10 CRM functions that will boost your sales during Corona
Sales clerks are supposed to do one thing above all: advice customers and sell. No matter where they are; at the customer's office or in their home office. Their actual daily doing is quite different though. They spend a lot of time searching for customer documents, creating business reports or submitting expenses. Mobile sales solutions, integrated in an ERP system, can help you avoid this. ERP provider proALPHA has compiled the 10 most important functions you wouldn't want to miss.
The pandemic abruptly relocated many sales activities to the home office. By now, most of the companies have become accustomed to the new normal. According to a McKinsey survey , 50% of the participants found working with less direct customer contact very or somewhat inefficient at the beginning of April. By August 2020, this number had decreased to 32%. At the same time, B2B customers in Germany are enjoying the current situation: they don't want to change anything about the communication with their suppliers, according to the survey.
Both sides benefit from the rapid development of mobility in CRM as mobile applications ensure a consistent sales process and at the same time enhance customer service. ERP provider proALPHA tells you ten functions that are a real asset to sales today:
Are the desired numbers of a product in stock? How long is the waiting time for a particular variant? Sales clerks can shine with excellent service and competency if they are able to immediately answer the customer's questions and reliably confirm delivery dates. This is why they need a mobile CRM application with direct access to the ERP system, the stock currently on hand, and more relevant data from production planning.
- Direct Document Creation – From Quote to Order
Highlights of mobile working are definitely binding quotes and the direct entry of orders with a legally binding signature. This ensures that the customer receives the goods faster. You can enter the order data both in online and offline mode. As the data don't have to be transmitted by fax, e-mail or phone to the main office and manually typed into the system first, the time before the production, assembly and shipment is reduced by a whole day or even more. The quick and consistent digital process also reduces the risk of errors.
- Systematic History of All Activities
Templates for structured visit and business reports help you to precisely note requirements and agreements. They don't only serve as a memory aid, but can also be used as a reference for subsequent processes like the assembly. In case the account manager changes, the new one must know what was going on, what orders a customer has placed so far and what turnover they have generated. The new account manager can find all this information in the ERP system, enabling them to competently continue the started work.
- Manage Contacts and Appointments Efficiently
Mobile CRM not only strengthens the relationship with customers. It also adds to efficiency, for example with integrated functions for managing appointments, tasks and follow-ups. To efficiently work with calendars, customer data and contact data, the synchronization with Exchange is obviously a must.
- Fact-Driven Sales Strategy
It is beneficial when sales clerks can view informational, graphically enhanced statistics, for example on a customer's sales trend compared to the previous years. This is a way better foundation for assessing potentials and sales opportunities than ballpark figures would be.
- Project Management for Sales
The more complex a sales project, the more important it is that all notes, tasks, reports, minutes, quotes, orders and statistics are compiled in one location. Of course, you'll benefit from this in your daily business. But this also adds to solid sales controlling. Whenever a sales opportunity arises during an appointment, you have to be able to quickly enter the new sales project on your mobile device.
- Route Planning
Even though the number of customer visits has decreased dramatically since the pandemic struck, the time a sales representative spends in the field is still valuable. Reasonable visit planning for the most effective route is more important than ever. It saves a lot of time if you can have a map display all nearby contacts. This helps you to optimally plan your route for customer visits.
- Do Paperwork from Anywhere
Many sales representatives have to fulfill administrative tasks in the evening, which mainly involves writing down the minutes of the meetings and travel expenses. If they are able to enter and submit reports and receipts using their mobile devices, they have more spare time in the evening. This also speeds up processes for approving and refunding, to the benefit of all.
- Comprehensive Search Options
The core element of a user-friendly interface is a comprehensive search. This includes searching the metadata of a company as well as searching for freely defined keywords.
- Support Complex and International Organizations
Large and international sales organizations have additional requirements for a mobile CRM application. For instance, it should not be possible for everyone to view and edit all data. A multi-level rights and roles administration is just as important as the availability in various languages. Companies who are planning to introduce a mobile CRM solution should also make sure that the solution can be used by an unlimited number of sales clerks. It must also be able to run on any platform, that is on Android, IOS and Microsoft systems, and on any device like laptops, smartphones and tablets.
A mobile CRM system is a core element in a company's digital transformation. Of course, the sales department is the first to benefit from this added efficiency. But there's more to this. All employees working with information from Sales are then capable of finding the data and documents they need, conveniently and in the right version, either in the ERP system or other downstream applications.