The pieces of the sales marketing automation and tech puzzle

You are a small business owner with a vision. You started your business, created a website, and then after a while, realized new business growth would require more digital processes to track your leads, sales, and tasks! You need a way to:

  • Track your interactions with your customers
  • Automate some of your tasks
  • Add more helpful data about your customers to send information and discounts for products and services
  • Streamline your process to ship your products
  • Locate information about customer orders

Well, you are not alone! Many small business owners find themselves trying to solve a sales marketing automation and technology puzzle.

A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System to Scale and Automate 

Our customers experience growing pains. They are small businesses providing products and services and may have a website with eCommerce functionality. As their companies expand, the owners know they need a better way to track their customers and automate tasks to keep growing.

To do this, they need a tool to assemble more pieces of their tech puzzle. It’s challenging to find one out-of-the-box solution that does everything you want. Custom development is an option, but is it worth it? Since it’s time-consuming and can be very expensive, you think about combining scheduling software, a CRM, accounting, and fulfillment pieces instead. You can purchase these individual core software packages, but they need integration, small connectors, allowing them to talk to each other and let information flow back and forth. How do you know where to start?

Big Rocks Within CRM Systems

Have you heard the analogy about sorting rocks, pebbles, and sand? You start with the big rocks first and figure out the best way to connect them. But what are the big rocks in this case? One big rock already in place is the website or e-commerce platform you are using. 

The second rock is choosing and integrating the right CRM system. This critical step will look at many options to find features that suit your small business. If you don't understand how the products work, it can be overwhelming! Many business owners suffer from "analysis paralysis" when evaluating CRM options without a consultant.

To avoid getting "stuck," create a list of requirements first and search for products that offer solutions for them. If it's too challenging or you don't have time to dedicate to it, contact Small Business CRM Coach for advice and support. We've devoted ourselves to understanding the capabilities of different products to recommend what works best for your company and sales teams with industry-specific CRMs designed for similar operations.

After adding the CRM, your next rock could be scheduling software. Be sure it's compatible with the CRM of your choice, or you'll need to find a connector tool. Many of our clients are in the middle of this process with certain software already in place or purchased. We help you simplify the integration as much as possible by knowing your options.

Another rock is accounting. You may or may not already have accounting software; however, your version might not communicate with other applications. In the interest of keeping information flowing from your CRM to the accounting software, upgrading to a more recent or cloud-based solution could be necessary, along with another connector tool for integration.

The last piece of the puzzle could be an application to take care of order fulfillment. A cloud app can help calculate accurate shipping costs, print stamps, and process orders in batches. Each business project or puzzle is different; just be sure that your existing software or cloud apps can to "talk" to your fulfillment app. With big rocks out of the way, you can automate tasks that eliminate pebbles and sand on their own!

Finding the Time to Solve Your Tech Puzzle

As you can see, there are a lot of pieces and moving parts when building a sales marketing automation system for your business. Your main applications are big rocks that may include a set of small connector apps to help them work together for reporting and tracking.

Just like a real puzzle, looking at all the pieces laid out on the table requires you to start with the frame pieces first. Do you have time to put your puzzle together, or does it makes sense to hire an expert to avoid a learning curve? We specialize in CRMs and other business solution software because we enjoy the challenge and help you achieve your goals.

How are you tracking your clients and potential sales? Is your business growing? Do you need a better system, or are you having a hard time figuring out how to use all your current CRM features? Contact us for Small Business CRM Coaching and Consulting to help you choose between desktop applications or cloud-based solutions with more data storage options and access across digital devices. 

Get the most out of CRM systems by reaching out for a Discovery Session to assess your situation.