Closing Deals With CRM Software

By now, you should know the advantages of inbound marketing in getting more traffic to your site. After employing the engagement and nurturing tactics discussed in this guide, you are now happy to report high-quality leads. These leads seem interested in your products and services.

You now have to close the deal and fully convert these leads into customers. To ensure accuracy and speed, many marketers use a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software. In the last part of our inbound marketing guide, we are going to tell you how to close deals with CRM.


The Rise of CRM Software

We briefly touched on the definition of a CRM software throughout this guide, but now we’ll go in more in-depth.

CRM software is often categorized as a system involving you and your entire team, from customer service to sales and marketing, will work together to achieve company goals. These goals include finding and organizing leads (often through lead scoring), engaging and nurturing leads, and converting them. You can also use CRM software to track sales and the success of a marketing campaign.

Most CRM software is automated, either fully or partially. You are allowed and encouraged to add inputs as well as make changes to the software. No technology is perfect, after all. At its best, CRM software simplifies complicated processes and saves time.

Companies are beginning to favor this software, even over traditional database management systems.


The various stages of a Sales funnel

You can use CRM software for all stages of inbound marketing we’ve covered in this guide. Once you have your engaged and nurtured leads, you will rely on the CRM to close the deal. This closing part of the process is known as the Deal Stage.

The Deal stage is often organized as a sales funnel, rather than a marketing funnel. Leads should have been scored and segmented into buckets by now. Each bucket refers to a lead’s stage in the funnel.

Think of a sales funnel like a board game. Some players are at the beginning, others are in the middle of the board, and some are about to finish the game. As your lead moves down the board or sales funnel, the goal is for them to become a buying customer (i.e. finish the game).

While it differs from software to software, here are the general steps you can expect as your lead navigates that sales funnel:

  1. Prospecting stage: This is the beginning of the funnel. At this point, there’s no engagement between the lead and your company. They’re just checking things out and doing some homework.
  2. Opting in stage: Now the lead has shown some interest. They may have set up an appointment or a consultation, if you’re a service-based business. If you’re a product company, the lead might have opted into your newsletter.
  3. Needs analysis stage: Before you get too excited, you must make sure you’re a fit for the lead. You should also see if the lead is a good fit for you. This may be where you do the lead scoring.
  4. Engagement and nurturing stage: Now that you have the lead’s attention, you have to hook them in. This is where you might use content marketing, social media, and other engagement strategies. You can also nurture them through personalized email marketing.
  5. Closed / won stage: If the lead starts buying your products and successfully converts to a customer, the deal is closed and their sales funnel ends. You can categorize these new customers under “closed won.”
  6. Closed / lost stage: Of course, you won’t always be successful. Some leads, for many reasons, might not convert. Perhaps they don’t need your product/service as much as anticipated. They may not have room in their budget or they may have found something else. It happens. You will classify such leads as “closed lost”. You can then start the sales funnel over, in case the lead may want to switch back.

Conclusion

With your lead relationships built and tended to, you now have to close the deal. CRM software is integral in helping you do so without much manual input. Do remember that not every lead will convert, and that’s okay. With a steady stream of incoming, highly-qualified leads, you can always recover from lead loss.

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