When you’re trying to convince your boss that CRM software would be good for business, as with all purchases of a certain size, it can be tricky to persuade him / her that the spend is worthwhile and the long-term benefits will exceed the short-term disruption.
Here we provide answers to three arguments against investing in CRM software. Hopefully these will help you to convince your boss to make the change.
“We’ve never needed CRM software before, why do we need it now?”
Buying habits and customer expectations have changed.
In the age of ‘omnichannel’, people want to choose how they interact with your company, and they expect a seamless experience regardless of whether they choose to shop in-store, over the phone, or online using their desktop PC, laptop or mobile device.
Customers – in both the B2B and B2C world – have become used to the high level of service they receive from companies like Amazon which includes, amongst other things, a truly personalised shopping experience. Today’s customers want you to know who they are, what they’ve enquired about or ordered in the past, and how much they’ve paid.
So it’s more important than ever to have an all encompassing CRM solution that brings together all of your data into one place. And this isn’t just contact details, it’s a record of every single conversation and interaction you’ve had with a customer. This provides you with, for example, a view of their interests, their order history, what they’ve paid in the past, their behaviour, and it ultimately leads to a better understanding of them.
A good CRM solution will allow you cope with these changes in buying habits and customer expectations. You will be able to provide a more personalised customer experience, improve segmenting, and create more professional and targeted sales activities and marketing campaigns.
“We’re doing fine with spreadsheets, why would we spend money on CRM software?”
Whilst spreadsheets serve a variety of functions in business, problems start to arise when there is a heavy reliance on on them, or they are being used to manage key business processes.
It’s very easy to make errors when using spreadsheets, and for large organisations, even simple errors can end up costing them millions. If you can’t trust your data, how can you make the right business decisions?
And if you’re looking for a view of how your business is performing with regards to customer service, sales and marketing, then searching through dozens of spreadsheets can be very time consuming and hugely prone to error.
It’s also incredibly easy for spreadsheets to stack up and there be no discernible system in place as to how they should be managed and how they impact the business as a whole. Particularly if you are experiencing growth, the number of spreadsheets you are relying on can very quickly increase, only adding to the confusion.
Multiple staff members may not be able to edit spreadsheets at the same time, which can result in duplicate copies of the same document flying around. This can make it really difficult to ensure that the ‘master’ copy is up to date.
With CRM software, all of your staff can enter data simultaneously into the same system, which reduces duplicated effort and the risk of errors. This allows you to manage all CRM functions within one streamlined solution and provides you with a single view of your customers, and your sales and marketing activities.
“We don’t have time to implement CRM software across the business, and time is money!”
Whilst in the short-term you will need to spend time and resources choosing and implementing the right CRM software, and then providing high quality training to your staff, the long-term benefits will provide a very real return on investment.
Here are some ways that you will save time and resources in the long-term by implementing CRM software:
- As all staff are viewing and updating the same centralised system, there will be no more duplicated effort which will save time and reduce costly errors. This also allows for much better communication throughout your entire organisation.
- Less time spent on administrative tasks means your sales staff will have more time to spend with your customers and prospects.
- You and your staff no longer have to spend time hunting through various spreadsheets and notes in order to get information about your customer service, sales and marketing activities.
- Automatic reminders mean your staff can easily remember which tasks to complete that day, without having to spend time hunting through notes.
- Easy access to the right data means you can produce more targeted and personalised sales and marketing campaigns, resulting in more new and repeat business. You will also be able to take advantage of more upsell and cross-sell opportunities.
- A single view of every single interaction and conversation you have had with a customer will lead to better customer service and higher customer retention rates.
- Easy access to the right data will allow you to make timely and informed business decisions, allowing you to react to changes faster than your competitors.
By looking forward to the future and considering the benefits CRM software can provide, it’s easy to see how you will in fact save time and resources in the long run.
Please go ahead and share your tips and experiences in the comments box below.