Friday, January 25, 2013

5 Key Benefits of Cloud CRM Over Old CRM for Small Businesses

Due to their inherent size and financial constraints, small businesses can largely benefit from effective application of a comprehensive Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solution that encompasses the right tools and strategy. The very core of Customer Relationship Management is to revolve around a customer-centric business strategy that initially lays its foundation and eventually flourishes through elevated customer satisfaction and loyalty. The efficiency, focus and productivity aspects of a CRM solution enable value conscious small businesses to successfully serve a larger number of their customers by employing fewer resources.

Benefits of Cloud CRM over traditional CRM software
Costs: For a very long time, traditional or old CRM software costs kept outweighing their benefits and the solution they provided for a particular issue were short-lived. When traditional software systems are deployed, requirements include client PC software and/ or server software, the servers and PCs themselves and of course staff resources that are needed for installation, operation and maintenance of hardware and software.
Hardware & software: When CRM software is delivered over the internet as a service, it is termed as cloud CRM which is a branch of the SaaS (Software as a Service) concept. What cloud CRM solutions do is bring about a significant reduction in Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) by taking the burden off a company’s shoulders and transferring it on to the CRM vendor. Thus, the responsibility of owning servers, management of software deployment, employing trained and dedicated IT staff, CRM software upgrades, etc. now becomes the prerogative of the CRM vendor. It just needs just a browser-equipped PC along with a broadband internet connection. All the benefits and functionalities of a traditional CRM system are served over the internet and that too at much higher speeds.
Updates & upgrades: The purchase and management of traditional CRM software involves installation, hardware compatibility, software update and upgrade issues – all of this is completely eliminated when cloud CRM is chosen. When cloud CRM is deployed, all issues related to maintenance, updates, upgrades, backups, system cleaning and management have to be conclusively shouldered by the cloud CRM vendor. Taking into account the operation expenditures, the implementation of cloud CRM has lower overall costs, can be implemented with relatively better speed and also deliver a much faster return on investment (ROI). Cloud CRM software also drastically reduces the associated time with adoption of new technologies. A new feature can be activated online and made available to end-users with their next p.
Flexibility: Small businesses do not enjoy the financial elasticity that large and medium sized firms do. This necessitates that they have an option to only subscribe to features based on their needs or newer strategies and financial growth. Cloud CRM allows just that - it offers small businesses with a ‘pay as you go’ business model for CRM implementations. Also, some vendors offer CRM solutions that can be switched by their customers from cloud CRM to enterprise CRM and vice versa.
Implementation & adoption: 
Cloud CRM solutions offer the advantage of being independent of computer and location, thereby providing small business CRM users the freedom to utilize their CRM tools anywhere and at any time.

Conclusion
Keeping the cost advantages and flexibility benefits of choosing a cloud CRM solution in mind, the primary focus should always remain on its functionality aspects. CRM solutions empower small businesses to streamline their services, enforce effective workflows and establish stronger customer loyalty. Cloud CRM eliminates the operational and cost related barriers that stand in way of implementing a customer driven strategy.


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