Customer relationship management (CRM) software can be one of the best investments for companies seeking to make more sales. CRM has a demonstrable effect on sales performance, with 65 percent of sales representatives who use mobile CRM achieving their sales quotas, compared with 22 percent among reps who don’t. The average return on investment for CRM is $8.71 for every dollar spent. A properly configured CRM solution can even yield a return on investment of as much as 245 percent, a Forrester study has demonstrated.
In order to enjoy this kind of return from your CRM investment, it’s necessary to follow certain best practices in implementing your CRM solution. Here are three ways you can use your CRM solution to close more deals, make more sales, and boost your revenue.
Using Data-driven Selling to Optimize Your Sales Processes
One way CRM can elevate your sales performance is by harnessing the power of science-based data analytics. A McKinsey survey of sales organizations around the world found that 53 percent of the highest performers use analytics. When your sales team isn’t using analytics to make data-driven decisions, your representatives don’t prioritize leads based on who’s more likely to buy, and they don’t know what factors may be preventing successful closing.
Meanwhile, sales managers don’t know what factors may be influencing the team’s sales performance, and they can only assume that sales representatives aren’t working hard enough if
they miss quota. This situation can lead to wasted efforts and misguided correction attempts that miss the mark.
When you bring data to bear on your sales, you can score incoming leads based on how well a prospect fits your ideal buyer profile. This enables your sales team to focus on prospects who are more likely to become buyers. Managers can also analyze trends in the sales data to identify which signals indicate a prospect is about to buy, what red flags indicate they’re about to walk away, and wherein the sales process you’re losing opportunities. This allows you to correct bugs in your sales process and to let your representatives know what to look for in order to capitalize on emerging opportunities.
Getting these benefits out of customer relationship management software requires an intimate knowledge of how to use CRM features. A knowledgeable CRM consultant can show you how to get the most out of your solution’s software features and adapt them to your team’s sales needs.
Automating Data Entry and Appointment Scheduling
Another way to use CRM effectively is to automate common tasks in order to boost productivity. One reason sales representatives don’t sell more is that they typically spend more time managing spreadsheet information about prospects than they do actually giving sales presentations. One study found that the average sales rep spends 64 percent of their time on non-sales activities.
One routine task CRM can automate is capturing lead contact data. A CRM program can automatically import contact data in from web forms and social media profiles, sparing your sales team the time it would take to manually enter this data. Likewise, a CRM program can automatically update an account as new data comes in from sales contacts and appointments.
CRM programs can help automate the appointment-scheduling process as well. You can set up your CRM tool to automatically coordinate a prospect’s schedule with that of your sales representatives, send out appointment invitations, and send appointment confirmations and reminders. This saves your representatives a significant amount of time, which they can then use to focus on giving more sales presentations, translating into more sales.
Customizing Sales Presentations for Higher Closing Rates
Another powerful way to leverage your CRM solution is by using it to customize sales presentations. Because your CRM database stores information about your prospects’ demographic backgrounds, preferences, and buying habits, you can analyze this data in order to determine which products, features, and benefits are most likely to appeal to a particular prospect. This can help you boost your closing rate. Personalized recommendations produce almost four times more conversions than generic recommendations while increasing impulse purchases and average revenue per sale.
One way to personalize sales presentations is by using your CRM solution to analyze a buyer’s profile in order to make recommendations that they are likely to buy. Passing these representations on to sales representatives can improve the appeal of their presentation, boosting closing and upsell rates.
Another way to personalize sales presentations is by using CRM data to make automated recommendations to website visitors. Amazon makes 35 percent of its sales from automated recommendations, illustrating the effectiveness of this technique.
CRM tools can help you and your team harness data analytics to optimize your sales processes, automate routine tasks so you have more time to deliver presentations, and personalize your presentations to boost your closing rate. A qualified CRM consultant can help your company unlock these benefits in order to leverage your CRM solution for a better closing rate, increased sales, and higher revenue.