Any good CRM software is always defined by how much of an individual's workload it can simplify. With businesses progressively on the path of digital transformation, more and more of them are heavily relying on relevant software and tools to keep track of their administrative tasks. This is where the concept of CRM integrations come into the spotlight to fortify a CRM's regular functionalities.
While immensely powerful on its own, a CRM is limited in its functionality and can prove to be a massive headache for your sales team.
In fact, 17% of sales reps opine that lack of integration of their business's CRM with other tools is the biggest impediment in using it.
CRM integration is the seamless connection of third party tools to your CRM software. Such integrations usually provide automated workflows to expand software functionality and ease manual efforts spent behind toggling between tools.
They also gather all essential sales functions in one place and turn your sales communication platform into a hub for customer support, document management, invoice management, email marketing, and more. Typically, there are three ways these integrations work:
Now that you are aware of the surface benefits CRM integrations can provide your sales teams with, let us look at 11 key integrations so that you can leverage to create automated workflows and streamline operational processes as a result.
CRMs help sales reps to track interactions with the customer, reach out to them, and automate manual tasks. However, an often overlooked benefit of theirs is the ability to simplify and drive effective email outreach.
Considering that 80% of customers like to be contacted over email, it pays to have a integrate your primary email service with your CRM.
Integrating email services, such as Outlook or Gmail inbox, with your CRM does not only let you record all of your emails, but it also allows you to access tools like sequences and templates to help you craft clear and sharp emails for your email strategy, and also aggregate all of your CRM contact data without having to leave the inbox.
Whether it's an online or a physical log, making a note of individual events, meetings, and schedules is a very time-intensive task. More than likely, most businesses have multiple entries to make to their calendars on a daily basis, losing a lot of time in the process.
Syncing your calendar with your CRM allows you to circumvent your way around manual efforts and reduces the amount of time you have to put in to record every single event.
By using two-way integration with your CRM and your Outlook or Google calendar, you can log events in your CRM, create notices for meetings, and release meeting invites.
The HubSpot Meeting Scheduling App is a perfect example, allowing guests to book a meeting based on their real-time availability.
Typically, live chat is utilized by organizations for engaging customers, and CRM is used to record customer details. But with customer interactions being increasingly examined for predictive analytics, integrating live chat with your CRM can help you simplify business processes.
By integrating your CRM with a live chat platform like Acquire live chat, you can enable your sales team to track customer interactions and details all from one place.
Acquire's live chat also automatically logs live chat transcripts and offline messages in easy-to-access formats called Notes and Cases. Data from these transcripts can then be used in a variety of formats to change up services to suit customer expectations accordingly.
Social media is one of the most important sales tools, especially for startups and small businesses. In fact, it has become so popular that 84% of VP-level and C-level buyers are influenced by social media.
Social media is an ever-growing hub of knowledge-sharing between providers and consumers, and thus failure to leverage these platforms is a huge wasted opportunity to engage buyers and learn more about their preferences.
Integrating your CRM with your company's official social media accounts can provide you deeper insights about your offerings and how your audience is perceiving them.
This helps you obtain valuable information about your offerings by analyzing the content that your social audience is sharing about them. Apart from these benefits, integrating your Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter accounts can also help you streamline and automate posting.
While CRM applications generate huge amounts of data, they don't help you analyze it. And no amount of business data, no matter how comprehensive, will amount to any good if you can't parse it. With BI (business intelligence) solutions integrated within your CRM, however, you can make data analysis easier.
By integrating a BI solution, you can gain a 360° view of your data and create analytics reports on an ad hoc basis to find cryptic patterns in customer behavior.
Marketing automation integrations are among the most popular integrations today. They can automate various tasks and expand functionality by connecting your CRM to an array of applications.
You can also build special integrations to enable specific tasks and create automated workflows as a result.
Integrating your CRM with marketing automation tools is even more remunerative when you have several marketing automation platforms. Take, for example, standard marketing automation software such as Mailchimp.
Integrating Mailchimp with your CRM allows you to make use of email automation tools more efficiently and simplifies many tasks, such as tracking user activity and exporting contact lists.
For customer-facing organizations, integrating customer success software tools like Zendesk with your CRM can help you gain a deeper insight into customer data to inform your future sales decision-making processes.
Your CRM can be fed with customer ticket data by your respective customer success software, which can then be linked to existing contact information of your customers in your CRM to remain informed of their latest needs and come up with proactive ways to serve them better.
Consumers today understand how innovations affect the advanced state of ecommerce technologies and expect their preferred online stores to use them.
For example, online shoppers not only expect but count on knowing how much inventory of a particular product is available while shopping. After they have completed their purchase, they wish to know the real-time status of their purchase through multiple communications channels.
This is all facilitated through the integration of ecommerce platforms with CRM. This allows online stores to automatically sync contacts, products, and orders so that they have ready access to buyer information.
Apart from these, specific software allows you to automate specific tasks. For example, if your online store uses Stripe, you can integrate it with your CRM to add new contacts automatically, send them quotes, and thus simplify the purchasing process.
When organizations plan to undergo digital transformation, their main goal is to find efficiencies in crucial business processes and gain a high level of visibility into them. Integrating an enterprise resource planning (ERP) software with your CRM helps you enable enterprise-wide control and visibility of customer data.
Leveraging integration platforms with inbuilt CRM system connectors and ERP systems allow you to regulate such processes more effectively by automating workflows for you.
This also eliminates the chances of data duplication and provides sales and operations teams with real-time data access so that they can move customer contracts through the approval process much more quickly.
A persistent pet peeve of sales reps is to keep leaving their CRM to create quotes and proposals. It eats up a lot into their time by having to switch between windows to find the relevant information for a specific customer.
This is why sales teams need to document CRM integrations. Apart from creating documents within the CRM by directly importing data from it, these integrations can also help sales reps manage electronic signatures and send proposals automatically once they have moved the lead to the next stage.
For companies who host seminars and webinars as part of their sales strategy, integrating CRM with their event management software can prove to be a time-saving activity. Apart from them, it can also help them understand how event attendance impacts their sales pipeline.
Furthermore, connecting an event management software with CRM also allows businesses to use this data to come up with revised outreach strategies, create personalized registration event reminders to their invite list, and build error-free funnel reports to find out event ROI.
Integrating your CRM with software isn't the easiest job, but it's worth the effort, especially after considering the amount of manual work it automates.
Such integrations also help you gain enterprise-wide visibility of data, gain deeper insights, and create more efficient workflows to manage customer relationships more effectively.
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