Special Report

CRM software for small businesses: Top headlines

When evaluating and deploying CRM software, small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) follow a different roadmap from their enterprise counterparts. Use this special report to get a better understanding of the different types of CRM software and technology SMBs should consider and find out what you should know about CRM for small businesses.

 

 

  CRM for small businesses: Top headlines  

 

What does a recession mean for small businesses deploying CRM?: According to many analysts, CRM software will fare better in the economic downturn than other technologies. As budgets tighten, many companies will look to CRM to get the most value for their money, especially in the SMB market. Analysts say that while many SMBs find CRM complicated and time-consuming, they're beginning to realize they need to do something to improve business and compete more effectively during a recession.

Considering open source software for small businesses: According to expert Paul Greenberg, most open source CRM products are aimed at small businesses and aren't built to scale large enterprises. SMBs often go the open source CRM route because of the flexibility and low cost of ownership associated with the model.

Mobile CRM spending in the SMB market climbs: Research from Compass Intelligence LLC suggests that SMBs are increasingly taking advantage of mobile CRM functionality. According to Compass, businesses in the U.S. will spend roughly $9 billion on mobile applications by 2011. Small businesses will represent 38% of that spending.

Software as a Service (SaaS) vs. open source CRM for SMBs: Both SaaS and open source CRM are low-cost software options for SMBs. According to industry expert Paul Gillin, growing companies looking for a long-term implementation may want to go with open source CRM, whereas companies interested in small, short-term deployments should consider SaaS. Smaller companies should consider products that offer customization and flexibility, while also considering how much ownership they want to have over their data.

Considering Web 2.0 for small businesses: Not all Web 2.0 and social networking technologies are a good fit for SMBs, but customer product reviews, which have already demonstrated measurable value, can be especially attractive to SMBs looking to operate more effectively during the recession. Some vendors have now begun making SMB-specific versions of their enterprise customer review products.

SMBs should consider CRM software for sales: Despite the down economy, many companies are raising quotas for their sales force. With less money for travel, training and technology, enterprises and SMBs alike are looking to CRM to improve efficiency, communications and forecast accuracy instead of increasing margins.

 


Visit the small business CRM topic section for more resources.

 

This was first published in April 2009

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