What does it take to help your business to take off, to morph and grow? Sales growth is one key element. I bet you’ve wondered if your company is too small for a CRM. Fear not and stop wondering – the answer is no. Sales prospect management software and Client Relationship Management software is crucial, whether you have of a sales team of 3 or 3,000.
CRM software is immensely important for managing existing relationships and perhaps more importantly, for sales prospect management, tracking of new sales opportunities to grow your business. If you think about it, what is more important than your existing and prospective client relationships? Creating a better sales and customer experience using sales process software makes a huge difference in how your team manages their sales activities.
Having real time sales information accessible within seconds, optimizes how you, and your sales team, spend your time. Time regained has real value. Take that time and apply it toward meeting your overall sales, business and personal goals. Now factor that time for each of your sales team members. It starts to add up into something of significant value.
Too many companies, owners and managers, try to run key aspects of their business using Excel spreadsheets. Excel is a great tool for activities needing spreadsheets, but running your sales department on Excel…not so smart. Does it make sense to run one of the most vital aspects of your business – sales and customer relationships – on spreadsheets? Speadsheets you likely don’t even control. We’ve all been there, someone takes our guarded “proprietary” spreadsheet with all of our customer information as they exit the company. Or, by the time we discover mistakes in those spreadsheets, we realize the cost stretches back months or even years. Is it really worth the risk?
Your customer information is a true asset of your company – please, treat it with respect! Using sales management software and specifically sales prospecting software solidifies the foundation of your business. By centralizing key assets of your business – your customer lists, your products, services and pricing, and by providing process direction for your sales team, on-boarding of new employees is more efficient, sales process expectations are defined, your team operates more efficiently and you are building sales success on a strong foundation.
Here are 5 key benefits to using CRM software:
1) Centralized Database – storing your company’s customer information in a centralized database has numerous benefits. Looking to dramatically reduce errors and redundancies? Updating information, keeping it “clean” and managing day-to-day is easier when there is one data source. A centralized database also protects proprietary assets of your business. If a member of your company decides to part ways, they can easily take all of your prospects, client information and leads with them when you allow your information to be stored on spreadsheets or on laptops. I don’t know about you, but tools that protect such vulnerable and valuable assets of my business are essential. For those considering your “end game”, your client, product, pricing, proposals, contracts and sales information is a major aspect of your business value. These elements are ultimately your “product”!
2) Sales Business Intelligence – with a CRM in place, organization of information will not be an issue, and sales confidence will be on the rise. Helping sales people keep tabs on their client and prospecting data is key. Sales people like to have the “answers” easily. It makes their jobs easier. With real time sales intelligence, sales meetings run smoothly, business decisions become clear and are based on key metrics and information. The bottom line is, you become a better manager. This is a selling point that doesn’t need to be sold. Having essential data such as: win and loss history, successful market sectors, purchases by customers, open quotes, quotes in negotiation, gross profit margins and so much more at your fingertips, returns major benefits that drive business success. Remember, knowledge truly is power!
3) Increased Efficiency – would you say that your time and the time of your sales team is pretty valuable? Thinking of going “paperless”? You’re on the right track. Less paper means greater efficiencies, descreased resource drain, fewer mistakes from redundant data entry. Think about how many forms are required in your business today just to book a sale. More time in a sales person’s day equates to an increase in sales. Using one system, creates training, process and data efficiencies that save you money. Being able to act real-time, versus the ‘I will get back to you’ approach is priceless in the sales and business world.
4) Solid Business Foundation – establishing solid business systems and practices regardless of the size of your company is key to the growth and overall value of your company. Simply put, you cannot manage a business on Excel. With sales prospecting and estimating software, recording, tracking and managing client information, sales pipeline and forecasts, wins, losses and market data for your company also enables you to feed other systems such as ERP software through technology integration. Reduction in errors, time and the learning curves are biggies here! When your company is reviewed, the fact that it is running with real systems in place that work from the front end of sales through finance and operations will provide a certain return on investment you will not get from spreadsheets and manual process.
5) Real Time Account Management – building strong client relationships, solid sales prospecting methods and managing new and existing accounts is all centered around management of data. Having all of your client information managed in one database, allows you to get the most reliable and detailed information real time. When you talk with your clients and know the most about how they work with you, they will be more satisfied. You will work smarter and reap the benefits of great client account management.
The key to success is not to be fearful of change. At first, you may feel a little lost and perhaps slightly intimidated, however, losing prospects, leads and existing clients is a lot scarier! Getting going with new software requires committment, leadership and yes, some work but, once it’s up and running the efficiencies and benefits come easily and provide daily returns. Just like taking your vitamins. You and your business will be healthier, more productive and happier.
Our advice – dive in! Only positive things can come of getting out of the rut of managing by paper, disparate “systems”, wishes and promises. Tell us what you think. We love hearing your success stories after taking that initial leap of faith. Happy hunting!