Customer relationship management (CRM), recognizes that customers are at the heart of any business. A company’s success is dependent on managing their relationships. CRM is about building long-term, sustainable customer relationships that provide value for both the costumer as well as the company.
CRM is a business strategy that selects and manages customers to maximize long-term value. CRM requires a customer-centric culture and business philosophy to support sales, marketing and service processes.
There are three main types of CRM activities that we distinguish: collaborative, analytical, or predictive.
1. Operational CRM
Operational CRM refers to common business functions such as customer service, order management and invoice/billing.
2. Analytical CRM
Analytical CRM is a process that collects, stores, extracts, processes, interprets, and reports customer data to a user who then analyzes them.
3. Collaborative CRM
Collaborative CRM enables vendors and customers to communicate, coordinate, and collaborate.
Others classifications of CRM are based on types of programs and the services or products they offer.
The Evaluation Of CRM
CRM refers to a strategy that recognizes customers as the core of a company and that establishing good relationships with them is key to the company’s success. Although it overlaps with relationship marketing in some ways, not all relationship marketing can be considered CRM. Customer relationship marketing includes a one to one relationship between customer (or seller) and customer. A company must be able to and willing change its behavior towards a particular customer in order to be a true one-to-one marketer. This is based on the information it has about the customer. CRM basically means treating different customers differently. CRM is based upon the fact that no two customers will be exactly alike.
CRM goes beyond sales and marketing. It requires a company to be able, in accordance with individual customers’ needs, to modify how its products and services are designed. Smart companies encourage customers to be involved in the design of products, services and solutions. However, customer-oriented is essentially being aware of the needs of every customer on the market. A company must maintain one-to-one contact with each customer in order to establish lasting relationships. Many firms are focusing on CRM because this type of marketing can build customer loyalty and help with the firm’s profitability.
eCRM (electronic Customer Relationship Management)
For generations, corporations have been using CRM manually. Since the mid-1990s, however, CRM has been automated. Information technologies have helped to improve CRM. CRM technology is an evolution of environmental changes that makes use of new IT tools and devices. The term eCRM, which stands for electronic customer relationship management, was created in the mid-90s. Customers started using Web browsers and the Internet. These technologies made customer service as well as that of partners more efficient and effective than ever before.
Internet technologies make it easy to access customer data for sales, marketing, and customer service applications. eCRM can also include online process applications, such as segmentation or personalization. These efforts can be monitored and adjusted in real-time, increasing customer expectations. eCRM has been a requirement in a connected world. This is not a competitive advantage, but a necessity. eCRM encompasses many topics, tools and methods. It ranges from proper design of digital products, services, pricing, loyalty programs, and much more.
These are the three levels in eCRM.
1. These services are the minimum required services, such as website responsiveness (i.e. how quickly and accurately the service was provided), site effectiveness, order fulfillment and order fulfillment.
2. Customers-centered services include order tracking and configuration, customization and security/trust. These services are what customers value most.
3. Value-added services include online education, dynamic brokering and auctions.