Beyond just a contact tool, your sales team needs a system that can effectively manage your interactions with your prospects, leads, and current customers. What was once tracked by multiple spreadsheets, databases, or applications, can now be found in a one-and-done CRM that automatically updates your complex sales information.
According to a recent study by Salesforce, 80% of business leaders reported using a CRM system as “a single source of truth for their customers.” As the need for better business relationships continues to grow, so does the need for more modern systems, with greater capabilities – without breaking the budget.
Why Are CRMs Important for Sales Teams?
In 2021, the total value of the CRM market reached around $69 billion dollars and is projected to reach around $146 billion, by 2028. This is because CRMs are the most commonly used databases for tracking activities and customer interactions, as well as collecting and optimizing leads. Their primary purpose is to secure all of your data in one place, making it easier to track and analyze important information about your sales processes.
If you are researching which CRM tools are best for your sales department, it is important to know the differences in the systems available. Most CRMs that are not solely focused on the sales process will include other multi-departmental tools like customer service tickets, automated billing, marketing communications, and executive dashboards. These are great options if you are looking to configure your entire company into the CRM and have the budget to support it.
If you are generally just focused on the sales process, you should evaluate more sales-focused CRMs. These platforms may also layer onto traditional CRMs to provide additional functionality to make sales reps more efficient. This is done by including features like deal tracking, customer mapping, prospecting sequences, cadence management, and much more.
These CRM functions help your sales team:
- Evaluate your sales cycle
- Better score your leads
- Increase overall productivity
- Keep your leads engaged
- Develop segmenting & personalization
- Send your message at the right time
- Shorten your sales cycle
- Strengthen your sales pipeline
- Monitor, analyze, and improve campaign results
- Improve customer retention
CRM systems also help cut down on tedious administrative tasks that can take up more of your time. This is especially important for Account Executives or other sales management positions because they can successfully navigate from pipeline to onboarding, to after-sales support with a few simple clicks.
However, CRMs can’t manage the information they don’t have, so if SDRs or other sales reps work outside of the system or without adequately managing it, their effectiveness lowers for your entire team.
Choosing the Best CRM System
According to Linkedin’s 2022 State of Sales Report, 57% of sales pros spend 3–10+ hours per week using their CRM tools. Around 32% of sales reps report they spend more than an hour manually entering their data each day.
As a sales leader, you are responsible for ensuring your sales reps are spending that time productively. One way to do this is by choosing a CRM system that works best for your business objectives, goals, teams, and the workflows you are looking to manage.
- Who is going to be using the system the most? Get their input when deciding and use that information to help cut options.
- What integrations would be most helpful? Think about the other technology and software you use, and what needs to be integrated for the best success rates.
- Plan your budget – Don’t be surprised by hidden fees, ask a sales rep to help calculate all the costs associated with the CRM plan. Check for any discounts or pay yearly to save even more.
- Look for options – The more flexible the options are from the CRM vendor, the more it can grow with your business.
- But don’t go overboard – Opting for something greater than your needs can deter you from properly managing it.
- Try it out – Ask to see their demos and sign up for any free trials they offer.
- Stay compliant! – With GDPR how your data is stored is extremely important. Having a GDPR-ready CRM system helps you manage customer data more efficiently.
Choosing the best CRM for your sales team means understanding your options and narrowing down features that aren’t as important – ultimately decreasing your CRM costs.
Highest-Rated CRMs for Sales Teams
We wanted to help you compare some of the best CRMs on the market right now. Here’s what we found from comparing reviews & features on all of the top SaaS sites. Take a look at our list below, in no particular order.