If you are a successful modern business chances are you are already familiar with the CRM basics. But have you explored the advanced CRM features that are available? Youre going to be impressed.
Every CRM package comes with the basics that are required for any sales departments to operate efficiently and effectively. But beyond that there are two other main categories that are important to business. They are integration and analysis. Lets explore these two areas.
1-CRM Integration Features Available:-
In large companies most times front and back office staff will work in different locations having virtually no face to face contact. In these instances customer relationship management software is essential to ensure that treated consistently across different staffing and departmental lines.
For superior integration between front and back office systems consider integrating ERP solutions and CRM solutions. Of course you should purchase both from the same vendor. The two combined will allow you to do seamless credit checks, product pricing, inventory lookups, and hand a host of issues seamlessly keeping your customer happy and your staff resources streamlined.
All that said its important to realize the purchasing your ERP system and your CRM system from the same vendor does not guarantee they will be compatible so you will wan to confirm this before making the purchase.
You also need to consider integrating your key communication methods with your CRM software. For example if email is a regular communication tool then find out how the CRM system handles the integration. Microsoft Outlook intergradations are available with a large number of CRM systems. Integration with other email programs is not as common. Youll want to look for the same integration with telephone systems.
2-CRM Analytical Features Available:-
The more customers and the more distribution channels within the company the higher the demand is for analytical tools and for different types of analytical tools.
For example if your company sells to a handful of big customers through one distribution channel there is a good chance your analytical requirements are pretty easy and straightforward with no need for special requirements. However if your business has a thousand customers and uses a dozen distribution channels you are going to want a top of the line CRM analytical tool to get the job done right.
If your contact list is very large and also complex you will want the ability to profile customers which allows you to group customers with different buying habits, or through different distribution channels.
If you have a relatively complex sales process you will want to mange the work flow of your leads so look for CRM software with the work flow capabilities which allows a lead to be passed on to others such as the sales department ensuring no potential customer is lost in the paper shuffle.
If your sales force is mobile then you should consider the CRM systems that are able to work with mobile devices such as cell phones, Blackberries, and PDFs.
The world beyond the basic CRM functionality is a pretty impressive place with all kinds of features to keep your business running smoothly and more profitably.