Go Understand CRM
By Ben Weiner
What is CRM software?
CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management. It is a piece of software that allows people from within (and outside) an organisation to get a view of customer profiles, buying patterns and other useful customer-centric information. Its’ primary purpose is to facilitate a better understanding of the organisations’ customers' from the products or services that they purchase, the main contacts within the customer base to trends and preferences.
In simple terms, CRM software computerises the process of gaining and a retaining a customer, selling to them, and tracking the ongoing relationship with them.
The future of...
CRM is here to stay because of the many benefits that such a system can deliver.
If anything, the use of CRM is set to expand especially with the onset of better mobile technologies (3G) and the use of Personal Digital Assistants (PDA’s). More specific CRM software is being developed so than rather taking a ‘one size fits all’ approach there are different solutions according to market types and size of companies. Naturally the demands of a lawyers’ practice is vastly different to a manufacturer of motor components and the needs a small garage differs to that of a multi national company split over many locations.
The purpose of CRM is to be able to track a customer's lifecycle; from the initial lead (or source of contact) through to the sale and thereafter for support, services and future sales.
An integrated CRM system eliminates the need for keeping information about a customer in several places. Tracking a customer’s lifecycle in a potentially haphazard or disorganised way may lead to poor sales results because leads are not followed up promptly, up and cross-selling can be difficult, and customer loyalty can decrease if support requests or complaints are not dealt... continued on page two >