Big companies get expensive, bulky CRM’s to handle their data. Often regrettably, like in the recent case of Avon’s failed SAP implementation. Your small business doesn’t need all that, but you know it needs… something. Something usable, something accessible. Something that holds your data, that automates and creates efficiency around your business.
But which CRM do you need, with what features?
You know your business inside and out – you could find what you need or learn how to pick and setup a CRM because that’s what entrepreneurs and small businesses do – they figure it out.
However you have deals to close and work to do, so here are 5 must have’s for a small business CRM, all in one article.
1. Do you need to access your data anytime, from anywhere?
If you need access to your data from the road, the coffee shop, or anywhere else, a mobile CRM that’s hosted on the cloud is a must. A system with a seasoned phone or tablet app well built and tested by likeminded road warriors is your sure ticket to an accessible database that won’t fail you when you don’t feel like lugging your 10 pound laptop through airport security yet another time.
2. Do you have Google Apps for Business or Gmail?
Wouldn’t it be great if you could have all your emails and calendars in the same system as the rest of your data? If so, you’ll want a system that integrates with your email provider. Google Apps for Business is popular for its reliability, ease of use, and low cost. Finding a CRM with similar features that plays nice with your Google-based email and calendar could be the key to exploding your efficiency.
3. Do you need to track communications with your customers or clients to provide optimum experience?
Turn good customer service into excellent customer service with a CRM that tracks and manages notes, calls, and emails with all your contacts. Say goodbye to “what’s your son’s name again?” by choosing a system that can provide you with instant insight on every discussion you’ve ever had with any person in your database.
4. Are you doing really significant phone call volume?
There are CRM’s out there that actually give you a dedicated business phone number (some systems even give you a dedicated line for each of your staff members) so you can call out and receive calls from within the system, automatically record and log calls, and run reports for fast visuals and insights on your activity.
A lot of small businesses use tools like these to handle their email marketing, document management, or proposal organization. If your business is one of these, a CRM that offers integrations to your other tools will make you infinitely more productive and save you tons of hassle around making all your systems play well together.
2. Test drive a CRM with all these features and get a free trial of Base.