What are the essential features of CRM software? What are the “nice-to-have” features? In this article, we present 8 key features common to all commercial CRMs on the market, and 4 bonus features of CRM that allow you to get the most out of your software.
1. A single customer repository
Features of CRM software allow you to have an overview of your customers in one click. To facilitate your exchanges with them, automate the most recurring processes and monitor performance and productivity, it includes:
- The emails sent by your customers
- The open rate of your commercial emails
- The number of pages your customers have visited
- The number of qualified leads
- The purchase history of each of your customers
2. Sales pipeline management (Lead management)
To save you time and efficiency, features of CRM allows you to convert potential prospects into leads using:
- Track and segment your customers according to their browsing and purchasing habits: you thus optimize your sales technique.
- Automation of the most recurring marketing tasks ( lead scoring, sending emails)
3. Monitoring of all customer interactions
CRM software is a great way to track the activity and performance of your employees. The software can provide supervisors and senior management with dashboards against which to measure productivity. Each employee can also individually track their hours, tasks, meetings, sales numbers, goals, and other items.
In addition, the features of CRM also allow you to add notes and track the history of interactions to document conversations with certain contacts. All the people collaborating with these contacts will thus have access to the information.
4. Automation of business processes
By enabling you to provide excellent customer service, features of CRM software can help you obtain and retain your customers. To do this, it uses certain useful and efficient automatic processes:
- A 360-degree overview of customers showing everything there is to know about a customer from the first point of contact
- Automatic tracking of all communication points, from prospect acquisition to closed sales and sales histories
- Record of all incidents, website visits, purchase history, and other activities for future reference
- Use of customer first names to personalize all correspondence
- Adding unique reference numbers for each account, customer, and help issue
- Automatic sending to customers of acknowledgments of receipt of their requests
5. Email management
Features of CRM software make it possible to collect, download, store and share documents in a centralized location, making it easier to access information.
Features of CRM software also allow you to add the sales context to your mailboxes, by displaying an overview of the current offers and activities of the contact. This is the case with the Pipedrive Gmail extension, which also allows you to add, create new offers, add or end activities, and automatically integrate them into your Pipedrive account.
Likewise, Salesforce’s Gmail extension makes it possible to send through Gmail, integrate with Gmail, and give advice to Gmail through the Einstein activity sensor.
Read more: Agile CRM Review: Complete Test
6. Analysis of files or prospects
CRM Analytics provides insight into customer data to help you make better decisions about the types of products, services, marketing, and general communications to distribute. Here’s what CRM software offers:
- Easy to read and understand customer segmentation to understand which segment is the most profitable
- Clear profit and loss data to help you determine your ROI
- Informative web analysis illustrating usage and behaviors of customer websites
7. Commercial reporting
Features of CRM software allow you to establish reports (dashboards or sales reports). It records in particular:
- The number of leads over a period
- The number of sales generated over a period
- Which employee converted which lead, and how many converted in total
- The number of outgoing calls
- The efficiency of your emails
- The stage at which your leads were converted
8. Construction of forecasts
A CRM can predict your future results based on current data in your pipeline. This allows you to adapt your marketing plan and make informed decisions.
Sales forecasts can also anticipate market changes to mitigate your business risk.
9. Bonus features
You can connect your CRM software to the software you are already using to save time and money. Choose a CRM compatible with your usual software. For example, Salesforce CRM software works with QuickBooks, Mailchimp, and DocuSign electronic signatures.
You can also sync your CRM and POS system to automatically store sales and order information.
Finally, be aware that if the software does not have one of the required features, and integration can solve the problem.
Nowadays, it is essential to be able to install your CRM software on your mobile phone and tablet, in addition to your computer. So even when the CRM software does not have a dedicated application, it should be accessible through the browser of the laptop or tablet.
A CRM integrating social media monitoring functions can save your marketing team a lot of time. This is one of the advantages of implementing CRM software :
- Keep up to date with what people are saying about your brand
- Count comments, shares, and mentions.
- Control each social media channel (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.) to tailor your strategy accordingly.
- Find out who your customers are
- Manage posts on your different accounts
Management of commercial proposals and quotes
Some CRM software offers an option to create and send quotes and proposals to your customers. Depending on the nature of your activity, this functionality can make you faster and more efficient in these processes.
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