What does CRM stand for — and do you need one?

The acronyms used to describe software can be confusing. CRM, ERP,  HRSM… You’re probably left wondering, what does it all mean? 

With so many options available to small business owners, it’s hard to know what you need and what you don’t. 

To help clear things up, we answer the question “What does CRM stand for?” and look at the benefits of CRM software for small businesses. 

What does CRM stand for?

CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management. While some companies may have a CRM department, the term is most often used to reference CRM software. 

What does a CRM do?

Now that we’ve answered “What does CRM stand for?”, let’s look at what a CRM solution does. 

The goal of a CRM is to house all the information about your current and potential customers. As a result, your CRM application should store customer data and lead details like:

  • Contact information
  • Order history 
  • Sales activities 
  • Marketing campaigns and other communications
  • Customer support records 
  • Social media profiles

The benefit of a CRM solution is that it makes it easy for you to know the status of each of your customers and leads in real time. For example, with just the click of a button, you can find out if an order was placed or if your sales rep followed up with a hot lead. 

A CRM is also a powerful tool when it comes to upselling. By knowing the buying habits of your customers, you can find out when they’re most likely to buy and reach out to them then. By looking at their order history, you can also create personalized offers for each customer filled with products they can’t resist. 

Do you need a CRM system? 

Now that you know what CRM stands for and its purpose, let’s figure out if it makes sense for you to get one. 

Here are a few questions that will help you figure out if you need a CRM:

  • Are there multiple people involved in your sales process
  • Do you struggle to find accurate, up-to-date information about your customers?
  • Do you miss out on sales because some of your leads slip through the cracks? 
  • Does customer and lead management take up the majority of your time?  
  • Does your business rely on manual data entry and processes? 

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, you’d benefit from a CRM platform.

What can you gain from a CRM tool? 

A CRM is often a game-changing investment for small businesses. Here are some of the reasons why. 

1. A deeper understanding of your customers 

Your CRM is full of data that you can use to better understand your customer base. From the demographic details of your customers to their communication habits, you can use this information to define your ideal customer. 

This is knowledge you can then use to better tailor your sales and marketing efforts to the preferences of your customers. And with 80% of businesses seeing an increase in revenue as a result of more targeted and personalized customer engagement, this is a sure-fire way to increase your sales. 

“80% of businesses see an increase in revenue because of a more targeted and personalized approach to customer engagement.”

– Forbes, 2020

2. Increase your productivity 

A huge benefit of a CRM solution is its workflow automation capabilities. By taking the manual labor out of tasks like data entry and activity tracking, a CRM puts time back in your day. Time you can dedicate to activities that positively impact your sales like taking meetings with potential customers. 

3. Improve your customer service

When you consider that 80% of your business’ future profits will come from just 20% of your existing customer base, providing an excellent customer experience becomes crucial. 

“80% of your future profits will come from 20% of your existing customers.”

– Small Business Trends, 2020

By allowing your customers to pay online 24/7 through customer portals, a CRM increases customer convenience and lets you focus on addressing more complex customer requests. 

Plus, a CRM ensures everyone on your team has access to up-to-date customer histories so that your customers don’t have to repeat their information or issues to each employee that helps them. 

Recap: What does CRM stand for and do you need one? 

To review, CRM is short for customer relationship management software. It’s a tool for businesses to manage their customers, leads, and sales pipeline. CRM solutions help you:

  • Better understand your customer base 
  • Leverage data-driven insights 
  • Optimize your marketing and sales strategies 
  • Automate tedious workflows
  • Increase your productivity
  • Improve customer satisfaction

Start your free trial of Method:CRM now and enjoy the business benefits of a CRM today. 

Image Credit: Anna Shvets via Pexels

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