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Growing a small business requires the right business process tools to remain competitive in today’s marketplace. Ideally, the decision to implement such programs, like BigContacts CRM software, should occur long before the business feels competitive pressures to do so, as noted in a Forbes overview on ‘change management.’

“It’s easy for leaders to say that they need to improve and invest in doing things better (either because the marketplace is telling them to or because they need to be proactive before circumstances force their hand).  The reality is that without strategy, change is merely substitution – not evolution.”

At times, business owners may push back on replacing their legacy programs, fearing the disruption internally that will, most likely, carry over to their customer base with other negative impacts, including  delays in getting the payroll out to a slowdown in orders and shipments.

One of the keys, therefore, to  successful implementation is to make certain the CRM integrates with existing programs: The new system must not operate as an “island” devoid of transparency or connectivity to critical programs.

Consequently, and when it comes to using cloud-based services (SaaS) versus on-premise programs, this uncertainty is further enhanced by the prevailing notion that using a cloud-service means giving up control of the company’s proprietary data, documents and files—though a more proper question, according to Cloud Tech, is whether or not the business is really in control of their data as it exists on-premise.

As such, and without proper training when new software is implemented, users often revert to their old programs; this, even though decision-making relies on historic versus real-time information. The latter represents a fundamental benefit derived from using Web-based CRM like BigContacts.

Overall, a key component to successfully implementing any new software is the necessary ‘buy-in’ among department heads to the C-level suite. Unlike BigContacts, the more complex and layered CRM platforms thwart full usage by employees, managers and above.

More often than not, when users are not privy to the ‘big picture’ as to why they are using the software, they are inclined to revert back to their old programs. Training issues, then, loom heavily with such complex solutions to the point that some vendors even recommend appointing key personnel within the business as liaisons during implementation.

But the good news for SMBs, according to a Forbes contributor writing on cloud computing, is the upward trend in universal cloud adoption. While 37% of U.S. small businesses are currently using cloud-based services, that percentage is expected to hit 78% by the year 2020. Furthermore, when it comes to using  CRM software, studies indicate that a fully “utilized CRM system can increase sales by 29%.”

Surprising or not, online use among small business owners averages “four hours a day” to attend to the “nuts and bolts” of running their operations. What’s more, some 58% of these owners are using cloud services to manage “relationships” with their customers.

Additionally, among the “2015 Top 10 SMB/Business Issues…,” customer relationships ranks fourth in importance when it comes to “gaining and keeping clients,”  which defines the goal of the developers at BigContacts: give businesses the tools to close more deals while nurturing present and future client relationships.

In short, today’s businesses must operate smarter, using the right CRM software that integrates intuitively with key programs, like Outlook and Mailchimp. Sales teams can interact with customers on social media channels, attend to customer questions and provide updates to profiles without opening multiple programs and windows. In addition, marketing departments are given more meaningful data to develop targeted campaigns.

Learn more about how CRM software can help you identify more selling opportunities while enhancing customer relationship. Contact us for a free demo, and ask us about our no-hassle, 30-day trial period.

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