There are so many challenges associated with running an ecommerce business. That is why companies are encouraged to use every advantage and tool that is available to them. One of those tools that companies can incorporate in a seamless and inexpensive way is customer relationship management software, or CRM software.
With such software on the books, an online retailer will have a much easier time targeting leads, maximizing the potential of sales channels, and understanding where they are going wrong in dealing with customers. Here are a few reasons why CRM software is so important to an ecommerce business.
Dealing with Customers
Many companies have good product offerings, fair prices and decent shipping methods, and if a customer never has a question or problem they would have a seamless experience with the company. But what happens when a customer is not satisfied, or they are confused about something regarding the product that is up for sale? What happens then? Most ecommerce operations have less than optimal customer service standards, but CRM can change that and give you a competitive edge.
One advantage that you get with CRM is when a customer communicates with the company, whether it is through social media, email or over the phone, their previous history appears instantly. That means that whomever is communicating with the customer will know everything about them in relation to your business. What products are in their cart, what items they have bought previously, when they first interacted with the company – this information is all present.
Having that data means it is much easier to deal with a customer. Satisfying them will not take very long at all. And with all of that information on hand, your customer service rep will have a much easier time appearing personal and knowledgeable about the situation – something a customer will appreciate in a big way.
We already know that CRM software is great for dealing with customers. But how can it help your company’s operations? One of the reasons why CRM software is so useful to an ecommerce operation is because of its data collection and analysis capabilities. When you have CRM software linked to your company’s network, it means that every little bit of data is being analyzed and incorporated into the software. All of this data is present and ready for you to use to your benefit.
For instance, many companies will spend thousands of dollars on overrated analysis tools just so they can get a basic understanding of customer behavior and product sales trends. But why do that when you can get all that data and so much more at a fraction of the price? CRM software is easier to use, cheaper, and gives you a lot more meat in the analysis. Every little trend or anomaly is highlighted by the analysis tools which is hugely helpful when you are attempting to create a successful business.
Maybe you want to understand the impact of a site-wide discount on various sales channels. You will have so much data available through CRM. The software will show you what products sold the most through each channel and where the most leads were being generated for specific product sales. This is just one example of how you can understand your company’s past and current performance to fine tune how you will approach things in the future.
Whether there are three or four of you running the ecommerce business or you have a company with 50 employees, good communication is always an issue. The reason why this happens is because everyone has their own tasks to handle, different groups form and communications become siloed. Plus with ecommerce, you also have the issue of employees not always being in the same place at the same time. This leads to a disconnection between departments and individuals that will only hurt the company in the long-term.
With customer relationship management software, it is a lot easier for your company to ensure there are good channels of communication between employees and departments. Advanced ecommerce CRM software will come with chat tools that allow your employees to talk at a moment’s notice. There are also some very good file sharing capabilities, along with a task manager that will help your department heads keep everyone working in a timely fashion.
Assessing Trends and Managing Returns
One of the toughest challenges that any ecommerce operation will face is understanding buyer trends. For instance, when is your company making the most money? Is there a day in the week when more sales are being made? Are there specific hours in the day when you have the most site traffic? Where is that site traffic coming from? Why do customers buy more items in certain months as compared to others?
Some trends could be industry or worldwide and not specific to your company. Those are easier to spot. But some trends may be related to your sales channels, lead generation tools and the items that you have for sale. Understanding these trends, both good and bad, will give you perspective on how to shape your business in the coming months and years.
Another great thing about CRM is how you can better manage the returns of products by customers. With CRM software, you are not only logging sales data but also returns figures. If there is some product, or set of products, that is being returned at a higher rate you will immediately spot the anomaly. Similarly, if a specific sales channel is resulting in three times more returns than all of the others, you will know that you may have to tweak the way you are marketing and encouraging sales from that channel.
Whether you’re selling on Amazon and need a CRM, or have a standalone store with Shopify, Magento, Bigcommerce or even just need a 3dcart CRM software solution, there are cross-channel providers that offer affordable options that can give you the upper hand. There are so many things that go into running a successful business, especially in ecommerce. The good news is that if you have a high quality CRM software built into your company’s operations, everything becomes a little bit easier for you to handle.