CRM stands for “customer relationship management” for those who don’t know what it means. This phrase is often used to talk about a type of computer program that lets you:
- Help your customers more.
- Do more with your time.
- Get a full picture of each touch from every angle.
- Boost how well your sales process works.
CRMs keep all of your customer information in one easy-to-find place. This includes information about past, present, and possible customers.
Using a CRM is better than a spreadsheet because all changes to profiles are updated immediately for everyone.
Since most CRMs store data in the cloud, everyone can work on the same Excel spreadsheet and avoid having different document versions.
When your company uses a CRM, everyone can get accurate and up-to-date information about clients from many different places.
A CRM is a place where you can keep track of all the information you would normally keep in different cells on different spreadsheets. The tool gives your team all this information on a single, easy-to-use screen. Also, CRMs often have built-in ways to connect to your accounting, email, and calendar programs. That’s because they were made just for managing customers.
This works because software integrations let you connect your different data sources to get a fuller picture of your connections.
CRM vs. Excel: What’s wrong with Excel as a CRM tool
You can’t use Excel to manage the links between your customers’ data and their customers’ data. This would be best handled through a CRM system. Excel can’t determine how customers, orders, and opportunities depend on each other.
Excel doesn’t let many people read and write at the same time. This is not a problem as long as you only have one salesperson. But if you have a sales team, it can cause confusion, make customers unhappy, and cost you money.
Lost Sales Revenue
Excel doesn’t let you target and segment your customers, plan follow-ups, keep track of reminders, or write down important information.
No File Storage
Excel gives you exactly what you see. You can’t attach invoices, emails, letters, quotes, or other important files with that record. These papers need to be kept somewhere else. This causes the information to be lost, messed up, or forgotten.
Constrained Field Control
Each field in an Excel spreadsheet has to be made and put together by hand. How Excel is set up may make users feel like they can’t use as many fields as they’d like. It is challenging to organize first and last names, phone numbers, emails, the date of the last contact, notes, invoices, quotations, lead the classification, etc., in a row, for example.
No way to make a schedule
Excel does not have the calendar functions needed for alarms, follow-ups, and scheduling. Even the most basic CRM software will perform better in this area than MS Excel.
You can’t use Excel spreadsheets to send out marketing materials directly. Using a CRM system, you can divide clients into groups and use this information in different campaigns. A CRM database will also track who got the campaign and who has opened it and replied. This gives marketing a better sense of reality.
The benefits of using a CRM versus Excel for any organization
Better lead management
You must scroll through a spreadsheet to see how much information it can hold. It’s hard to type long notes, like a phone call summary, into a small cell on a spreadsheet.
On the other side, lead handling is substantially improved with CRM software. These software tools are designed to maintain thorough records of your potential and existing customers. Everything is considered, from basic information like their name and location to their qualifications and the goods and services they want to buy.
Simple and all the same
To do everything you need for sales, you must continue using software other than Excel. In such a case, a separate application would be needed for each of the following: emails, calls, calendars, invoicing, etc.
You’ll spend a lot of time on this and be unable to handle your data more effectively. Employees must do more than one thing at once and keep track of all the information in each program.
CRM integrates all these features and benefits into a single solution to boost productivity, save time, and better manage your data.
Integrations between CRM and Excel
Excel can be used with the Microsoft Office suite, which includes Word, Access, and Powerpoint.
But it’s hard to move data between programs if your business depends on the software that isn’t Office. Using tools that don’t talk to each other is expensive and inefficient, whether you’re retyping things from scratch, copying and pasting data, or sending files to yourself or others via email.
A lot of CRMs are made so that they work well with other popular business software. With the CRM integration, you can enter customer and accounting data in either program, and the changes will show up immediately in the other program.
CRM applications may also be integrated with your calendar program, email service, or email marketing platform. So there are a lot of choices. You may save time and steer clear of costly blunders by having the freedom to move lead and customer data across systems.
Better collaboration and access to data
Using Excel on your computer is OK. However, things might grow complicated if you often share spreadsheets with colleagues, customers, or suppliers.
Also, it takes a lot of time to keep track of all the changes when many people are simultaneously working on the same page. Using different versions of Excel could also cause problems with style and formatting.
However, cloud CRM software allows several users to examine the same data simultaneously. So, when one user makes changes, others can see them immediately. This ensures that every team member knows everything there is to know about each customer at all times.
Improved data security
Because Excel is so popular, most people think that anyone who gets a file will be able to open it. The problem is that there is a security risk because spreadsheets are so easy to share and open.
If a worker downloads documents to their personal computer and then leaves your company, probably, they will still have access to business data unless you remember to change the password on every spreadsheet.
If you use a CRM that requires an email address and password to log in, your valuable customer, lead, and sales data will be safer. Additionally, permissions can be used to specify what users can access and change in the system.
Choices for personalization
Excel works the same as a basic spreadsheet tool for all business sizes and types. But this isn’t the best choice for businesses that need more powerful tools or have complicated operations.
When comparing CRM to Excel, businesses have much more freedom to make efficient processes when using a custom CRM solution.
CRM is great because any business can change it and is built on a “no-code” platform. CRM lets your business set up self-service client portals that make your work easier and automatically take care of tedious tasks.