Understanding the customer is key to meeting their needs and boosting your business’ revenue. More and more businesses are coming to realize this. That’s why the customer relationship management software market is expected to reach $48.4 billion by 2020. It is already regarded the world’s biggest software market and it is showing no sign of slowing down. Investing in CRM is vital for any operation. However, before you begin to worry about choosing software and reading CRM metrics, you need to have a strategy in place.
Here are five questions you need to ask to ensure you get a return on your investment.
1. Which business processes do you want to improve?
CRM implementation should be tied to a specific outcome so think long and hard about what your organization needs to do better. Many businesses want to improve efficiency and eliminate repetitive manual tasks. You may want to send automated emails to customers in response to specific situations and free up your staff to work on tasks which really require human input. Email campaigns, complaint handling, and support processes are all areas which businesses want to improve.
2. Do you require industry-specific solutions?
If you are in a specialized field like education, healthcare or the NGO sector, you won’t approach CRM in the same way as a business with a more diverse customer base. Since your processes and procedures are different from those of a retail operation, you need to craft a strategy suitable for a highly vertical market. Remembering this will help you as you search for a solution which can adapt to your field.
3. Which workflows do you need to manage?
All CRM systems help businesses to arrange daily tasks, track sales and manage relationships with individual and companies. However, your strategy needs to include other workflows which are aligned with the nature of your business. You may have records, property, events, training courses, or products which need to be considered as well. When you’re clear about all the relationships and workflows you need to incorporate, you’ll be better positioned to find a solution.
4. What’s your buyer’s journey like?
This is a good time to revisit your buyer’s persona, re-examine their journey and see how you can better serve them. Do your research and take note of the traits of your ideal customer. Where do they live? What problems do they have and how can you solve them? What do they like about your product or service? Answering these questions helps you to zero in on your buying cycle and determine what you need your CRM strategy to achieve.
5. What do front-line workers have to say?
The decision to implement a CRM strategy comes from the top but since employees will be the ones executing the strategy, they need to be brought onboard as soon as possible. Decide which categories of workers you will consult in the planning and implementation stages and how you will include their perspectives in the strategy.
You need to perfect your CRM strategy if you want to see significant returns from what is often a large investment. Asking the five questions outlined above can help you to get started on the right note.