How to select the right CRM for your small business?

As a small business owner, you will likely be faced with the challenge of managing a growing customer base and keeping track of various interactions and transactions. This can be daunting, especially if you do it manually or use scattered tools and systems. This is where Customer Relationship Management (CRM) comes in. CRM is a powerful tool that can help you manage customer data, automate processes, and improve overall business efficiency. This article explores the key considerations of selecting the right CRM for small businesses and discusses the AlphaBOLD advantage. 

What is CRM? 

CRM is a software or system that enables businesses to manage and analyze customer interactions and data throughout the customer lifecycle. This includes managing customer data, tracking sales and marketing efforts, and automating business processes. With a CRM system in place, you can have a single, centralized location for all customer data and interactions, making it easy to access and use this information to improve your business. 

The importance of CRM for small businesses? 

  1. Improved Customer Management: With a CRM system, you can easily track and manage customer interactions, transactions, and data. This allows you to better understand your customers and their needs, which can help you tailor your products and services to meet their specific requirements. 
  2. Increased Efficiency: Automating business processes and having a centralized location for customer data can help small businesses save time and resources. This allows you to focus on growing your business and serving your customers better. 
  3. Better Sales and Marketing: A CRM system can help small businesses track and analyze their sales and marketing efforts, which can help identify areas of improvement and increase overall ROI. 
  4. Improved Collaboration: CRM systems often come with features that allow team members to collaborate and share information, which can help small businesses work more efficiently and effectively. 

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The trifecta of CRM: 

Deciding on a CRM for small businesses is challenging as there is an abundance of options accompanied by various integrations, pricing plans, and features. However, a few essential considerations can help small businesses make the right choice when investing in a CRM solution. These considerations are:  

  1. Return on investment (ROI) 
  2. Cashflow 
  3. Functionality/features of the CRM solution 

Return on investment (ROI): 

When considering investing in a CRM for small businesses, it is important to evaluate the potential ROI that the system will provide. A CRM solution has a direct impact on the ROI of a business. For example, a CRM system can help companies save time and resources by automating business processes and centralizing customer data. This can lead to increased productivity and cost savings, which can be quantified and used to calculate the ROI. 

AlphaBOLD client success story: 

Customer 1: This customer is involved in B2B and B2C sales. This Manufacturing company is using Dynamics 365 CE for customer service and sales. We will refer to them as “BOLDCustomer” for this blog, but these are real statistics, and it is a referenceable customer in case you want to connect with them.  

BOLDCUSOTMER revamped its customer service with Dynamics 365. They now track customer interaction with CSRs and gain valuable insights using this solution. Furthermore, they now have fewer customer service calls because of the self-service portal. The implementation reduced the average call time for the BOLDCUSOTMER and increased the number of first-call resolution cases by providing instant customer information. The BOLDCUSOTMER now successfully launches and tracks calls on the Dynamics platform. Based on the 2021 activity, the customer service team made up to 3284 up-sell calls, out of which 50% resulted in successful up-sell of the orders. Considering the average order size of $600, this has increased by almost $1 million in 2021 alone.  

They anticipate an increase of 25% in 2022, directly attributed to successful Dynamics 365 Customer Service implementation. In addition, BOLDCUSOTMER has seen a 16% increase in revenue in 2020 and 2021 after rolling out Dynamics which is spread across many regions U.S., Japan, Korea, Australia, Canada, and the UK. 

Customer 2: This customer has B2B business model. Heavy industrial manufacturing company using Dynamics 365 CE for sales and quotations tracking. They also use customer service modules for after-market support. BOLDCUSOTMER technicians now have a 360′ view of client information and history, enabling them to access case information easily. The BOLDCUSOTMER after-market team now launches and tracks service request cases in the Dynamics platform. Based on the activity in 2021, the team handled close to 10,000 cases compared to roughly 7,000 cases in 2020. Using Dynamics 365 Customer Service and Unified Service Desk (USD), they managed 3000 cases with no additional headcount. This productivity increase saved the cost of around two additional headcounts, contributing to approximately $100,000 per year. In addition, using USD to manage cases and quoting activity, the average time for quote has been reduced from 12 to 5 minutes, resulting in a yearly time savings of roughly 815+ man-hours throughout 2021, contributing to the additional savings of around $30,000. In addition to this annual saving of about $130,000, BOLDCUSOTMER now closes more business by sending out more quotations than in previous years. This additional business adds up to roughly $8 MM per year. 

Based on these two customer success stories, it is evident that businesses investing in CRM solutions will recover their money. Read the following research for some additional details on Dynamics ROI.

Cash flow: 

Now let’s discuss cash flow, as that can be a big challenge for small businesses trying to implement a CRM solution. The way AlphaBOLD helps its customers navigate through this challenge is by following the BOLDRoute methodology. BOLDRoute is a stairway approach to implementing CRM solutions. It helps guide customers through a prioritized list of requirements that can be implemented in phases. This enables small businesses to plan their spend and pick only the most essential features for implementation in phases. The key to success when using BOLDRoute is the blueprinting phase to map business requirements to the CRM solution. AlphaBOLD has built tools that make it easy to define implementation from scope, time, budget, and phase perspectives. These tools make it easy to gauge how much money will be spent on each phase, create successes, and evaluate ROI before consuming more. This also helps CRM solutions scale as small businesses grow.  

CRM Solution

Functionality/features of the CRM solution: 

Features and functionalities are essential when deciding on a CRM for a small business because they determine the capabilities and functionality of the software and how well it can support and improve the business processes. 

Having the right features and functionalities in a CRM solution can help companies: 

  • Manage and track leads, sales, and customer interactions effectively 
  • Improve team collaboration and communication 
  • Streamline sales and customer service processes 
  • Automate repetitive tasks, such as lead tracking and customer follow-ups 
  • Gain insights into customer data and behavior to make informed business decisions 
  • Improve customer satisfaction and retention 
  • Increase productivity and efficiency 
  • Save time and resources 
  • Without the right features and functionalities, a CRM solution may not fully support and improve the business processes; thus, the team may be unable to use it effectively. This can lead to wasted time and resources and, ultimately, a loss of potential sales and customers. 

AlphaBOLD has experience with various CRM software applications and can help customers automate their internal processes, such as marketing, sales, and customer service. With years of experience in CRM technology consulting, implementation, and support, we can help manage all your customer relationships in a unified platform. 


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In summary, choosing the right CRM for your small business is not a task to be taken lightly. It requires careful consideration of your business needs, features and functionality, scalability, user-friendliness, and cost. Luckily, experienced CRM solution providers like AlphaBOLD can guide businesses of all sizes to make the right choice for their business. We take time to understand your business needs and identify the most beneficial features and functionalities for your business. Additionally, AlphaBOLD can provide clients with customized solutions that meet the business’s specific needs. 

AlphaBOLD experts provide companies with the necessary support and training to ensure that the team can use the CRM system effectively. They can also offer ongoing maintenance and help ensure the system works correctly.  

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