CRM Software & Systems

Man using tablet device to view CRM software

What is CRM Software?

Broadly, customer relationship management (CRM) describes the processes that companies use to compile and analyze data throughout the customer lifecycle.

The goal is to improve relationships and ultimately increase sales.

CRM systems collect information on customers from multiple points of contact, such as visits to the business' website, telephone calls, online chat, social media and more.

CRM software consolidates various pieces of data as well as any relevant internal documents into one database, which streamlines information management for companies.

The software can also document and record different customer interactions, such as emails, phone calls, and social media correspondence, while tracking personal information, purchase history and preferences.

Additionally, it automates tasks and appointments, and allows managers to monitor productivity among their workforce.

Read our big brand CRM case studies to see how some of of the most well known companies in the world use CRM to improve their business practices.

Find the right CRM software provider for your business by filling in the form at the top of the page.

Benefits of a CRM System

 

Data organization

When managing dozens, hundreds or perhaps thousands of leads and customers, having a robust contact list is critical.

You need to be able to access email, phone and other information without digging through files or other hard-to-manage software.

Plus, many CRM systems let you search for customers with broad keywords, rather than entering specific details.

Task and time management

With CRM software, it's almost impossible to miss important deadlines. If you enter tasks into the system, it will send you an email reminder to keep you or your team on track.

Many programs also sync to your calendar and remind you of upcoming events, ensuring that you allocate your time appropriately.

Additionally, you can set the system to alert you of a customer milestone, such as a birthday. By sending out birthday wishes, you can improve customer relations.

More quality leads

CRM software lets you segment your contact list in a variety of ways, and separate valuable leads from those who haven't yet actively pursued your products and services.

As a result, you can target your marketing campaigns to different segments. In turn, you save time and money by addressing only the most relevant customers, rather than trying to reach everyone at once.

Increased sales opportunities

The more data you collect, the more opportunities you'll find for sales.

For example, by tracking the purchase history of a particular customer, you'll get a more refined sense of their interests.

The next time you launch a product similar to an item they bought in the past, you can notify them, increasing your chances of another sale, while letting customers know that you remember their personal tastes.

CRM Features

Project management

When working on a particular project or campaign, you can use CRM software to create and monitor tasks.

Many systems let you establish project milestones, and allow you or your team to leave comments and attach important files as the campaign progresses.

Integration with email, Outlook and more

While different CRM providers offer slightly different integration options, most can share data from major applications such as Outlook and Office 365.

Meanwhile, certain systems integrate with email providers like Gmail, allowing you to create dynamic email campaigns.

Analysis

Without analysis, CRM would just be another way to store data. Which is why all providers offer options for maximizing your information. You can pull data from different fields within the system, and segment it with conditional filters.

As a result, you get a more complete picture of each individual customer.

Mobile and Social Solutions

Many CRM systems have accompanying mobile apps, allowing each member of your sales team to work remotely.

Whether you're traveling or just operating from home, you can access the same wealth of data that you're used to on your desktop computer.

Additionally, social media integration is now offered by most providers.

Typically, all you have to do is enter a contact's email information into the system, and the CRM will automatically connect to the social media profiles associated with that email.

CRM Software Case Studies

Leviev Extraordinary Diamonds

Leviev Logo

Leviev, a premium diamond retailer, prides itself on exceptional customer service. The relationship with the customer is just as important to them as the quality of their diamonds.

With only a handful of boutique locations spread across the globe, Leviev wanted a way to stay connected with its traveling clientele.

Using Salesforce's CRM, the company was able to track customers' personal info, as well as purchase and travel habits.

In addition to following up on birthdays and anniversaries, Leviev knew if a client, say, traveled to the south of France during the summer.

In turn, this helped its international sales force plan the kind of relationship-building activities essential to building a business. The company targeted its clientele at the right time and place, and improved relationships as well as sales.

JetHub

JetHub Logo

JetHub provides a charter service offering private flights to more than 7,000 airports around the world. The company specializes in connecting their clients with their preferred private jet of choice, whenever possible.

As a result, maintaining good customer relationships is key.

However, JetHub's previous CRM was outdated and lacking in some necessary features. Sales agents' contact lists weren't secure, allowing anyone to access and disrupt the system.

Additionally, the company needed a much more streamlined customer data center, as its employees all worked remotely around the country.

The solution? Zoho's cloud-based CRM system. JetHub was now able to follow up with leads from its website by forwarding them to its sales team.

In addition, the company set up important tasks and alerts to give its customers exceptional and personalized customer service.

Software providers

Zoho

Zoho Logo

Zoho's CRM platform is designed to generate sales and streamline work. The company emphasizes its system's ability to automate tasks and improve workflow, while building leads and creating more sales opportunities.

Additionally, it can automatically assign leads to particular agents, prioritize prospects, and track and measure all marketing activities.

Its plans start at £7.72 per user per month for small businesses, and run through £32.25 per user per month for large, customer-centric organizations.

Salesforce Logo

Salesforce

As perhaps the most popular CRM, Salesforce claims it can improve customer satisfaction by 37%.

The company offers separate sales solutions for B2C and B2B companies, as well as various powerful platforms including Salesforce1, its most popular service.

You can take advantage of individualized self-service portals or complete call center solutions that integrate with the CRM itself.

It also offers a marketing cloud platform that lets you connect all of your digital marketing solutions with your contact database.

For £17 per month per user, small businesses can use the service's basic features, Salesforce’s Small Business Solutions . Other plans, such as a standard account for Professional Edition starts at £45 per user per month.

SugarCRM

Sugar CRM Logo

SugarCRM emphasizes its ability to give you a 360-degree view of each individual customer. By providing contextual intelligence for your data, you get a more complete picture of your customers' interests.

The system's unique features offer real-time collaboration with experts across your organization, social selling, and more.

Pricing breaks down to £22.54, £38.65, or £96.61 per user per month, depending on your company's size and demand.

Read more: SugarCRM Review

Maximizer

Maximiser CRM Logo

Maximizer offers an on-premise or cloud-based CRM that includes 3 powerful tools: sales management, customer service, and marketing automation.

The company's highly configurable web-based interface makes data management easy, while its reporting offers pre-built Excel reports and granular analytics for increased sales opportunities.

At £35.43 per user per month, Maximizer offers one major CRM package, which includes all of the expected management features, as well as an accompanying smartphone app for enhanced mobility.

NetSuite

Netsuite CRM Logo

NetSuite offers a complete CRM solution that promises personalized interaction across the entire customer lifecycle.

While the company delivers common CRM features such as customer support and marketing automation, NetSuite stands out among its competitors, providing quotes, order management, sales forecasting and even integrated Ecommerce functionality.

NetSuite specializes in mid-market and enterprise solutions.

Other Providers:

  • Teradata
  • Sage CRM
  • Marketo
  • KnowledgeTree
  • Vtiger
  • Capsule
  • Highrise

Cost of CRM Software

The price of CRM software depends largely on the size of your business. However, even small companies can take advantage of feature-rich systems without breaking the bank.

On the low end, Zoho offers a plan at £7.75 per user per month. The system is basic, but still meets the needs of smaller businesses that want to manage and optimize customer information.

On the high end, many companies offer dynamic CRM platforms for enterprise organization. At £161 per user per month, Salesforce's CRM plan is ideal for managing a large number of contacts across multiple channels.

Compare CRM software and systems at Expert Market.