CRM solutions have evolved substantially since they were first created several decades ago, and as the market and consumers driving growth become more savvy, CRM tools will be upgraded and enhanced further to keep pace and continue serving businesses of every industry.
Studying trends is a great way to understand where the market is heading and what CRM enhancements and features will be most impactful in 2019. Here’s a closer look at the 2019 CRM trends to embrace.
1. Cloud CRM Adoption Continues to Soar
One of the most significant trends that has continuously evolved business software over the past few years is cloud technology. Cloud-based solutions are growing more popular among all types of businesses each year due to the benefits of convenience, mobility, and cost-effectiveness they offer for companies small and large. CRM is no exception, and in 2019, adoption of cloud-based CRM solutions is only expected to continue growing.
2. Intuitive Designs and Interfaces Gain Priority
Usability is a factor that’s consistently cited as one of the most important elements of a CRM solution, which makes perfect sense, because for a software to bring optimal benefit to your business, you teams must be able to use it and feel confident and comfortable with all the tools and features at their fingertips. With each new iteration of CRM technology, designs get more impressive and the interfaces become more intuitive and useful.
3. Customer Experience Morphs from Buzzword to Business Initiative
Customer experience is a term that has cropped up recently as businesses shifted their focus from reactionary customer service to a more proactive approach of enhancing the entire journey a customer has with their business and brand. What began as somewhat of a buzzword is now a common business initiative garnering resources and budget to make sure customers have positive, memorable experiences that build loyalty and drive long-term profits.
CRM tools are essential for businesses focused on customer experience, and offer a plethora of customizable tools and features that help you track every step of your customers’ journeys so you can constantly improve their experience. CRM solutions can help you not only track important customer details and interactions, but also build in automated workflows to ensure that customers are always supported and offered other products and services based on their purchasing behavior and history.
4. Data is King
Data is an important element of any business, and CRM solutions are vital to keeping a living database of customer information and data. Your CRM holds a wealth of knowledge about your business and your customers and clients, but analyzing that data carefully can help you uncover budding trends, catch issues before they impact your company health to drastically, and find new, innovative ways to follow up with leads and support high customer retention numbers. CRM solutions offer analytics and reporting tools that help you analyze all the vital business data you’re already collecting, which is a necessary step to stay competitive in any industry.
5. AI Moves to the Forefront
Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology isn’t new, but it’s getting a lot more attention at the mainstream level in many businesses as software companies enhance systems with AI as a new component in their solution.
In 2019 and the years to follow, AI is going to be used more frequently in software automation and user experiences, and is already starting to appear in customer-facing tools such as natural language chatbots and real-time language translations. This technology has the potential to not only change how you interact with customers, but expand who you can reach and service as well.
6. CRM Goes Social
Social media is constantly reshaping how businesses develop a footprint for their business online and market to their customers, but it’s also become a popular venue of customer support in the past year. Consumers search out companies through social channels and even interact with business profiles to learn more about a business or get support with questions.
As a result, social media integration with your CRM is going to be vital to ensure you don’t lose any valuable customers or data from social interactions. CRM tools offer integrations with the main social media channels so you can gather and analyze your business data that lives online via social media.
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