5 ways to increase your startup's revenue with a CRM

If you run a start-up, you probably know that the difference between survival and failure lies somewhere in the bottom line, i.e. how well your company can generate revenue.

Traditionally, unless you run a business where the value of your services thrives with a larger and more active user base (think Twitter or Facebook), the need to accumulate more revenue should always take precedence over accelerated user growth. This is especially true in today's unforgiving funding climate, where presenting an MVP to investors to generate funds without revenue can be a tough sell.

Adopt a CRM system. Until recently, these softwares did not receive the recognition they deserve for the role they play in revenue generation. But this has changed. In their quest to meet customer expectations, business owners in all types of industries are beginning to appreciate the linear correlation between customer relationship management and the bottom line.

The great potential of a CRM to acquire new customers and maximize their value over their lifecycle has resulted in Fortune 500 giants and small startups alike integrating such solutions into the core of their information systems.

Regardless of your company's size or scope of activity, to boost your startup's revenue generation, you need a customer management system. But don't just take our word for it. Below we explain the importance of a CRM for your startup's revenue.

How does a CRM increase revenue and profitability?

According to sales experts, some of the essential requirements to close a deal successfully are: good prospecting, relational selling, accurate identification of pain points, making persuasive presentations, overcoming objections, closing the sale and obtaining recurring sales or referrals.

But stringing together all these tightly connected aspects of the sales process is not only tedious, but also time-consuming. Therefore, startups need CRMs that help them streamline operations and exponentially increase sales in order to achieve profitability with less effort.

With management software, team members, whether in sales, marketing or customer service, receive a detailed view of each customer to gain insight into their activity and behavior. Data sets are thus available in a single source of accurate information. This includes, for example, information on a customer's purchase history in order to take into account their preferences and provide them with a more personalized experience.

Here's a good example: implementing Efficy's 360° customer view feature for CRM allows teams to cut through silos of information and give departments (sales, marketing, finance and production) a complete view of customer relationships in order to create more personalized experiences.

Remember that, in your company, your employees are internal customers in a sense. And real-time reporting can be a great way to keep department members in sync and focused on meeting their KPIs on time.

Efficy's reporting tool features customized dashboards that give members of different departments autonomy to choose how they want to report their progress. While maintaining confidentiality, each member has access to their own reports and line managers in each department can view all relevant reports for monitoring and evaluation purposes.

This not only ensures that team members are held accountable, but also improves sales performance as the process becomes more results-oriented. Storing information in a single source of truthful information helps centralize business intelligence that can tip the business balance in your favor. Even better, this store of information is easily accessible and available to your team members: all for one, one for all.

How to increase revenue with a CRM

According to Harvard Business Review, a reduction of just 5% in customer churn can boost your profitability by 25 to 85%. Therefore, companies that want to increase their revenue can take full advantage of the data insights available with CRM technology in order to, as a first step, prevent customer defections.

In addition, well-implemented customer management software remains an invaluable tool for increasing revenue by helping companies better understand their customers.

When marketing and sales teams take into account customer preferences gleaned from data, they implement targeted campaigns that drive engagement, conversions and increased sales.

Leveraging these features of a CRM system enables companies to position themselves correctly to drive revenue and long-term profitability:

Align internal teams to improve efficiency

Integrating a CRM with other business functions in marketing, sales, production and finance can increase company profits. The seamless transfer of customer-related data can help teams act on accurate information in a more targeted and timely manner.

For marketing teams, management systems reveal a wealth of valuable information about customers, including their contact details, purchase history and more. This data can be extremely useful for developing targeted marketing campaigns, which are more likely to generate conversions.

Efficy's marketing campaigns tool helps ensure collaborative work between marketing, sales and customer service teams with a centralized database that displays marketing campaigns and the contacts linked to them in real time. This avoids information silos and helps foster stronger customer relationships.

On the sales side, this tool can track leads throughout the process and identify opportunities to increase average order value through upselling or cross-selling. You can also leverage CRM data to develop a territory plan for the sales team and help them focus their efforts on the areas that are most likely to generate results.

The finance team could also benefit from CRM integration. For example, you can use data from customer relationship management software to develop more accurate financial forecasts that take into account customer behavior patterns. As an added benefit, linking billing and payment processes to the CRM tool can streamline the receipt of payments and improve cash flow.

Finally, integrating management software with production can also positively affect the profit margin. For example, if you use data from your customer relationship management solution to manage inventory levels, you can avoid both stock-outs and overproduction, which can be very costly. Likewise, linking production processes to customer service data in the CRM platform can help identify and correct issues that drive down customer satisfaction rates.

Discover customer buying behavior

With the help of artificial intelligence and machine learning, marketing and sales departments can leverage next-generation CRM systems to measure performance and analyze trends and patterns to develop sales forecasts or anticipate changes in buying behaviors.

Efficy's interaction history provides enough context regarding customer interactions to enable teams to deliver a more impactful customer experience. The tool displays an interactions screen that details all communications (and their outcomes) with CRM users (internally) or customers (externally).

Internally, teams can link an interaction to a new opportunity that the sales team can try to make happen or, in the case of an external customer, link a complaint letter to the customer service team for resolution.

To meet customer expectations, most startups take an omnichannel approach to sales. Discovering the most profitable channel can be decisive, as it allows iterating marketing efforts with a renewed focus on winning platforms.

Ultimately, the advanced analytics of a CRM brings the 360-degree view of customers required to make informed decisions. What to do with so much data? Drop unviable leads like a hot potato, focus the marketing team's efforts on leads with more potential, and intercept downward trends just before they affect the bottom line.

Forge stronger customer relationships

Effective customer service can turn potential customers into loyal buyers and brand ambassadors for your company. However, you must first develop relationships and build trust.

An efficient CRM offers a number of advantages, but perhaps the most important to your bottom line is its ability to track the status of customer accounts, regardless of where the buyer is in the process. This allows you to intervene when you see a reduced likelihood of conversion and leverage real-time actionable information to keep them engaged.

Sometimes knowing the right time to send a message to a customer can be the difference between a productive interaction or an attempt that gets relegated to the spam folder. You can earn trust and loyalty by keeping everyone on the sales team on their toes and equipping them with the right information to send messages to prospects and existing customers at the right time and with the right strategy.

Increased trust and loyalty not only leads to repeat sales, but also to referrals that significantly expand the customer base and drive revenue growth. Efficy's interest area management feature offers another way to segment customers based on interests identified through their activity or interaction with the company.

The insights thus generated can be used to better personalize communications or explore additional up-sell and cross-sell opportunities to both existing and potential customers.

In addition, using your CRM data to segment audiences into specific groups can help you target them with more personalized marketing messages that impact them more.

Another revenue-generating weapon is Efficy's segmentation tools. With it, you can delineate audiences according to different criteria (in this case, any data can be used as criteria for segmentation; for example, the prospect's company, geographic location, birthday, request, current opportunities or previous purchases, etc.) and target them with more personalized messages.

Improve employee productivity and performance

A CRM helps you increase turnover by allowing you to plan and organize tasks in a unified dashboard. This gives your team members the access they need to tasks and information at all times. Finally say goodbye to overlapping tasks and assigning them to the wrong quarter.

A quick cleanup of the backlog can eliminate unnecessary and unproductive work that has no real impact on the bottom line. This way, you'll leave more room for meaningful work that allows for more revenue at the end of the fiscal year. If there is not so much to do, it should not be a cause for concern. On the contrary, less work for sales teams means more time dedicated to meeting customer needs.

Efficy's campaign automation makes it easy to manage multiple campaigns with the ability to predefine marketing triggers that are activated after a given action. For example, a sales team member can schedule an automation feature, such as sending a reminder to subscribe to a service after the customer has signaled their serious intent to purchase it during a phone call.

Accelerate the sales lifecycle.

As your customers continue their buying journey, you need to constantly assess their needs and satisfaction levels, be available to correct any potential sales lifecycle failures, and provide useful feedback to encourage them to move on to the next phase.

One way a CRM platform helps streamline the sales cycle is by providing a single, centralized point in which to store all customer data. When needed, teams can easily view and analyze complete customer profiles with their contact information, sales history, emails, buying patterns and more.

This facilitates quick access to vital customer data to create proposals tailored to each customer's needs. This also speeds up the closing of transactions.

Another way in which a management software helps streamline the sales cycle is by automating tedious tasks that would otherwise consume precious time. It allows a company to set up automated workflows to save valuable time and resources by eliminating manual data entry and ensuring timely customer follow-up.

For example, a company can set up an automated workflow to send reminders or follow-up emails to customers to prompt them to make a purchase when they have reached a certain point in the sales cycle. By doing so, it quickly brings them one step closer to making the desired purchase, resulting in a faster sales process.

In terms of streamlining the customer lifecycle, Efficy's product catalog feature is an encyclopedia of sorts, containing information on general product features, pricing, sales pitches, inventory, or discounts or dates of a promotion.

The product catalog is a valuable internal reference point for your sales teams to better understand the products and the sales pitches to use when explaining them to customers. Having this information readily at hand can make the difference between a conversion and another case of abandonment, something that often happens when sales reps demonstrate insufficient product knowledge. A CRM solution not only makes the sales team's job easier, it also helps to reduce costs and increase profit.

Download our handbook 5 ways to boost your sales with a CRM and discover how it can help small and medium-sized companies.

Use Efficy CRM for everything

The insights available in a CRM are a great equalizer for startups in ultra-competitive industries that want to get the most revenue from their marketing campaigns.

Are customer needs changing in line with emerging trends? Can customer satisfaction levels be improved? Which offerings are topping the performance charts? Data provides the benchmark to answer these business performance-related questions in real time.

Approaching the market from these insights allows you to better allocate resources, spend only on what matters, and improve the customer experience to drive sales effectiveness accordingly. One of the spin-offs of developing CRM-based relationships with your employees and customers is that investors will be happy to provide funding, because you will have streamlined, efficient, data-driven operations.

Efficy CRM helps you achieve this and much more by providing you with first-hand knowledge to work smarter and eliminate unnecessary tasks. Our set of time-saving features will boost business performance and attract qualified leads that, in the long run, will become loyal customers.

Would you like to know how it works? Request a free demo to start the journey to a secure future for your business. Drive sales effectiveness with Efficy CRM today.