A big part of creating a successful business is not just the amount of sales you make each month or how many followers you have on your business’ social media accounts. While that’s certainly important, none of that would be possible unless you put your customers first. Your customer relationship management strategy, or your CRM, can really make or break your business, so it’s crucial to understand the best CRM practices and how to use them.
If you don’t try to understand your customers’ needs, your business can fail. Rather, if you strive to understand your customers at every step throughout the sales journey, then your business should have a very promising future. Therefore, it’s essential that sales teams are familiar with how to implement the best CRM practices right from the beginning.
What are the Best CRM Practices?
Understanding your customers does not mean you need to investigate each and every person individually. That would take much too long, and it would be hard to structure your business so that every single customer is happy all the time. You cannot possibly accommodate their every wish.
But, what you can do, is utilize data collected by the Mission Suite to create CRM strategies that are effective. There have been many studies by experts to find the CRM best practices that are proven to work, and what works for your business may not work for someone else’s. However, it’s helpful to know some of the basics:
- Communication: There should be a system where staff can directly communicate with customers who have questions and concerns.
- Collaboration: Do not make it difficult for customers to get in touch with someone from your sales team.
- Consistency: Do not transfer leads or customers from one agent to another. Always make updates to your website that reflect any changes to your products and services.
- Organization: Everything has a place, even when that place is somewhere in the Cyberworld. Use folders, files, task management tools, and anything else that will help everyone stay organized.
- Personalization: Don’t treat your customer like they are the same everyone else. Use personalization techniques to make them feel that they are being given the time of day.
- Data: Collect and assess customer data regularly in order to understand their behavior.
- Patience: Closing on sales cannot happen without a good CRM strategy. But, this can take time. Don’t lose a customer because they are taking too long to make a decision and don’t push a lead to buy right away even if they’ve expressed their sincere interest. You should have a structured sales process that you can use for each one of your leads.
- Simplicity: Keep things simple. Your website should be simple. Contact information and availability should be easy to find. Email templates should be easy on the eyes. Your language should be reader-friendly. You get it.
- Goal-setting: Everything you do should have a purpose, and that purpose should be connected to whatever your goal is with your customer and your business overall. You should have long-term and short-term goals, and these goals should always be outlined clearly.
What Information Should You Collect from Your Customers?
In order to implement the best CRM practices, you’ll need to gather some information from your customers. Gathering information from people in any fashion can be a bit tricky. You need to get what you need in order to provide the best experience possible for your users and clients. But, asking for too much information — or taking too much information without explicit permission — can turn a lot of customers away. That, of course, will not be good for your CRM strategy at all.
Instead, utilize tips regarding what information is okay to collect from your customers:
- Their name and contact information.
- Basic demographics, such as their age, gender identity, region, etc.
- Their position and decision-making power (this is especially important for B2B businesses)
- An idea about their socio-economic background. If they simply can’t afford your product and/or services, then you should not be targeting them.
- Their user behavior.
- Their satisfaction rates. (For instance, “On a scale from 1-10, how happy were you with our service?”)
If you’re not sure what kind of information to collect from your customers, this is a very good place to start. And, best of all, Mission Suite can help you do this efficiently and in an organized manner. This will come in handy later on when you want to learn more about which customers have had the most potential so that you can really narrow down your target audience.
Implementing CRM Strategies Across the Board
Implementing best CRM practices is not difficult as long as you have the right tools and resources to do so. Mission Suite provides a comprehensive and easy-to-use system to take control of your CRM, from the moment a lead comes in and you need to collect data, to when you close a deal and want to send your customer a thank you note.
The first step is working with your sales team. Everyone should be on the same page at all times. Conduct regular meetings and make sure each employee knows what they are responsible for. Email threads should include everyone involved, and each team member should have their own role and stick with it. Mission Suite can be used to write notes between sales team members in regards to a customer, too, so that you’re practicing the CRM strategy of consistent communication.
Once your whole sales team is on board, make sure that each person is aware of your business’ CRM best practices at all times. Keep them posted on a wall somewhere as a visual so that everyone can see, or make a note and add it to a shared document. If there’s something that is not quite fitting well into these practices, then go back and revisit them.
Lastly, after you’ve successfully brought a customer through the sales cycle and have closed on a deal, you should continue to have communication with this customer. Another best CRM practice mentioned was to get feedback about that customer’s satisfaction with this process This is important because you can use this information to improve your CRM strategy overall, and thus, convert even more leads into customers, and more customers into returning customers.
Want to learn more about how Mission Suite can help you implement CRM best practices? Request a demo today!