If you are the owner of a business, you know that you aren’t going to get anywhere without keeping up with the latest business technologies. One of the most important is CRM software, which makes it so easy to track your sales, leads, projects, finances, and so much more. With so many options available, it can be tough to figure out which software is going to be best for your particular business. Here are some things to consider when you are looking for CRM software.
You need to consider the experience level of everyone who will be using the CRM software. A software package may look terrific, and have all kinds of bells and whistles, but if there is no one in your business who knows how to use it, the software is going to be pretty much useless. The last thing you want to do is waste money on software that you can’t use, and you will also have to spend more money to get more software. Look at everyone who will be using it, and find software that is going to be user-friendly for all levels of users.
You need to keep cost in mind when you are choosing CRM business software, or any other software for that matter. While you don’t want to cheap out and get lousy software, you also don’t need to spend a fortune on it, so be sure to check out deals on business software.
Cloud software is great because you can integrate all of your systems via API’s (Application Programming Interfaces). Your software can share data and other information, so you can look at various data side by side, and access it from your Google Apps mail account. For instance, you can look at customer service data at the same time as sales data. But, you can only do this when you have API’s that are open and easy to access. Before choosing software, find out how much integration is offered. The more, the better. Also remember that all integrations are different. Take a look at YouTube videos or other online information about how all integrations work.
4. Your Vision
Your CRM software should be able to grow with your business. You need to take a look at your plans for the future, and find a software package that is going to be good for your business at all levels. Some software companies don’t have visions that will match yours. For instance, some companies may have exit strategies that allow them to grow their user base so they can get a good payoff later when they sell the companies. All of the sudden, you have gone from using SMB software to using enterprise software. You can learn more about the visions of many software companies by reading interviews, tech blogs, and reviews. Don’t end up with software that is going to leave you hanging as your business grows.
The features offered in a software package should play a part in influencing your decision. Not all packages offer the same features. There is no sense in buying a package that has features you will never use. That is just a waste of your money, which could be better spent on other aspects of your business. Look for CRM software that has the tools you need, nothing more, and nothing less.
One of the most important considerations when choosing CRM software is security. Many systems offer “bank grade” security. This means that the web applications are “SS-Enabled” (Secured Socket). While this is hard for hackers to break, it is standard with most packages. Look for software that has this and more, because you can never be too secure. Warning signs to look for include hashed and encrypted passwords, IP access controls, multi-step login authentication, and data redundancy.