Roles of the CRM Application in Defining Sales Strategy

The importance of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) applications can be attributed to its role in enhancing sales by targeting the correct audience. CRM taps into customer data to reach out to them via improved marketing communication. As per Salesforce.com, CRM applications can contribute towards enhancing sales by almost 29 percent.(1)

The CRM applications have to be employed in the correct manner to channelize customer data. It is important to define the most valued customer, focus on techniques for customer acquisition, search for sources and acquire new customers. CRM analyze the effectiveness of previous communication by reviewing past orders and service requests. In addition, the applications can be targeted for a more strategic role.

Sales Data Analysis: Forecasting the sales volume can be enabled by CRM applications for a given time duration. This helps the sales team chart sales strategies, prevent fall in sales, or plan for operational effectiveness for enhanced sales. Better coordination and collaboration amongst various teams such as marketing, inventory, logistics, and shipping can be maintained for meeting customer requests within a stipulated time frame. It can also aid in fulfillment of organizational goals related to time management. (2)

Serving the Most Desired Customer: Segregating customers into “most desirable”, “desirable” or “potential” through the CRM applications can shape the marketing strategy. Data can be gathered through the application for customer segregation and enable the business to channelize efforts towards the most desirable category. Applications allow the sales team to follow the valued customers through the entire sales process until the final purchase and feedback session. This allows for evaluating how effective the sales process is and gauging customer satisfaction. CRM data can be further used to modify the sales strategy to target the desirable and potential customer category and convert them to “most desirable”.

Suggestion selling is another sales strategy which CRM applications help in implementing. Recommendation tools enable salespeople to focus on the best time to recommend new and improved products and accessories related to a specific purchase. or unrelated purchase.(3)

The focus should be buyer centric marketing and sales strategy. Better engagement tactics during the sales process are necessary because so many buyers have access to company information online.(4)

Source Evaluation: CRM application data can be analyzed to evaluate the effectiveness of various sources with respect to lead generation and lead conversion. Working on analytics of various sources can help in determining the most effective strategy from the sales and marketing perspective.(5)

Customer Retention: For any business the most difficult task is to retain customers and harness the benefit of lifetime value relationships. Serving the retained customers can make the sales efforts more effective. This can lead to servicing the customers in a better way, understanding their requirements, monitoring communication with them, and developing stronger customer reports. (6)

Developing relationships through customized communication, depending on past buyer behavior, and current need analysis, can help in building customer loyalty. CRM not only maintains new customer profiles and purchases, but also tracks retained / loyal customers.(7)

All of this helps in developing stronger ties with customers, sharpens persuasive marketing strategies, and betters customer engagement techniques.

ROI Calculation: the sales data can be analyzed to assess the return on investment with respect to advertising and marketing efforts. Every channel can be individually monitored with respect to their contribution in revenue generation. A cost/benefit analysis can be done for every sales and marketing channel to predict sales generation, study lead pipelines, and allocate resources.(8)

Pricing Strategy: CRM software can help in devising correct pricing by monitoring customer orders, analyzing inventory, and fulfilling orders based on product availability.(9)

Goal Alignment: CRM applications can link data related to marketing and sales strategy to analyze the level of goal synchronization between these two related fields.

It is very essential for marketing and sales to collaborate to engage, develop, and convert leads into actual and repeated revenue cycles. Any gap between the two teams can lead to poor buyer experience and lost opportunity. For streamlined communication with the buyers at various stages of the purchase cycle, both marketing and sales need to develop utilize a program. (10)This synchronization can be achieved by implementing a CRM application as a part of an overall strategy.

References

(4,10) Carlos, Hidalgo. “4 Strategies for Transforming your Demand Process.” 13 February 2013. Software Advice. 17 February 2015

(1,2,5,6) Jeff, Orloff. “CRM’s Role in Sales Strategy.” February 2015. Toolbox for IT. 17 February 2015

(7,8,9) Measures, Arlette. “CRM Role in Sales Strategy.” 2015. Small Business Chron Website. 17 February 2015

(3) Neil, Kokemulle. “CRM Role in Sales Strategy.” AZ Central Website. 17 February 2015

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