The fight for acquiring a larger market has been brought into the online realm, and digital data is more important than ever in order to reach out to every customer. In the current era, being a brick-and-mortar retailer means being left behind, and even the largest traditional businesses are scrambling to have a larger online footprint.
Here enters Customer Relationship Management (CRM), which is a software program that can enhance customer interactions with the help of information management by increasing business efficiency, improving communication and management, and providing better customer service. It is in no way a novel concept, but CRM remains an effective tool to stand out between competitors especially in the era of an eCommerce boom. Before deciding on the ERP software for their business, a prospective owner would benefit from knowing the range of benefits CRM solutions offer for retailers.
Consumer data has always played an important role in retail enterprises, enabling the company to personalize customer service accordingly in order to achieve a smoother experience on both sides. However, the scope of how that data is utilized has reached a level of effectiveness unimaginable twenty years prior.
Relevant data such as shopping preferences and interests, gender and demographics, or brand-based preferences and aversions will enable retailers to make accurate pattern predictions for that regular consumer and for a new consumer of a similar social or cultural group. With such a powerful insight into consumer behavior, companies will be able to segment customers precisely in order to achieve a product that caters to consumer needs, run more successful marketing campaigns, and ultimately boosts productivity.
Targeted Ad Campaigns
After achieving accurate customer segmentation, free of unfounded cultural assumptions that stem from stereotypes, CRM software programs can be used to target particular customers systematically. With the organized data gathered on each individual customer on their habits and wants, the software program would allow retailers to send personalized special offers that are relevant to the recipient without appearing obnoxious or insensitive.
CRM software programs can make use of page visits, wish lists, and click interactions to reach even more accuracy in predicting preferences. Depending on the company’s mode of workflow, targeted ad campaigns can be run either via search engines or social media platforms, both having a higher number of unique page-views than an average website. Another option would be just directly emailing offers to a customer, especially someone who’s a dedicated regular, which would open up conversations and further improve the profiling process – a frank discussion is easily more valuable than any form of automatic data profiling.
With customer segmentation data, companies can work on improving customer experiences in a myriad of ways. For physical retailers, basing inventory arrangement on purchase preferences will enhance branding, which may place the retailer as the first option a customer thinks of when they think of a particular product. In online retail, incorporating additional information with purchases such as shipment tracking and order status updates will offer certainty to consumers and mark the retailer as a reliable brand. Alongside, curated offers and sale alerts will keep customers coming back for more.
Another aspect that could be vastly improved in customer service is the realm of call and chat services. While interactions with call center employees are often portrayed as inconvenient, the use of CRM will enable these exchanges to be much more helpful. For example, having an extensive history with all the past history of the customer will aid in finding the right agent for the solution and also aid that agent in how they should approach the customer’s issue. Customer support is a crucial aspect of a brand’s image, and if it is done right brand loyalty is bound to increase.
Eventually, the end goal of CRM is to automate tasks that are repetitive and of low relevance in order to help companies focus on more important work. Having the CRM system take control of simple tasks like forms and reports would give the sales department an opportunity to focus on closing deals and improving customer service.
Moreover, by efficiently utilizing data stored in the system as emails, documents, and voice calls, retailers would become less dependent on individual agents as all teams and employees will be able to access the information whenever they want. Alongside this, exchanging the more critical data among employees will promote new marketing initiatives and amplify sales.
Analytics and Reporting
Most CRMs would generate reports automatically based on their collected and organized data. Accessible to anyone in the organization with just a single click, this extensive gathering of data will enhance analytics and give rise to better insights which will aid agents in creating opportunities for new sales, promotions to retain current customers or marketing campaigns to bring back old ones
CRM is arguably the most effective tool for the marketing department, where customer profiles will provide vast possibilities for new campaigns. As CRM software programs also simplify and systematically arrange these profiles, the marketing department will struggle less when they’re segmenting customers, targeting groups for ad campaigns, or creating new promotions. A good number of times the department will have a clear lead from customer behavior data, which will enable the team to not only create the right products and promotions but also launch them at the perfect time.
With the important objective of making consistently growing sales, retailers have to deal with the critical task of maintaining customer satisfaction and loyalty. As CRM makes a detailed account of each purchase, loyalty programs can be built off easily, where customers are offered buyer points and discounts. With correct implementation, a loyalty program to retain old customers is bound to be much more affordable than any ad campaign for new customers and CRM has all the data required.
Retailers might have not utilized this business strategy as much back in the past as they lacked the ability to follow and generate consumer engagement in a curated and timely way. However, as programs like Odoo CRM get more evolved in collecting relevant data, it is for certain that using this solution to create meaningful customer relations is necessary to stay afloat in this competitive world.