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CRM for your Small Business

CRM for your Small Business

Andreas Krebs | SmallBizLink

Customer relationship management (CRM) software is now available for even the smallest of enterprises. This is a proven business tool for retaining customers and adding new ones. CRM software solutions help your business by allowing you to maintain a database of information about each customer. For any business, this data can be used in many ways to improve customer service.

Now there are so many options out there for small businesses, so how do you choose? Here are some questions you need to answer before you decide to purchase:

Does the program have the ability to grow along with the business and can functions be added as your business expands?

Will your business retain ownership over all data entered into the CRM software and can that data be exported to another system when necessary?

Does it have a clear Service Level Agreement? It should clearly define commitments made by the software provider and should identify remedies if these obligations are not met.

Are there ongoing or recurrent costs associated with the program?

Is the program protected from malware or hackers? Your CRM solution providers should be able to show how your data is secured and protected.

Can a demo version be tested before buying? When testing the software, make common errors and serious mistakes in the data to see how the system handles malfunctions.

With these basic questions, you can now more or less determine if the software is best for your small business. Take note of the three most important criteria for choosing your CRM software:

Usability

The most important thing about your CRM is that it should be easy to use. If it isn’t, you could end up spending a lot of money teaching your team how to use the new system. Understand that you want a solution that works right out of the box and is easy to use with minimal training. Choose a CRM program that is designed to deliver maximum usability. It would be great if it’s as simple to use as an email program, as any team member familiar with basic email programs will be able to start using the CRM tool right away. This can save you a lot of time and money.

Functionality with your business

Successful implementation of a CRM strategy first requires an understanding of your business goals and objectives. An analysis of your business will turn up a list of the important features that your CRM software solution must have. You have two options: Look for a program designed specifically for your field, possibly paying a vendor extra to design a program for your company, or you can opt for a commercially available program that you can customize to your needs. Find a fully customizable system that lets you set up your CRM to fit your business needs and goals. Start with your customers and your current situation and build your CRM system around that.

Conversion

Where do you currently keep your customer information? You will need to convert your current customer files into your new CRM system, so make this less tedious by choosing a system that lets you import information easily.

Do some research today to find the best CRM software for your business. Check out business sites for recommendations, visit vendor websites, look for customer reviews or testimonials, and evaluate your options before choosing a vendor. With all this information in hand, you as a small business owner can be confident that the software solution you select will do the job required for your business. To learn more about how All Covered can help with your IT and technology please contact us at All Covered or call 866-446-1133.