Before reading I would caution you that this is not a comprehensive list of reasons. There are many many reasons for a CRM - I simply listed out a few that I have found helpful or that I have personal experience with in the past. You may think of other reasons. My goal is not to provide an exhaustive list, but merely to get you thinking about the value of a CRM and hopefully help you come to the realization that if you have a business, then you need a CRM.
10. Your memory is not perfect
9. Emails are decentralizedI spent many years convinced that my inbox was the perfect solution. I mean, I could filter, I could search, and I could read past emails - what more could I want. But I started to realize something. I was having to sync my email on all my devices and store all my past email on all of them. This was fine at first but my inbox was quickly growing in size and storage space and becoming unmanageable. Finding sent mail is also a problem and makes things difficult in tracking what has been said to various clients. And then comes that great day when you hire employees. You'll never remember to CC or BCC the team on every email sent. Suddenly email is not a good solution. Your team may be spread completely apart and communications will quickly get lost, and your clients suffer. A customer relations management system put all the pertinent client information in one central location that was easy to update and easy to see when other's updated. All communication can be kept in one spot, nothing gets lost and you can now see and share with the rest of your team.
8. You need metricsDo you know how many successful projects you've had in the past week, month, or year? Can you quickly state your conversion ratio or explain the best method you reach your customers with absolute certainty? Metrics are critical to your business growth and success. You may deceive yourself into thinking you can figure out things with common sense or with some Excel spreadsheet formula - but is that what you want to spend your time doing? My guess is that your time is more valuable than that, and the odds are high you'll make a mistake in your calculations anyway. I know I do. A CRM will give you instant metrics on dozens of aspects of your business, and you don't have to do anything. Plus with a CRM like CRMery you can actually create custom reports to better track metrics and reports specific to your needs. Create it once and use it forever. Once you have these reports I guarantee you'll never look back. Who knows, maybe you'll find out it's really not worth your time to do cold calls after all!
7. Statuses are importantDo you know which clients are ready for a quick callback? If you knew exactly which prospects and clients were on hold and who was slightly interested in your services would that help your business and your sales strategies. I think it would. A CRM at its most basic level lets you see those statuses. Every time you make a call, send an email, or contact that customer or prospect you can update your CRM with their current status. Then, because your memory's not perfect (as stated earlier) you will be able to review and see exactly where each client is in the sales process. No more wondering, and no more following up on cold leads instead of landing the hot ones.
6. History is importantIf you've ever wanted to look back and see everything on a particular contact, the stream of communication between you and them and other members of your business then you need a CRM. Customer relations systems help keep all those conversations in one place and make it easy for you to quickly look back in time and see how things have progressed. Don't be confused about why a particular customer is upset - see for yourself the progression of a client and their communication as well as your company's notes and responses. You'll be able to save more customers from leaving by catching something you would have otherwise missed. And you can learn from your history.
5. Competition helps businessIt's never fun to feel like you're going at it alone. It's good to have communication between your fellow employees and compare notes on things. And competition helps a business. CRMery has leader boards and goals to help with just such a thing. You can stage friendly inter-office competitions to see who can close the most deals, sell the most dollars, or carry on the most conversations. As those leader boards and competitions grow so does your business. And everyone wins when that happens.
4. Never lose your dataIf you use notepads, memo books, calendars, and other systems for tracking your data then the odds are high that you are going to lose it at some point. Store everything on your laptop? They can be stolen. A web-based CRM lets you effectively protect your data from being lost. Sure, servers can crash and hard drives fail but with the proper web host and data backups you'll never lose your data. That's just one of the benefits of CRMery, as an Open-Source CRM you have the complete freedom to select the absolute best web host and service provider. And you own your data. It's not stored on some company's server leaving you at their security and their business infrastructure. CRMery lets you install, manage and maintain your own data on the server of your choice.
3. Predict your futureEveryone wants to know the future. If only there was a way to know what to expect. CRMery helps you with that. Now of course a CRM cannot predict the future with 100% accuracy (it's not a crystal ball), but a good CRM can give you a reasonable expectation of the future based on past performances and past events. If your history is stored correctly in your CRM (see History is important) then a good CRM can extrapolate that information to give you a good idea of what is to come. You can see your pipeline of your prospective deals and have a pretty accurate feel for how much business you can expect to see in the months to come. Once you realize how much information you have access to you may start to feel like a bit like a psychic.
2. Track your tasks and eventsCalendars are important, way more important then emails with dates in them. You'll never be able to keep track of every task you need to do and event you need to attend without a good system. A CRM will help you not only keep track of every task and every event but also relate them to the appropriate customer or lead. CRMery provides a calendar system that allows you to see all of your tasks and events and also your teammates tasks. Plus, with CRMery you have a dashboard that gives you a quick overview of upcoming tasks and events across all your contacts. Need access on the go? CRMery provides an amazing mobile interface to provide instant access to your immediate tasks and events as well as allowing you to create new tasks or events immediately. Sure there are dedicated calendar apps and task management software you can use, but the goal is more than just managing tasks. The goal is relationships. A CRM will relate those tasks and events to the appropriate lead, contact, deal, or company. It all works together to form a cohesive whole - and that leads perfectly into the final reason.
1. Be organizedYou may claim that you can manage your business using email, task management systems, and calendar systems but you'll miss the big picture. Organizing all your information into one system gives you that big picture. A CRM integrates emails and tasks and calendars and so much more in one easily maintained and managed place. Access your information from anywhere in the world and from any internet-accessible device. You'll learn things about your business you never knew before. By being organized and storing things in a central location you'll bring all the pieces together. The key is business organization.
I'm obsessed with helping businesses grow and succeed. CRMery provides an amazing platform to help businesses do just that. By using a CRM your business will become organized and as your business becomes organized you'll start to see success. I don't claim to have the perfect solution, we're constantly improving things to make it better. I do claim that having a well-organized business will never, ever be a detriment to your success. Get organized and let CRMery help you get there.