Imagine walking into a jeans store and all the jeans being the same size, color, and length. Some customers would have to roll them up at the bottom, others would have to pull them in at the waist and the worst of it is, you must work around these alterations yourself. The same comparison can be made for an off-the-shelf CRM solution; you’re going to have some elements that suit your business, but it won’t be a perfect fit.
What can a Bespoke CRM solution offer you that an off-the-shelf system can’t?
A Bespoke CRM is like taking a trip to a Savile Row shirt maker; you can choose the fabric, the fit, the collar style, and the buttons. Plus, you’ll receive an exceptional customer experience.
Whether you’re just starting out or you want to upgrade your current system; choosing the right CRM solution is a big decision. You may be surprised to learn that a bespoke solution doesn’t mean Savile Row prices; let’s take a look at each of these solutions and discover some of the reasons why a Bespoke CRM could be the best fit for your company…
The name says it all; an off-the-shelf solution is ready to use from the moment of selection. The product has been designed with the mass market in mind and therefore is expected to fulfill the needs of as many users as possible. It may offer more features than a bespoke solution but often will not meet your expectations. Off-the-shelf software lacks individuality and in most cases, you will be left with features and functionality that you don’t want or need. In the end you will find yourself adapting your working processes to fit the system instead of the other way around.
Choosing off-the-shelf software is often cheaper in the short-term, as you don’t have to finance the build. However, as I previously mentioned there will be plenty of functionality you won’t use but will have paid for. Additionally, your users must navigate their way around a system that will feel cumbersome and won’t offer them that Savile Row user experience.
Your upfront costs may be cheaper but what happens when your business grows or your requirements change? There are restrictions and limitations to how much you can manipulate your off-the-shelf software to suit your evolving needs. There will be the possibility that you have to invest in further software and who is going to build these integrations? In the long-term, the costs can add up and the short-sightedness of your purchase may come back to kick you.
A bespoke solution will offer you features and benefits which surpass any standard solution that you pick off the shelf. A bespoke system is tailored to your company and your specific needs, will offer you scalable functionality for growth and ultimately, just like buying your Savile Row shirt, gives you an exceptional user experience.
No two businesses work in exactly the same way and having a solution that is tailored to you ensures that your individual requirements are met. Your system should enhance and improve your business processes, as well as the productivity of your team.
The Benefits of Bespoke
- Work the way you want to
A bespoke solution enables you to operate the way that you want to, not dictate the way you work. Your solution will be built from the ground up, with only your business needs in mind; offering you features and functionality that are tailored to you.
A bespoke CRM offers you scalability as your business requirements change. As your business evolves and grows this solution can scale and adapt with you to ensure a great fit remains. One of the biggest restrictions with an off-the-shelf product is the limitations to adapt to change; as users try to navigate around its shortcomings they may defer to working outside the system or revert back to using spreadsheets.
- Flexible Pricing
There is no doubt that a bespoke solution may come with larger upfront costs, but you are only paying for what you need. Plus, you’ll own the system and avoid high monthly fees. A Bespoke CRM offers longer-term savings and even after small hosting costs, it is a far more cost-effective solution than the off-the-shelf option. With the huge range of bespoke benefits, it really is the savviest way to approach achieving the perfect fit.
- Capture all the data you need
“The customer is king!” – We hear that phrase all the time, but how can you provide an exceptional customer experience if you don’t have all their data? Additionally, no two customers are the same and therefore your service must be tailored for each of them.
A Bespoke CRM acknowledges these individual relationships by not only capturing the standard data; name, address, email, phone number, etc, but also the additional information which helps you give that Savile Row experience, enables your business to progress and keeps your customers coming back.
- Employees can access all the information
We’ve all had the experience where we’ve contacted a company, but your regular contact isn’t there and ‘Jane’ can’t help you because she doesn’t have the information you need. This is a common problem with off-the-shelf software; it’s often financially impossible for small to medium-sized businesses to give everyone access to the relevant data.
With a bespoke solution, there are no access/licensing limitations; therefore, everyone can have access to your customer information, which will improve customer service, increase efficiency and productivity, save time and hopefully increase revenue.
Finding a great partner
After you’ve chosen a Bespoke CRM your next task will be to find the right partner to implement it. Finding a partner you trust will ensure your digital transformation is a success, provide you with long-term reassurance and they’ll guide you through the process.
Just as a great tailor measures you up to ensure you receive an excellent fitting shirt; your partner should take the time to fully understand your individual needs and tailor their approach to your solution accordingly.
When looking for a partner you should consider whether they offer:
- Scoping – to ensure any proposal is accurate a partner should take the time to fully understand your business and industry, how you currently work and discuss what you are aiming to achieve.
- Testing and Training – a partner should conduct extensive testing of your solution to review and amend any problem areas which arise. Providing training to your users will ensure they engage with your new software and feel empowered by it.
- Managed Service – after your system is live problems may occur. A managed service offering (Including elements such as help-desk requests, further training, and technical consultancy) will provide you with reassurance during the early stages of using your new system. Additionally, some partners offer further development and customization of your solution, for example; if you wish to onboard a new department or you require more functionality to reflect a change in services you are providing.
When you invest in a tailor-made shirt, you are confident that the fit will be exactly what you are looking for, as well as longevity in the quality. In the life-cycle of that shirt, how many cheaper ones could you have brought as an alternative, going through the unnecessary hassle each time?
Implementing a Bespoke CRM can be regarded as a costly task, but these costs are justified if you consider your long-term business goals and the need for longevity within your solution as your business grows.
Sara Evans is a Marketing Executive at PragmatiQ Solutions and regularly shares expert opinions around the technology industry, marketing, team collaboration, and more. Day-to-day, Sara stays up to date with the latest digital trends which she also enjoys reading about in her own time.