Having to choose a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system for your company can be a tiresome step. With the myriad of options out there and the vast amount of features each one of them offers, it can be tough to determine which CRM is best for your business.

But we’re here to help you, salespeople, so rejoice! You don’t want to waste time (and money) on a CRM that’s not right for your business, so we’re going to help you narrow down the field to the CRM that will get you to succeed.

Cost, features, integrations, etc. What are the criteria for choosing the right CRM? And what process should you follow?

In this blog post, we’ll give you a rundown of the different types of CRMs and show you how to pick the best one for your business. So read on!

crossroads with many directions

Why choose a good CRM?

It’s no secret that a good CRM can help your business in many ways. In fact, it can be the difference between success and failure.

Imagine trying to keep track of your customers and sales leads manually. Or trying to close deals without having all the information you need about your customer in one place. It would be nearly impossible, right?

That’s where a CRM comes in. A CRM can automate and streamline your sales processes, giving you more time to focus on selling and less time on administrative tasks.

Additionally, a good CRM will help you:

  • Manage your leads: Keep track of your leads and follow up with them in a timely manner. Additionally, it can help you score your leads, so you can prioritize the hottest ones.
  • Know your customers better: You can have a 360-degree view of your customer, including their contact information, purchase history, and interactions with your company. This means you can provide them with a better, more personalized experience.
  • Stay organized: Track your sales pipeline and manage your deals effectively. This way, you can focus on the deals that are most likely to close and avoid missing any important deadlines.
  • Improve your team’s performance: Track your team’s performance and identify any areas that need improvement. Additionally, you can develop targeted training and sales coaching programs to help them improve skills such as sales targeting.
  • Make better decisions: With all of the data that a CRM provides, you can make more informed decisions about your sales strategy and allocate your resources more effectively.
  • Communicate better: Automate your email and social media outreach, so you can reach out to your customers and leads on a regular basis. Additionally, you can use your CRM to create targeted email and social media campaigns.

As you can see choosing a good CRM for your business is a great step up for your lead management, your email lead generation campaigns, and your overall team performance.

Now more than ever, it’s absolutely paramount to have a good CRM in place to help you not only generate better leads but also to manage and nurture those leads more effectively.

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What are the main types of CRM you can choose from?

Before we get into how to choose the best CRM for your business, let’s first take a look at the different types of CRMs that are available.

Operational CRMs:

These CRMs are focused on automating and streamlining your sales processes.

They typically include features such as lead and contact management, deal tracking, and pipeline management.

You can think of them as the foundation upon which you build your sales operation. If you’re just getting started with CRMs and you don’t have a lot of data or needs, an operational CRM may be all you need.

pipedrive logo

Examples of operational CRMs include:

  • Pipedrive
  • HubSpot Sales CRM
  • Zoho CRM

Analytical CRMs:

As the name suggests, these CRMs are focused on giving you insights into your sales data and managing your customers. You can use this to make better decisions about your sales strategy and operations.

They typically include features such as reporting and analytics, so you can track your KPIs and performance over time. Additionally, they often include predictive analytics, so you can identify trends and make projections about future sales.

Here are some of the best analytical CRMs on the market:

  • Salesforce Einstein
  • HubSpot Sales Insights
  • Zoho Analytics
  • Customer-Relationship

Collaborative CRMs:

Collaborative CRMs are focused on giving you a 360-degree view of your customer.

Meaning they not only track your interactions with them but also their interactions with your website, social media, customer service, etc.

This way, you can provide them with a better, more personalized experience.

They typically include features such as customer profiles, contact management, and social media monitoring.

Examples of collaborative CRMs include:

  • HubSpot CRM
  • Nimble
  • Insightly

Now that you’re familiar with the jargon, it’s time to start thinking about how to choose the best CRM for your business.

How to choose the best CRM for your business?

You’d think that with the abundance of CRM options on the market, choosing the best one for your business would be a simple task.

Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. With so many features and options available, it can be tough to know where to start.

That said, the selection process should remain the same and must be based on a good understanding of your needs in terms of marketing and sales processes, in order to define the functionalities that are essential to your business.

Once these criteria have been identified, it will be easier to sort through the numerous offers on the market and select the tool that best meets your needs.

Questions you should ask yourself when you choose a CRM

To help you get started, here are a few questions you should ask yourself when choosing a CRM:

  1. What type of business are you in?
  2. What are your main marketing and sales objectives?
  3. Do you automate your processes? Which ones?
  4. What type of data do you need to track?
  5. How large is your team?
  6. Do you need a CRM that can be customized?
  7. What is your budget?
  8. What are your long-term goals?

If you have a positive answer to each of these questions, you’re well on your way to finding the best CRM for your business.

Criteria to take into account when choosing a CRM

In addition to the questions above, here are a few other criteria you should take into account when choosing a CRM:

  1. Ease of use:

A CRM must be easy to use in order to avoid any adoption issues within your team. Otherwise, it will likely go unused, and you’ll be wasting your money.

  • Features:

As we mentioned before, make sure to choose a CRM with the features that are most important to your business. There’s no need to pay for features that you’ll never use.

  • Pricing:

CRMs can be free, or they can cost thousands of dollars per month. It all depends on the features and scalability you need. Be sure to choose a CRM that fits within your budget.

  • Integrations:

Most CRMs offer some sort of integration with other software, such as email marketing platforms, social media, and accounting software. These integrations can make your life a lot easier, so be sure to choose a CRM with the integrations you need.

  • Scalability:

As your business grows, you’ll likely need more features and functionality from your CRM. Be sure to choose a CRM that can scale with your business.

  • Customer support:

When things go wrong (and they will), you’ll want to have access to quick and easy customer support. Be sure to choose a CRM with a company that offers excellent customer support.

Final thoughts

Choosing the best CRM for your business can be a daunting task, but it’s important to take the time to find the right one.

But hopefully, armed with this information, you feel more confident in making the decision that’s right for your business.

Do some research, figure out what features are important to you and your team, and then try out a few different systems before settling on one.

The bottom line? Don’t rush into anything—choosing the wrong CRM can do more harm than good. With careful consideration, though, you’re sure to find the perfect system for your company.

Happy CRM hunting!