eCommerce stores usually follow the D2C business model where they are directly selling to their customers thereby directly communicating with them. Since this industry is among the most competitive industries, it becomes quite important to keep customers at the center of all the operations.
For example, Amazon’s founder, Jeff Bezos, has made sure that each and every employee working at Amazon knows their ‘start with the customer and work backwards’ attitude where they hyperfocus on creating an excellent experience for their customers.
Now, to achieve this state of customer hyperfocus, you need the right customer relationship management software and strategies. And picking the right software is just 25% of the work. The real work starts after integrating the CRM in your operations.
In this article, we are going to focus on CRM strategies – why they matter, smart ways to create them, and we’ll also share a few proven CRM strategies that you can start implementing today.
What is a CRM Strategy?
CRM Strategy isn’t a technical term or jargon – it simply means company-wide strategies to grow revenues and profits by establishing long-term relationships with the customers. Mostly, these strategies are created and executed by marketing and sales departments along with other marketing strategies and customer support models.
CRM Strategy for eCommerce – Why it Matters
- Customers expect personalized communication, product recommendation, and hyper-targeted campaigns from eCommerce brands — CRM strategies can empower your marketing and sales teams to create personalized campaigns and communication that nurture your customers and increase average order value thereby increasing the bottom line.
- A complete overview of supply and demand – forecasting demand based on past data and planning supply accordingly are the most crucial processes that determine the shopping experience of your customers and it’s quite important to have the right data at the right time.
- Centralized data that’s accessible to all the stakeholders – having the right information at the right time is considered a superpower these days which is where CRM becomes an enabler.
Apart from these benefits, having a CRM enables you to provide better customer service, create easy check-out processes, and better-targeted marketing campaigns.
Now that we’ve understood the importance of CRM and CRM strategies for an eCommerce store, let’s explore a quick 7-step process in creating a CRM strategy for your business.
7 Step Process for Creating CRM Strategies
- Define goals and vision which will be pillars for your CRM strategies
- Create buyer personas of your target audience to be more specific with campaigns and messaging
- Define the entire customer journey to get an overview of all the touchpoints
- Based on the touchpoints, establish processes to create a holistic experience for your customers – from pre-sales to post-sales, feedback, loyalty programs, and nurturing them to become promoters
- Conduct market research to understand your and your competitors’ positioning
- Study your products and services inside out to make interactions more informative
- Set key performance indicators for all the major stakeholders
By following these steps, you’ll be able to create impactful CRM strategies for your eCommerce store that are hyper-focused on customers.
3 Smart Tricks to Make the Most of CRM Strategies
- Focus on retention: When creating any CRM strategy, focus 60-80% of your resources on retaining your current customers and the rest of the resources for acquiring new ones. Because acquiring new customers is 7x more expensive than retaining the current ones — of course, this is applicable for mature businesses rather than startups and growing businesses.
- Focus on building loyalty: Never create strategies around gaining more monetary value from customers – instead focus on creating loyal customers which will become your ambassadors and promoters meaning they’ll automatically bring in more business.
- Integrate everything: As mentioned above, having the right information at the right time is a superpower that you can have only by integrating all your tools and CRM can be the hub of all your data. You can use 3rd-party integrations, APIs, and custom integrations to create the integrated ecosystem.
At this point, we’ve covered everything about CRM strategies, the process of creating them, how they can help boost ecommerce sales and improve customer experience. In the next section, we will explore a few proven CRM strategies that you can try today.
4 Proven CRM Strategies to Try Today
- Multi-channel marketing: Utilize all the touchpoints of customer interaction to create impactful campaigns – onsite, push, browser, email, SMS, WhatsApp, and social media – not in a spammy way but in a curated way which means don’t run one part of the campaign on all touchpoints. Instead, break the campaign down based on the customer journey and curate the messaging and content based on the stage of the journey.
- Utilize automation: Even while creating the multi-channel marketing campaigns, utilize the power of automation offered by CRMs which will help you send the right message at the right time with the help of conditions, triggers, and delays.
- Track everything: One of the main advantages of having a CRM is that it gives you the ability to know your customers and their behaviors really well. As soon as you integrate a CRM, start tracking your customers’ interactions and behavior and then start creating customer segments based on your targeting strategies. This will help you in creating personalized experiences for your customers.
- Have data cleansing processes: We all know the importance of data in this digital world but your data won’t be accurate and useful if it contains duplicated, incomplete, and wrong data. So, make sure you have a data cleaning process intact that is undertaken on a regular basis to keep your data clean, updated, and complete.
On a closing note,
Customer feedback is above all these CRM strategies. No matter how smart, integrated, and advanced your CRM strategies are, if you are not listening to your customers and integrating the feedback into your CRM strategies, they are not going to work.
So, make sure to have an automated feedback process in place, which is also done through CRM so that it feeds the important information back into the data hub.
To fill you with enthusiasm and customer obsession, here are some powerful words from Jeff Bezos – “We’ve had three big ideas at Amazon that we’ve stuck with for 18 years, and they’re the reason we’re successful: Put the customer first. Invent. And be patient.”
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