e-CRM – electronic customer relationship management
Information technology has found its way into every industry. Most companies rely on computers and electronically processed data to manage their business processes, to create marketing campaigns and find sales opportunities, to develop a business strategy, and to improve customer service. Customer relationship management has proven to be extremely useful when it comes to analysing customer data.
Definition of e-CRM
E-CRM is the result of these topics. E-CRM (electronic customer relationship management) is the combination of customer relationship management and information technology, the main focus is on the use of electronic environments and devices in order to manage the respective business processes.
Similar to a conventional CRM, e-CRM supports processes such as collecting customer data, analysing it, and monitoring all customer related procedures.
Benefits of an e-CRM
The goal of e-CRM is to gain profitable long-term relationships with customers. Businesses can benefit from several aspects of this kind of customer relationship management in order to achieve this goal.
One advantage of e-CRM is that it is usually based on web technologies. When employees have access to the Internet, they can also use the software. That means that any device connected to the Internet is suitable for e-CRM. The advantage hereby is that no local installation is necessary, software updates or upgrades only have to be implemented centrally. Cloud storage solutions enable employees to access and modify all relevant data in the CRM system at any place and at any time. This is especially useful for traveling sales people, who can access all necessary data with their mobile devices where and when they need it.
Another advantage of e-CRM is the fact that it can be implemented into almost any already existing software system. But not only customer calls and e-mails can be tracked, analysed, and evaluated. On top of conventional customer interactions, data such as a customer’s purchase behaviour or contents of a shopping cart can e.g. be used to target certain customer groups with specific marketing campaigns. Furthermore, customer data can be automatically updated based on certain actions e.g. during a visit of an online shop. However, when using customer data companies need to make sure that all necessary regulations concerning privacy are met.
As web analytics and tracking systems become more and more elaborate, automatically gathered data of customer actions can support the process of sales management and customer service. The customer benefits from tailored data, personalised offers, and from employees who can get an overview of all relevant customer data instantly.