Business Automation

Does Your Online Store need Free CRM Software?

October 2, 2018

Feature Image Source: Unsplash

Online Businesses are spoilt for choice today in regards to automation software. CRM software promises to automate some of the most crucial elements of a business. Elements such as customer service and sales. There are basic and advanced versions of CRM software available, some of which are actually free. Let’s take a look at the advantages that are associated with CRM software and how it can serve to uplift your business.

What is CRM?

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a means of providing customers with what they want as opposed to what the business wants. This usually comes in the form of products and services which is presented to the customer in the best possible way through excellent customer service.

CRM is about expertly satisfying your customers' needs, whilst maintaining a healthy and professional relationship with them. The process of CRM begins at the very first moment a customer contacts a business, right through a sale and even after the sale. CRM also focuses on repeat business and tries to establish new sales by retargeting old clients.

The act of CRM is one that is filled with personal data and statistics. There is plenty of clerical and administrative work that should be strictly adhered to when practicing CRM. It can be difficult given the nature of sales staff or business owners who are more focused on sales rather than admin. This is why CRM software was developed.

What About CRM Software?

CRM software serves as a complete hub for all of your company’s data that is related to customers and sales. It is almost impossible to manually manage every single customer, especially within large companies. CRM offers a paperless solution that keeps track of your customers' interactions with your brand.

You can store personal information of all of your clients such as:-

  • Name
  • Age
  • Gender
  • Race
  • A physical address and email
  • Social media accounts

The more data the software has, the more complete insights it will be able to offer you. Among the most crucial factor regarding the insights that the software provides is customer service.CRM software can be regarded as automation software. It is possible to automate parts of your customer service process with CRM software. The software can automatically message customers to follow up on sales and other appointments.

It can also guide your sales team towards taking the right steps towards satisfying your clients whilst delivering the best customer service. Investing in CRM software was something that was mostly reserved towards companies such as luxury car brands.

The CRM software available then was pretty basic and is still available today. However, more companies, big and small, are beginning to get into CRM systems. If you have an online store, then having CRM software is a must. Below are a few more detailed features that CRM software has to offer business owners.

After Sales

CRM software automates some of the after sales procedures by following up with a customer who has just bought an item from your store. The software can either message the client directly or inform the salesperson to do so.

This is a vital step in the sales and customer service process. The customer could need help installing the product, or they may need extra accessories. This may be the perfect opportunity to sell additional products whilst going the extra mile for your client.

Customer Support

Woman in Customer Support

 Source: Pexels

Because most CRM systems document a customer's entire sales journey, it is possible to provide that customer with support before and after a sale. An online chat can be a means of assisting online shoppers in making purchase decisions.

A similar scenario exists when a customer has an issue with the product they have purchased. They can also initiate an online chat session or get in contact with a support agent. Whatever the case may be, everything will get recorded into the CRM database.

Learn Who Your Customers Are

CRM software will help online store owners to get a better understanding of who their customers are. However, there is only that much data a CRM system can find on its own. It is up to the business owner to feed the system as much relevant info as possible.

This is why it is imperative that companies gather as much information as possible on its customers. Most online stores require that you register before making a purchase. This is a good time to get personal info.

If you wish to get email and other details before a sale, then it is best to encourage visitors to fill out a different form whilst initially visiting your site. You could exchange a discount or coupon code for this info. Or you could get them to subscribe to exclusive email offers. The more info you get, the better insights you can get out of your CRM software.

Advanced Email Marketing

Men Discussing on Email Marketing

Source: Unsplash

Some CRM software has advanced email marketing capabilities. In other words, the software will forward emails that are tailored to meet a customer's needs. If a customer was interested in a particular movie (or he even purchased one) within your store, then the system will send him an email informing him of similar titles that are available at a lower price.

The software can even go as far as announcing the release of the sequel to the original movie you purchased. An email about the new sequel can be sent to people who had interest in the first movie. Deeper marketing strategies such as cross product selling can apply here too with emails focusing on books and T-shirts related to the original movie.

Re-Engage Old and Potential Customers

CRM tracks every moment in a customer’s sales journey. Even the long periods during purchases. Some customers may have bought a few items 3 months ago and they may not have been heard of since. CRM software can suggest a discount coupon to be used on the next purchase.

This can also apply to customers who have subscribed to emails from your store but have never actually bought anything. Sending them coupons from time to time can help entice customers to visit your store and take action.

CRM software is certainly worth checking out. Especially if your business is sales driven like an online store or has a tremendous focus on customer service. There is some fantastic basic CRM software out there that are free. The only time you will have to pay is if you want more premium features.

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