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The Hidden Problem with Online CRM

As Software as a Service (SaaS) continues to grow in popularity, and mobile applications overtake static Internet usage, we also see a positive impact on CRM adoption rates. Gartner forecasted 2015 as the tipping point for cloud CRM—the year when more than 50% of companies would have web-based CRM systems. They predict that by 2025 fully 80% of CRM implementations will be SasS-based.

 

Cloud CRM and mobile access certainly make CRM systems more flexible and available. But here’s the problem: CRM systems are only as good as the data entered. If data entry is hit or miss, your CRM system loses much of its value. To help ensure CRM success, your employees need to be able to work wherever and whenever they want…even when they are working offline.

 

Mobile Access to Online CRM: A Competitive Advantage

According to a recent study by Boston-based Nucleus Research, mobile access to CRM can boost sales productivity by 14.6% on average. Furthermore, 30% of survey respondents reported that mobile CRM improved their sales reps’ productivity by more than 20%.

 

Similarly, Innoppl Technologies found that mobile CRM not only raises productivity it increases revenue. When the Atlanta-based web and app developers looked at sales quotas, they found that 65% of mobile CRM-enabled reps achieved their sales goals versus only 22% of non-mobile CRM users.

 

It’s easy to see why businesses large and small are adopting cloud CRM and mobile access. But if you want the greatest productivity and ROI from web-based CRM, you need a system that encourages use at all times.

 

The Catch: Online-Only CRM Lowers Productivity

As connectivity becomes virtually ubiquitous, the need to work offline may not appear to be a problem. But think about the times when you haven’t had Internet access:

 

Perils of Public Wi-Fi — Public Wi-Fi in coffee shops, airports and even hotels is not always secure. When working with critical customer data, you may not want to risk hopping online and accessing your company’s CRM system.

Inflight Internet Unavailable — While more and more airlines provide in-flight Internet access, it’s not universal. At those times, you may find it necessary to work offline.

Working in Remote Locations — You’re meeting with a client or prospect and want to take notes, update records and schedule a follow-up meeting. If you can’t get on the customer’s Wi-Fi or use mobile broadband, you’re forced to save data to your device.

Driving Through a Dead Zone — Yes, they still exist. You’re on the road and need to contact a customer. If you have cell coverage but can’t access the Internet, you may not be able to pull up the contact record you need.

When your sales reps are forced to work offline and can’t update directly into the CRM system, they use whatever is most convenient. They open up an Excel spreadsheet or Word file, take notes and save locally. Or worse, they revert to pen and notepad. And while they have the best of intentions to transfer data to CRM at a later time, there’s no guarantee. And even if they do, you’ve still created more work for people whose time is best spent selling.

 

Access CRM Anywhere & Anytime

You don’t have to spend much time researching and reviewing CRM systems to discover news about the dramatic failure rates for CRM. Anywhere from 40% to 70% of implementations reportedly fail to meet expectations. But when we examine the reasons for these so-called failures, we find that most boil down to the same thing: Usability…or more precisely, the lack of usability.

 

At Claritysoft, we’ve always made usability our priority. In addition to ease of use and focusing on the features users rely on most, we’ve designed our online CRM system to provide access to CRM data even when working offline. Users can produce price quotations, enter new opportunities into the pipeline, update existing records, add tasks, schedule meetings or open a contact record…then synchronize to the cloud once they are connected.

 

Claritysoft raises the bar on your success with the online CRM system that works the way you work.

 

To learn more, request a free, personalized demo.