For startups, CRM is an indispensable tool. In a highly competitive sales environment, startups can’t afford to allow its sales team to spend several hours on logging call notes, entering lead information in excel sheets, searching for information spread across disparate systems, and doing other mundane tasks. With a unified CRM in place, startups can not only improve its sales team productivity but also accelerate growth by building strong customer relationships.
Here are 9 ways of using CRM to fuel your company’s growth:
Manage all contacts in one place:
Active networking is the lifeline of any startup. Your teams constantly stay connected with prospects, customers, investors, influencers, partners, and advisors. CRM helps you store all the contact information and track all the related activities in one place. Contact data centralization and seamless accessibility ensures that there are no duplicate contacts, the sales team doesn’t waste time on searching and retrieving contact information, no two team members engage with the same contact, and the entire team is on the same page.
Build credibility among investors
When investors take interest to fund a startup, they want to evaluate the company’s past performance and its potential for growth. A well used CRM can provide the desired information accurately. You can use the CRM data to show investors what your company has achieved so far and how the pipeline looks for the next few months. You can forecast sales and justify your calculation with real data.
Never miss a prospect or a follow-up:
Startups have small sales team working rigorously to keep the sales pipeline full. In the busy schedule, sales associates can easily fail to notice an email enquiry which is buried under a pile of other emails or forget to follow-up on lead. With a CRM in place, your sales team can always stay on top of all the important tasks and automate the ones that don’t need personal attention. Powerful CRM workflows allow you to auto-create contacts from email inquiries, webform, submissions, and mentions on social channels. And smart alerts notifies your sales associates when a follow-up is due or when a prospect engages with their emails or goes idle.
Identify sales patterns
Do you want to know what your most successful sales associates are doing differently to close more deals? Or do you want to know what products, which regions, or what channels is driving most of your sales? Then you need a CRM to uncover such details. Because CRM tracks every sales activity, you can slice and dice the CRM data to discover sales trends and otherwise untapped sales opportunities.
Standardize sales process for fast growing teams
To successfully convert a prospect into a customer, sales associates usually take a set of repeatable steps. Add these repeatable steps as tasks in the CRM to standardize your entire sales process. Use workflows to automatically move deals from one stage to another when a set of tasks is completed. This way you can always be sure that your sales associates – both experienced and new – follow a standard sales process and close more deals.
Automate rote tasks
This is basic. CRM is an automation tool. You can automate all routine sales tasks such as lead creation, qualification and routing, phone dialling, call logging, quote approvals, report generation and more. Automate any sales task that does not need a personal touch. When done right, you should be able to automate most of your sales processes, saving several hours for your sales team.
Spend less time reporting
CRM reports allow you to convert raw data into meaningful information to gain deeper insights into your business process. Generate reports, pivot tables, and charts on your team’s activities, sales pipeline, or any other performance indicator to get a sense of your business growth and identify areas that need improvement. Furthermore, you can schedule monthly and quarterly growth reports to be sent to key stakeholders.
In a startup environment, bright ideas keep coming from all directions. This is why it becomes even more important to communicate and collaborate right where your deals are managed. Whether you want to initiate a collaborative brainstorming on a sales best practice or get a quick tip for moving a deal forward, CRM enables you get your team members’ attention. The team members can quickly refer to the CRM record to get full context and give their best recommendation.
Provide the best customer experience
Great customer experience is the most important factor that drives business success. Startups need to put customer experience at the core of everything they do. With CRM in place, you can personalize every interaction your customer has with your company and exceed customer expectations. For instance, when a customer switch communication channels or reach out to a different department, your team members can use CRM data to continue the conversation right from the point it was left off, and ultimately delight the customer.
CRM is one of the most important tools that a startup needs to organize its business process and build a great relationship with its customers right from its early days. While there are several CRMs in the market, you need to pick a CRM that will let you manage all your requirements in one place and scale as you grow. Invest in a unified CRM that can break silos between your customer facing teams to offer a comprehensive view of your customers.