It’s hardly a secret that trade is the industry with the most competition. Of course, if you’re selling a completely unique product or offering, something that is tailored to a very small and distinct target group, you have fewer reasons to worry about competition.
However, most organizations deal with conventional products or services that are a necessary aspect of our everyday lives. In order to remain on top of your game and become a leader – or, at least, a major player – in your industry, offering high quality is simply not enough. To stay competitive, you have to make attracting and retaining clients your a top priority.
Customer relationship management (CRM) systems were developed specifically to help you do that. They can optimize and enhance the way your enterprise operates. These systems enable you to improve your customer service by making the process of working with clients faster and more efficient. As a result, you spend less time doing mundane organizational tasks and more time focusing on what really matters: providing an unmatched quality of customer service, meanwhile attracting new clients and retaining your current customer base.
What are the benefits of CRM for trading businesses?
Business people will agree that knowing who your customers are and what they need is the key to success. A CRM system serves as a vault with customer data that provides a 360-degree view of your customers and your interactions with them. It keeps an extensive history of both communications (calls, meetings, emails) and purchases, which allows you to personalize your approach to every customer. With this information at hand, you can segment your customer base and easily create individual offers and discounts, based on the analysis of preferences and behaviors of each segment. In addition to helping you gain insight into how your customers think, the software also assists in arranging and systematizing the information about your current and potential clients, suppliers, partners, investors and resellers.
The CRM software allows managing your product catalog on a new, more advanced level. You can add the goods and services you offer, monitor their availability, define pricing, append their characteristics and properties, set various discount and tax rates, and divide them into different categories. The system enables you to filter long product lists, find the needed item quickly, add them to your quotes, sales orders, invoices. All of this allows you to accommodate to the buying preferences of customers and keep you informed about current market trends.
The main aim of salespeople is to keep customers satisfied by providing their orders on time. However, the faster your business grows, the more difficult it is to manage sales processes efficiently and keep the documents in order. A CRM system can significantly improve your sales performance and automate the document flow. With its help, you can monitor the progress of deals in real-time, automate the creation of calls or other follow-ups, and of course streamline the process of generating and sending quotes, sales orders, invoices, etc., by configuring templates for them. This saves your employees a lot of time, increases their productivity and allows them to focus on more important tasks.
The success of a business largely depends on the quality of communication, both internal (between teams) and external (with customers). However, maintaining clear and effective communication is a rather challenging task. With a large number of internal messages, letters and calls from customers, notes about deals, records inevitably get messed up. The CRM system optimizes communication processes across the entire company. It helps you establish contact with your customers through all possible channels of communication (including phone calls, emails, text messages and social networking) and stores the communication history in one place. Moreover, the software automates communication within teams and between departments by displaying real-time updates and changes to the records, the workload and availability of the employees during the work hours. In this way, each employee gains access to the relevant information, and your company works as a single, cohesive whole.
Your marketing department can also benefit from the information that you obtain from everyday interactions with customers. With a CRM system in place, you can conduct market analysis activities and see whether they are yielding the results you’re looking for. Based on these insights, you can then change or modify your marketing strategy and investigate how it affects the performance of a particular customer group. In this manner, the software increases the relevance of your advertising, and automates every step of your marketing campaign – from creating personalized email templates to auto-populating target lists.
Customers are the vital force of any company. Making them a top priority for your business always means dedicating a lot of time, effort and resources to ensure that they receive the best possible service. EspoCRM can facilitate the work of your company and help you keep customers happy, so they will come back for more purchases. The functions mentioned in this article can be further extended and modified to suit the unique needs of your company. This unmatched customization results not only in enhanced customer service but also provides you with positive feedback from your customers. Finally, with CRM automation, the management of your company becomes easier and more efficient, resulting in a larger number of potential clients, improved customer retention levels and, of course, an increase in your revenues.