Customer Relationship Management Software

What is CRM Software?

Customer Relationship Management Software

Customers are the heart of every business. Whether you specialize in products or services, gathering and nurturing leads is an important part of growing a business. In order to capture the information so that you can refer back to it later, you need a software specifically designed for the purpose.

This is where customer relationship management software comes in. Built to power a business’s contacts, CRMs have become increasingly more sophisticated over the years. Instead of merely holding names, addresses, and phone numbers, today’s CRMs can provide promising leads, remind you to follow up, and even reply intelligently to customer support requests. Add to that a customizable CRM like 1CRM, and you can easily have a solution that serves as the backbone of your daily operations.

What is CRM?

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At one time, professionals kept their contacts in paper-based daily planners and Rolodexes. If they needed to look up a contact, they searched for the information they needed. For managing large databases of customers, though, a computer-based database has long been necessary. As technology has evolved, the software powering those databases has evolved, as well. Customer relationship management software is a technology that helps you manage contact information and interactions with existing and prospective customers in an easy-to-access format.

Today’s CRMs go beyond merely collecting names for later reference, though. With 1CRM, for example, businesses get a full-featured system that helps them improve their customer service on an ongoing basis. A good CRM pulls in the information a business already has in its databases, creating a solution that can improve sales, marketing, customer service, project management, and order management efforts across the board.

The key features of the best CRM solutions include:

Lead Capture

As visitors drop by your website, you want to do whatever you can to gather information on them. A CRM will interact with a form you put on your website, collecting the information they enter for you to use in building mailing lists.

Task Management

A team needs a way to organize the work they do. Good CRMs include calendars and other tools that will help employees stay on track.


No CRM is complete without reporting that offers insight into the customers you’re attracting, the leads you’re pursuing, and the results of your marketing efforts.

Mobile Friendliness

It’s no longer enough to have software that works on someone’s laptop or desktop. Today’s busy professionals expect to be able to get to their information wherever they are, using the mobile devices they always have on hand.

Automated Customer Service

You can’t have someone on hand 24/7 to respond to customer service queries. Your CRM can tie in with your website’s chatbot, which can pull customer information from your database to intelligently interact with visitors.

Follow-ups and Reminders

It can be too easy for things to fall through the cracks. Your CRM can prompt you to follow up on an opportunity in progress and even send automated emails using parameters you define.

How CRM Works

For any business interested in customer relationship management, it can be natural to wonder how it works. Behind any good CRM are the databases that contain all the customer information. This is the back end of the software. On the front end is the customer-friendly interface that makes it easy to access all of that information. Here is where various team members can update the information so that other teams can see it.

Although at one time, CRM solutions were on-premise, most popular solutions today are cloud-based. This means instead of installing the software on a local server or individual devices, a business subscribes to a service and pays a monthly fee. Each authorized user gets a username and password, which they can use to log in from any internet-connected device. This means they can access and update information even when they’re away from the office, making it easy for sales team members to keep client information updated when they’re on the road.

Who Needs CRM?

Businesses of all types and sizes rely heavily on CRM solutions, from service-based businesses like law firms and medical practices to e-commerce sites and large retailers. Any business that needs to gather data on customers and use that information can benefit from having a CRM. Within a typical organization, usually sales, marketing, and customer service work intensively with the CRM from one day to the next.

When a business looks at customer relationship management examples, it’s important to consider how a solution will be used in its own environment. If it’s a small startup without customers yet, lead nurturing will be an integral part of the software that business chooses. However, it’s also important to put that infrastructure in place so that from the earliest point possible, a business is capturing information from every customer interaction, at every data point possible.

Benefits of CRM

As a business reviews its customer relationship management process, it’s easy to see the many benefits customer relationship management software can bring. At its core, it simply helps build lasting relationships with customers. Here are a few other benefits you’ll get from a good CRM like 1CRM:

  • Captures leads that come through your website, bringing customers to you rather than forcing you to track them down.
  • Gives employees a way to easily see previous transactions and personalize customer experiences.
  • Boosts your sales team’s activities by helping them identify the best leads and track their interactions with them.
  • Prompt team members for follow-ups to avoid missed opportunities.
  • Provides the data necessary to personalize marketing efforts through advanced automation.
  • Improves collaboration across all your business’s teams since they’ll be working from the same information on each customer.
  • Increases revenue as your team follows up on every opportunity and retains existing customers through positive interactions.
  • Improves morale due to employees having all the information they need to do their jobs, accessible both in office and via mobile device.

Types of CRM Software

There is no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to CRM support. A sound customer relationship management strategy should include finding the platform that supports a business’s unique needs. 1CRM can be customized to a specific environment, combining a variety of approaches. Here are three major types of CRM software, designed to meet different organizational styles:

  • Operational—An operational CRM is geared toward supporting daily operations, including sales, marketing, customer service, project management, and order management. You’ll often see operational CRM used for automation both to save employees time and to boost current processes.
  • Analytical—Analytical CRM is based on mining information. As businesses increasingly rely on data to power operations, an increasing number of companies are prioritizing this feature. The ability to pull reports on a regular basis is generally built into a CRM, but it’s important that a business ensure their CRM generates the types of reports most relevant to its own activities.
  • Collaborative—When teams have access to the same information, they avoid duplication of efforts while also making their own customer interactions more informed. A collaborative CRM is one that brings teams together through the information it gathers and offers.

What to Look For

Before you start shopping for a CRM, it’s important to identify what your own needs are. The best way to determine your need of customer relationship management software is to look at how you’re currently handling customer interactions. What information do you currently have on your customers? How could you supplement that in a way that moves your business forward?

Here are a few things to prioritize in your CRM search:

  • Ease of setup—Consider your own team’s tech aptitude and how much training they might need on a new product.
  • Affordability—Although your budget is a factor, don’t forget the ROI you’ll get through customer and employee retention, improved lead generation, and increased productivity.
  • Compatibility—Although cloud-based CRMs don’t have the compatibility issues seen with on-premise software, it can still be helpful to ensure you can connect to solutions you already have.
  • Easy collaboration—In addition to allowing employees across all teams to seeing updated information on every customer, it should also be easy for everyone to communicate. Forums and group calendars are a great way to keep everyone working together.
  • Contact syncing—If you have to spend hours manually adding years of collected contacts, you’ll lose money right away. Make sure your new CRM can pull contacts from your team members’ mobile devices, email accounts, and existing databases so that they can be up and running right away.
  • Reporting and forecasting—All that data you’re collecting will be much more useful if you can put it to use in growing your business. Make sure the CRM you choose can not only provide reports, but help you see how the information relates to the work you’re doing every day.

With 1CRM, you can find all the features your business needs and more. Your solution will be customized, so you’ll be able to create a platform that fits with your own unique environment. You’ll get lead capture, automated follow-ups, and insightful reports, among many other features—all in an easy-to-use format that your team will love. Contact us today to find out how 1CRM can help your business.

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