The better prepared you are to use your CRM to understand your customers’ needs and preferences, and to be able access that information anywhere anytime, the more likely it is you will be able to generate better customer loyalty, long-term business success, and steadier revenue. As one study has found:
- Businesses which employ a CRM spend less than 25% of their time on new customer acquisition.
- CRM makes it easier for these businesses to foster customer engagement and loyalty, and build strong brand association.
- Business owners report “improving customer relationships” and “growing revenue” as two distinct advantages to having a CRM.
To make sure that you are receiving the full benefits of your CRM platform, consider the following six best practices.
#1 Don’t forget the importance of customer feedback tools
Customer feedback surveys are an excellent way to gain insights into your customers’ thoughts about your product or service and the overall experience you provide. Moreover, asking for feedback makes your customers feel valued. According to a study, 62% of respondents say they are more likely to purchase from a business that asks for their opinion. This could largely explain why marketers who put customer knowledge at the center of their marketing decisions improve their return on investment by 15 - 20%.
#2 Use customer information to create better email marketing campaigns
A study of 347 businesses sees the top-performing companies across all industries relying on customer knowledge to drive their marketing initiatives, especially email marketing. Working with segmented customer lists, you are likely to join the 39% of email marketers who see better than average open rates, improved email deliverability, and increased revenue. Email conversion rate optimization without segmentation is less effective, likely to lead to generic bulk email blasts.
Optimizing communication based on each customer’s unique profile can have a huge impact on your business’s overall conversion rates.
#3 Set clear objectives
Any successful CRM strategy needs to be directed at achieving specific objectives. Successful implementation of your strategy will never happen if you don’t begin with concrete goals with a clear plan to measure both progress and results. According to CRM Solution, “A successful [CRM] project is one that attains its objectives, but it is amazing how many business entities undertake a CRM solution with vague, unidentified, [and] immeasurable goals.” Without clear metrics to drive business goals, your CRM initiative will fail and its’ ROI will never be realized.
#4 Make sure everyone is on board
Perhaps the most important – and obvious – trick to a successful CRM implementation is making sure that everyone actually uses it. Unfortunately, many businesses never achieve 100% user adoption. Typical reasons for not doing so include:
- Failure to properly integrate the CRM program into an existing business plan;
- Not understanding the technology;
- Not knowing what to measure.
But considering that successful implementation can increase sales by up to 29%, sales rep productivity by 26.4%, and revenue by 41%, you want to make sure that every user is maximizing the full potential of your CRM platform.
#5 Optimize for mobile access
Mobile CRM boosts sales productivity. According to one study, mobile access to CRM applications increases the productivity of sales people by 26.4%. And another study shows how 65% of sales reps who work at companies that have adopted a mobile CRM have achieved their sales quotas as opposed to just 22% of reps from non-mobile CRM enabled companies. This is due to the fact that mobile CRM shortens the sales cycle since customer information can be accessed anywhere, anytime, freeing up time for sales reps to prospect new leads.
#6 Keep it clean
Data integrity and quality are critical to developing and maintaining a strong CRM database. Bad data will leads to bad business decisions and lost revenue. To avoid this problem, you must maintain a clean, up-to-date database.
Consider doing the following:
- Purging useless customer information;
- Completing missing data;
- Eliminating duplicate data;
- Regularly updating data. Dirty, duplicate, and incomplete data will only lead to missed opportunities and operational inefficiencies, wasting marketing dollars, resources, and support staff time.
Successful CRM implementation will enable you to increase satisfaction, improve loyalty, maximize sales opportunities, and improve operational efficiency. For all of these reasons, you can’t afford to not invest the time, energy, and resources into optimizing your CRM platform. The pay-offs of successful implementation are just too big to ignore.