The importance of keeping your CRM up-to-date

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In an ever-evolving digital landscape, being up-to-date is absolutely crucial for any business endeavor or asset. This naturally extends to business solutions and platforms, notably including Content Management Systems (CMS) and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software. Thus, this article will focus on the latter. Here at MoversTech, we’ve continuously attested to the potency of CRM and the statistics behind its merits. By the same token, today we’ll discuss the importance of keeping your CRM up-to-date, and just how to do so.

Staying up-to-date, data-wise and software-wise

Initially, it’s vital to establish what staying up-to-date means. There are two distinct forms of updates, each with its own benefits; data updates and software updates. This article will naturally cover both.

Data updates

If you’ve delved into matters of CRM before, you’re likely aware of the significance of data quality. Among others, consider the following statistics and research on this front:

  • Experian found that 91% of businesses suffer from common data errors; U.S. organizations believe 25% of their data is inaccurate; 77% believe their bottom line is affected by data inaccuracies; human error is the most common cause of inaccurate data.
  • CSO Insights found that 51% of CRM customers view data synchronization as a major issue.
  • GetBase found that 30% of marketers struggle to gain clear customer insights due to disparate data sources.

Finally, Software Advice’s findings that 82% of sales reps saw improved data through mobile solutions consolidate this proposition. Data updates, streamlined data entry, and a consolidated database are all crucial to data accuracy. In this context, keeping your CRM up-to-date data-wise can be massively beneficial.

Software updates

Similarly, as with all software updates, CRM updates can prevent a slew of potential issues:

  • Compatibility issues
  • Sluggish performance
  • Security risks

What may seem like a trivial concern, then, may hamper workplace productivity. Software updates are thus vital, on grounds of both maintenance and overall performance.

Keeping your CRM up-to-date, data-wise

Starting with maintaining your CRM databases up-to-date, let us stress its importance again. Data Warehousing Institute notes that data quality problems are extremely costly. In numbers, it finds that “data problems cost U.S. businesses more than $600 billion a year”.

Thus, to avoid such financial damages, you may consider these key steps and practices.

#1 Enter data in real-time and import essential contact list data

To use customer data effectively, you’ll need to ensure it’s accurate from the very first entry. To do so, consider the following practices.

Enter data in real-time

It’s incredibly easy for data to get lost if it’s not entered in a timely manner. Many reps may devote a specific part of their schedule to data entry – most frequently at the end of the day. While that might sometimes be viable workflow management, it’s also prone to human error. Therefore, you should encourage real-time data entry whenever possible. Reps that use cloud-based mobile CRM can take note of this and produce more accurate data, keeping your CRM database up-to-date.

Only import essential contact list data

Similarly, redundant data may needlessly clutter your database. This may be limited to Name, Address, and Phone number (NAP) information for initial records. Conversely, it might extend to more data your business deems essential. In either case, only importing essential data makes data management easier – and thus improves your overall workflow.

An illustration of 4 stopwatches that reads "time management".
Data accuracy can help ensure better time management and thus increased productivity.

#2 Clean up your data

On the subject of data management, keeping your CRM up-to-date hinges on both data entry and data cleanups. Having covered the former, consider key steps toward the latter.

Remove inactive and unresponsive contacts

Firstly, you may remove contacts that your teams deem to have been inactive for too long. Doing so will clean up your database, and subsequently improve your marketing automation efforts.

Delete outdated and duplicate data

Next, on the subject of data cleanups, you may tend to outdated and duplicate data. Understandably, both can create interaction problems and needlessly complicate your data management.

Remove old reports and email templates

Finally, you may remove old reports and email templates that you don’t use. If any such data isn’t relevant, actionable, or usable anymore, it’s in your best interest to remove it.

#3 Continuously update your data and run data audits

Lastly, updating your data and running data audits can both be immensely beneficial. Data accuracy is crucial, and its importance can’t be overstated – both for cost-efficiency and overall productivity. As such, remember to continuously delve into both.

Update your data

Examine your data at regular intervals. Update customer fields in your CRM with new information as it becomes available to account for such instances as relocations and email or phone number changes.

Conduct data audits

Finally, data audits at regular intervals will highlight all of the aforementioned shortcomings. Let audits comb through your data and consolidate it into actionable, useful customer information.

Keeping your CRM up-to-date, software-wise

Vector image of smart phone with development elements.
Software updates are an essential part of keeping your CRM up-to-date and fully operational.

Software-wise, keeping your CRM up-to-date is much easier and requires less manual effort. As such, let us highlight the benefits of CRM software updates.

#1 Reliability

As a crucial part of your operations, CRM needs to be reliable at all times. Updates help ensure that your CRM remains responsive, stable, and well-maintained. An unexpected crash or other software malfunctions can cost dearly, and at times even undermine a final sale.

#2 Productivity and cost-effectiveness

Similarly, CRM updates include functionality upgrades and other revisions. What’s more, such upgrades come at no additional cost but can offer practical improvements. From a cleaner interface to new or improved features, updates will help ensure maximum productivity and cost-effectiveness.

#3 Safety and security

A black open lock on a grey laptop keyboard.
Security is absolutely essential when dealing with sensitive customer data.

Finally, as with all software, CRM updates frequently include security updates. CRM holds a wealth of customer information, so it’s of paramount importance to deter hackers and malicious actors. After all, private customer information leaks and breaches can be incredibly damaging for any business.

Conclusion

To summarize, it is undeniably important to keep your CRM up-to-date in both senses of the word. A clean, consolidated database offers accurate customer data that drives decisions reliably, and updated software offers a solid operational foundation. As with all business solutions, remaining informed and being proactive can only help avoid unnecessary costs and lost opportunities.

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