What is CRM?
CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management and refers to business systems designed to manage your customer interactions. Most commonly, a CRM system is used by sales people, proving Sales Force Automation. The aim is to help you develop customer relationships, drive business growth and improve customer loyalty.
A CRM system provides a single platform for all your customer data and interactions, generated across multiple channels. This might include contact details collected from your website, emails, calls, meeting notes, and your marketing. The beauty of this is that everything you need is in one place, giving you clear visibility of your sales pipeline.
Get your team on the same page
Investing in a CRM system creates efficiencies across your business and encourages team collaboration. Using cloud technology your CRM system is updated in real-time and accessed through your browser. Your team can access the system from wherever they are working, allowing them to track and follow up their sales leads, without duplication of effort. Consequently, nothing falls through the cracks or gets forgotten.
The proven benefits of using CRM software includes increased efficiency, productivity, sales growth and business forecasting.
According to Wikipedia, “The generally accepted purpose of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is to enable organizations to better serve their customers through the introduction of reliable processes and procedures for interacting with those customers”. Which is as good a CRM definition as any.
History of CRM
First coined in the 1990s, the literal and original meaning of Customer Relationship Management was, simply, managing the relationship with your customer. Today it is used to describe IT systems and software designed to help you manage this relationship.
CRM systems were the must-have products at the height of the internet bubble in 2000/2001. This was followed bya few years of disillusionment as expensive systems failed to deliver the results to meet the raised expectations of the users. The Gartner Group has a Hype Cycle graph showing the traditional pattern of a slow start, followed by unjustified euphoria, down to disillusionment and back to a level of realisable sanity. Which is where we are today!
Here at Really Simple Systems we provide a Cloud CRM system that covers the whole business process from marketing, sales through to customer support.
To find out more about what is CRM software you might find these other articles useful:
Understanding cloud-based CRM systems – What is Cloud CRM
Defining the phrase Customer Relationship Management – What is Customer Relationship Management
What is Sales Force Automation within your CRM – What is Sales Force Automation