Wondering why you would need a custom CRM system in your company? In our digitally driven world, it’s hard to imagine how it is possible to manage a company without the customer relationship management system (CRM). Relationship with customers is the core of any business. Managing customer relationship is vital for building customer loyalty which has a great impact on the company’s revenue. Today, successful businesses rely on advanced CRM systems that help companies manage customer data, streamline processes, get actionable insights that can transform their businesses, boost sales, and increase profitability.
You need a CRM system if:
- You are selling your products to businesses, not to consumers. All major CRM systems are designed with the B2B data model.
- You have a lengthy sales process (more than a month). It’s difficult to remember where your prospects are in the cycle.
- You want to run marketing campaigns. CRM system will help you keep customer data in one place and take control of your marketing efforts.
- You have to handle more leads than you can remember. CRM software can help you contact your prospects in the sales cycle.
- You want to monitor the sales pipelines of your sales staff to have their prospects under your control.
- Your customers and prospects have multiple points of contact within your company and you want to see all the results during the sales cycle.
There are lots of CRM solutions on the modern market that are tailored for different business’ sizes and industries. Besides, there are flexible and customizable CRM platforms. So why should you choose a custom-made CRM system that is designed specifically for your company? Keep reading to learn how custom CRM software differs from the ready-made solutions and how you can benefit from implementing a bespoke CRM system. We will also discuss what things you should consider before starting your custom CRM project and how to ensure that it will be a success. Let’s get started.
Custom CRM vs Off-the-Shelf
You have made a decision to use CRM for collecting and managing your customers’ data in your organization. It’s a critical investment so you are trying to analyze different providers and software packages to understand which of them is the right solution for your business. At this stage you are not sure whether you need bespoke CRM or off-the-shelf CRM. We are going to show you the benefits and drawbacks of both approaches to help you pick the best solution.
Many companies invest in ready-made CRM systems because they are easy to install, and the initial costs are lower. But these systems are created to appeal to most businesses, so they are designed for generic tasks. Therefore, you may need to adapt your company’s business processes to fit the CRM. This may require the development of add-ons and additional training of your employees.
Out-of-the-box CRM solutions are tried and tested so you are likely to get a high level of support as a part of your maintenance contract. You will get regular upgrades that will give additional functionality as a part of your subscription. But your vendor can make changes to the software that don’t suit you. Besides, if you rely on the same ready-made software as your competitors, it will be difficult to outperform them because you can’t maximize your effectiveness and productivity.
Often, ready-made CRM software comes with functions and features that are overrated and expensive and you don’t actually need them for your business. It may happen that the features you need represent only a small fraction of the pre-built system but you will have to configure the entire software package. And keep in mind that if you have a unique business model, out-of-the-box CRM software is not an option. You may benefit from a custom CRM system.
Custom CRM software is specifically built to meet the goals and objective of a particular company. With custom-made CRM, you will have a system that is tailored to your particular requirements. That can give you a competitive advantage. Having a CRM customization team on hand, you will be able to quickly respond to changes in the market and build a CRM that stays fit for your business goals. Although the initial costs of custom-made CRM can be high, they can pay off in the long run because your system will be tailored to your every need and you will not have to spend much time or money on developing add-ons.
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Custom CRM Software – the Benefits are Huge
Let’s discuss the advantages of bespoke CRM systems in detail. Consider the following.
- Custom-made CRM software adapts to your business processes and helps you overcome your business challenges.
- You don’t have to worry about developing extra add-ons and spend less time when training your staff because the system is designed based on the workflow that your employees are already familiar with.
- Custom CRM development is cost-effective. You don’t pay for the brand. You pay for the development of the features that you really need for the success of your business.
- Tailor-made CRM software can be easily integrated with your existing software systems. They ensure quick data migration and synchronization.
- You are not tied to expensive and busy customer support of the big vendors. If you choose the right company for your custom CRM project, you’ll get a high level of support. Developers will help you update, improve or adapt your CRM as you need it.
- You have a complete control of the bespoke CRM solution’s shelf life. You may use it as long as you see the value. CRM application updates are not pushed to you – instead, you decide when you would need to update your system.
- Tailor-made CRM software is scalable and as your business grows, you can add new features to support that growth and adjust your CRM solution to meet your increased needs.
- Custom-made CRM solutions feature increased security and your customer data will be better protected against cyberattacks.
Customizable CRM Is Hard to Live with – Myth Busted
- When choosing a custom CRM, you are not required to have the in-house development team. You can invite external consultants and an implementation team.
- It may be longer to implement such a project, but you will be saving time and resources while using your CRM system because it will be tailored to your specific needs.
- Your company will benefit from better employee engagement and faster adaptation of the new CRM system because the system is tailored to their needs and they participate in the development suggesting improvements to ensure that it is easy to use.
- The whole architecture of a CRM system is flexible and it will be easier to integrate additional systems or add-ons later on.
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Things to Consider Before Developing a Custom CRM
As you see, custom-made CRM systems bring a lot of value, even though they are more difficult to implement initially. With a tailor-made solution you get exactly what you want and pay for the functionality required specifically by your company.
When developing your custom CRM system, you should take into account the following things.
- Your new system has to be convenient for end users. It should provide opportunities for quick and easy access to the most important documents, report generation. Users should be able to communicate with your company’s customers and with each other directly in the system.
- Your new solution should be scalable so that it can grow as your business evolves.
- The system should be flexible so that you can change the settings for a specific process.
- The complexity of the CRM system depends on the size of your business and its specifics so different technologies can be used for CRM development.
- Your new system should be compatible with third-party resources such as email, accounting software, messaging services etc.
- The future CRM will store valuable data about your company’s customers, transactions, and more so you should take measures to ensure data protection.
- You should analyze your goals and objectives (e.g. maintaining a client database, tracking sales activities) and prioritize them to design the tailor-made CRM system with the optimal set of features.
- Every company needs some specific CRM features, but there are core functionalities that every system should include: tracking emails, interactions and pipeline, sharing files, reports, and analytics.
Custom CRM Project – Where Do I Start?
What does it take to develop a great custom CRM system tailored just for your company? It’s important to create the ultimate CRM roadmap before you start the actual development. In this way, you’ll be able to avoid common mistakes and ensure that your new software will be simple and powerful. Here is how you can do that in 8 steps.
- Gather initial information to define your business needs and objectives. Communicate with your employees and decision-makers to get a better idea of what kind of CRM system your company needs.
- Use brainstorming techniques to determine the opportunities for further improving your customer relationship.
- Make a list of the key features for your tailor-made CRM. Try to link every CRM feature to a direct value opportunity. Revise the list and make sure you really need all the features.
- Define the scope of your CRM project. Set specific goals that your CRM software has the potential to reach, e.g. improve customer satisfaction rates, increase the efficiency of your sales representatives, establish a data warehouse etc.
- Outline the technical requirements that are necessary to get each task done. You have to address the technology stack, processes, and the specific development environment.
- Estimate costs needed to develop a CRM system. They may vary depending on the complexity, urgency, and customization. You should take into account the software development costs, infrastructure, support and maintenance, training, external/internal human resources, and an approximate number of future users.
- Develop a business case and include the information about the costs of required resources and the overall duration of your project and specify the time necessary for implementing every outlined task.
- Build a roll-out strategy for your CRM project implementation.
Now it’s time to create a great team that will be responsible for implementing the future project. Your team should consist of the representative of different departments to ensure that the process will flow properly. We recommend that you should assign the following key roles:
- The CRM project team should include employees that represent all user groups such as managers, executives, operations staff, sales and marketing personnel and other end users. They will document CRM requirements, promote the value of the new system to all users, develop a training program for employees, list user features and help implement new developments.
- The administrator will be responsible for configuring your future CRM system. The administrator will be responsible for migrating data from other applications, managing user profiles, developing marketing campaigns, creating dashboards and reports, rolling out custom features and regular upgrades etc.
- Executives and managers will play a key role in planning the CRM project, training their team members, and defining the sales process. They will establish rules for processes and the workflow, define requirements for dashboards and reports etc.
- End users should be involved in the process of CRM implementation. They should have an opportunity to provide feedback about the new software and suggest improvements. End users will participate in the training to ensure that they will be able to use the CRM system proficiently.
As you see, when you are starting a CRM project in your company, there are a lot of important things to consider. To run a successful custom CRM system implementation, you will need a lot of time, expertise, and hard work to create a detailed plan and gather an enthusiastic team. The other way is to contact Quandary CG consulting and engineering teams, who will gladly take the burden off your shoulders. We have a vast experience of working with businesses of any size and lots of success stories from different markets and industries. Order your free initial consultation now to learn how we can help you with your custom CRM project.