Avoiding The Top 10 Small Business CRM Mistakes

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Choosing and implementing Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solutions can be a resounding success or an unmitigated disaster.  Big businesses can ‘afford’ the shock of failure.  Small and medium businesses can’t.

To achieve success in selecting and implementing CRM in your small and medium business, pay attention to overcoming the following:

1.     You’re Not Sure What You Need:  Each CRM solution is different.  To make sure you identify and choose the best solution for your business, prepare a brief summary of ideas, requirements, or objectives that you wish to have solved or delivered by the solution.

2.     The Solution Can’t Adapt to Your Business:  Is there something unique about how you manage your customer relationships?  If so, does a particular vendor allow you to customize the solution to your unique needs?  If the solution can’t adapt, look elsewhere.

3.     An “Uh Oh” Cost/Expense Moment:  From up-front investments, to customization/consulting fees, to monthly or annual licensing costs, or subscriptions – each solution costs something.  Make sure you uncover all the costs before you get started.  Choose to work with solutions with simple fee structures and no hidden costs or additional expenses.

4.     An Inexperienced Vendor:  CRM is not ‘accounting.’  CRM is not “technology.”  Make sure that your solution vendor is deeply experienced in customer relationship management processes, best practices, solution implementation, and support.

5.     Information  Insecurity:  Your customer information is a key, strategic business asset.  The information, communication, terms, services, and products you sell to your customers must be secure from intrusion, theft, virus/trojans, or other external threats.  Make sure your CRM vendor is skilled at protecting you and your assets.

6.     The Solution Doesn’t Expand:  Your business and customers can’t be held back by an inadequate CRM system. Choose a solution that easily expands with your business and always provides fast, anytime/anywhere access – no matter how many customers you have.

7.     The Solution is an Island: Your business is integrated to deliver the best customer experience possible.  A CRM solution must fully integrate with your business processes, your environment, and your customers.

8.     Little or No Connectivity:  Your business uses common productivity and communication tools. Things like personal computers, software, email, fax, and mobile devices.  You need the flexibility to have each of these devices act as communication tools and access points into your customer information to and from your CRM solution – even if you’re out of the office.

9.     Can’t Get Fast Information:  Make sure the solution you choose allows for ‘real-time’ reporting and analysis.  Also ensure that you have access anytime, anywhere, from virtually any type of device.

10.   Can’t Get Help When You Need It Most:  To maximize the benefit of a CRM solution, it must be used fully and across all relevant parts of the business.  As such, training and support/help desk is mandatory.  You need to have people and information ready to help, when you need help.  Your business can’t be left to ‘figure it out.’

By NextCorp, Ltd., Dallas Microsoft Dynamics GP and CRM Partner

3 thoughts on “Avoiding The Top 10 Small Business CRM Mistakes”

  1. Agree with you. Nowadays there are many CRM providers that offer different functions for different price. We've chosen WorkforceTrack's CRM because of its being all-in-one solution (Project Management, CRM, HR Management System, Accounting) and that it was designed specially for small and mid-sized organizations, so prices are flexible and discounts are available

  2. This article is so informatics for everyone and aware about Small Business CRM Mistakes.Thank you so much for sharing a awesome article.

  3. Choosing a CRM vendor is not an easy job! As no two companies are identical, it is critical to understand what type of company you are and how your business processes work. Intelestream assists customers analyzing what instance best suits their needs based on their individual requirements before completing the entire implementation process. We have developed intelecrm, an online on the cloud CRM, standard out-of-the-box solution but we usually develop customized features for those requesting it. Try out a free 30 day trial by visiting http://www.intelestream.net/intelecrm

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