Understanding Customer Relationship Management

What is Customer Relationship Management?

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is the process by which a company manages their customer interactions and customer data throughout the customer lifecycle.

A customer has many touchpoints with a company over the lifetime of their relationship with the company:

  • Walking into a physical store
  • Getting help from store sales staff
  • Subscribing to a mailing list
  • Making a purchase on the company's online store
  • Communicating with online customer support staff

CRM solutions include technology and processes that help a company track, analyze and manage their customer interactions.

Why use a CRM solution?

Better customer support: By tracking customer communications across all channels, a CRM solution offers a way for your team to have more context when talking to a customer and ultimately deliver better customer support experience.

Increased Sales: By having all your customer details and communications in one place, your sales team will be able to better understand the customers. The result is they'll be able to deliver the right message through the right channel at the right time – closing more deals and increasing revenue faster.

Stronger Retention: CRM systems typically include the tools to automate customer support processes and ensure the team is providing consistent messaging to customers. Analytics that look into the customer lifecycle can better identify pain points and address them early on.

Who Needs a CRM?

Anybody working in sales, marketing or support could benefit from a CRM.

Anybody running a business with a large number of customers could benefit with a CRM tracking the contact data and communications.

Cloud CRM or On-Premise CRM?

CRM can be available as something you can run on-promise or in the cloud.

However, cloud solutions have an advantage since they can replace some of your communication tools altogerther. For example, you may not need an email server if your CRM can send/receive email directly.