Today, when a new product hits the market every day, businesses in all industries face greater cut-throat competition than ever before. With the marketplace changing at a herculian pace a business can’t be at an advantage for too long by just offering a service or a product. Why? Product and service offerings are becoming more and more similar with umpteen number of companies targeting the same customer base. With a multitude of options to choose from, customers are increasing fickle and prone to churn. Not only do they scrutinize products and services before spending on them; with the advent of social media they are more capable now to influence the purchasing decision of others as well.
The key to stability in today’s dynamic marketplace is in forging long-term customer relationships. To succeed, a company must differentiate themselves through superior service & offer a consistent, convenient customer experience to gain an edge. They must abandon the view that customers represent immediate sales transactions and a quick buck. Instead, they must view customers as long-term relationships, keeping in mind the potential business that they’ll will bring over the years.
Customer Relationship Management is the strongest and the most efficient approach in maintaining and creating relationships with customers. Its not only pure business but also ideate strong personal bonding within people. Once this personal and emotional linkage is built, it is very easy for an organization to identify the actual needs of customer and help them to serve them in a better way. But, the Customer is not new, Relations are as old as a buyer and a seller and so is Management. The concepts of CRM have existed since the concept of buying and selling came into being. Then, what is creating waves in today’s CRM industry? Is that small electronic ‘e’ changing the trend? Dedicated CRM softwares are the answer. Why? Time for a bizarre, yet fitting analogy.
What does CRM and the weight loss industry have in common? Let’s belabor the analogy. Maintaing a successful customer relationship can be as daunting to people as trying to lose weight. It’s human nature to want the silver bullet, or the magic pill, to solve complex problems. Technology today is no different. In essence, buying a dedicated CRM software is the new ‘quick fix’ . Also, it is a belief that more the sophisticated strategies involved in implementing the customer relationship management, the more strong and fruitful is the business .That’s why traditional CRM solutions have evolved from simple contact management solutions to sophisticated commercial databases, branching out to marketing, customer support, accounting and more. These solutions are now cloud-based, facilitating their connection to popular web services (e.g. LinkedIn and Twitter) and complementary B2B applications. They have become enterprise platforms at the heart of a company’s internal and external processes. Most of the organizations have these dedicated world class CRM softwares into their workplace.
What can a CRM software do for your business?
CRM improves the flow of vital, timely, accurate customer-related information across your company, so all employees in customer-facing roles can collaborate more effectively to acquire, retain, and support your customers. Here are a few telltale signs that show how CRM software can be handy for you:
Enhanced Customer service , Increased Marketing and Sales
There is much data needed for the CRM system to work. These fields include the customer name, address, date of transactions, pending and finished transactions, issues and complaints, status of order, shipping and fulfillment dates, account information, demographic data and many more. This information is important in providing the customer the answer that he or she needs to resolve the issue without having to wait for a long time and going to several departments. With just a few mouse clicks, a customer support representative can track the location of the customer’s package or order. This is infinitely better than the cumbersome process of tracking shipments previously. Furthermore, the customer service representative will also be able to see the entire history-about every element of a customer’s relationship-what they have bought and when and previous concerns of the customer, which is beneficial in three ways:
- This is a great help especially if the customer is calling about the same issue since he or she will not have to repeat the story all over again. This results in less time in resolving the issue, thus, the higher productivity of the support staff.
- Greater knowledge about every element of a customer’s relationship, what they have bought and when, the value they put on different products and services and the true cost of servicing individual customers increases marketers’ ability to understand customers’ needs and wants. Products and services can therefore be packaged and priced differently based on a deeper understanding of different customers. This also enables them to offer special treatment and recognition, resulting in improved relationships that will drive future business.
- Customers can be grouped according to different aspects according to the type of business they do or according to physical location and can be allocated to different customer managers often called as account managers. This helps in focusing and concentrating on each and every customer separately.
The strongest aspect of a CRM Software is that it is very cost-effective. Instead of isolated bits of data on each staffer’s hard drive, in paper files in drawers or scribbled on a blizzard of sticky notes around the office, a CRM application centralizes information, so that you need lesser staff to manage and lesser resources to deal with. The technologies used in implementing a CRM system are also very cheap and smooth as compared to the traditional way of business.
In a real sense, CRM software reinforces an organization’s commitment go the “extra mile” in an attempt to please its customers and keep them interested in its brand. Also, it can add value to organizations of any size, in any industry. In even the smallest business, it can be hard to make sense of every bit of data, make sure everyone knows about every interaction with every customer, and ensure that every action is followed up, accurately and on time. By helping businesses cope with ever increasing customer demands, CRM reduces complexities in both processes and communications. In a nutshell CRM is the backbone for any company to enhance the level of customer satisfaction.
Dakshesh Verma is a web analyst and free-lance writer for various web hosting platforms.