Rachel is Marketing Manager at Cal Partners and is a Chartered Marketer. She began working in marketing in 2007 and has a particular specialism in the professional services sector.
Why should a small business have a CRM system?
Many small businesses think a CRM software system is just for large organisations, but for a small business, it can be one of the most important systems you can have.
Every small business and particularly the professional services sector relies on client referrals and word of mouth. Client relationships are integral to success and as a business starts to grow, it can become harder to maintain those connections and provide that ‘personal touch’.
What is CRM?
A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System automates everything you do to maintain and nurture relationships and centralises details about every client - all in one place.
Adding another expense might be the last thing a small business needs, however a CRM system can also help to reduce costs for a business, such as printing, files, folders and most importantly, time.
Are you fed up with having multiple spreadsheets, business cards, bits of paper, trawling through LinkedIn or reminders popping up from your phone and Outlook? Well, if this is you, a CRM system could be a step in the right direction.
A CRM helps to get a business more digital!
- Relationships are important
A CRM system helps to keep track of client relationships as well as leverage opportunities. Most CRMs allow you to create customer profiles, track sales and marketing campaigns as well solving issues and recording communications between you, your clients and suppliers.
- Provides seamless customer service
Better service is provided through using a CRM system as relevant information can be found quickly and easily. Having information stored allows everyone to see a client’s history which you can then tailor your offering to.
- Everyone is on the same page
Even with a small team, it is not possible to keep track of every interaction without some sort of process or uniform structure. A CRM benefits teams as it makes the most of everyone’s time and can help to reduce workload.
- Analyse trends
CRM software helps businesses to analyse and forecast sales trends and this is really useful for small business owners as they can use the information provided to help plan and make future decisions.
- Creates efficiency
A CRM system improves processes through better access of information and frees up time to do other tasks - a CRM will massively reduce the time spent looking for information. CRM software streamlines work and data in one convenient place. With records stored electronically, paper will be reduced and allows the team to access important information remotely as well as reducing duplication of work.
What should I do next?
There are many systems out there that range in features, ability, and price! It is best to undertake research, utilise free trials to identify which will work best for you and within budget. A powerful CRM system is an essential tool for any small business. From managing customer relationships to helping direct future trends, decisions and strategies, CRM systems enable small businesses to run efficiently and effectively.