It’s not your industry that decides whether you need a CRM or not; It’s your sales process and after-sales service. And yes, your team size is important.
Although CRM as a concept is not new, most people look at it as if only large enterprises require CRM.
Well, it used to be true, historically, since CRM systems were very costly and challenging to implement.
Not anymore, with cloud-based technology SAAS models and subscription-based pricing, now CRM is within reach of every business.
Also, now CRM systems have evolved and become very simple and flexible to use.
The adoption has increased significantly because of developments in mobile technology.
But the question is whether you need a CRM?
BTW, CRM software might be a new concept. But all the businesses from time immemorial have been doing Customer Relationship Management. The only difference is that now CRM also has a software framework.
Your industry or vertical does not decide whether you need a CRM or not. I will share examples below to explain this.
Your turnover also does not decide whether you need a CRM or not. I have seen many examples of companies that are more than 100 crores working without a CRM system.
How to decide whether you need a CRM solution or not?
Generally, a CRM solution is used for three purposes.
- Service (or helpdesk)
Before we discuss purposes, let us discuss the size of your team.
If the combined strength of your sales or service team is less than 5 people, then you may not go for CRM as it requires some managerial overhead.
Sales processes that require a CRM
- If your sales process requires “Follow-up” with your prospects, then you need a CRM.
- If you need to get new clients, then you need a CRM. Businesses that deal with few select clients and depend on repeat customers might not require a CRM. E.g., A contract manufacturer who manufactures Railway Wheel will not need a CRM because they have only a few buyers that are a Railway Company. (Indian railways in India).
- If you have walk-in customers, then you don’t need a CRM, for managing sales. But you might need a CRM for marketing purpose.
- This is a typical B2C scenario, where CRM is used for Customer database and marketing purpose.
- Typically hotels don’t need a CRM, since they have walk-in guests. But a large chain of Hotels needs a CRM since they also have a corporate sales team, which sells packages to corporate customers. For that Sales team, a CRM is required.
- Also, hospitals and clinics don’t need a CRM, because they generally have walk-in patients. But large hospitals and clinics have salespeople that sell different packages to the general public and corporates, they need a CRM.
Marketing CRM is required when:
- If you want to send Email and WhatsApp campaigns to your customers, then you need a CRM.
- All the modern CRM platforms these days are capable of managing the contacts details of prospects and customers and send them campaigns.
- The best part is that you can get an analysis of your campaigns and ROI.
- Another advantage of using CRM for marketing campaigns is that you get the whole picture since all the related records are present in one platform.
When Customer service requires CRM:
- If you have a product where the customer requires after-sales service, then you need a CRM.
- In case you also have some kind of service agreements or contracts with your customers, then you need a CRM.
- In case your customers are enterprise customers that require strict internal and external SLAs (service level agreements), then you definitely need a CRM.
So now the need for CRM is established, the question is should you buy one or not, is the important question.
CRM is about the Digital transformation of your Sales, marketing and Service teams. Digital Transformation is not about technology. Change appetite of your organization is more important than your need for CRM.
Should you buy CRM?
I have seen many companies that have huge turnovers and a large number of sales team members. Even their sales process requires following up with customers, but still, they don’t go for CRM.
There are even many companies that have tried many CRM systems but invariably failed every time.
So, Even though your business needs a CRM, but whether you should buy it or not depends on one important factor.
Change the appetite of your organization is one important factor to consider before buying CRM.
Because implementing CRM is all about Digital Transformation of your sales, marketing and service teams.
The habits of your team will not change because of CRM. Rather if they want to change, then CRM can help.
So, if you think that your team is not ready for the CRM, you as a business leader will not be able to drive the change, then don’t go for CRM without talking to some expert.