For the ones still unaware, CRM is no more than just another verbal abracadabra. For the initiated ones, it has already become an indispensible business aid. Adepts of Excel might contradict, which, nevertheless, does not change the core concept of CRM: not only to store data and contacts, but to build sustainable relations with clients. CRM functions are all about it: attracting → engaging→ selling, closing a deal → converting to a regular customer  all this without spending much on any of the stages.

Statistics explicitly show the total loss of customer after the first and the only purchase for as much as 73% of companies. Now, think of the 5-20% probability of a purchase made by a new client as compared to 65-72% for a regular client. This means huge losses for any business, where each customer counts. Read the easy explanation about CRM that follows.   

CRM BASICS

CRM is the abbreviation of "Customer Relationship Management" and denotes an approach to managing a company's interaction with current and potential clients.

This is the main function of the system. In contrast to Excel and similar programs, where the data is stored in a list, CRM has an organizational logic of its own. The data about each client — their contacts, requests history, calls, questions and queries, deals, emails, documents, invoices and anything else you might require for work and communication — is stored in a unified profile of the client. The system is not only a data storage — it also sends notifications reminding you about calls to make, documents to send and appointments to keep. 

The system simplifies the document flow. All you need to provide is just a template — the system will fill it out automatically. Routine processing becomes fully automated. For example, creating an order involves several employees, making it a major issue to coordinate their actions. The system offers the following solution: CRM logically assigns tasks to employees on each stage of deal processing.

The system will send out mass campaigns at a definite hour and on the day you require. Need a report, sales statistics or employee KPI? — just go to CRM dashboard and find all the diagrams ready for you there. There is no longer a need to ask someone and wait for the data to get processed. CRM offers a far easier and more convenient way. DiscoverOrg survey shows that the number of companies using CRM has increased from 54% to 76,2% only in 2016. 

 workflow without CRM

Nancy owns a small travel agency. As long as it was a tiny office of 1 owner + 1 employee and a couple of clients, everything was fine. As the business grew gradually, and the number of clients reached 100, Nancy had to employ more staff — and that was when the problems started to emerge. Each day brings more and more clients, whereas the employees — especially the new ones — experience significant problems complying to service procedures. They are no longer capable to answer all the incoming calls in time, they occasionally forget to call back or send an email, they might delay an SMS campaign with special offers for Christmas, etc.

Same story  CRM style

  • A client calls the company or submits an online request on company website. Even in case the call is left unanswered, the system will register the client as incoming lead and create a callback task for the employee in charge. The client is by no means left ignored. Each new client is automatically provided with a contact/deal profile, where all the further details and communication with the client is stored.
  • Then, the system will register a new stage of progress in the profile, for example "Matching a tour" and will automatically create a corresponding task for one of the employees. 
  • After that the process will follow the predetermined algorithm: "Matching a tour" including country, hotel, airlines, transfer and dates → "Paperwork" including visas, tickets, medical insurence → "Payment", where the system will automatically compile the contract and the invoice → "Final arrangements" → "Deal closure". 
CRM offers automated campaigns, thus providing every client is aware of latest company deals and special offers. 

CRM advantages

NO MORE LOST LEADS

The system is a huge storage of information. All the requests are automatically registered in CRM and are transferred to tasks for the relevant managers. Any task status can easily be tracked, thus indicating whether the request was processed. CRM provides a huge variety of means of client communication — from calls and SMS to messages in social networks.

COORDINATION BETWEEN EMPLOYEES AND DEPARTMENTS

CRM clearly states tasks and deadlines for each company employee. All client data is stored in one place, thus making the employees replaceable in case of vacation or illness. 


YOU ALWAYS KNOW WHO'S SKIVING

You can always resort to analytics: diagrams and efficiency reports. Current tasks, deals at all stages, number of calls and appointments are always available to check for any employee. Phone conversations recordings are also available, if required. 

ANALYTICS

CRM performs regular analysis of company internal processes. There is no longer a need to draw diagrams, compile tables and structurize information — the system will do it all for you. Statistics on calls, closed and lost deals, as well as major business processes of the company are displayed on the CRM dashboard.

DATA SECURITY

Manual copying of data is out of the question. Data security in the system is guaranteed by access permissions to browse, edit and upload/download data. Logging makes it easy to track the intruder. The database is nonerasable and can be recovered at any time.

FAST INTEGRATION OF NEW USERS

Contact profile comprises maximum explicit information about a client, which makes it easy for new employees to study all the customer interaction history within just a few minutes and take over the process in an efficient way.

BOX OR CLOUD VERSION?

In general, there are two options: SaaS and Standalone. SaaS represents a cloud service, where the software is placed on provider's server, while its usage is subject to access fee and is provided upon purchasing the licence. In this case you cannot make any changes to the software code but you can easily adjust access permissions, integrations with external services (website, email), reports, fields etc. Our tech support experts will also assist you to customize business processes. All you need to access SaaS version is stable Internet connection.

Advantages of the cloud solution:

  • no need to install a server; 
  • fast connection, instant standby;
  • no need to purchase any updates — they are provided by developers;
  • easy login from any device.
Box solution implies purchasing the licence to install the software on you company server. In this case, you can make changes and improvements to the software code. All data is stored on company private server. The only indispensable condition is an experienced IT expert in your company.
Small and medium companies do not generally require dramatic system changes and, therefore, can easily go for a SaaS solution. 

WHO NEEDS SaaS?

Any business with more than one employee and two clients, interested in long term customer relationships and high quality service. Statistics show that 78% of customers put off a purchase or abandon it altogether because of the poor customer service provided.  

WHO DOES NOT NEED SaaS?

If you have roughly two clients, with whom you enjoy stable long term relationships and do not require any reminders. Alternatively, there is no need for SaaS, if your business, such as a convenience store, is simply uninterested in long term clients and there is no need to keep them — they will always come to your store. 

HOW TO SELECT CRM?

Your choice depends on your company needs. Small business would not normally have a vast financial basis, and it is most important to define the essential functions for the preliminary period. Usually, a basic set of functions is offered, but you can add optional ones if required. 

Basic CRM functions would include: 

  • Marketing management. Registering and planning sales and company material resources. Correct marketing strategy based on data analysis. 
  • API for integrations with external applications. 
Excessive functions will not do any good. Instead, it is much more important to select the basic ones very carefully, keeping in mind that you can add supplementary ones at any time. We offer CRM for sales as an optimal starting solution.

what is CRM admin for?

You need a CRM administrator in your company to: 

  • keep the database up-to-date;
  • explain to company employees how to work with the system and brief them on its updates;
  • make crucial decisions concerning CRM in your company.

you can make the most of CRM, if

  • the data in the system is updated on a daily basis;
  • all the tasks are completed in time without delays;
  • company KPI analysis is being constantly conducted.


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APRO CRM is a SaaS cloud solution and is hosted by our servers. The CRM is flexible and can adjust to your business needs. You will be getting all the necessary assistance from your personal adviser while using the system