One of the biggest challenges for any small business is growing. By growth, we mean the number of opportunities that small businesses have regarding employees, customers, and earning more revenue. Companies (of all types) need to have streamlined processes for effective workflow.
This is where CRM software becomes the hero for small businesses. CRM software is of great value for startups, entrepreneurs, and even already established small businesses.
More than ever, small business owners and entrepreneurs are looking for CRM software to help them with their marketing efforts. With so many options available, it’s hard to choose the right one.
If you are looking to drive your business to growth in marketing and sales, CRM will play a crucial role.
That’s why we’ve put together this blog post on 8 of the best CRM software options in 2021 that you can use in your business today!
What is a CRM Software?
A CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system is an integrated package of web-based applications that helps organizations manage customer interactions across channels. It includes features like sales force automation, lead management, ecommerce integration, and more.
In simple words – CRM is part of an everyday business. It can be a tool, strategy, or even a process that helps small businesses to become better with organized data.
Small businesses can maintain their client relationship healthily and boost their sales with a reliable system. CRM software, a part of digital technology, is worth investing in.
A CRM connects different departments for marketing, sales, and customer service. The user can organize, upload, download, and maintain information in cloud-based software.
This allows easy synchronization across teams and departments.
Because CRM is a cloud-based software technology, the uploaded data is safe and secure so that every company benefits from the software.
7 Reasons Small Businesses Must Use A CRM Software
39% of the companies already follow integrated CRM platforms, allowing them to have a competitive advantage over other companies. With the help of CRM software, businesses earn leads, sales, revenues, and customer retention.
A small business uses CRM software for a variety of reasons.
• Optimized Strategies
Startups and low-tier companies want to build an influencing market profile. To achieve this goal, it doesn’t come as a surprise when they start using CRM tools. The use of technological tools gives buyers a keen sense of motivation to buy from a specific vendor.
Businesses continuously have to do market research. They want to target the local audience that matches the “business’s customer profile.” CRM allows them to understand the customer’s behavior and how to resolve their needs.
CRM benefits companies by helping them to target the right lead within the availability of their resources.
• Workflow Efficiency
Any technological tools help the business to stay the course. The right CRM software allows companies to save lots of time, effort, and energy. Not only can they maintain the workflow but also update their client’s database without losing any information.
Result? A happy client means a successful business. Therefore, such software spares the users from double entries and tedious work, which can slow productivity.
A system as good as a CRM eliminates the chances of manual errors too. The system consolidates the means to track all employees’ activities and track and evaluate their performances.
• Accurate Data
One thing that CRM software teaches a small business is to promote their campaigns with a renewed energy. How? Customer preferences and demands are ever-changing. Therefore using CRM tools is also helpful in marketing optimization.
It teaches you practical ways to promote your campaigns and products even to the unfamiliar audience interested in buying the product. CRM gives valuable insight to every department, so it means that users have the chance to integrate the data with all operations.
Each employee’s performance is tracked, which means there are minimal chances of errors. This helps to improve the data accuracy. It usually takes long hours to organize financial data, but with CRM, the workload is easier and faster, improving data accuracy.
• Retaining Customers
Small businesses’ growth relies on their customers. Since all small businesses are customer-focused, their primary goal is to satisfy them.
At this point, CRM software helps to elevate the marketing, invoices, and sales in a helpful direction. For instance, using CRM allows automating the messages and notifications you need to send to customers. Communication with customers is more straightforward; it reduces their agitation and helps collect valuable feedback too.
A CRM allows you to connect with the customers almost on all platforms, whether it’s their cellphones, social media, or even web forums. Therefore to grow the customer base, a CRM is crucial.
• Tracking Performances
How well would you know if an employee’s productivity levels are increasing or decreasing? Most business owners rely on the CRM system to understand the workflow and track the tasks.
It helps them evaluate the productivity levels and develop intelligent strategies to assign the tasks to the team. Since CRM software integrates all departments, it allows diverting inquiries to other departments if no one is available to respond.
The primary user can assign tasks to the team members, schedule one-time or recurring tasks, notify the employees if the deadline is due, etc.
• Integrated Invoices
One of the significant reasons to use CRM software is to streamline the invoices and bank accounts within the system.
Financial data is sensitive to share. Some of the best CRM software allows you to integrate the invoices once payment is made or an order is complete. With the invoices, you can automate the time and documents involved.
It’s easy for small businesses to streamline the paperwork and invoices online using the CRM tool instead of manual work. It helps to maintain a healthy record of the complete or pending payments.
• Improved Sales
Another primary reason to use CRM software is to ensure a successful sale in the target market. However, with the help of this online tool, small businesses can support certain quality practices that improve sales.
Managing sales are accessible with the use of CRM software. For instance, the software can track the customers’ previous purchases. It also allows predicting the forecast sales. All details about the customer’s purchases, products, and services are stored in the cloud/centralized database.
Therefore, professional CRM software spots an excellent opportunity by tracking the sales too.
Quality Features of a Professional CRM Software to Keep in Mind
Several CRM software are available in the market. Therefore, when a small business seeks quality CRM software, they need to keep their business and the software’s features in mind.
Here are some of the standard features that you need to consider that will best serve your business.
• Work Automation
The main aim of any good CRM is to automate the workflow. The automated workflows allow performing actions and assigning tasks by using the best elements of the software.
For instance, an accountant can easily set an automatic reminder for the client that notifies him of financial updates or after the fiscal year’s report that needs to be checked. The workflow automation features keep the workload minimum, and tiny details (time, data access, notifications, etc.) are quickly taken care of by the team.
So if you are looking to boost the productivity levels, CRM software allows you to improve the workflow.
• Dashboard Interface
The primary quality of any CRM software is its user dashboard. It must be easy to use, follow and become your next best friend.
It is the fastest solution to manage spreadsheets and other activities. Therefore the dashboard must be user-friendly. The accountants or other team members must be able to import the data into the CRM with ease.
The more the CRM dashboard is easy to use, the better quality experience it will provide to the user.
The use of CRM software provides you with a learning curve. If your employees have been doing manual tasks before now, they can shift to online tools with practice. Such software improves the working capabilities of employees, new information updates are easy to tackle, and the program is customizable.
For instance, you can add as many clients and team members as you want. But it also depends on the type of subscription package you buy. CRM software allows you to update the information as per your need, like reports, extensions, plugins, etc.
• Customer Service
Another quality advantage of CRM software is that it helps solid and long-lasting customer relationships. Teams can communicate with the customers by sending notifications, emails, and messages that allow customers to be aware of the updates.
The data stored in the cloud-based software storage is beneficial to track the customer information and plan a customer-oriented strategy to meet their specific needs.
Once a customer is kept in touch with the software, they will feel valued, and hence businesses can retain customers relatively quickly.
• Task Tracking
Thanks to the automated workflow feature, owners can keep a close eye on the employee tasks. From key performances to delayed work, team members are notified, which gives them ample time to complete their tasks within the due date.
Besides, CRM software helps automate the data entry and manage the admin tasks better. It allows the team to focus on their tasks and minimize manual errors. The task tracking features give the benefit of the doubt to owners and employees. This helps tremendously to boost productivity levels.
• Data Analytics
Most high-profile CRM is based on cloud-based software technology. It gives extra security to the sensitive data that businesses want to keep safe.
The stored information can be shared with limited access. Therefore, you can avoid wasting time looking for files.
Even the sales team does not have to worry about the time they spend on logging calls, emailing, notifying the meetings manually, etc. The user can set recurring tasks for specific dates and times. It helps avoid the nuisance of making calls and giving manual reminders.
• Progress Reports
Is your business going into loss? If no, then how do you keep track of the finances with the software?
CRM software is designed keeping the finances in mind. It allows for the collection and organizes the data in folders. Users can even create customized folders to maintain the sales and progress reports at the end of the month.
A CRM tool for small businesses helps them evaluate their performances and keep track of financial stature with the help of progress reports. The inflow and outflow of cash, expenses, and revenues are easy to record.
• Encrypted Emails
Accountants need to keep their employers informed about the financial information. Therefore it is vital to keep the clients in the loop too. Since financial data is case sensitive, the files, reports, and other financial information are risky to share online.
However, CRM software has another quality feature – encrypted emails. No third-party user can decode the email. The user can share the files with limited access. CRM can connect with your emails.
Since clients have customized URLs to access the dashboard, the emails generated are also encrypted. This way, the shared information is safe and secure.
A customer relationship management system is more than just an ordinary online tool. It’s a surviving methodology for small businesses looking to make smart but affordable investments. Small businesses can grow and maintain quality goodwill inside and outside the company with the help of smart tools like CRM software.
Always choose CRM software (or any other online tool) that helps give insight, boost your customer satisfaction, and increase sales. The software must offer a user-friendly experience, and therefore your business will become one of the compelling clientele for the software itself.
But you also need to make sure that the software is not putting a dent in your budget. It must be highly affordable for any small business, startups, or even for entrepreneurs.
So how to decide which of the CRM software is the right choice? Try the free subscriptions of any of the above-mentioned CRM software to find the best fit!