CRM inspires passion with me. You can normally implement CRM in your business workflow with only a little extra effort. That effort pays back handsomely in saved time and easier acquisition of information after your first few interactions. Mostly, it provides a level of confidence and insight when those around you play guessing games. Few other tools give you such insight into questions of how and why things happen in your business.

What it means

CRM stands for customer relationship management. It accomplishes much more than your contact database. CRM tracks and highlights the workflow of getting customers and ultimately how you interact with those customers over time.

CRM shows it all.

Tracking the ROI on marketing campaigns and media as well as professional memberships takes those items out of murky guesstimates into solid numbers. Something as simple as recording new customer contact helps you measure advertising campaign effectiveness like a pro. Before you know it, those feelings of what works and doesn’t work can backed with names and numbers that can validate what you thought you knew or help you cut loose from a losing proposition.

By analyzing internal processes and workflows to see where you might be leaking potential sales, CRM helps you locate what processes (like complicated paperwork) might be turning away customers or making delays when you try to close deals. More than other tools, it even shows if one method of sales closes more than others you use. Are you missing an opportunity by not doing more business with existing customers through your website? You can track that too.

a graph of CRM relationships
CRM Tracks all of your customer and constituent relationships.

CRM applications have been gamified to bring friendly competition to your sales team. Specialized CRM applications exist for associations and non-profit groups as well as verticals for specific industries. We use an application made just for hosting companies and I’ve written about CiviCRM before.

What about your small business? Do you think that you’re not big enough for such a powerful piece of software? Does the learning curve frighten or intimidate you? It shouldn’t. Day to day, just the process of taking the kind of notes that you probably already keep feeds valuable data into your system. The pay off comes back as reports on those notes. Most of us never have the time to sort through all of our notes to digest the bigger picture. A good CRM does that for you. Ask for a report on sales by product and get it back in seconds. Want to track that product through your different sales channels? It could hardly be easier.

Ready to learn more about how to include CRM in your hosting? Need help with installation or configuration or choosing one of the free applications included with our hosting? Call our office at 850-942-9442 in Tallahassee or open a ticket or leave a comment below. We’d love to hear from you.

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