The number of companies using Microsoft Dynamics CRM has dramatically grown in recent years. There are several reasons for this, including its out-of-the box integration with other popular Microsoft business applications such as Office and Outlook. Other reasons include its customer-friendly user interface, ease-of-use, and that it can easily be configured to fit the needs of different industries and organizations. Additionally, Dynamics CRM can also interface well with many widely used ERP and accounting software platforms.
On top of these reasons, Microsoft Dynamics CRM is incredibly feature-rich, just like a Swiss Army Knife. It is an extremely robust platform with many features, functionalities and tools. Some companies use Dynamics CRM to centralize and consolidate the business processes of their entire organization. Other companies leverage it for engaging and marketing to their customers and prospects, and to track opportunities; still others fully utilize the customer service management and fulfillment features it offers.
And just like a Swiss Army Knife, there are many tools you can use, all conveniently located in one platform, and they can be used in different ways. Depending on your needs, you may find that you need to use the corkscrew, can opener and bottle opener most of the time, and then as time goes on, the ruler, scissors, and magnifying glass come in handy.
Even the Sales features of Microsoft Dynamics CRM are very robust. Some companies incorporate their product catalog into the Opportunities function, and also include the Quotes, Orders, and Invoices tools into their sales processes. These advanced sales processes come out-of-the-box in Dynamics CRM, and are designed to mirror and integrate with ERP and financial software. If a business finds that it does not need all of this functionality, they can be removed but then can be added back in when they are needed in the future.
Many companies have found the advanced sales features offered in Dynamics CRM to be extremely useful. The Quote tool enables companies to conveniently create quotes right from within their CRM. This allows companies to collect valuable information to make better decisions. For example, they can see what products are selling the most, and conversely which ones are selling the least.
Additionally, using the advanced sales features help to keep data about a company’s sales efforts centralized. With CRM housing all the data such as leads, marketing campaign responses, opportunities, quotes, orders, and invoices, it makes it easy for a company to report trends and track wins and losses to further refine products, pricing and sales methods.
Other impressive advanced sales features include Price Lists and Discounting mechanisms which are built into Dynamics CRM. If a business sells products in multiple cities, states, or regions, it can have different price lists for those regions. Regular Customer and Dealer/Wholeseller price lists can also be configured. Different price lists can be designed so that they are only active during specific times of the month or year. Moreover, specific “default” price lists can be assigned to different products. And a company can create and associate a price list to a marketing campaign to provide special discounting or pricing options too.
This discounting feature allows control over how much, when, and at what measurement the discounts can be applied to a quote or order. Say a company sells Ginsu Knives, for example, and the more a customer purchases, the more they save. Discounting kicks in by the number of units sold, so if a customer is willing to purchase products in volume, a discount can be applied to each product by a specific amount or percentage.
Wait, there’s more! Imagine how many product accessories could be sold to help increase the business‘s bottom line if it could quickly identify the customers who purchased Ginsu Knives in the past. A company could increase its number of Ginsu Knife sharpeners sold by running an email marketing campaign right out of CRM. It could be done quite easily because the product order and customer data are all located in Dynamics CRM and readily available to the marketing department without any additional time-consuming programming and costly add-on integrations.
If you would like to learn more about implementing Dynamics CRM and about the advanced sales features covered in this article, contact the experts at NexusTek at 303-773-6464, or complete this short online contact form.
Dale Laushman is a NexusTek Microsoft Dynamics CRM engineer and technical expert.