It’s the year 2022 and CRMs are big business, and when we say big, we mean massive. According to Fortune Business Insights, the global CRM market was valued at $52.64 billion in 2020. By 2028, it’s estimated that CRM tech will be worth $128.97 billion worldwide.
A growth partly spurred on by the COVID pandemic and companies having to embrace new, agile ways of working remotely, as well as the digital age in which businesses have to find innovative (and automated) ways of connecting with customers online, it seems CRMs are here to stay.
Especially if you take into consideration the fact that 91% of companies with 10 or more employees have a CRM in place to manage customer communications, 82% of companies use it for sales reporting and process automation and 64% of respondents in LinkedIn’s State of Sales report consider these to be impactful or very impactful to their business.
Read more: Do You Have a CRM Strategy Ready to Go?
It might seem counterintuitive in our day and age to rely more on software when everyone is clamouring for a more human-centric, bespoke customer experience. The thing is, a CRM system can actually help you provide a more personalised experience to each and every customer by centralising data, automating tasks and providing deep insight into customers’ needs, so doing freeing up more time for salespeople to spend with customers instead of doing paperwork.
- 75% of companies believe it’s increasingly important to close more deals for their teams,
- 48% want to improve the efficiency of sales funnels,
- 69% claim to want to turn more contacts into customers and
- 33% want to increase revenue from existing customers.
All of these objectives, as HubSpot notes, require access to a powerful CRM. Not only to streamline processes but also to make them more time-efficient, cost-effective and able to scale sustainably.
More importantly, a CRM can help drive sales. Here’s how:
- A CRM delivers an ROI of $8.71 for every dollar spend officially. This relatively older stat was recently recalculated by Dynamic Consultants who believe the ROI to be closer to $30.48.
- CRM software can increase sales by 29%.
- A CRM can shorten the sales cycle by 8-14%.
- CRMs can increase revenue by a whopping 41% per salesperson!!
The stats are impressive and hard to argue against. So, let’s take a closer look at how a CRM can help you drive more sales.
What is a CRM?
A CRM, or customer relationship management system, is a central database that collects, organises and stores all of your customer-related information, from contact details to purchase history and much more. A CRM can tell you where in the buyer’s cycle a specific client finds themselves. As well as the last time a sales rep interacted with them. It can also provide you with automated prompts on when to contact them again. Or even information on their hobbies and interests, and their activity on social media.
How Does a CRM Help Drive Sales?
To answer this question, we first went to the source directly to find out how top CRM suppliers believe their software can help sales. Here’s what they had to say:
“A properly deployed CRM system is an immensely useful tool. It tracks and manages all interactions and communication your reps have with prospects and customers. It also helps flag opportunities that might require additional nurturing or follow up. Using a CRM system will boost productivity among reps, help your team close more deals, and foster important business relationships” – HubSpot
“CRM helps sales people to optimise their daily schedules and prioritise tasks to make sure customers are not ignored and the key prospects are contacted on time” - Super Office
“With a CRM, you open up the possibility to discover new opportunities for upsells, cross-sales, and marketing for new products” - Keap
A powerful CRM system can offer many valuable tools and functionalities that can help drive sales. The most in-demand features are:
Now, let’s take a closer look at how these CRM functions drive sales on a granular level day to day.
1. Central Database
“Centralised data also makes for a smoother communication process. With a CRM, you can craft personalised content and set up automations for follow-ups so that prospects can move steadily down the sales funnel toward the ultimate goal: the sale” - ZenDesk
By allowing a company to store all its customer, sales and marketing data on one platform with cross-team access, a CRM cuts down on the amount of time it takes to find client information.
This removes silos between departments and allows salespeople to gain a holistic view of each customer and their journey, enabling them to sell better.
2. Contact Management
One of the biggest drawcards of a CRM is effective contact management.
In fact, in a recent HubSpot survey, 74% of respondents said that a CRM “gave them better access to customer data, allowing for more personalised service and better communication”.
That’s because HubSpot’s Contacts functionality, for instance, does not only store all of a client’s contact info and other demographics but also all communication to and from the client in one spot. In addition, sales reps can also leave notes to one another regarding a customer, schedule meetings and follow-up prompts, send and track emails, use the Telephony functionality to call customers and record and log calls, and even see when and where clients were active online.
All of this, of course, allows for a more personalised and delightful customer journey, which can, in turn, help drive sales as reps can automate reminders for follow-up calls, for instance.
CRMs allow your team to easily keep track of every contact (and their related data), no matter their buyer's journey stage. In fact, reps will be able to see if a contact visited your company website, downloaded content from the site, or spoke with another member of your sales team already” - HubSpot
This, of course, is important as three out of four consumers will spend more money with a company because of a positive customer experience.
Plus, a happy customer is a lifelong customer and CRM systems have been proven to increase customer retention by as much as 27%.
In addition, satisfied customers can drive referrals, which are naturally good for sales.
3. Administrative Automation
Because CRM systems store all your customer data in one place and allow you to automate many repetitive admin tasks such as sending out emails, it greatly reduces the time salespeople have to spend inputting data, logging client communications and more.
“A CRM allows reps to update all deals by the stage they're in — then, the system automatically handles the rest (e.g. weighting, summation, visualisation), keeping this process as efficient as possible for everyone involved” - HubSpot
That frees up more time for sales teams to get to the business of selling. In fact, a CRM can increase a sales team’s productivity by 34%.
Plus, the automated prompts for actions that need to be taken or meeting reminders ensure that a rep never misses a beat – or opportunity.
4. Lead Management
Not only can a CRM correctly and efficiently capture lead info from multiple sources but it can also be set up to segment leads based on pre-determined criteria based on buyer personas. By identifying and qualifying relevant leads, your CRM will ensure that your reps contact the correct prospects at the correct time, upping their chances of making a sale.
5. Reports and Analytics
CRMs can be used to generate a number of in-depth reports (including productivity per rep, sales activity on target accounts and conversion response metrics) and provide deep insight into sales and marketing efforts. All of this data can be immensely valuable to a company - not only to plot where things are currently at but also to plan ahead as a CRM can boost forecast accuracy by 40%.
6. Pipeline Management
A CRM can provide reps and managers with a complete overview of all sales activity via custom dashboards that can be set up. These dashboards can provide insight into where in the sales cycle each prospect is, where leads are converting or falling off, if targets are being met and much more.
Sales dashboards can also provide sales teams with analytics and reports to better plan and maximise sales potential.
All of this also helps shortens the sales cycle, which is a huge benefit as CSO Insights reports that 27% of salespeople say a long sales cycle is one of the biggest barriers to sales effectiveness.
Another key offering of a CRM is that it drastically increases the mobility of salespeople. With a mobile CRM system, customer data can be accessed on the road, instead of having to return to the office to pull information or input requests, etc.
And the numbers prove it: 65% of salespeople who have adopted a mobile CRM solution have achieved their sales quotas while only 22% of salespeople using non-mobile CRM software have reached the same targets.
As we said in the beginning, the stats are impressive and hard to argue against.
In the current marketplace where every second and cent counts, no business can afford to fall behind - especially when it comes to investing in tech and software that can help drive sales. And who doesn’t want a more efficient, faster and better performing sales department?
So it seems the question isn’t so much about how a CRM can help your business but rather if your business can afford to not have CRM help.
If you’re looking to find out more about HubSpot as a CRM for your business, please click here to get in touch, we’d love to chat more about your business.