Category Archives: CRM

How CRMs Help to Improve Sales Pipeline Forecasting

Organization is key. In sales, especially for large organizations with hundreds of customers, organization is especially important. The sales pipeline is a vital part of your sales process, and with the assistance of a CRM (customer relationship management) system, managing the sales pipeline can be simple and effective. Before we discuss how CRMs help to improve sales pipelines forecasting, we need to fully understand two important elements of the conversation: the sales pipeline and the CRM itself.

What are Sales Pipelines?

Sales pipelines deal with prospects. Essentially, they are the system through which prospects become customers. It usually moves an individual or company from the status of a prospect through the pipe until they become a final purchaser. The system can involve meetings scheduled, proposals sent, and first purchase.

Each industry and company will have a different sales pipeline, but the principle of moving a contact from prospect to customer remains the same.

What are CRMs?

CRMs deal with customers. They are software systems that are designed to help organize, automate, and implement customer contact. CRMs are used before, during, and after the sale, and they can be used to modify marketing techniques, customer service, and internal organization.

CRM systems are designed to give everyone on the team access to the right information. User access can be adjusted to fit the personnel; for example, managers can have access to all the customer and sales data while sales associates can have access to only those that fit their department.

Why CRMs Help to Improve Sales Pipeline Forecasting

Now that we have a basic understanding of both systems, we are ready to understand why CRMs help to improve sales pipeline forecasting.

Helps You Determine and Monitor Prospect Goals

One of the major purposes of a sales pipeline is to determine how many prospects you need to contact to reach your sales goals. For example, if every 10 contacts results in a single sale, then simple math tells us that we need to contact 100 prospects to close 10 sales. By using a CRM, a business can track their contacts and success rates, giving them reliable information on how many people they need to contact for a successful year, quarter, month, or week.


Increases the Effectiveness of Contact

CRMs can help take the sales pipeline forecasting even further by providing valuable information on the types of contact a business should make. Everyone in sales knows that no two leads are exactly alike, so going down the phonebook and contacting every person is obviously a waste of time. CRMs can help you specifically target individuals who fit your desired prospects, increasing your conversion rate and reducing the amount of time you spend on dead-end leads.

Reduce Administration Time

If you or members of your team spend hours organizing and analyzing your sales information to create forecasts, a CRM may be able to help. A report from Pace Productivity found that sales reps spend almost a quarter of their time on administrative tasks, which can include planning contacts and organizing follow-ups. They found that most sales reps only spend 22% of their time actually selling. Ideally, they say, a rep would spend 33% of their time selling and only 15% on administration.

With a CRM system, there is a reduced administration time, which helps streamline forecasting and other elements of the sales pipeline.

Move Deals Forward with Greater Efficiency

The end goal in sales is to close the deal. Therefore, moving deals ahead with greater efficiency and expediency is always a good thing. (Assuming, of course, that expediency does not result in recklessness.)

When properly implemented, your CRM system will provide greater efficiency without sacrificing the quality of leads, closing rate, or the accuracy of sales forecasting.

Let Us Make Your Sales Pipeline More Efficient

Want to learn more about CRMs and sales pipelines?

Contact 602 Creative Studio today and you’ll get the information you need to launch your organization’s continued growth!

How to Choose the Right CRM for your Business

You have so much going on regarding data management and customer service that you feel like you’re juggling way too much at one time. You feel that having all these resources in one place would make so much more sense, and you’ve been hearing about customer relationship management, better known as CRM, systems. So what is CRM? And how would you choose the right CRM for your business?


What is a CRM?

CRM, or customer relationship management, refers to software that lets companies track every interaction with current and future customers. CRM is a catch-all term for any system that allows this kind of tracking.

A CRM’s capabilities vary from system to system. Almost all CRMs can store prospect and customer contact information. Some can log calls and emails sent to prospects, pull in prospects’ social media profiles, and include space for users to enter additional information.

More sophisticated CRMs can enrich prospect information, allow for the scheduling of meetings within the app, visually display a sales team’s pipeline, and provide sales forecasts.

Regardless of the features in place, the goal of implementing a CRM for your business is to create a system that your company (most often the company’s sales and marketing teams) can use to more efficiently and effectively interact with prospects or customers.

Types of CRM

There are many hundreds of CRM systems. They can be created with different themes or models in mind, such as operational, sales force automation, analytical, collaborative, campaign management and sales intelligence models.

According to softwareadvice.com, one of the leading CRM systems in 2016 is Salesforce.

Some of the other systems that we believe are the best in the business include Zoho, Sugar CRM, Insightly and HubSpot. At 602, for example, we use HubSpot CRM, as we believe it is the best service out there, and it is the perfect tool to help us fulfill our clients’ needs.

Some programs might contain more than you need, so there is no need to spend more on the program than necessary. Other programs might not provide enough resources for what you hope to accomplish. Identifying your specific needs can help you choose the right CRM for your business.

 

Choose the Right CRM for your Business

In order to choose the right CRM for your business, consider these tips, courtesy of organizations including HubSpot.com and SugarCRM.com.

1. Make sure it can meet the growing needs of your business.

The right CRM for your business would provide you with the flexibility you need to add customers as your business grows. Your CRM should be dynamic and scalable.

2. Look for a productive CRM.

A key to help you choose the right CRM is to find one that is not overly complex. The right CRM provides access to relevant customer intelligence quickly. Look for a CRM that makes your business more efficient and helps your employees become more productive in their sales and customer support efforts.

3. Go for a SaaS-based solution.

According to HubSpot, 41 percent of all CRM systems sold in 2013 were SaaS (software as a service) based. Cloud-based service providers use a subscription-based business model, which means the initial investment you make in the CRM service is at the lower end of the scale. You can scale up the subscription package as your needs change. Also, the third-party provider is in charge of maintenance and upgrades. All you need to do is focus on leveraging the maximum potential of the CRM.

4. Try before you buy.

Make sure you try out the software so that your team can judge its features and benefits. The right CRM for your business would meet the highest standards of usability and can integrate seamlessly into your business’s existing IT environment.

In addition, the system would provide users with the best experience whether they are using smartphones, tablets or laptop computers.

5. Know your own budget and requirements.

When deciding on a CRM system, consider your business’s integration, support, vertical market, feature, financial and vendor requirements.

Budgetary concerns also will factor into how you would choose the right CRM. While some businesses’ resources are constrained, others can take a longer-term view of the financial aspect of the CRM investment. The CRM market now supports both types of customers.

6. Consider ROI.

The right CRM for your business would help you improve its profitability. If you know how you are going to measure the ROI of the CRM, you will be able to buy a product with features that deliver on your goals.

7. Research the vendor.

Make sure you have every detail available about a vendor, including the vendor’s experience, expertise, partnerships with big companies and maintenance and support levels.


There is a lot to consider. If you need a team to help you, we are here to answer your questions. Contact us at 1-888-602-0197.