I’m frequently asked what’s the best CRM to use. Many business owners don’t realize this is a loaded question because there’s no such thing as a one size fits all system. The market is packed with thousands of CRMs with various flagship features and heaps of functionality. The question we should ask is “how do I find the right system for me?”

In order to answer that question, let’s take a look at what a CRM is. CRM is an acronym for Customer Relationship Management. It’s software that supports relationship management processes. This includes but not limited to your sales process, onboarding, and customer support. In short, CRM supports implementation of the customer journey. The end result of a fully optimized CRM is increased productivity and increased long-term profitability. So it’s no wonder business owners are flocking to invest in CRM at a rapid pace.

CRM is no walk in the park

But finding the right CRM is no walk in the park. My personal search for a CRM took several months and purchasing multiple systems before I found a CRM that met my business needs. Although I thought I was alone in my frustrations, I wasn’t. The more I shared my story, the more peers expressed the same challenges.

In fact, I met a business owner who spent eighty plus hours doing research, invested $1,600 on a CRM, and spent an additional 100 hours on customizing her system only to discover implementing the CRM would cripple her business.

If you include her hourly fees and multiply them by the 180 hours she spent on her CRM, the business owner lost a lot more than the $1,600 she paid for the system. She lost thousands of dollars’ worth of time and energy that could’ve been spent making sales and delivering services.

So why is it such a challenge to find the best CRM for your business and how can you avoid our mistakes?

Third, companies market CRMs by advertising sexy features and persuasive demonstrations. This seduces buyers and many are duped into buying an inappropriate system. You can avoid feature seduction by thoroughly evaluating the pitfalls in your business. Ask yourself the following five questions about your business:

-Do I have the time and energy to dedicate for CRM investigation and if so, how much time?
-When it comes to my customers, what challenges am I experiencing?
-What tasks are taking the longest to complete?
-What tasks could I automate to enhance customer experience?
-Which processes need support?

The more detailed your answers, the easier finding your CRM will be, so be thorough. Once you know the type of support needed, identify the top five features. When listing features, think about must have features such as integration, mobile responsiveness, and customer support.

Also, it’s a good idea to list each step in each process you have. If it sounds like a lot of work, it is, but your lists will serve as road maps to CRM optimization once you choose a system. And an optimized CRM leads to saved time, increased profits, and deeper business relationships. The total investment in finding and customizing the perfect CRM is well worth it in the end.

Need More guidance in selecting the right CRM? Let’s jump on a clarity call.

 


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