The e-CRM acronym stands for an ecommerce customer relationship management system. This type of software enables you to automate and systematize your interactions with clients. Ultimately, you'll optimize your business processes, make more sales and maximize your ROI. In this article, we'll try to answer the question "What are ecommerce CRM systems?" and outline the potential benefits of this type of software for your company.
What Is a CRM System in Ecommerce?
CRM in e-commerce stores all the data about your current, past and potential clients. This information is well-structured and regularly updated. At any moment, you can easily find the necessary facts, numbers and contacts. It will be easier for you to stimulate demand for your goods or services and forecast sales. The data from the CRM can serve as the foundation for an efficient loyalty program. You'll be able to better understand the demands, tastes and paying capacity of your target audience. The CRM will be instrumental in the scaling of your business.
Now let's see how is CRM different from e-CRM?. First, not all CRMs were created for the B2C sector. Many of them are fine-tuned for the B2B niche.
Second, software that was designed specifically for the sector of online shopping is more focused on sales and customer experience. It will provide you with actionable reports with suggestions on how to boost your conversion rate and tailor your product range to your customers' needs. You'll be able to more efficiently personalize the experience of each consumer, thus enhancing their satisfaction and the probability of placing an order in your store. An ecommerce CRM will facilitate the process of attracting new customers and retaining the already existing ones.
A generic CRM is not concentrated on sales. It's aimed at optimizing any type of relationship between the vendor and the buyer: from sending out newsletters to analyzing the demographics of the audience.
Key Components of CRM for Ecommerce Website
To give an exhaustive answer to the question "What is e-CRM?", it's important to mention its three distinctive features
Here are a few examples of questions the answers to which you'll be able to find in a CRM:
- How many individuals visit each page of your website per given time period?
- At which time of the day and on which days of the week do they tend to be the most active?
- How much time do they spend on each page?
- Which products interest them the most?
- Which promotions appeal to them most efficiently?
- How many of these individuals convert?
The CRM will not only provide you with raw data that you'll need to process yourself. It can also analyze all these facts and figures for you and draw conclusions. This system will detect trends and patterns of client behavior. It will compose profiles of the customers from various segments of your audience. It will identify which forms of marketing communications your clients prefer and come up with relevant tactics.
You won't need to hire or outsource professionals to take care of your CRM. Such systems are very easy to manage. They will smoothly integrate with your already existing software and have a shallow learning curve.
What Exactly Can an e-CRM Do for Your Business?
You connect a CRM to your online store. This software will collect, systematize and analyze data from your shop. It will visualize the information with the help of diagrams, graphs and charts. You'll be able to rely on these statistics to improve your sales.
Which Goals Can You Achieve with a CRM?
A CRM for ecommerce enables you to improve data analytics, automate marketing and organize data on customer experience. It will save time and effort for your team members, allowing them to concentrate on high-priority tasks. As a result, your online store will begin to generate higher revenue.
Which Features Does a Typical e-CRM Have?
CRM solutions differ greatly in their functionality. However, they all can collect, systematize and store customer data. Plus, they automate marketing processes and analyze data. On top of that, there might be many more features.
How to Use a CRM to Track Customer Journeys?
All you need to do is to link your CRM software to your online store. The system will begin to gather data and generate reports. It will be able to visualize the collected statistics in your preferred format, be it graphs, maps or charts. You'll be able to detect any bottlenecks that clients might face when navigating your website and fix them.
How to Personalize Marketing Efforts with the help of a CRM?
The CRM enables you to compose a portrait of your target customer. Or, better to say, these would be several target customers, each of which represents a particular segment of your audience. You can rely on this information to curate your relationships with clients. For instance, your online store will be able to automatically suggest products to people, based on their previous purchase history. Or, they can show such promotions to people that will be likely to impress them the most.
The data that you can obtain from the CRM will let you improve the copy for your blog and social media. You'll understand which words and news generate the most positive response from your audience.
Reasons to Automate Your E-commerce Customer Relationship Management
When talking on the topic "What is e-CRM and its benefits?", we need to highlight four goals that this type of software will let you achieve.
Save Full Customer History
The longer the history of your interactions with a particular person, the better you get to know their buying habits. Let's imagine that you're thinking of adding a new product to your catalog. The analysis of customer history will help you answer these questions:
- Will your audience need this product?
- Which segment of your audience will be particularly interested in it?
- Which price will people be ready to pay for it?
- Which features should the product have?
- In how many variations should it be available?
- What's the optimal time for releasing the new product?
- Which type of marketing campaign would it be wise to launch for it?
Improve Your Team Management
Your clients are not homogenous. The CRM will suggest by which parameters you should segment them. You'll be able to assign a dedicated manager to each category of buyers. When customers begin to send queries to you, the CRM will automatically forward the incoming messages to the appropriate team member. It will distribute their workload in such a way as to avoid a time crunch.
Refine Your Marketing Strategy
To make the most of your marketing efforts, strive to personalize them. People appreciate it when you do the following:
- Offer them precisely those products that they like and can afford
- Remember their names and previous purchases
- Reach out to them through their favorite communication channel
Scale Your Business
Scaling can be efficient only when it's thoroughly planned and backed up by data. Most online store owners are too busy with their day-to-day operations. The process of manually gathering all the necessary information turns into a challenge. Thanks to a CRM, all the data will become accessible in a couple of clicks. You'll find out what consumers expect from you and how much they're ready to pay for that.
The data that you get from the CRM is indispensable for staff training when preparing for scaling.
Arguments in favor of Automated Customer Relationship Management in Ecommerce
After you install dedicated software to automate customer relationship management in e-commerce, you'll appreciate at least five of its advantages: client segmentation, enhanced time management, improved social media interactions, access to insightful data and the opportunity to investigate the details of financial transactions.
Here are a few examples of parameters that you can rely on when segmenting your audience:
- Spending history
- Past actions on your website
- Response to your marketing activities
The CRM can answer even the most sophisticated questions about your clients' behavior, such as:
- How many people added products to their shopping carts but left without finalizing the purchase?
- Which pages of your online store get the lowest number of visitors?
- How many clicks does a client make before completing the order?
In most companies, sales professionals devote most of their time to technical or administrative tasks. They might spend as little as 10% of their working day on selling products. Consequently, you fail to get as much revenue as you could. The CRM will automate the processes that take so much effort from your team members. Let your sales reps concentrate on what they do best and boost your profit.
Social Media Interactions
A strong social media presence is required to:
- Improve brand awareness
- Expand audience
- Establish closer relationships with customers
- Drive more traffic to your website
- Make the most of marketing
Details of Financial Transactions
To make a lot of sales, you need to offer several payment options for your clients to select from. You can integrate all your payment gateways in the CRM to manage them conveniently. By analyzing your customers' paying behavior, you'll be able to find ways of boosting sales.
How can an online shop owner use a CRM to refine their marketing strategy?
The process of building an efficient marketing strategy starts with getting to know your customers. You should find out about their demographics, preferred products, paying capacity and response to various types of campaigns. The CRM will enable you to compose an exhaustive portrait of each of your clients and segment your audience. You'll be able to personalize your marketing efforts and maximize your ROI. When you need to find specific information about a selected person or group of people, you'll be able to do it in a couple of clicks.
In which way can CRM be beneficial for the relationship between the vendor and the seller?
The primary mission of a CRM is to improve customer experience. After you integrate such a solution into your workflows, you'll start to better understand the tastes, demands, behavior and paying capacity of your audience. You'll detect the products that generate the highest demand and marketing campaigns that produce the best impact on consumers. You'll be able to make precise sales predictions and more efficiently tailor new products to your clients' needs. Besides, the CRM will accelerate and facilitate the process of handling customer queries and feedback. It will automatically direct questions to those of your staff members who can provide the best answers to them. Plus, you can integrate a chatbot into your online store through the CRM to solve the most basic client queries.
Can an e-CRM help an online store better organize the inventory and make more precise sales forecasts?
An e-CRM can detect the most popular products, so you'll get to know whether you should purchase or manufacture more of them. The data about your top-performing products will help you decide which items to add to your catalog. You'll understand the specifics of seasonal demand for various types of items.
I've never used a CRM. I began to compare different solutions and I got spoilt for choice. Should I get the most expensive one that I can afford?
If you lack experience in using a CRM, the crucial factor for you will be the ease of integration. The quicker the system integrates into your online store, the better. The price can't serve as the key parameter. Instead, take into account the scale of your business. Some CRMs were designed for large enterprises while others cater to small and medium-sized businesses. The third vital aspect is the correlation between the CRM's functionality and your business goals. For instance, if you want this system to improve your sales forecasts, it makes sense to opt for a product with strong analytical capabilities. If you strive to improve your social media communications, get a system that offers the relevant features.
Which factors should I rely on to pick the best CRM for my business?
It would be wise to focus on four factors: usability, analytical capabilities, cross-channel tracking and ROI.
- An ideal CRM should feature an intuitive interface and a shallow learning curve. It should take you and your staff only a couple of days to get used to it.
- When installing the CRM, you can never know which kind of analytics you might require over time. So the larger the analytical capabilities of the system, the better. However, the price of some solutions might depend on the number of analytical tools included. When choosing a perfect product, make sure you won't need to overpay for the functionality and features that you'll hardly ever resort to.
- The term "cross-channel tracking" denotes monitoring the efficiency of all the platforms that you use for marketing purposes. You won't need to switch manually from one platform's dashboard to another. It will be easy for you to control all of them through the CRM and analyze customer behavior on each platform.