Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is one of the critical responsibilities of any service provider. It refers to all strategies designed to improve customer service. Managing relationships with customers relies on understanding the context that drives interactions. This context is obtained through different channels and ingested via various tools used by organizations.
Today, you can package CRM strategies into a software solution that you can bake into an organization’s infrastructure. A CRM acts as a central node of your business, harmoniously aligning your sales, marketing, and customer support activities. With its help, you will be able to access all the contexts of driving your customer relationships by aligning your strategies scattered across different tools.
However, that doesn’t encapsulate the extent of the ROI your business can avail when you invest in a modern CRM solution. Relying on overall macro measurements like revenue or profit does not tell the full story, not that you won’t see positive signs there. The benefits aren’t concentrated in any one aspect of your operations but spread throughout, in the form of various optimizations, and workflow enhancements.
Accurately quantifying the gains accrued from across your management structure will allow you to appraise the full ROI you can draw from your CRM software. Having this insight will enable you to ascertain if the costs involved in overhauling your CRM infrastructure will be worth it.
In this post, we offer some areas where you can expect to see substantial ROI gains.
1. Data centralization and lead scoring
Data management is one of the most significant areas where companies usually lose a lot of value but stand to gain the most. Modern customer relations is quite fragmented, encompassing activities that range from live interactions to email marketing and support, telecommunications, website activity, and more. Having disparate tools and strategies for each channel can lead to many problems such as lost information, non-collaboration between different channels, and many other critical issues.
You can often lose sight of the big picture and have no concrete information about what is working, what is not, and why. This fragmentation causes your business to leak a lot of value when you could maximize returns by efficiently combining the information acquired from all these channels. A great CRM software brings all channels under a unified umbrella. It can organize and intelligently parse all of your communications to give you a complete understanding of your customers and prospects on a single screen.
We live in the age of big data analytics, which has a proven ability to maximize returns dramatically. As such, having the ability to record, catalog correctly, and process information in a centralized manner is the most significant indirect source of ROI for your business. Needless to say, data is the new oil. The savviest players across all industries invest heavily in the efficient collection and management of data for their business needs.
A great CRM software acts as your data hub over and above being a sales and marketing tool. It will enable you to track and consolidate all your communication with the customer in a singular hub to create a comprehensive relationship history. Furthermore, it automatically enriches your contacts with their social and publicly listed information.
Having all this information at your fingertips allows you to score your leads effectively. Sales agents can distinguish hot and cold prospects, get visibility into the likely outcomes of deals, and act accordingly with the insight derived from metrics, letting them quantify the health of customer relationships. They have access to the current status of any engagement, allowing them to provide a seamless service experience. This can transform your sales qualification process resulting in a dramatic contribution to your overall ROI in CRM software.
2. Effective customer segmentation
The best way to convert more leads and maximize returns is to segment your customer base into useful categories. You do this to pair the right approach with the right customers. For instance, if you are deliberating on a new range of products, having a proper understanding of what segments you can market to improves your decision-making ability.
The centralized data collection offered by a CRM allows you to segment your customer base with data-driven insights and tangible metrics gathered from across all channels.
The combination of data-driven customer profiling and a bespoke interface allows you to implement an optimal arrangement of your customer data into useful segments, thereby generating the potential for significant returns across your systems.
There is, of course, the direct benefit to the performance of sales and marketing terms from the availability of such contextual customer information. But having all the data collected and neatly compartmentalized allows you to enact some of the most modern marketing strategies out there, which leads us to our next area of substantial ROI.
3. Tailored marketing powered by A.I. and automation.
You can put your insights generated by the CRM software by using it as a foundation for deploying cutting-edge customer interaction tools such as chatbots to further enhance your customers’ experience. Using chatbots can help you engage with the most number of customers in the most effective manner possible.
A.I. powered solutions like chatbots drastically cut down lead response time by taking over the first contact and automating various customer relationship duties. It is useful in initiating conversations with new visitors, linking up with returning customers, and providing a quick turnaround for everyday customer support needs. This allows for a dynamic customer relationship strategy for creating meaningful, contextual engagements.
Having these smart tools helps you sell more, convert more leads, and helps in customer retention. Live chats add massive value to your customer relationship infrastructure, increasing conversion rates by 3–5 times, and delivering up to 6000% ROI. Users love it when businesses can engage them proactively, respond to them promptly, and provide a quick, intelligent response to their queries.
A CRM software allows you to access a 360-degree view of customers through its exhaustive data collection. You can use this to tailor your engagement via chatbots and other intelligent automation, such as proactive email campaigns designed to engage your customers in innovative ways. These can be deeply customized and have maximum impact thanks to data-driven customer segmentation.
You can target customers with preconfigured triggered messages which respond to critical patterns of customer behavior. Or continuously send them mailers with bespoke offers generated from parameters that target different segments appropriately. By optimizing your lead generation and conversion rates in such a fashion, you stand to increase your returns substantially.
4. Improve agent productivity with automated workflows.
People managing customer relationships are bogged down by several processes that underpin CRM activities—reaching out to customers, following up on leads, and much more. These inefficiencies inflate your cost of doing business. Finding a way to mitigate such unproductive, time-consuming labor is key to maximizing your ROI from overhauling your CRM.
A CRM software can effectively automate these procedures. Along with marketing automation, you can also automate other parts of your workflow, such as lead distribution, agent assignments, etc. It can even speed up specific repetitive tasks your agents need to perform by activating a series of actions based on AND/OR conditions.
Assistance offered by CRM software enables teams to qualify customers in real-time through integrated chatbots and analytics generated by the historical data maintained by the software. This frees up valuable time for agents and provides them with the support necessary to nurture more leads through every stage of the sales funnel. They can effectively solicit business, sell more, and serve better. In other words, by boosting productivity without expanding your workforce, you get a lot of bang for your buck.
5. Track performance by monitoring your entire sales pipeline
Your organization is the sum of many parts. Consequently, you can’t have the full picture of your it’s performance if you can’t effectively evaluate all your processes. Many businesses have gone under because they failed to properly assess their processes and iterate them due to a lack of granular information. An investment in quality CRM software mitigates this problem by providing you with a suite of custom reports that give you relevant information.
The centralized nature of CRM software makes it intuitively well placed to generate relevant reports about your sales processes since it continuously records and parses all the relevant data. Therefore you can have a holistic insight into every aspect of your sales pipeline and accurately ascertain what is working and what needs tinkering.
Since the CRM software records all marketing and sales activities' efficacy, it can condense robust analytics down to handy visual representations. You can cut through the noise and figure out how your agents approach leads, right from initial contact up to deal closure. Thus you know which of your strategies are proving to be the most effective. Having such rich, contextual information at your fingertips allows you to make data-driven decisions with granular precision.
Thanks to its range of analytical abilities, CRM software becomes a compounding value proposition, which continuously appreciates the value and efficiency of your entire process over time, making it a long term investment worth undertaking. By placing it as a foundation for your CRM strategy, you set yourself to reap a significant ROI that only appreciates over time.
Investing in a robust CRM, however, does not automatically guarantee success. The real value of any tech solution comes when users know the product inside out and are proficient in all its offerings. Depending on the nature of the software you invest in, it is possible that users are overwhelmed by how feature-rich it is.
This is why it is necessary to provide users with the right tools that help them understand the nuances of the tool and empower them to maximize the usage of the tool. Unless your software investments are used to their fullest potential, you really cannot derive the ROI that you are promised. A Digital Adoption Platform like Apty helps you accomplish just that.
If you are looking to maximize adoption and productivity of your CRM software, consider investing in a Digital Adoption Platform (DAP). It helps you increase your CRM utilization, onboard new users in minutes, fix errors in real-time, effortlessly, and automate mundane tasks. Click here to see Apty in action and understand how a DAP can help in CRM adoption.
This is a guest post by Gautham Ramakrishnan.