Adopting a fitting CRM system gives any company a significant advantage against its rivals. Among the core of them are lower production costs, more loyal customers due to a personalized approach, higher sales revenue, and better market share in a long perspective. But how to create a CRM that will be ideal for your business? Today, professional CRM development specialists from a custom software company 5ly.co will help us figure out this question.
Benefits Your CRM Should Give You
Before we start, let's refresh in mind the top list of benefits your custom CRM should give you, no matter what niche or industry of the market your company belongs to (and if it doesn't, this is a sign of a wrong choice or at least that there's a field to improve):
- Efficiency and productivity of your team should increase: with all the data on products, customers, and clients kept in one place and manageable, the productivity of your workers should be increased several times. It should be especially obvious if compared to days when they needed to use scattered or outdated info taken from several sources;
- Real-time reporting, deeper customer analysis, and better KPIs: a good CRM for business should track all your data on leads, customers, and contracts, analyzing it and aggregating it into a visual dashboard. Thus, you should be able to make accurate predictions, build sales campaigns, and make data-driven strategic decisions with the help of it;
- Resources optimization and lower business expenses: with a fitting CRM, you can cut costs on operational activity and invest more in other important business fields. For example, you can optimize and re-arrange the workload of your employees, so they can spend more time on strategic tasks rather than a daily routine, or you can concentrate on exploring new markets and launching new products;
- Deeper personalization and better customer satisfaction: having all of the above benefits in hand, you will definitely provide your customers with better and more personalized service, which will result in their loyalty, trust, and better satisfaction. Thus, you'll grow the number of regular customers and benefit from their word-of-mouth marketing.
So, before creating your own CRM, just have in mind all these benefits it should give you, and it will be much easier for you to build a good product. But if you already have one and it doesn't possess all the necessary features, or your team doesn't seem to use it much, it's a sign that it needs some refactoring, customization, or upgrade. In this case, you should consult with a trusted CRM development company and choose the best strategy together with software specialists.
Features to Include in Your CRM System
Not let's proceed with the must-have features to include in your CRM in order to cover at least basic business needs. As we already mentioned, it should cover contact and lead management, automate your sales campaigns and lead messaging, has robust data filtration and structuring capabilities, as well as provide you with timely reporting and analytics. Thus, below we collected the top 4 features to make all these benefits possible:
- Workflow automation
Workflow automation is, probably, the core feature every effective CRM should possess. Having everyday monotonous tasks automated will free your employees up for more creative, inspiring, and challenging tasks, and boost your company's overall efficiency.
Plus, it helps to raise employees' retention rate, which is especially important in our fast-changing world. According to recent research, as much as 63% of companies say retaining workers is even harder than hiring them while training new workforce each year is quite budget-consuming.
Below we've collected only a few examples of how workflow automation can benefit sales, marketing, and customer support teams:
- Notify about important events, meetings, and calls, as well as new leads and clients;
- Tune recurring task reminders for everyday activities with follow-up reminders;
- Manage e-mails and messages to leads, customize and tune them according to your needs;
- Update item statuses on a certain date and notify your team via services you use in work communication like Slack, Notion, or Gmail.
- Integrations with third-party tools
To make such a thought-out automation strategy possible, your CRM system should have robust third-party integration capabilities. This means that it should easily manage data taken from different sources, creating a single source of truth for your company's various departments. Here are some examples of the external tools you can integrate into your CRM:
- Tools for internal communication of your team like Slack, Outlook, Skype, etc.;
- Sales tools like Pipedrive, Salesforce, and Shopify;
- Marketing and social media tools like Snov.io, MailChimp, and Hubspot;
- Project management tools like Notion, Asana, and Trello;
- File-sharing services like Dropbox, WeTransfer, and Box.com;
- Handy tools for software development and design, like GitHub, Figma, etc.
- Personalized communication
When you create a CRM for your business niche, it should be able to foster personalized communication with your customers. In practice, this means that it should have customizable rows to store various personal info like:
- customer's preferred way and time of communication;
- their age, location, date of birth, and interests;
- last contract details, your company's profit;
- a short summary of the communication;
- any other special notes on customer preferences.
This will not only allow you to build strong and long-lasting relations with customers but also ease the process of knowledge sharing between the members of your sales team.
How Your CRM Should Look From Your Team's Perspective
Okay, now we've finished with your ideal CRM's features and benefits, but we shouldn't forget about your employees' perspective. This is the most common mistake made by companies' CEOs when they didn't ask their workers whether they're comfortable with the new CRM, or if there's room to improve.
Below we've compiled a list of must-have characteristics your custom CRM should possess to become a handy tool for your team:
- Quick-to-learn: your workers should be comfortable with the new CRM, thus, it should quickly match the existing business processes. Every member of the team would learn how to use it in a couple of hours, including managing sales campaigns, adding, deleting, and editing deal stages, creating chains of messages, etc.;
- Flexible and operable: when your business grows, your team's needs concerning this custom CRM will change too. Quite often it happens that a CRM can only support up to 10 team members, and when a company reaches this limit, managers have nothing to do but pay for additional seats, so you better have scalability options included in your CRM;
- Collaborative: a modern CRM should foster communication not only within 1 team but between various company departments too. The best decision here is to adopt a cloud-based CRM, as it gives you the opportunity to access your data from anywhere in the world, share files, and work on them together in real-time.
Last But Not Least
Now we've done with all the characteristics, features, and benefits of an ideal CRM. The only thing that's last is choosing the right software development team which can use the proper technology toolset and bring all your ideas to life.
We can recommend checking web development listings on trusted tech reviewing platforms like Clutch, TheManifest, and similar. Pay close attention to customer reviews, choose a software provider with similar cases in your portfolio, and tell them about your custom CRM idea. Use the advice from this article to compile your requirements list, and enjoy your brand-new workflow automation tool!