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Customer relationship management (CRM) for small and medium businesses (SMBs) has changed a lot in recent years, thanks to the impact information technology has had on the marketplace. Now, in addition to doing things like planning ahead for busy seasons and practicing hospitality to patrons, SMBs also can leverage technology to optimize relationships with customers. CRM software helps businesses better manage sales, marketing and customer service operations. Many SMBs are finding that CRM software provides much-needed insight into customer needs and are using it to better serve current and potential customers and gain a competitive edge.

Wondering how CRM software could help your business? Here are a few scenarios that demonstrate its value:

  • For retailers that want to better understand and attract their target audiences, CRM software can provide rich information about all current customers, gather it in a single information repository and even analyze it for more effective marketing and sales.
  • Or, for businesses in the financial services sector that need more efficient ways of determining the individual needs and preferences of clients, CRM software can help by supplying real-time information about customer interactions and lead details and capturing it in one location. This information in turn helps in the development of new strategies to better serve, attract and retain clients.
  • CRM software benefits the professional services industry by greatly improving project management. It includes tracking and monitoring capabilities that provide detailed information about all projects, activities and tasks, as well as real-time insight into client information across the company to ensure everyone is working from the same data.

Microsoft’s latest CRM software, Microsoft Dynamics CRM 2011, has all the capabilities SMBs need to better understand and serve customers. Designed to perform all the functions mentioned in the scenarios above, and more, this solution is based on Microsoft tools and interfaces employees are already comfortable with and provides better intelligence for decision making. It connects people, processes and data both inside and outside an organization, all while delivering the power of productivity for users. While this solution is available as traditional, on-premise software, SMBs also can access CRM online via the cloud. Click here to learn more about how your business can benefit from this powerful CRM technology.

About the Author(s)

Cindy Bates

Cindy Bates is the vice president of the U.S. Small- and Mid-Sized Business (SMB) Organization at Microsoft. Cindy and her team serve millions of SMB's in the U.S., helping them start, grow and thrive by utilizing today’s powerful and affordable technologies.

Vice President, Microsoft SMB
customer relationship management