What is CRM software?

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) Software has become very popular in the recent years. However, some people still do not understand its meaning. What is CRM software? CRM software is a business management program or tool designed to enable businesses organize their customer-related information, such as marketing, leads, sales and customer support. It helps to create a customer profile, which can be accessed by all members of staff and allows the staff of a given business to check out each other’s schedule and network more effectively.

The Importance of Using CRM in a Business

Customer relationship issues get more complex when many people deal with a customer. The member of staff who is talking to a client should be very familiar with him and his requirements. In other words, the employee should have all available information about the customer.

In today’s high-tech world, there is a tendency to put customers into preconceived groups, and this can adversely affect customer support and relationship. A response that works for one customer may not be satisfactory to the next one.

The ability to follow up with potential customers is equally important. For example, you may reply to the questions posed by a potential customer over many weeks, and then he suddenly stops communicating. You will possibly forget about this customer and he too would probably forget about you.

These three scenarios occur frequently in almost every business. To avoid wasting a lot of time and money, you should consider getting CRM software to help you monitor such things very easily. Moreover, it can help you monitor your sales team.

Types of CRM Software

There is a wide range of CRM software applications, which vary in costs depending on the complexity or simplicity of the application. But generally, they come in two types: remotely hosted and locally hosted.

Remotely Hosted

This service is accessible from the CRM Company’s server. The best part about this type is that the CRM provider is left with the responsibility of running the software and the application is very secure. This is very beneficial, particularly if you have stored a large amount of data in the software. The CRM Company will also upgrade the software and resolve any problem that might occur. This can save you so much money, which you could have paid to developers for troubleshooting and fixing the problem. However, ensure that you choose a reputed CRM company because the CRM service can disappear with all your data

Locally Hosted

This involves setting up the complete software on your server. It gives you full control over the software and the ability to easily customize. Since you will need technical support for its setup and upgrade, you will most likely pay for the ongoing support. As your business grows, your CRM needs will equally grow, forcing you to add extra features to meet those needs. This can be very expensive on your part. The features of an ideal CRM Software include call automation, a multi-user environment, frequent data backup, data encryption, shared communications, email marketing, document sharing, task and support tracking and so on.

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