The data structure might not seem that complicated at first glance. But think about the multitude of different job titles given to people that perform the same roles in different companies. Take sales as an example: Sales manager, Business Development Manager, Consultant, Director, Vice President of Sales, Proprietor. You can put them all in a database, but if I ask you to create a list of salespeople at all the companies in your database, how are you going to ...How to Choose a CRM System


A big part of succeeding in any sales job is staying ontop of your prospects. What I mean by this is that consistency is the name of the game. As much as we like to practice our sales scripts, the fact is that there is an extremely high correlation between the number of sales calls to a prospect and the likihood of winning that particular business. But why don't more salespeople ... What CRM Software You Choose


Analyst Forrester says many medium-sized businesses continue to seek an on-premise deployment ... In its assessment ... Forrester identified Siebel Professional Edition, Sage CRM SalesLogix and Pivotal as the best match for medium-sized companies.

But not even the most dyed in the wool traditionalist can deny that hosted CRM software is catching up. A study from AMR Research... the hosted model has now become the prime delivery model for CRM applications... Hosted vs packaged - which to choose?


When it comes to CustomerRelationship Management(CRM) it’s important to understand all the benefits of an integrated system before beginning your selection process. That’s why we created this guide – to provide you with the essential information you need to make the best decision possible. How to Choose a CRM System
This guide is designed to help you build a business case for a CRM system, form an effective project team, ask the right questions, identify the challenges involved and ...How to choose a CRM system

How to choose the right CRM software solution for your business

A solid CRM suite is a must-have in today’s business environment if you wish to develop, manage, and grow your business. CRM helps you retain customers and at the same time grow your customer base. All businesses, big or small aspire for a CRM solution that is the perfect fit for them. However, given the not-so-impressive rates of successful CRM deployments it is crucial that you know what you are getting into when you decide to deploy a CRM solution.


CRM software

As a generalization, most businesses, whether enterprise or SMBs have similar expectations from a CRM solution. There are certain factors that you should consider when selecting a CRM so that it is in alignment with your business practices and customer approach. These factors should cover the people, processes, and technology that will play a role in the successful deployment of your CRM solution. 

1. Know your requirements – Your CRM software purchase decision depends heavily on your awareness of your business requirements. You can shop around only if you have a clear idea of what your company needs. Your need analysis enables you to be in control and ask prospective vendors the right questions instead of being swayed by their salespersons. It forces the vendors to put forth realistic quotes without glossing over costs that get added on to your bill at the time of payment. Targeted marketing, richer customer data, integration of applications, centralized database, generating more leads, leads conversion, efficient reporting, mobile connectivity are some of the factors that you need to consider. Of these some factors could well be overarching business requirements and some not so pressing. Your need analysis should factor in your state of preparedness for deploying a CRM solution as well as your growth plans.

2. Cost – Your financial capabilities are an important consideration. The size of your business, present number of users, and future plans will have a bearing on the cost of the software and the total cost of ownership. Compare vendors for the one-time cost of software and the TCO over a period of time. In most situations small businesses are much better off with the SaaS option where they pay only for what they use; however it is also possible that the TCO over a period of time can go beyond owning an on-premise CRM solution. You can bring the deployment and maintenance costs down if you have the requisite IT infrastructure.

3. Usability – This is a factor that can make or mar CRM adoption within a company. A CRM system that facilitates intuitive navigation, entering of data and access to information with minimum number of clicks ensures user acceptability. Employee training is a cost and the process can drag if your CRM system of choice requires that your employees have to grapple with tabs and functions. Check the extent of training support provided by the vendor; how many staff personnel is it willing to train and for how long. Find out if there are any extra training costs involved. Will the vendor provide training support at the time of upgrades?

4. Vendor analysis – Once you have your requirements sorted out, you can compare vendors in an objective manner. Armed with a prioritize list of requirements you can assess, select or eliminate vendors without wasting undue time on the process. The vendor should be assessed on two counts – technology and fitness for long-term business relationship. The technological must-haves are dictated by your requirements. The vendor’s experience in your vertical is important. A CRM solution pre-customized to your specific needs will work out cheaper than a generic CRM that you are forced to customize later. Select a vendor who you feel fits in nicely with your business environment. Your staff and the vendor will have to work together for a successful deployment and it’s only possible if you and the vendor see eye-to-eye on key issues. The vendor’s standing in the market, his history of innovation and vision for the future are also important considerations.

5. On-premise or on-demand – The deployment method depends on your finances, whether you are a first-time CRM user or making a move to another vendor, your in-house capabilities and other factors. On-demand is cheaper for the short term and allows your field staff to stay in touch with their counterparts behind the desk. It is a better alternative if you wish to deploy mobile CRM. On-demand CRM is also far easier to deploy, you can have it running in a matter of days. On-premise CRM offers greater control of data and better results for your customization efforts. However, it’s an expensive proposition and well nigh out of reach of SMBs.

6. Integration of data – Compare vendors for the ease with which their product can integrate with legacy applications in your enterprise. The prime objective of CRM is to provide users with a single truth about the customer and eliminate the use of multiple silos of data. This can be achieved only if the CRM software integrates smoothly with existing applications. It is also important from the point of view of achieving an ROI from applications that already exist within the company. Integration capabilities are important as protect you from vendor lock-in. You reserve the option of building your systems with products and services of different vendors. Also check if the vendor is capable of cleaning the dirty data that is invariably generated during the course of the initial data integration.


Selecting a CRM solution can be a difficult task but given the benefits that follow the successful implementation of a correctly chosen CRM, it is well worth the effort. So, do your research, be informed, compare and ask questions. You will surely find a vendor who is the perfect fit for your business.