The Pros And Cons Of Using A CRM Software
More businesses have realized the advantages of using technology platforms and tools for lead conversion and sales management workflows and processes. It even allowed small firms with online stores to reach potential buyers from all corners of the world. Suddenly, most companies have found themselves handling marketing and sales globally.
It urged many businesses to adopt and implement Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software systems to manage their lead conversion and sales processes. If you are not convinced, you may check this site to see a CRM comparison of various systems currently offered. CRM systems have compelling advantages, but they might also pose some disadvantages for businesses and enterprises that aren’t prepared or don’t know how to use them effectively.
With that said, here are some of the pros and cons of using CRM software.
1. CRM Puts Everything Together
One of the most vital advantages of using CRM software is that it puts together everything you need to manage your interactions and engagements with your clients and customers.
It creates and establishes centralized storage of data and transactions records that can be accessed, retrieved, and worked on by permitted individuals in your business. It also provides numerous technological tools that can enhance the efficiency and productivity of your employees. It enables your accounting, finance, marketing, and sales teams to focus their time and efforts on their core functions instead of being burdened with administrative and recording tasks.
2. You Can Mine Data And Gain Insights
Another critical advantage of using a CRM system is that it gives your business the capability to mine the data stored in your CRM database for insights. Your CRM database is a rich repository of information about your customers, including their purchases, transactions history, repeat orders, the volume of orders, among others. You can mine this database to gain a more in-depth understanding of the needs and requirements of your clients and customers.
For example, you can mine your CRM database to extract the purchasing patterns by clients of specific products in any given year. It could give you insights on the supply of that particular client based on its ‘seasons of supply needs.’ Your marketing and sales teams can use this information to create discounts and packages that are suitable for the needs of a specific customer. You can also time your procurement and production to factor in this insight.
3. It Can Enhance Lead Conversion
The CRM system is also highly useful in converting leads into buying customers. Most CRM systems have a tool that allows their users to sort out and qualify their prospects based on available data.
Without a CRM system, marketing and sales teams would have to manually scan their lists of leads. They would also have to decide on each lead whether they were qualified to be reached out for a sales prospecting effort. At best, they would most likely have to do this using spreadsheet software and a formula that gives weights to specific data fields in their lists. On the other hand, most CRM systems have a tool that allows you to qualify your leads by pre-selecting the relevant data.
Some of the more recent CRM versions have taken the lead qualification and conversion process to the next level with the introduction of Artificial Intelligence (AI)-aided processes and tools. Some CRM systems can now allow your teams to use AI programs and algorithms that can qualify your leads. This is based on AI algorithms that have been trained using massive amounts of data from various sources of customer conversion information and analytics.
4. CRM Is Scalable
Another advantage of CRM software systems is that they’re scalable. You don’t have to purchase a CRM system that’s so complex for your small business, especially if you’re only starting. If you don’t have too many complex work processes and transactions yet, you might find some of the sophisticated features of CRM systems unnecessary for your workflows and business operations.
The good thing is that you can start with a CRM system with a simple platform, but it can still scale up as you grow your business. You can start with only the essential and helpful tools and features. And as your volume of customers and orders grows, and your clients’ requirements become more complex, you can configure your CRM system to add and install new features and tools.
Here are some of the disadvantages of using CRM systems:
1. It Somehow Diminishes The Human Element In Business Process
One of the disadvantages raised against using CRM software systems is that they tend to downplay or diminish the human element in business processes and transactions. Some businesses believe that adopting and implementing a CRM system would supplant human participation and interaction, which is essential in the marketing and sales processes.
2. It Will Require Continuing Technical Support
Another disadvantage raised against using CRM systems is that they require continuing technical support services. Since CRM systems are software applications, you can expect that they would still require maintenance, troubleshooting, and sometimes even debugging and repair.
Because of its continued use by the company’s different teams, some issues may arise sooner, if not later, with some of its programs, files, or tools. When this happens, the company should have a system of support service ready, otherwise, the CRM system would be down for long periods. It could severely affect the workflows and processes of its marketing and sales teams and possibly harm revenues and profits.
3. Workers Have To Be Trained How To Use Them
The contention, it seems, is that there are still many marketing and sales professionals who don’t know how to use CRM systems. Even among those who know how to use them, the company would still have to train them to use the particular CRM system implemented by the company.
This would entail additional expenses for the company due to lost business hours, training costs, and transition periods. Since workers would have to be assigned specific roles and functions within the CRM system, there would also be a need to train people each time someone is promoted. The same thing could happen when people are assigned to new teams or departments and when some employees leave the company.
4. Workers Will Be Spending More Time Updating CRM
Some people who oppose the idea of adopting CRM systems also believe that the company would find its workers spending more time on updating and maintaining the CRM system rather than doing what they’re supposed to do. They say companies would find out, for instance, that their marketing teams are spending too much time trying to extract insights from AI-enabled lead qualification programs rather than getting more names and developing more lead lists. Hence, making the CRM system inefficient and a waste of resources.
More businesses have realized some advantages of using CRM systems for their lead conversion and sales processes. Some of the new converts are small and medium businesses who have suddenly found themselves thrust into the global marketplace by the reach of their online stores and the power of social media. They’re now getting inquiries and orders from places they’ve never heard of before. However, the more traditional ones are more skeptical about the potential disadvantages of implementing CRM systems.
And the adoption of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software systems can significantly improve businesses’ lead conversion and sales management processes. CRM systems provide a centralized data storage solution, data mining capabilities, and enhanced lead conversion tools. They are additionally scalable, making them suitable for businesses of all sizes. However, some companies may face a number of disadvantages when implementing a CRM system. For example, large technology companies such as Andersen or N-iX need to allocate a whole staff of developers to maintain and continuously develop a CRM system. Ultimately, companies should evaluate their unique needs and carefully weigh the pros and cons before implementing a CRM system to maximize their advantages and minimize disadvantages.