CRMs are essential to improving sales performance in a business. But before it can help you boost your sales, it has to have the right features first.
As you know, CRMs (Customer Relationship Management) can help improve various aspects of a business. But how important is it when it comes to sales?
Let’s look at some statistics to best answer the question.
According to Salesforce, businesses that use CRM software have seen an increase of 29% in their sales. These businesses also went through a 34% increase in productivity and a 42% increase in accurate sales forecasts.
Meanwhile, Cloudswave revealed that the right CRM software can help increase sales conversion by 300%.
So, it’s clear that CRMs are essential to improving the sales performance of businesses.
That’s because it provides important data about customers. This then lets businesses get to know their customer base better, allowing them to easily engage with their leads and build trust.
Beyond that, CRMs can also automate certain processes in sales. This means that those involved in sales can now focus on other tasks as well. Ultimately, this allows a business to have a more efficient and productive sales performance.
But there’s a catch – to get these results from a CRM, it first has to have the right features.
In this article, you’ll learn more about what these features are and how you can maximise the effects of your CRM to boost sales and profitability.
The 7 Must-Have Features
Feature #1: Workflow Automation Tools
The sales process isn’t just about pitching and offering to a client. It also involves other tasks like answering emails, filing customer information, following up on meetings, etc.
Such backend tasks are all important in making sure you can provide the best service to your clients.
But if these tasks are done manually, they’ll be very time-consuming. It can take away precious time that your team could best spend on other tasks. Like building better customer relationships and increasing your sales.
That means if you can use CRM to automate certain tasks, you’ll be freeing up a huge amount of time so your team can be more productive.
So, what tasks can you automate?
Often, it involves those tasks that are repetitive, such as:
- Sending emails
- Updating of customer information
- Tracking of customer activities and transactions
- Filtering of leads and sending them to the right team or territory
You can automate your chosen tasks by creating workflow triggers. That way, when a customer does something, it triggers your CRM to perform a task for you.
Take note that this feature isn’t a usual inclusion in CRMs. It’ll cost you more to get a CRM with workflow automation, but it’s worth it.
Feature #2: Leads Management Functionality
Lead management is an important feature of many CRM. It will ensure that leads will automatically be captured from various lead magnets, like your web forms, social media interactions, and chat conversations.
The right CRM will allow you to identify who your best customers are through proper analysis of the demographic and psychographic profile of your ideal customer. That way, you can filter who gets further into your pipeline. And by setting up a lead scoring strategy, you can further increase your conversion rate.
Later in this article, you’ll learn more about what lead scoring is. But essentially, every transaction gets scored so your sales team will know who the hot leads are. They can focus their attention on these leads so their efforts aren’t wasted on people who won’t end up converting.
A proper lead management strategy will help you identify areas where leads could get stuck in your sales process. That way, your sales team can focus on these areas to ensure that potential customers can find their way through.
When you integrate your lead management strategy in your CRM, make sure you involve your sales team in the process. They have to be satisfied with how this feature works. Otherwise, they might choose to ignore it and do things manually.
Feature #3: Reports and Dashboards
CRMs are all about providing you with relevant customer data. But this data will be useless if you can’t view it properly. If the report generated isn’t clear, you could make the wrong assumptions about what’s happening with your customers. As a result, you could make the wrong decisions that could compromise your sales performance.
That’s why if you want to boost your sales, having a dashboard and efficient report-generating CRM is a must.
But keep in mind that it has to provide real-time data that’s highly accessible so your sales team can get data from anywhere. Also, it should be automatically updated and synchronised so everyone sees the same set of data every time. This will make it easier for your team to cooperate and be more systematised in their approach to closing deals.
You should also look for a CRM that allows customisable dashboards. This will allow you to create a dashboard that’ll highlight the important information that your sales team needs to make quick decisions. After all, if they can make informed decisions fast, they can eliminate or minimise mistakes brought about by guesswork.
Ideally, you should train your sales team to rely on statistics and analytics instead of using their insight alone. And by providing them with easy access to accurate reports, it’ll be easier for them to get used to the habit of relying on data analytics.
Feature #4: Automatic Data Capture
One key role of your CRM is to capture data. But sometimes, you can’t completely eliminate the manual tasks that will allow your sales team to focus on what really matters.
Here’s an example:
One of the initial reasons to get a CRM is to track customer communication via emails, calls, etc.
For most CRMs, this can only work if salespeople encode customer emails into the system or upload their recordings manually. Doing so can be incredibly frustrating, not to mention time-consuming. And there’s also the chance that they’ll make mistakes as they try to speed through the process.
Ultimately, instead of focusing on talking to prospects and converting them, your sales team will have to do data entry and paperwork.
So, make sure your CRM can automate as much of the data capture tasks as possible. That way, your sales team can focus on conversions, not admin tasks.
Feature #5: Traffic Analytics Tools
These analytics tools are very useful when it comes to boosting your sales performance. It’s because they allow you to assess the traffic that goes to your website or any other lead magnet in your sales funnel.
If your CRM has an effective traffic analytics tool, it can help you benchmark the effective strategies that’ll help you improve your sales. It’s because you can track the visitors to your website and see where they’re coming from the most – Is it from social media? Or maybe Google ads?
Such information gives you key insights into what lead magnets are working. Furthermore, it’ll help you identify crucial data like buyers’ intent and market interests.
Traffic analytics tools are also very useful when it comes to analyzing past projects. You can determine what projects need to be replicated, improved, or removed. Using this information, you can continually improve your sales funnel to increase the number of leads landing on your website and converting into paying customers.
If you need help in using these tools in your CRM, Automation Agency can be of assistance to you. Our Concierge Service can help you ensure you have the right traffic analytics tools that meet your needs and maximise them for your business.
Feature #6: Lead Scoring
As briefly discussed earlier, lead scoring is a part of a lead management strategy. And it’s a powerful tool that can identify the prospects that are highly engaged with your business.
But how exactly does lead scoring work?
Using the data you get from your CRM, you can identify the different contact areas of potential customers in your sales funnel. You can then set points for each contact to determine how engaged the customers are. The more engaged they are, the higher the lead score.
With lead scoring, your sales team will know the leads they should focus on. They can see which ones can be easily converted and which ones require a little more nurturing. They can also avoid or minimise interactions with prospects who aren’t likely to convert.
And with the right CRM, you can even get predictive scoring that’ll help your sales team create a better strategy to boost their performance. As you use this point system, you’ll get more insight that’ll allow you to improve the system over time.
Feature #7: Meeting Bookings
Scheduling meetings with customers can be time-consuming. But if your CRM can automate this, your salespeople will spend less time going back and forth with prospects and customers.
This is why your CRM should have a calendar scheduler that prospects and customers can access. There should be a link to it that’s available on the website or other lead magnets. Then, this calendar should be synced with the schedule of your sales team to avoid double bookings.
In doing so, your salespeople can just look at their schedule at the start of the day and they’ll already know what meetings they’ll handle for the day. There’ll be no need to send emails to customers to set the meetings – they can all just show up and discuss business.
Since this meeting gets initiated by the customer, your sales team will know that they’ll only be making time for those who are interested in your business. It’ll then be easier for them to convert those leads.
Choose the Right CRM, Boost Your Sales
Chances are, you’ve seen the many ways that CRMs can help businesses succeed. And you likely know that the data they provide about customers can give important clues on how you can improve their experience with your business.
And now, it’s time to leverage CRM to help improve sales performance in your business.
You can start by automating certain processes so your sales team can avoid wasting time doing manual tasks. Instead, they can focus on building relationships and increasing their sales output.
At the same time, make sure your team has the right customer information in their hands. If your CRM can deliver the right information to your salespeople, they can make the right decisions to help customers move forward.
Remember, you can only achieve all that if you have the right CRM in your business. So, make sure that your chosen CRM has the features listed in this article at a minimum.
If you need further help in finding the right one for your business, our Automation Agency Heroes can help you. Get in touch so we can find the CRM that suits your business and optimise it to boost your sales performance.