Six Of The Most Important Features Of CRM Software

Managing customers can be a challenging and complex task. Updating customer details, responding to inquiries on time, correctly diagnosing issues and ensuring consistently high satisfaction can quickly get overwhelming. Customer relationship management (CRM) software helps reduce this burden by taking over customer-related processes that would otherwise have to be done manually.

CRM systems often have dozens of features for managing the customer lifecycle. However, not all features are equally important. Here is a look at six of the top must-have CRM features. 

Contact Management

The foundation of all customer relationship management is customer identity. CRM software must have a contact management feature. This ensures the storage of names, phone numbers, email addresses, mailing addresses, social media accounts and any other relevant identity data.

That being said, the best CRM software goes beyond just providing these fields and instead ensures the information is organized intuitively. The most important fields should show up first while lesser ones such as hobbies can be slotted toward the end of the form.

Interaction Tracking

If contact management is the foundation of CRM, then interaction tracking is the cement that holds everything together. CRM software must maintain a record of each interaction between a customer and the business. This should occur irrespective of where it happens and which department is involved.

Think about how frustrated you were when you had to repeat your problem to three different customer service representatives before your problem was resolved. Interaction tracking seeks to prevent this from happening. It documents and tracks conversations with each customer. Where a customer has more than one contact person, this is noted and indicated for each interaction.

Lead Management

Businesses exist to sell products and services and make a profit. If you are not making any sales, your business does not have a promising future – and sales are dependent on how well you grow, nurture and convert your leads.

CRM software should streamline lead management, thus improving a business’ ability to convert prospects into customers. That means enhancing your ability to identify, score and move leads along the sales pipeline. There should be a flow and transition of leads that is in line with the expectations and requirements of your sales team.

Workflow Management

CRM software should create workflows that automate tasks, trigger actions and send reminders on the next step. When a customer calls with an issue, the CRM software should allow the customer representative to route it to the particular person or department that should handle it.

It should also automate repetitive tasks and therefore free up employees to focus on more long-term and strategic matters.

Document Management

With good CRM software, you should have the ability to centralize the collection, storage, sharing and retrieval of documents. This is an especially useful feature if you have a large team involved in your sales, marketing and customer service.

The centralized hub would go a long way in ensuring all team members are on the same page. This delivers a seamless, consistent customer experience.

Reporting and Analytics

You cannot manage what you cannot measure. CRM software will not be of much value if it does not include the ability to perform analytics and generate reports. It should allow you to design and schedule daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly or annual reports as you deem fit. You should also have the capability to create and run reports on-demand.

The CRM reports may cover everything from total sales figures and individual salesperson performance, to funnel stage and geography filters. With such insights, you can identify hidden opportunities and address budding problems with your sales and customer service processes.

Support Strategic and Tactical Needs

Good CRM software ensures the business can better manage customer interactions, maintain relationships and provide support through reliable processes and systems. It integrates processes across sales, marketing and customer service with features that serve the overarching strategic needs of the organization.

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