The ultimate expectation from any CRM would be to improve customer experience.
A well-implemented CRM would empower agents to deliver great customer experiences through the journey from being a Lead to a customer and an evangelist for your business!
To empower agents to delight customers, a CRM has to:
1) Improve the quality of responses
- Does it offer one view of the customer and relevant information without having to switch applications?
2) Reduce manual data entry
- Do new leads come automatically from your website and Ad forms on Facebook/Google, etc?
- Does it enrich information through integrations with data providers?
3) Reduce duplication of effort
- Does it integrate with your accounting and other apps to reduce duplicate data entry?
- Does it offer a chatbot to handle frequently asked questions from the website and other channels?
4) Automate repetitive flows
- Can it send drip emails for sales prospecting automatically?
- Does it have a visual process builder to automate assignment and approval flows?
5) Support omnichannel communication
- Does it bring in conversations from messaging apps such as WhatsApp and Telegram, and direct messages from Social channels in addition to traditional channels such as Phone, Email, and SMS?
6) Improve response times
- Does it offer templates and suggestions?
7) Provide guidance
- Does it have a built-in LMS?
- Does it offer conversation analysis to help managers audit calls and provide feedback?
8) Improve data accuracy
- Does the CRM help prevent duplicates and assist in identifying and handling duplicates?
9) Increase consistency in the sales process
- Does it offer playbooks to streamline actions to be completed to advance deals to the next stage?
- Does it support custom pipelines and stages?
10) Get better visibility of the pipeline
11) Generate more accurate forecasts
- Does it allow you to create quotas and provide forecasts?
12) Send timely alerts (on contracts, deals, cases, tasks..) to customers, sales and customer service agents, and managers.
- Does it allow you to configure alerts?
13) Integrate with your existing collaboration tools
- Does it integrate with the collaboration tools you use internally?
There are also many non-functional requirements that are important.
1) Ease of use
- Do your sales and customer service reps find it easy to use?
- Do your administrators find it easy to customize?
- You will have new requirements in the future. Is the platform extensible to support requirements that you don’t know today?
- Is the vendor committed to giving you personalized support?
- Is your data secure?
- Does your CRM provide authentication?
- Is your CRM governed by privacy policies like GDPR?
- Is your CRM easily scalable?
- Will you be able to add users and processes? Extend the functionality of the CRM without compromising the performance and security?
- Is the CRM available for all your functions, activities, and teams in the organization?
- Is your CRM efficient - will it measure up to the demands of your business?
- Will you be able to track its performance so you can generate insights into the aspects of business you need to improve?
- Does your chosen CRM fall within your budget? Are there hidden costs?
- Does it come with enough features that are required for your business?
For more details on how to choose a CRM, please read our eBook, CRM Buyer’s Guide.
Sreenivas Kanumuru, CEO, Vtiger CRM