In the current digital landscape, it is increasingly important for businesses to capture data on clients and prospects, compile analytics on marketing efforts, and implement tools to improve the organizational efficiency of everything from sales to operations. Unlike costly custom-built enterprise systems of a decade ago, modern customer relationship management (CRM) systems compartmentalize these functions and provide a central location, often cloud-based, for all the data your business needs.
The demand for real-time customer data has led to enormous growth in the number of available options. If your business is looking to purchase and implement a customer relationship management solution, online CRM reviews can be an excellent resource to supplement your CRM research.
Pre-define What You’re Looking For
Before your start digging into CRM reviews, think about your actual businesses needs and the unique requirements you have for a CRM. By knowing what you truly need, you can more easily wade through the sea of CRM reviews out there.
Look for Meaningful Comparisons
A big part of the appeal of most CRM systems is their scalability. Theoretically, they should work for everyone from small businesses with five employees to large corporations with five thousand employees. However, some solutions are simply too much for smaller companies and will end up costing more in the long run.
Make sure the CRM software reviews you consult include apples-to-apples requirements and feature comparisons of different solutions and note the recommended organizational size for each product. It will be particularly helpful to read reviews from businesses that are similar in size and scope to your own. It can be tempting for smaller businesses to adopt the same solutions as large, well-known companies, but this may not always be in your best interest. Learn from those who are already using certain CRM systems successfully.
Beware Hidden Agendas
The nature of online interaction makes it easy for companies to disguise a sales pitch as an impartial product review. Often vendors are requesting just their best customers review them online, making CRM reviews sometimes unreliable. Legitimate CRM reviews should include both the positive and negative aspects of a given product. Having access to relevant and complete information will help you make the best decision for your data needs.
Pay Attention to the Details
Nothing is more frustrating than a simplified 5-star rating system when you’re considering a business solution as complex and pivotal as CRM software. There are too many moving parts and contingencies to consider, and these factors are difficult to rank without detailing the context behind them. The more information you can access on different solutions, the better.
Collect and Analyze
When choosing a CRM system for your business, online reviews can be an invaluable resource. Following these guidelines, you will be able to narrow the large and growing field of software solutions and invest in the one that is best for your business.
However, you need to not only consume CRM reviews, but collect the information, share it with stakeholders, match it against your pre-defined requirements, etc…CRM reviews alone are not going to guarantee you’re selecting the right product. Learn more about a formal software selection process.