRM like Zoho, can not only automate your entire sales funnel, but also can help you create better co-ordination within the organization as well as give focus to your marketing activities.
If you are proactively searching for a CRM software, chances are you are dealing with some pain points in your day to day operation. Be it the inconvenience of maintaining spreadsheets or the obstacles faced while following up with leads, make sure that the CRM you have in mind addresses the issues.
In case you are already using a CRM and looking for a better option, it’ll be best to go for a product that solves the issues you are facing presently.
Last but not the least, choosing the correct vendor is as crucial as choosing the CRM itself. Make sure you do thorough research before zeroing down on a company for customizing your CRM.
Checking out the company website for identifiable testimonials, case studies etc is the best way to judge how reliable the vendor is. Here, after-sales service is as important as the quality of work offered!
These 6 questions will surely help you find a CRM system that is appropriate for your business. So, consider these questions thoroughly and if needed discuss on these with your CRM vendor before you purchase the product or services.
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