CRM Trends and Predictions for 2015


This article excerpt, by Billy Lyle, originally appeared here: http://bit.ly/1ISoDYf 
There are some major CRM trends to look forward to in 2015. Microsoft released its Dynamics CRM 2015 updates, and with these new features you’ll be able to lead your company to a CRM victory over your competitors.
Taking advantage of these CRM trends will help you help your company cut costs and increase revenue by being truly customer-centric.
The move towards cloud CRM rather than on-premise
One of the interesting trends continuing into 2015 is the rise of CRM deployed in the cloud. Gartner predicts that the percentage of companies with cloud CRM deployments will rise above 50% in 2015.
The thing with on-premise CRM is this: every new development needs a costly new upgrade. With the number of updates and upgrades increasing, many companies have found it cheaper to switch to the cloud. This means less IT staff on-premise, lower IT infrastructure costs and a more adaptable platform for the future.
What this means to you: If you’re still using an on-premise CRM system, consider switching to the cloud. In many cases it will help you slash costs and avoid being caught out for expensive new upgrades.
Mobile capabilities becoming more powerful
One of the great benefits of CRM is that it allows sales teams to organize themselves more effectively. That means more time selling.
In the past, many CRM apps have had limited functionality. But as time moves on, CRM vendors are investing in their mobile platforms to make them more powerful.
With Microsoft’s voice commands, salespeople can bring up CRM records, add notes and get facts that can help them close more deals.
What this means for you: Picking a CRM vendor with powerful mobile and tablet apps can help your salespeople close more deals, be better prepared for meetings, and report more accurately. That means you’ll be more likely to get impressive results in the coming year.
More powerful social listening tools
Social media is becoming ever more essential to all areas of business. As such, CRM is adapting so that your people can always have their ears to the ground.
The Social Listening tool has been enhanced with the Dynamics 2015 update. Marketers can get social insights displayed about their company’s brands and campaigns on the platform. (And it’s now free if you have over 10 professional users.)
What this means to you: By investing in Social Listening tools you can empower your marketing and sales teams to be relevant and customer-centric with every single touch point. Ultimately this will lead to more connection, more sales and improved customer satisfaction.
Bringing together marketing, sales and customer service silos
For too long marketing, sales and customer service teams have worked in silos and are often stifled by barriers between departments. But the truth is, if you can connect the dots and the data between those departments, you can get phenomenally better results.
What this means for you: If you use an advanced CRM platform that aligns all your customer-facing departments, 2015 will be a year to remember for you. And, perhaps more importantly, this will help you get ahead of companies that are still fighting between departments.

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