Business of all shapes and size understand the concept that strong customer relations sit at the very core of a successful future. It used to be that we could depend on our trusty rolodex to keep organized, efficient, and connected to our customers but much has changed in the past thirty years!
Here’s a quick flashback:
- First on the scene- The Ledger
- Second responder – The Rolodex
- Third in the crowd – Database Marketing
- Fourth in line – Contact Management Software
- High five – Sales Force Automation
Finally, there is the evolution of CRM which began in the mid 1990’s and continues to current day. CRM is a buzz word that many still associate to big business, (bigger than your own anyway). However, CRM is simply a strategy which uses software programs to gather information about your customers and provide business intelligence across multiple data systems such as inventory, supply, shipping, accounting, etc. With this information, new goals can be developed to provide better customer service; hence, build stronger and longer-lasting relationships.
The information gathered is often called “big data,” and can be collected from both online and offline sources. As a small business owner, you may think that “big data” sounds better fit for an enterprise. But truthfully, any small business that has a website, social networks, mobile app, legal documents, computer logs, email marketing, inventory, etc. can reap the benefits of CRM designed for the small business.
CRM does not replace a strong, experienced and well-trained sales force. However, it can also provide some nice tools that help the sales team close more sales. Depending upon what you need, there are even free versions of CRM available to help your small business become more profitable.
When CRM is aligned with the specific needs of your business, it should be an investment that quickly pays for itself. At the link here, find some of the best rated CRM software of the year: Best CRM Software 2016
If you decide to go with a CRM system, it could quickly become your company’s best asset. Good luck!