Measuring the Success of Your CRM Implementation
Once you put all of the hard work and effort into picking out the right CRM for your company, getting the correct edition, and customizing it to fit your processes, you may be tempted to “set it and forget it.” I think we all wish we could do that with our business technology, but leadership at your organization is going to want to know if something you’ve invested so much time and money on is actually worth it.
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So what metrics are the ones that truly demonstrate if your new CRM is worth its price tag?
Have you ever watched one of those shows with the premise of saving a business that is failing? I’m a Gordon Ramsey fan, so I’m thinking of Kitchen Nightmares, but you can go by whichever one you prefer. Every so often, those shows do a “where are they now?” episode where they return to “saved” businesses and see if they’re doing better, or not. Typically, when the business is doing just as badly as it was pre makeover, Gordon, or the host from your show of choice, chalks it up to them going back to all of their old bad habits.
This is a long winded way to say that if your employees aren’t correctly using your CRM, you’re not going to be able to measure anything. If teams are not recording information within the CRM, and recording it correctly, your CRM will still be shiny and expensive, but utterly useless, and you won’t see increased efficiency or growth. This means that one of the first things you should make sure you’re measuring is employee usage of the platform.
Not every campaign or strategy you put into place utilizing your new CRM is ultimately going to be successful. This is fine, but if you don’t know what is working and what isn’t, then there isn’t going to be a way for you to learn from previous efforts so you can spend more time focusing on the things that do work. Is one of your email marketing campaigns barely getting read by the contacts you send it to? It’s probably time to halt that campaign and come up with a new one. Is a very similar campaign getting a lot more traction? A/B testing and comparing the results can demonstrate subtle differences that really matter.
The main purpose of a CRM is to increase sales and therefore increase your organization’s ends, whether that be to increase profits, donations, etc. Depending on your industry or sales structure, this can vary greatly, and encompass a number of factors. Company success metrics can include: customer retention, customer order numbers or volume, cross sales, up sales, reactivation of previous customers, and customer referrals. Your CRM doesn’t just exist to help you gain new customers, it should also make retaining and upselling your current customers more seamless.
In order to be considered successful or “worth the money,” a CRM has to help pay for itself and then some, but your CRM is only as good as the data manually entered or automatically funneled into it. Measure your employee usage of the platform and engagement of your customers with the campaigns you have deployed, and you will be able to continually tweak your processes to make your CRM more effective for you.
Arthur Middleton Hughes for Database Marketing Institute: “How to Measure CRM Success”
Pam Baker for CRMSearch: “The Best 5 CRM Analytics”