- Most companies are only using a portion of their CRM functionality.
- CRM success stories almost always come from companies utilizing their investment to its full potential.
- The oft-forgotten features can be some of the most powerful in the software—and likely played a role in why your company chose its CRM.
As the one who buys and uses software for your company, you’re likely well-versed in Customer Relationship Management, or CRM, functionality and features. You likely spent countless hours researching the best product and trying to stay under budget while evaluating your business needs.
However, even with all that research and planning, you’re likely underutilizing some of its best tools. It’s easy for even the savviest CRM user to overlook features and capabilities.
If this is you, don’t fret. We will explore some of the most underused CRM features and functionality so you get the maximum benefits out of your investment today.
ALSO READ: Top CRM Automations for 2023
In this article...
If you’re finding you need to make your communications more efficient and streamlined, it’s time to start using email integration, one of the top features of a CRM.
Many businesses and people still rely on email as their most-used means of communicating. With email integration, a CRM can help you sync contacts, organize and keep emails in one place, as well as customize your CRM feed.
While implementing email integration, be sure to utilize email engagement features. Email engagement is important for many reasons. For example, it allows you to see when emails have been opened and read, and it will enable you to see when someone clicks a link, opens an attachment, or sends a reply.
Email engagement goes hand-in-hand with email integration to help you save significant amounts of time by keeping you more organized and appraised of how well your email marketing is doing.
Email templates are the best way to round out your email use for CRM. While it sounds repetitive, utilizing email templates can save you and your team time. Email templates save you and your team time because templates contain pre-filled information specified by your email marketing team, so they don’t spend time re-entering information for each type of email.
Template types are dependent on specific activities or triggers. Each type of trigger has its own template type that you can personalize. For example, you can choose when you want to send it and to which type of customer.
Template examples include global templates for any product or marketing email, personal templates for your use only, as well as generic organizational templates that anyone can use.
When dealing with customer relationships and management, it’s ideal to have an idea of the big picture and how customers behave from the initial contact all the way through the sale. Knowing customer behavior helps you and your team predict future behavior and how you can connect with them through each stage in the customer journey.
Predictive analytics help you accurately forecast sales revenue to make informed decisions. When using your CRM, remember to use the predictive analytics capabilities to help you give your customers what they want before they know they want it.
You probably do already use your CRM dashboard. You may refer to it daily, and your team may also depend on the snapshot of data the dashboard CRM feature uses. However, you may still need to customize your dashboard or use it in a way that can benefit your team efficiently and effectively.
When creating your CRM, it’s helpful to consider sales goals and KPIs and a deeper dive into these insights. For example, you can include closed deal data by team or region instead of just tracking your total sales.
Dashboards can bring better team alignment due to their ability to include more flexible analytics and more granular views. Just be sure to enable easier viewing of both high-level and granular data and business goals.
CRMs typically have at least one reporting feature, most have several. Some reporting types that people overlook in their CRMs include customer service reports, sales performance reports, pipeline analysis reports, sales activity reports, and revenue forecast reports. These powerful tools help teams track performance and identify trends and patterns to make informed decisions.
These decisions can range from how to allocate resources to how to optimize sales efforts. The mistake some people make is assuming that reporting is a one-time thing, but reporting is a continuous process changing with customer and business needs.
Voice recording and notes
If your customer service team hasn’t yet utilized notes, it’s time—especially voice recordings and notes. While automated entry is helpful, customer service folks can offer significant insight by adding their knowledge to the record.
Having customer service teams enter their note data helps them deliver better support and also helps sales and marketing teams. For example, sometimes your customer service teams are the only people privy to customer preferences and unique requirements. Having notes in an easily accessible place where all can view their insights will prove invaluable for your business by creating personable service clients expect.
Choosing the best CRM
CRM software solutions are improving and expanding at a rapid rate. As a result, more and more companies are offering CRM products. You can find the best CRM by following a few steps.
- Define your business needs. Do you need better access to data, or do you need to increase your team’s efficiency? Do you need to increase leads or convert more? Answering questions like this will help narrow down what CRM tools you need to meet your goals.
- Identify your must-haves. What tools you need will depend on how you define your business needs in step one. Make a list of your absolute musts, and then your “nice to haves.”
- Identify which teams will use and access your CRM. Ask them what tools and features they’d like to have access to.
- Consider your budget. Determine how much and how often (monthly, yearly, etc.) you’d like to pay. Take a look at all options and plans. Make sure there are no hidden fees.
- Deduce if you want a cloud-based or an on-site CRM.
- Make sure the CRM is compatible with your current software.
- Find a reputable supplier who will offer customer service should you need it.
Once you work through all or most of the above steps, you’ll have a clearer idea of the type of CRM solutions and the functionality you’ll need.
Still looking for the latest in CRM solutions? Check out our CRM Software Buyer’s Guide.
Who uses CRM?
Major industries widely use CRM software, including banking, finance, technology, insurance, and manufacturing. In addition, teams that use CRM include marketing, customer service, and production.
What is CRM functionality?
A CRM is a tool that lets teams store customer information in one location so that it’s readily available to anyone who needs it. The software helps capture data from multiple channels, including customer information, sales, sales opportunities, marketing campaigns, and customer interactions.
1 monday Sales CRM
monday sales CRM is the customizable, no-code CRM that allows you to control your entire sales funnel and close more deals, while simplifying communication and collaboration. Automate manual work, capture and import leads, and centralize deal and contact info, all in one place.
2 HubSpot CRM
HubSpot is an intuitive CRM that makes managing your sales pipeline a breeze. Everything you need to track important metrics, set up time-saving flows and automations, manage clients seamlessly, and grow your business is available in one tidy dashboard. Plans are available for businesses at every stage of growth, starting at 100% free. Start taking the guesswork out of business management today with HubSpot CRM.
3 Zoho CRM
Fully-customizable Zoho CRM provides unified solutions for businesses of all types and sizes. Conduct your Sales & Marketing analytics to gain insights using Dashboard views and Automate your daily routines. Customize your CRM theme based on your industry needs using Canvas, Omnichannel communication for streamlined communication between teams and customers, handle customer support from within the platform to improve customer relationships. Get Started with Zoho CRM now!