The big question as we close out 2015 is: what will be the biggest trends for CRM in the upcoming year?
- Rise in Mobile CRM: Mobile CRM is not a new topic, but the extent of its use will now shift to the forefront. Sales teams are constantly on the go, and being up to date on their client and prospect history is important. Real-time data will be paramount going into 2016. Features like note-taking applications and more user-friendly applications with full prospect details will be a focus. Mobile users will want access to all the same information they would find on the desktop version.
- Social CRM: Social CRM will be on the rise in 2016 as more companies will want to track engagement and listening from their accounts, letting them know who is talking about their company and what is being said. Companies will be seeking new ways to link up social interactions with CRM data.
- Business Intelligence PLUS: It is anticipated the upcoming year will see more CRM systems linked to analytic tools. Users will be able to see, in real time, what customers might be interested in for a cross-sell or upsell opportunity. Sales and marketing departments are leaning more on predictive analytics to better understand prospects and customers on a deeper level, based partly on their past interactions with your company. Companies realize that data is not limited to history, but can also be the key to future business.
- Growing the C-Suite: Possible additions to the executive team could emerge in the upcoming year with greater use of CRM and its attached analytics. Positions such as Chief Insight Officer will become the point of contact for all items data to help create actionable insight. They will utilize CRM and connected technologies to push their company farther.
- Verticals: The same one-size-fits-all CRM system is no longer going to work for every industry. A healthcare employee has different needs than an individual in banking. More industry-specific CRM technologies will be appearing, giving an additional level of focus and expertise to those individuals. Salesforce demonstrated this trend’s beginnings in 2015 with the introduction of verticals for finance and healthcare.
- Integration: Information siloing is becoming an increasing hindrance on the success of a company. Integration of CRM, marketing automation, BI and other software is coming. It is not efficient or beneficial for users to have to download and upload data between systems and applications. Users will push for total integration between their tools. This important step will ensure companies maintain the power to reach their customers in the most direct and personalized manner. Siloing only holds teams back.
- The CRM of Things: Internet of Things (IoT) has opened the door to companies wanting a full understanding of their customers. With so many devices being used daily, it is necessary for users to have the data from all outlets at their fingertips…meaning all smart devices will need access to CRM systems. Users will want to be able to access sales data, customer service information and billing history all from one location.
The upcoming year has lots of potential for the future of CRM. Companies will be seeking more personalization and connectivity as they better try to reach customers where they are.
About the Author:
TopLine Strategies delivers the complete integration and development of sales, marketing and customer service technologies that enable corporate clientele to improve revenue streams and strengthen customer interactions. Our project management and consulting is designed to achieve timely delivery, 100 percent user adoption of the technologies we implement and deliver measurable returns on investments for our clients.