Big and small businesses are preparing for the season that contributes most significantly to their bottom line. Christmas sales are only a few months away. Now is the time to send the marketing and sales departments into high gear. Nowhere is this more important than for the online business community. For many years the volume of online sales has grown at a higher percentage than the growth rate of traditional brick and mortar establishments. Online sales outpaced traditional sales channels by averages between three and five percent annually. This trend will continue in the foreseeable future.
While your local business establishment has direct customer contact and therefore knows the likes and dislikes of customers firsthand, online sellers do not have that advantage. They must collect as much customer information as possible and store it where it is easily accessible to salespeople.
Many small and medium-sized companies still use individual databases to achieve this goal. But that is not the answer.
Ecommerce CRM Software Is The Correct Answer
CRM software is here to stay. Many entrepreneurs still think that ecommerce CRM software is for big companies only. They tend to believe that it is too complicated for their employees. It takes too much time to train them, they say. It requires specialists in software applications. And it is too expensive. These arguments are not valid.
The most recent ecommerce CRM software rivals all the chameleons. It comes in simple, easy to implement and to use packages. There are also CRM software suites for the biggest, most complex companies and jobs. It all depends on the needs of an individual business. CRM packages can even grow with the company that employs them.
All CRM software applications offer the same basic functions. The most important ones are:
Collecting data on existing customers.
Identifying future customer groups.
Developing marketing and sales strategies to reach them.
Analyzing marketing and sales data and trends.
Establishing and maintaining customer contacts.
Maintaining social media presence.
Maximizing customer satisfaction and loyalty.
All competitive CRM software applications offer these and many more functions to some degree. How many and to what degree of sophistication determines the price of the software.
Ecommerce CRM Software Meets Changed Customer Behavior
Today’s buyers are a far cry from traditional retail and service customers. The Internet serves a wide spread of information and knowledge that is easily accessible to almost everyone. The proliferation of mobile computers, especially smartphones and laptops, put it literally into the hands of babes. These developments create informed buyers and customers. Businesses must respond to the increase in buyer sophistication or be doomed.
Statistics show that potential customers research prices for products or service on multiple Internet site before even considering a decision. Currently about 57 percent of potential customers engage in this ritual before even approaching a business. Well informed customers switch from business to business just as easily. Customer satisfaction with the sale and customer loyalty after the purchase is of utmost importance for continued success of medium and small businesses.
The software industry is responding to the needs of their potential clients. Software companies are developing ecommerce CRM software that is more customized to the special needs of medium and small businesses than ever before. Cloud storage eliminates the need for storage capacity on the customer side. And application service provider (ASP) based CRM software makes their products easier to implement and to use. In short – the time is ripe for onboarding, and there are plenty of wonderful solutions to consider when you take the time to look.