17/06/2016 - Posted by Emily Healey
If you’re thinking of investing in CRM software you could be wondering just what features are out there and what you might need. Below you’ll find a list of what we consider to be the basic, essential features of a good CRM software system. Many features will depend on the size and type of business that you run, so instead, we’re focusing on the features that almost any business can take advantage of to make their business run smoother and help facilitate better relationships between you and your customers.
The best systems give you the option to access your CRM in as many ways as possible. If you’re not always near a computer with the software installed when you need to access data or input new information, being able to do so from any computer connected to the internet is a must-have feature. Likewise, a good CRM system will have mobile accessibility that has been optimised for the device you’re using, such as your smart phone or tablet.
We’re not talking just a simple address book, we mean a detailed, up-to date and synchronised database of customer records. Business moves fast these days and you can’t afford not to as well. In that regard, CRM can help you bring up any customer information quickly and easily when you need it most. On top of that, any changes you make, new records added such as recent transactions, or messages and emails you’ve sent to the customer will be in the system immediately, so if you are interacting with a customer you’ll have every bit of information you could possibly need.
Once you have a centralised database of customer records, having a system with the power to analyse that information is essential. Whether it’s sales projections, purchase trends or suggested consumer groups, your CRM can tell you a whole lot of things a mere mortal might struggle to extrapolate. Even what you can work out yourself can be analysed a lot faster and more accurately by your CRM.
It should go without saying that your CRM needs to be easy both to use and to integrate with your business. As with any new product or method or working, there will be an adjustment period, but a well-designed system with make this time go as smoothly as possible until you’ll be wondering how you ever lived without it. There are many ways this can be done, from the design of the software itself to the level of technical support you receive along the way.
There are many must-have features dependant on your individual business, but whatever you’re looking for it should start with the features listed above. If you’re not sure if a particular software package meets these requirements the best way to find out is to talk to an expert and try to get your hands on it to see for yourself. If you choose to have the system custom designed you’re all but guaranteed to get what you want out of it.