Although platforms like Salesforce have become commonplace, there are many businesses who, for whatever reason, have bucked the trend and are not adding a CRM (or Customer Relationship Management System) to track their sales efforts. These organizations have avoided CRM platforms for a variety of reasons; however, there is a point where businesses – even those that never needed one in the past – need to seriously consider adding a platform manage sales activities. Here are four signs that it’s time for your business to add a CRM:
1. Sales leads have fallen between the cracks
A sales lead is one of the most valuable commodities for any business. Organizations spend countless hours prospecting, warming and following up with leads. When you discover that you missed out on a potential sale because a lead was overlooked, it’s a loss – money left on the table. Of course, this is an error any business can make from time to time, but if you’ve noticed it’s happening more and more, there’s a problem to be addressed. In many cases, it has something to do with how lead activity is tracked in your organization. Maybe you use a spreadsheet, maybe sales reps track their own leads. Whatever your organization does, leads are being lost in the mix. If this is happening, then you need to seriously consider adding a CRM. With a CRM, you can rest assured that each sales lead that comes in is accounted for in your database and is being tracked.
2. Marketing efforts are growing more varied and complex
If your organization is primarily relying on salespeople to generate new leads, then a CRM may not be necessary; however, the minute that marketing joins the lead generation mix, you have two separate departments handling leads. At that point, keeping track of all the moving pieces can get difficult. Plus, as marketing initiatives diversify to include inbound and outbound channels, the total number of leads increases, and their position in the sales funnel becomes more varied. Keeping track of these will grow more complex. At this point, turning to a CRM may be necessary. Not only will the CRM help streamline handing off leads from marketing to sales, it will also help ensure that each lead’s position in the sales funnel is recognized across departments and team members.
3. More team members joining the sales organization
Perhaps your sales team has been relatively stable over the past few years, with the staffing and the size of the organization being maintained with little turnover or change, but the demands on your team have increased, thus rendering additional sales reps necessary. Suddenly your staff, which has an established process in place, is faced with change. Navigating new team members and establishing new processes can be difficult, and a CRM can be a great asset. Not only can it establish uniform processes across your business, it can also help you track performance of new sales team members and provide visibility into inefficiencies.
4. Sales process has grown more complex
When an organization begins marketing to a new vertical or targeting a new type of business, the overall sales cycle will most likely change. Whether this means additional touch points are required, new points of contact established, or lead time increased, the routine your sales team is used to has been thrown out the window. If this is happening to your sales team, in order to get things running smoothly again, a great step to take is adding a CRM. This will help solidify a process and provide your team a view into what is happening across the team.