A company is known for the quality of products and services it offers. However, that isn’t the only factor required for its survival today. For a company to become popular amongst consumers, customer service is vital.
Customer service was a challenge when people shopped in-store, but it has become doubly difficult in the age of online shopping.
Customers are connected to the brand via multiple touchpoints, and they expect excellent customer service at each of them. Negligence on any front can cost the brand its reputation and sales.
This is where Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software comes into play. CRM is a software that helps companies manage customer relationships by analyzing customer data and organizing operations. It helps companies manage excellent customer service across all platforms to keep the customers happy and the sales high.
With numerous CRM options available, it can become confusing for a business to adopt the right CRM methodology. To help you make the best choice, here are 6 critical trends in CRM that you shouldn’t neglect this year:
1. Enhancement of Operations through AI
Thanks to the machine learning tech, artificial intelligence has become a helping hand in completing repetitive and tedious tasks, such as updating data records and generating reports in CRM applications. Infoholic Research mentioned in its study that AI implementation is forecasted to raise the CRM market revenue to $72.9 billion by 2023.
AI integration into CRM helps companies to determine what their customers want and how often they want. How? By examining customer data such as call logs, purchasing history, and interactions, the AI provides a clearer picture of the customer to sales and customer representatives. This enables them to make personalized interactions with their clients.
Another powerful feature of AI is in the use of chatbots. With advancements in natural language processing, AI is capable of handling common client queries or directing requests to customer care officials. Such data is also collected into CRM records so that representatives can directly tap into resolving issues.
2. Third-party Integrations
A standalone CRM app isn’t enough to maintain data records related to customer demands and purchasing habits. Various third-party sites and apps have an integral role in collecting and analyzing data related to customer preferences and purchasing patterns.
The constant switching between multiple platforms for accessing vital information or executing key operations can become irritating. That’s why CRM applications now allow integrations so that any staff member can conduct key operations by accessing apps directly through the CRM.
Besides syncing CRM with apps, integration with the Internet of things can be a powerful addition to a CRM system. IoT’s constant data recording functionality can help businesses to gain better insights regarding clients’ needs. This will allow them to improve their marketing campaigns, provide a better customer experience, and boost sales.
3. Increasing Need for a Mobile CRM
The norm of working in the office has changed as more people handle operations on-site or at home. With smart devices at our fingertips that support the use of multiple applications, the completion of business operations has become easier. However, for achieving optimum results in these operations, dependency on data has increased.
CRM applications form a central point for running multiple tasks. As more people are used to working on smart devices than on traditional PCs, the need for mobile CRM access can’t be neglected. The COVID-19 pandemic has also highlighted the importance of providing a centralized management system that allows employees to access basic resources wherever they are for ensuring smooth business operations.
That’s why many SaaS companies focus on providing CRM packages with mobile apps.
This enables sales, marketing, and customer representatives to make data-driven decisions for providing personalized services to their clients.
For example, realtors reviewing listings or conducting open houses can take advantage of the best Real Estate CRM application that can enable them to conduct real estate operations right from their smartphones.
4. Customer Service
A brand that can provide quality service to its customers can induce a memorable experience in them. Providing a better customer experience is the key force that holds relationships between clients and businesses.
To nurture relations with prospects and maintain customer loyalty, CRM is required. The applications today provide a variety of functions for sales, marketing, and service teams to make and design the correct approach to their clients and audience. Hence, one of the main functions of a CRM system is to aid companies in serving customers right.
5. Merging of Social Media Platforms with CRMs
The coronavirus caused people around the globe to practice quarantine measures. During this difficult time, the importance of social media couldn’t be neglected as it connected people throughout the world.
Similarly, social media platforms serve as an important base for organizations to connect with their target audience. Businesses engage with clients through posts, allowing them to make connections with them and understand what their preferences and issues are.
Integration of social media platforms with CRM systems can be a great advantage for businesses. Why? As they can enhance social listening, an essential skill needed for finding the concerns and likings of your clients through social media. This can help organizations to make quick responses and provide a better experience to customers.
6. Data Analytics
Collecting stats from data sources has become important for several businesses to interpret important trends. This helps them to make more precise decisions that can help in achieving their goals. According to a marketing report published by Salesforce in 2020, 78% of marketers’ customer interactions are data-directed.
Even CRM systems are used by organizations for storing data from multiple sources. However, the number of sources and data types has increased, which can make it confusing for employees to interpret such data.
To take advantage of data records, data analytics features are a must-have in a CRM app. Marketing, sales, and customer service officials require making data-driven decisions, which can be done if the data has been managed and converted into interpretable form.
CRM Can Help You Achieve Your Goals
CRM applications and trends continue to evolve with the advancement of technology and problems faced by organizations. By focusing on implementing the above-mentioned CRM trends in your CRM system, your company can stay ahead of its competitors.