Customer relationship management in retail can increase customer satisfaction, reduce your costs and improve your company’s performance in the marketplace. CRM software manages your relationships with individual customers to create advantages for both parties. To select the appropriate software and ensure it includes the features you need, you have to know how CRM works and what effects it has on your retail operations.
CRM helps you gather information about each of your customers, including preferences and demographic data. You can use such information to segment your market and customize your approach to each group of customers. For example, if you find you have a large number of young families in a segment, you can create a family-friendly retail environment. If your data shows you have many seniors, you can install ramps for wheelchairs and make your store more easily accessible. The effect of segmentation based on CRM data is to adjust your retail strategies to better suit the customers you have.
The data you gather within a CRM system lets you not only target a market segment with promotions that appeal to its members, but also to target individual customers. For example, when you know that a customer is reaching retirement age, you can promote appropriate hobby products to him. If you see that a customer has visited your website and looked at particular products, you can include promotions of those products in his mailings. In this way CRM reduces promotions that are of no interest to the recipient and increases the relevance of material you send out.
A CRM system keeps records of customer purchases and customer service calls. You can keep track of the products each customer has purchased and whether there have been any warranty or dissatisfaction issues with the purchase. This information allows you to send out special offers to customers when the products they have purchased reach the end of their lives. Such a strategy keeps your products in front of the customer just when he might need them and gives him the benefit of lower pricing if he buys from you again. On your side, the costs of such a targeted promotion are lower than marketing to a large group and receiving only a few responses.
The overall effect of CRM is to increase the retention of customers by serving them in a more focused and convenient way. You can further increase this effect by using the CRM software to implement customer loyalty programs. Since the applications already track purchases, you can issue reward points and bonuses to keep valuable customers. Such programs let your further reduce costs because sales to long term customers are less expensive than sales to new customers.
Benefits of CRM in the Retail Sector
- Make your customers happier
- Strengthen customer loyalty
- Improve company performance
- Spend less money on ineffective marketing
- Create successful marketing campaigns with a higher ROI
- Increase customer retention rate
- Encourage repeat sales and return customers
How to Get the Most Out of Your CRM
Having a CRM won’t do you much good if you don’t take full advantage of it. Use these pro tips to get the most out of your customer relationship management system.
Keep detailed, accurate records on as many customers as you can. Complete every customer profile with as many details as possible.
Keep a record of purchase history, demographic information, and anything else you can use to fine-tune your marketing campaigns and show your customers that you’re really paying attention.
Segment Your Data into Like Groups
If you segment your data, you can market effectively to each type of buyer you serve. Divide your customers into categories that you can really market to based on what you have to offer.
Some companies segment their buyers by age, location, or gender.
Others may choose to segment their data into interests and purchase history, such as customers who spend a lot of time and money in a specific department.
A company can craft more powerful and precise marketing campaigns by sending home decor promotions to customers who have shown the most interest in the home goods department.