Customer Relationship Management

CRM

A Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system integrates marketing initiatives, customer information, and business operations to deliver an optimal customer experience while uncovering revenue generating opportunities for the business. The integration of data that is normally stored in and viewed by separate divisions into a single access point within a business provides a holistic view of all customer interactions with the business. Information in this format provides several advantages, including:

  • The discovery of customer preferences – Knowing customer preferences as revealed by previous purchases can open conversations regarding related and add-on purchases.
  • Increased efficiency in marketing efforts – This same knowledge can help target the customers that will be most receptive to marketing campaigns for new and/or related products.
  • The aggregation of customer information in a single location in real time – This allows for customer service personnel to provide fast responses to inquiries regarding backorders, shipping, exchanges/returns, etc.
  • Improved customer retention – Positive experiences in terms of purchasing, tailored marketing, and customer service will keep customers coming back time and time again.

Empowering your personnel with the ability to view integrated customer data on a single screen can take your business to the next level in terms of sales, marketing, and customer service.

Here are the three different aspects of CRM systems.

Analytical – Analytical Customer Relationship Management describes the primary function of all CRM systems, which is to gather what can be disparate points of customer data, integrate it, and then use the information to make faster and more informed decisions and responses relating to sales, marketing, and customer service.

Collaborative – Collaborative Customer Relationship Manage systems integrate customer data with the objective of enabling different departments within a company to communicate with each other while viewing the same sets of information. This aspect of CRM is a critical element in the optimization of the system for enterprise-sized businesses.

Operational – Operational Customer Relationship Manage systems are those that are focused on automating customer contact processes. An example would be a phone system that prompts callers through a menu of services. Another example would be data mining customer information to determine the best opportunities for marketing leads, sales prospects etc.

 

Featured News

  • Two Things to Do and Two Things to Stop Doing with your SEO Initiatives

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    Google has made sweeping changes to the algorithms that determine the rankings of web pages, resulting in the obsolescence of a wide variety of search engine optimization (SEO) practices with other practices becoming the core of successful SEO efforts. Here are two things to do in light of what Google wants now.

     

    $     Develop professionally written content – Quality content has always been a central element of SEO campaigns but black hat optimization tricks often surfaced crummy content, much to Google’s dismay. Over the last three years, with the rollout of the Panda, Penguin, and Hummingbird algorithm updates, the search engine gradually shut down manipulative practices such as low quality publications on sites referred to as content farms and buying spammy links by the thousands. With the elimination SEO trickery, the publication of quality content is now a core element of SEO. Additional changes in the algorithms are now designed to reward websites that regularly post valuable content which subsequently generates social signals such as sharing and other forms of engagement. The best way to ensure that your content attracts these forms of attention is to develop professionally written content, which can enhance branding efforts as well.

           Make your website mobile device friendly – Desktop computers will never go away completely but mobile devices are both the present and the future for internet access. Google, which already considers the web to be “mobile first” and strives to deliver the best user experience possible to its customers, is now gauging the quality of the interface between mobile devices and websites, which doesn’t bode well for sites that present the same page configuration whether being viewed with a massive screen or a small viewport on a smartphone. To deliver the website experience Google seeks, you’ll need to make your website mobile device friendly by adding responsive design architecture, which configures and customizes the information on each page to the size of the screen through which is being viewed.              

     

    Here are two things to stop doing:

     

    $1    Believing in SEO shortcuts – While there was once a stable of black hat techniques that delivered SEO results, those shortcuts have been rendered useless by Google’s algorithm changes. Generally speaking, the optimization process must now follow a more natural path, which no longer includes instant gratification in SEO efforts.

            Guest blogging – When it came to guest blogging, the temptation of doing spammy content to generate links was too much and Google has now killed the practice. Whether you were guest blogging on other sites or allowing others to blog on yours, the benefits are gone and the risk of being penalized is too high to continue with this practice.

     

    Giving Google what it wants will be the key to success in your SEO efforts. On the flipside of that coin, if you’re still taking shortcuts and/or trying to build links by guest blogging, stop both of them now.

  • 3 Ways to Rehabilitate your SEO Campaigns

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    When Google released The Panda and Penguin algorithm updates in 2011 and 2012 respectively, the reaction from affected website owners was immediate and loud due to the fact that practices such as distributing single articles that had been spun dozens of times and buying backlinks for $10 per thousand had finally become detectable and would no longer deliver the benefits of front page rankings for search results. The loudest voices after these algorithm updates were from the owners of sites that, in addition to losing the juice from blackballed practices, had also been penalized for going above and beyond Google’s tolerance level for SEO chicanery.

    On the other hand, when Google rolled out its most sweeping algorithm change in years, referred to as Hummingbird in August of 2013, the search engine waited a month to make the formal announcement during which time barely anyone noticed. This seeming subtlety masked a directional change in how Google interprets search queries, which may not have rocked rankings as much as Panda and Penguin, but may be affecting the rankings of your web pages now.

    Prior to the Hummingbird algorithm change, Google’s algorithm would parse each word in a search term and deliver results based on the web pages that had content containing those words. Pages that had the exact sequence of words in the query would typically rank the highest while pages that contained the words in the search term, but not in sequence, would be ranked at the next level down from exact matches. This methodology, much to Google’s dismay, could be gamed by stuffing content with high percentages of keywords that often made the text difficult if not impossible to comprehend, but high rankings would still be granted.

    The Hummingbird algorithm takes a different approach; by assessing search terms in the context of a question, the search engine now returns web pages that are seen as delivering the best answers to that question. If your web page rankings have suffered since the Hummingbird algorithm rollout, there are several actions you can take to rehabilitate them, including:

            Replace keyword research with finding the questions your customers are most likely to ask when they search for the products/services offered by your business – Only by knowing these questions can you develop content that provides relevant answers.

            Deliver copious volumes of information – When answering these questions, be generous with your information and invite readers learn more on additional pages within the site. This action will help your SEO efforts while also helping to sell the products being researched.

            Develop new content consistently – This has always been a staple of Google’s algorithms, but it’s more important than ever now. Plus, the more you publish, the more questions your site can answer.

    SEO is all about content now. By delivering content that answers questions while delivering information and value, your SEO rehabilitation will have begun.

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