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Top CRM Support Functions You Need in 2018

on February 26, 2018

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Introduction

Customer relationship management (CRM) systems are business-oriented tools used by companies to interact with customers and keep their records. A CRM database with its many features affords small and large businesses the opportunity to thrive. Recent years have seen improvements in certain aspects of technology such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Intelligent Automation (IA). These improvements have seen consumers grow heightened expectations of how they want companies to interact with them.

Now, more than ever, businesses have to embrace new technology trends in CRM systems to expertly manage business prospects, opportunities and customers to better their counterparts. There are tons of CRM support functions that provide solutions to streamline operations and improve experience. This post examines the most common CRM support functions and new trends to watch out for in 2018.

What are CRM support functions?

CRM support functions are the utilities and tasks performed by CRM systems that help them accomplish their goals. Some of these support functions are automated and with the right CRM support functions, a CRM can save a business a significant amount of time and money.

Most common CRM functions

Below is a list of the most common features of a CRM system.

  • Contact Management: This functionality helps you to arrange your business contacts into whatsoever groups or context you deem fit.
  • Reports and Dashboards: CRM systems have dashboards incorporated into them where users can view statistics in formats that are highly visual and self-explanatory. It is also possible to download reports daily, weekly or monthly.
  • Flexible Layout: one of the common CRM functions is its flexible layout where users can customize the home screen in various formats of their choice.
  • Mobile CRM: This CRM functionality is one of the most recent trends in the CRM technology. The mobile CRM application provides users with a system where they can collect data and interact with their clients.
  • Forecasting: This is a very important CRM function as it helps to project a company’s future sales, income and other metrics from previous data.
  • Sales Data
  • Customer Records
  • Partner Management
  • Web Analytics Integration

It is necessary for companies to be on top of the constant changes being made to database systems. Thus, there are certain CRM support functions that companies should watch out for in 2018 and we are going to analyze these functions below

Five CRM Support Functions to Watch Out For in 2018

The CRM industry is a constantly shifting landscape and companies have to upgrade constantly so as not to be left behind. There are new CRM functions that companies should watch out for in 2018, these trends will shape the customer support system in the new year. Below are some of the new trends.

  1. Intelligent Automation Functionality: The intelligent automation support feature is an opportunity that can not be overlooked. It helps businesses transcend limitations in their customer relationship efficiency levels. With intelligent automation, businesses can track and automate processes and work flows. In 2018, companies will need CRM systems that are fused with the intelligent automation functionality as they reduce the time live agents focus on dealing with difficult customer issues. A chatbot is a service powered by artificial intelligence, it interacts with customers and deal with problems real time. This is important as over 42% of consumers prefer the live chat bot functionality because they don’t have to wait on hold.

 

  1. Intelligent Call Routing: Companies that sell various products are unlikely to have representatives that are experts in all. There is the need for specialized representatives and mechanisms to help in interacting with customers. This CRM support function helps to recognize the segment the customer complaint belongs and routes the complaint to a representative with specialty in that segment. The intelligent call routing helps to save time and also increases customer satisfaction. It has been revealed that 73% of customers are more satisfied when the company’s service system values their time.

 

  1. Lead Management Automation: Entering customer and sales records manually can prove to be a daunting task and prone to error. This support function automates data entry and forecast sales by displaying the right information at the right time. This CRM support function uses a profiling system that collects customer basic information such as emails, web behavior and other necessary information required for the database. This functionality is one that business would need in 2018 as it reduces time consumed during manual entry.

 

  1. Deal Management Automation: an advanced CRM system should have the capacity to perform routine sales related activity on its own. For a business whose aim it is to improve sales, it is of utmost importance to learn how to manage deals and opportunities effectively in short time. Tracking deals, following up sales, forecasting profits and managing accounts should all be automated. Having this functionality will help companies to close deals faster as automated systems have proven to be more effective than humans.

 

  1. Automated Follow-Up Support Function: Another CRM support function that is required in 2018 is automated nurturing. Follow ups, metrics reports and lead scoring should also be automated. For every customer record generated, the CRM should record sales and marketing metrics and also track reports effectively. This CRM function would track customer preferences and their web behavior and interact with them based on this information.

For companies that hope to compete at the highest level in the business world in 2018, they should have these CRM support functions integrated into their customer database systems, as it will give them the much needed edge with their customers.

Conclusion 

Companies struggle to see importance of high tech CRM support functions in identifying real sales prospect with their data. It may be challenging to keep up with the increasing trend in technology due to the rate at which it is evolving and the costs involved. However, it is necessary to study the CRM support trends explained here and figure out how to adapt to them so as to take your business to the next level in 2018.

Rahul Varshneya is the co-founder of Arkenea, a custom software development company that builds custom mobile and web apps for entrepreneurs and enterprises. Rahul has been featured as a business technology thought leader in numerous media channels such as Bloomberg TV, Forbes, HuffPost, Inc, among others.