Tue Nov 05 2019
A customer relationship management or CRM system is a specialised software application designed to save time, increase efficiency, and streamline overall business processes.
Even if you’re one of the few people who are yet to use a customer relationship management system, chances are that you’ve probably heard about it – especially since it’s the largest, as well as the fastest-growing, software market in the world.
Over the past three decades, customer relationship management has emerged as a key brand differentiator. The level of personalisation and data management allowed by this software has helped drive sales, increase customer retention, improve brand image and positively affect the bottom line.
Despite this, many doubt still whether integrating a CRM with a small business website is a good idea. While it works for larger companies, can a small business owner benefit from a CRM system?
Let’s find out.
Before we expand into why integrating a CRM system should headline your business objectives, let’s look into what it actually is.
Customer relationship management is a software application designed to assist businesses in dealing with existing and potential customers. It keeps track of all consumer-related details of your business, including personally identifiable information, preferences, purchase history, contact info, etc.
It can also include the communication history the client has had with your organisation – from the number of calls to stored messages and responses.
A CRM system can help determine and establish your sales pipeline and identify the buyer’s journey to complement your marketing efforts.
The reason behind its success can be accredited to the fact that it allows businesses to create a comprehensive database. They also include in-depth sales data that is collected through various touchpoints.
With such detailed information, salespeople can easily recognise opportunities, leverage personalisation and contact them through various channels. And this can all be viewed from a single dashboard.
As 91% of businesses (with more than 11 employees) make use of a CRM software, its widespread popularity is a testament to its efficiency. With 74% of these entities affirming the positive effect it has had on their customer service, there really is no reason why small business websites cannot benefit from CRM integration.
The adoption of CRM is less common among small businesses with 10 or fewer employees (50%). However, the core benefit of a CRM system remains the same regardless of the size of your business – it provides deeper insights that improve efficiency and boost profitability. This presents a great opportunity for small businesses!
Here are the top three benefits of integrating a CRM system for a small business website:
Consumer experience has emerged as a key influencer when it comes to consumers’ decision-making process. A survey by PwC noted that 73% of clients consider their experience an essential factor – regardless of the size of the business.
For smaller set-ups, the stakes are even higher. Such businesses often don’t have the means to advertise to the mass public and so, they operate in niche communities. As such, one bad consumer experience can lead to negative reviews that spread like wildfire.
Customer relationship management allows you to reduce or even negate the possibility of bad consumer experience. By tracking consumers throughout their sales journey, you are better equipped to provide them with relevant information that they need to move onto the next stage of the funnel.
As you eventually begin to scale, ensuring optimal consumer experience becomes more difficult. Delayed orders, missed phone calls, billing confusion and unanswered queries can derail your dreams of scaling.
With a niche-specific CRM system in place, you can keep a check on all your consumer interactions. In short, it is the best way to ensure that they are provided with excellent service throughout their journey.
The conventional way of selling through generic marketing efforts has long been over. In fact, Marketo reveals that 63% of respondents expressed extreme annoyance over the way brands continue to market through generic ads.
Remember, a small business is built around a personalised target audience. So you can centre your efforts on a niche market to ensure a personalised experience for each of your customers.
This is where a customer relationship management system provides unparalleled value. It allows you to profile your audience according to their purchase preferences, lifetime value, demographics and interest in your product.
Once you integrate your small business website with a CRM software of choice, you will be provided with a complete overview of your customers’ interactions with your organisation. Once you have the trail of their entire journey you can personalise your offerings based on their pain points.
While the idea that CRM systems are exclusively made for salespeople is nothing more than a stereotype, the fact remains that it is really helpful for the sales team.
Consider this: Sales reps experience a 39% increase in sales, a 34% increase in productivity and a 42% increase in sales forecast accuracy – all by implementing a CRM solution.
Here is a small glance at the features that a standard CRM system provides to increase your revenue:
Small businesses need to make the most out of their resources to ensure profitability and growth. By requiring salespeople to fill in data, you are essentially wasting an hour of their time that could be spent prospecting, qualifying or calling consumers.
Overall, small businesses need to make the most of their investment in order to stay afloat in this highly competitive economy. While a customer relationship management system may seem like an expense, it effectively allows businesses to automate everyday processes, optimise their outreach methods and sell better.
With an average ROI of $8.71 per $1 spent, there is no doubt that integrating a CRM system with your small business website should headline your agenda. For more information on how a CRM can improve your business, contact us today.
We’d love to hear about your digital requirements. Even if you don’t quite know what you need, get in touch as we can help formulate a whole digital strategy to meet your business objectives.