Where’s the App?
One of the most common questions we get asked is “Do you have a CRM App?” The answer is “No, we don’t have any CRM Apps”, but this is a positive attribute that often goes misunderstood. I’m going to attempt to explain why without getting too techie.
What’s an App?
First, let’s clarify what is meant by an app. An app typically refers to software used on a smartphone or mobile device such as an Android phone, iPhone, BlackBerry or iPad and are generally known as a “mobile app” or “iphone app”. The app is usually a programme with a specific narrow use that has been designed for ease of use on the mobile device.
CRM Apps Pros and Cons
CRM apps are quite common and yet there are disadvantages. Whilst an app can mean a better interface for mobile users it usually means a stripped down version of the full CRM with limited features and functionality. The app is a separate programme from the CRM so needs to be downloaded to the device, regularly synchronised with the CRM, and updated from time to time. This means the data may not be up to date and you may not be able to perform all of the CRM functions. Plus it goes against the philosophy of Cloud Computing, “No local software”.
To provide an app, the vendor needs to be able support a vast number of devices and keep them updated. Being locally installed software it tends to be prone to bugs, especially when used across a wide range of devices. It’s impossible for the vendor to test every smartphone and operating system combination so, as new models come along, it’s common for support to be dropped for the older models. An example of this is the Salesforce1 mobile app due to be launched next month. I understand Salesforce is dropping support for all Android phones and tablets except the most recently released Samsung Galaxy models. See “Salesforce1 update will leave many mobile devices out in the cold”
CRM Apps Disadvantages
Benefits of a browser-based CRM
There’s a lot of different terms used to describe the same thing here: cloud CRM, online CRM, web CRM, browser-based CRM, SaaS CRM (Software-as-a-Service). The deal is that instead of installing software on your PC or Mac you access the software directly through the internet. The CRM providers’ servers hold all the date in a datacentre, and accessed via an internet browser. You just login and there’s your data.
In theory, this means that the same applies when you access the CRM through a mobile device. Sadly, not all CRM systems have been designed with mobile users in mind and what looks great on your laptop may not be user friendly on your phone. You will most likely be viewing your CRM in a landscape orientation on your laptop and then portrait on your phone. The CRM generally features grids/tables of data, click through buttons and icons that when transferred to the smaller screen take up too much space or fall off the page. This is where HTML 5 comes in.
What is HTML 5?
The latest version of Hypertext Markup Language, HTML5, is the programming code that describes web pages. Basically, if you use the latest improvements to this coding language when designing web pages you can create an app-like experience called “responsive design”. Really Simple Systems CRM uses responsive design so when you log into your CRM on a mobile device, the code automatically detects what device you are using and adjusts accordingly. Everything fits the screen beautifully and makes it easy for you to access the data you need.
This means you get the full CRM system at your fingertips with data updated in real-time, on any device, wherever you need to be.
Basically, whatever device you’re using is of no consequence as there’s no CRM apps to install. The CRM is a website so you simply open it up, login and use it.
What about CRM security?
As you are accessing your CRM data in real-time, through your web-browser, when you logout, that’s it, there’s no data left on your device. So if you were to lose your phone or tablet your data is secure, without your logon details no-one will be able to access the CRM.
What can Really Simple Systems do for you?
With full access to your CRM whilst you’re out of the office you’ll be able to view account data, contacts, leads and opportunities. You can manage tasks, record meeting notes, calls and emails; manage your schedule and call contacts direct from your CRM. With our new CRM Version 5 you’ll also have an integration to Google Maps and a new, modern user interface, not to mention the lightning fast search!
All this gives you great competitive advantage as your customers benefit from your efficiency. It’s a better experience for you too with everything you need to run your business in your pocket! Our CRM is easy to use and quick to learn, giving instant access to your customers’ information, wherever you are.