Companies that are working to improve customer experience (CX) have increased their revenue by up to 15%. This report by McKinsey indicates why businesses must prioritise CX – and the best way to do that is through a data-driven approach. Customer relationship management (CRM) is your best chance at improving CX and effectively boosting your profitability.
What is customer relationship management (CRM)?
Big data is the future of business. And one area it is proving incredibly beneficial is in dealing with customers. Customer relationship management systems collate customer data across different channels. This empowers those working directly with customers with detailed information related to the individual such as purchase history, queries and complaints, as well as personal preferences.
What is meant by customer experience (CX)?
CX is every interaction or experience your customer has with your business. From first contact through to customer loyalty – or ending the relationship. The customer experience is an important part of CRM because this determines whether they have a positive or negative CX.
Is CRM part of the customer experience?
There is a correlation between CRM and CX whereby CRM systems focus on managing customer information, while CX goes deeper into the customer’s experience for a unique perspective.
What are the 3 main components of customer experience?
When it comes to CX, businesses need to focus on three main areas when implementing CRM systems. These are:
This component looks at how much effort the customer needed to put into an interaction with your company. The less effort on the customer’s side, the better.
How did the customer feel about the interaction and what was the emotional outcome?
At the end of it all, does the customer consider the interaction successful?
What are the types of CRM?
If you’re looking to take your business forward, then implementing a CRM system is vital. But it’s important to know which system to work with. Here’s a look at the options you can consider.
- Operational CRM: This system automates the processes related to sales, marketing and services so as to generate leads and establish potential customer contacts.
- Analytical CRM: Customer data collected throughout the customer’s journey is analysed so that your business can make more informed sales and marketing decisions. Through data-driven decision-making, analytical CRM empowers businesses with relevant information for a more targeted marketing approach.
- Collaborative CRM: Once customer data is collected, a collaborative CRM system allows you to share this useful customer information with your other departments to improve customer service and loyalty.
How can CRM systems improve customer experience?
There are a number of ways that implementing a CRM system into your existing operation can improve customer experience and boost profitability. Here’s a look at some of the ways you can leverage CRM for CX.
Keeping top of mind is key when dealing with customers. This means establishing constant – but not overwhelming – contact with them. By incorporating a CRM system into your business, you have the opportunity to engage with them across their chosen platform. This could be email, SMS or WhatsApp. Through these communiques, you can share useful information related to new products, special offers and upcoming promotions related to big holidays or other celebratory events.
Beyond communicating with your customers, CRM data allows you to actually track their individual activities, engagements and purchases. You then have detailed information related to that particular client. Your data gathered will also include first names, emails and other contacts so that you’re contacting them directly with specials and promotions that interest them personally. Note birthdays to offer specials or discounts tailored to their individual interests.
Learn about customers’ needs
CRM systems not only highlight a customer’s current interests within your business, but they can also give you more insight into what it is that your customers actually want or need in the future. Through a CRM system, you can generate surveys via email marketing which gives you valuable feedback about your products and services, as well as what you can do to increase the experience. You can also use the data received relating to what customers bought or browsed on your website or social media channels. It’s important that you actually use this information, once received, and pivot operations to improve CX.
Centralised data storage
The CRM system has a central database that stores all the information relevant to your customers, their preferences and desires. Where customers make contact with you via phone, email or social media, this data is stored in the CRM. It’s now accessible by any departments that might need it. Leveraging this CRM-generated data means that all your employees are better prepared to improve customer experience.
Consistency in customer experience
For a positive customer experience, it’s important that your business maintains a constant level of communication rather than constantly fluctuating. If a customer isn’t getting the support they want, when they want it, they’ll eventually leave. With your CRM system, you’re able to respond to customer queries through an automated system. This retains consistency in the customer experience and improves your brand reputation.
Drawing on social media
Many customers now turn to social media to illustrate their frustrations or satisfaction with a brand or product. This cannot be overlooked by your business as it’s an important source of data. Your CRM system will collect all relevant mentions of your product or service on social media and collate them into your central database. This way, you never miss out on any mention, no matter which social media platform is used.
What are the CRM features to look out for?
It’s clear that CRM can drastically improve customer experience, but it’s important to choose the right CRM for your business. When it comes to choosing CRM, here are some of the features you can consider.
- Automation: CRM can automate workflow such as sending a custom message to the right department, or sending a pre-set response within an allocated amount of time.
- Customisation: You can choose CRM software that can be customised to your business’s particular needs.
- Employee tracking: Your CRM software can actually track employee activity and performance to achieve goals and targets. This allows for incentivisation and improved productivity.
- Real-time data: CRM software with real-time data lets you make informed decisions that drive business growth.
- Third-party integration: You may need CRM software that integrates with existing software so check with your supplier ahead of time.
- Lead management: With this feature, you can identify leads throughout your sales cycle and act on them promptly.
- CRM analytics: These offer insights into customer data and come in a variety of options.
- Reporting: This feature collates sales and marketing results and can be presented in a visual graphic.
- Customer service: This CRM feature allows you to retain customers through a number of ways such as personalisation, incident logging and tracking communication.
If you’re in the market for quality CRM software that will improve customer experience, then get in touch with Omni Accounts. We offer a variety of features suited to a variety of industries. We know that these will ensure an enhanced customer experience that translates into improved productivity.