A guide on: How to pick the right CRM platform
At some point or the other every business feels the need for a better customer support system, most start with emails but soon that’s also not enough, few people opt to scale up their customer relations team, but what you need may be a customized Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform.
Once you accept the fact that you need a CRM platform comes the big question. Which one?
Picking the correct platform for customer support is the initial hurdle in the wake of scaling your client support system as there are just too many support software out there.
Not only are the options endless, but every single CRM solution provider is obviously trying to present their product as the best in the market. This means that they all look attractive at first glance, and task of choosing one can be a pretty daunting.
Today, we’re going to talk about the points you need to keep in mind while figuring out which CRM platform suits you the best. It’s a step by step guide to help you cover all the necessary aspects of the issue.
The Process of Choosing Support Software
Best way to approach the issue of choosing the right CRM platform is to go about it in a structured manner. You need to figure out all the aspects which will come into play and address them one by one.
Here’s what you need to do:
1) Figure out what your requirements are
2) Discuss with your team
3) Assemble a list of options
4) Eliminate the options which doesn’t satisfy your needs
5) Try the remaining options and pick one
Let’s go through all those steps in detail.
1) Figure out what your requirements are
First comes the need for introspection. You need to look at the customer support you currently provide and how you want to be changed about it now. What are the needs which you have from the CRM platform, then you can start looking at the options available.
The people you should think about while figuring your needs are:
- The Customers
- The Support team
- The Managers
Follows are few things to consider when it comes to all of those parties:
What kind of customer support experience you want to provide to your customers?
- How important is it to have personal touch in your communications with customers?
- For which cases you want customers to use resources available and for which cases you want customers to log on to your portal for submitting queries?
- What part of your customer support you want to provide as self-service to your customers?
The support Team
What kind of environment you want for your support agents?
- Feature set and usability is a matter of give and take, so what’s the best balance of the two for you?
- How much do they need to collaborate?
- How much automation do you need?
What capacity do you need your supervisors to have?
- What are the consistent issues that your managers are having?
- What kind of data or information do they require with the end goal to understand them? (For instance, if consumer loyalty is down, at that point perhaps it’s an issue of long answer times?)
After you’ve considered each one of those requirements, you ought to likewise consider the general condition of your organization and in addition where it’s going—and how quick.
Picking a support platform is an imperative choice. Onboarding your group to another platform requires time and effort, so you need to consider what’s next for your organization.
Choose something that will take care of your needs for a long time to come.
Consider the following things:
- In what ways will your customers or audience group change?
- How quickly is your team growing?
- Do you think you will get to 100+ support agents one day?
- How will your customer support requirement change down the line?
After going through all of these points, you should have a list of things that you need. For example:
- An option to create a knowledge base
- Great collaboration features
- Easy to use interface
Keep this essentials list as brief as possible for quicker evaluation.
Besides the essentials, you can also think about features that you may use in the future to do something that will benefit you.
- Analytics for in-depth reporting
- Automations to make your team more efficient
And then you get started.
2) Discuss with your team
After you’ve assembled a fundamental review of your needs and future plans, you should also have a discussion with other people in the team.
The ones who will be using the tool every day as well as those directly managing them will be crucial obviously.
After having a discussion with your team, your list of things you absolutely require and things you totally don’t need will be finished and conceded to by everybody.
3) Put Together a List of Options
Now that you’ve had a discussion about what you really require and discussed with your group, it’s time now to begin taking a look at choices available.
To figure out what your options are just start with google. The no. of results will be a lot but you will have a comprehensive view.
A lot of sites also have reviews of most of the market prevailing options. Go through as many articles as possible and keep looking for the feature set you need.
While looking into these reviews you will get to know more and more about what features are available on different platforms and it may help you update your list of requirements
After doing your research get in touch with your network for recommendations as nothing is more valuable than the first hand experiences. It will also help you eliminate a few options or may be add a few.
But remember take these recommendations under consideration with a pinch of salt as the fact that a solution didn’t work out for another company, doesn’t mean it won’t for yours.
Also try visiting few communities online and getting reviews from there as well.
4) Evaluate and Eliminate
Once you have a list of options at hand go through each one of them and see what features they offer.
Most of the providers have a list or videos showcasing all the features of their product so you won’t even need to register to evaluate this.
This will enable you to see which platform instantly have (or don’t have) the things you’ve set up as your requirement for your organization.
Remove the choices that don’t meet your criteria from your list. In the event that the list of options is still long, you can likewise depend on your gut a little and dispose of the ones you feel are excessively mind boggling, excessively costly, or that you simply don’t care for the look of them.
Keep in mind that, you’re not cutting off ties here—you can simply return to any of these, yet your current task is to come down to the supreme crème de la crème of CRM platforms as per your particular needs.
Once you are down to 2-3 choices you can start trying your hands on these.
5) Try Them Out
Since you have your best alternatives, it’s a great opportunity to join and evaluate how you like really working with them.
Most of the good platforms has a trial or a demo account you can use to get into it.
Play around with it to get a vibe of how it functions and what you’re searching for really feels like.
In case that something appears to be an incredible fit, test it well by importing your emails and make sure everything is being imported and working correctly.
All Good? Ask your group to do the same and test it as per their requirements, and after that talk with them about what they loved and what they didn’t—in a perfect world you ought to have everything down in a synergistic report so individuals can remark on it.
As a matter of fact while testing a platform can uncover a few things that you probably won’t like usability wise, and you ought to be prepared for any such occurrence.
Stress not, though—if something doesn’t work out for you, simply return, pick something else from your list and rehash until you find ideal choice for you.
Pick your CRM platform well
Picking a CRM platform for your team is a big step as it will set the tone of your customer relations, remember a good team can do a lot with the right tool and once you commit to a platform you will be using it for a considerable amount of time.
There are a lot of options out there, and going through all of them will take you a good amount of time and effort
Never be afraid to be picky and take your time—a tool that fits your needs perfectly is crucial for your customer support’s success and team’s productivity.