As more and more businesses start utilizing technology to improve their internal business processes, the outlook for continued growth in the Customer Relation Management (CRM) market looks promising. In fact, Gartner predicts that CRM will be a $37 billion industry by 2017.
As market competition increases, the most innovative product offerings will reap the greatest rewards. Here’s three new types of CRMs that are adding value and flexibility for users, while disrupting tradition offerings :
1) Mobile CRMs
After surveying 450 c-suite executives, a joint report by marketing research firm IDC and enterprise resource planner ISF found 31% of respondents selected a mobile CRM app as the choice for their next mobile app. Such a significant response is probably correlated to a Nucleus Research study that reported implementing mobile and social functionality to your CRM increases the productivity of sales people by 26.4%.
With numbers like that, it’s no wonder CRM startups like AppMesh can raise $3 million with only a mobile platform. Returning to Gartner, the firm predicts the number of mobile CRM apps available for download will increase by 500% in 2014. Again, that’s 500%.
2) Cloud Based CRMs
The same Gartner report suggests that by 2016, over half of CRM services will be cloud-based. Cloud-based CRMs offer a number of benefits over traditional on-premise software. For starters, purchasing a cloud-based subscription costs significantly less up-front for businesses. Add in the ease of implementation associated with cloud-based products, and it’s easy to understand the soaring popularity of Software as a Service (SaaS).
Cloud-based CRMs also better at obtaining social data, an information source which businesses are increasingly factoring into their marketing strategy. Capturing and interpreting social data also opens news doors for cloud-based vendors to act as advisors. Simply capturing the data may not be enough for some businesses; they may want their CRM vendor to provide some data consulting as well.
3) Industry Specific CRMs
In conjunction with the rise of cloud-based CRMs, startups in the field are starting to specialize, offering software suites dedicated to particular verticals. For customers, specialized products promise modules tailored directly to their needs, reducing the inherent frustration of trying to bend a generic product to fit a market-specific need. For vendors, entering narrow markets presents exciting opportunities to dominate certain segments. For example, in the span of only a few years, Veeva Systems strode past Oracle in the life-science market. Veeva’s game plan? Build a product just for life-science organizations.
Look for these three CRM types to permeate the market in the coming months, both in the form of standalone products and as add-ons to established brands.
What features does your business look for in a CRM? Do these three trends align with your company’s needs? Let us know in the comments.