CRM for e-commerce is a great tool to boost your business. If your eCommerce website is not yet integrated with a CRM system, you’re losing customers and revenue. Nucleus research shows that CRM pays back $8.71 for every dollar spent.
If you do not have this technology, it is high time to consider CRM eCommerce integration. In this article, we will learn about CRM in online shopping, highlight pros and cons of CRM for online stores, and cover the best eCommerce CRM softwares for small and medium-sized businesses.
What is CRM?
CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management. These are systems that store all customers’ and leads’ data. With a CRM program, all the data is centralized and managers can get it any time, anywhere.
The main purpose of CRM is to accumulate all the information about customers and optimize business processes by improving relations with customers and increasing sales.
What can CRM do?
eCommerce with CRM becomes more profitable since it automates processes. Moreover, there are a lot of spheres which are covered by CRM systems:
- Deals with information about customers: telephone calls, transactions, and orders; unifies it in a convenient database
- Automates documentation issues
- Provide analytics
- Provide additional services such as mailing
What are the advantages of CRM?
Thanks to developed CRM software eCommerce is boosted. A CRM for online retail or bulk buying helps you to get:
- Optimized marketing strategy
- Increased workflow efficiency
- Retailed customer analytics
- Easier customer data access
- Better customer relations and customer experience
What are the disadvantages of CRM?
- Difficulty of implementation. CRM for ecommerce business is a rather expensive procedure. You have to choose a certain company, a suitable tariff plan and adjust the business processes of the company. For sure CRM allows you to increase profit and in a long-term run it will be paid off for the company. Yet, a certain budget is required for implementation and configuration for a start.
Some eCommerce platforms have built-in CRM tools. For example, CS-Cart Multi-Vendor has a basic CRM system which is enough for the beginning.
- The need for employee training. Despite the fact that CRM for eCommerce websites are relatively simple and user-friendly technologies, the preliminary training is required. Due to the extensive functionality this technology may not be welcomed with ease for the first time. However, with time passing by, employers can get used to it.
Does your business need CRM?
There are some signs that your business needs the CRM system.
- The number of manual employers for processing client services is growing but the efficiency is the same or even decreases
- To find and keep information about customers have become difficult since it is scattered
- Some queries from clients are missed and after a long period you cannot find any contacts of order history
- You would rather have less mistakes than happened today in your business in client services
- You want to implement advanced marketing strategy or loyalty system
Some entrepreneurs consider that CRM is needed only for big-sized businesses but CRM for small retail businesses is also a great solution. Automated systems help to boost any business. For small business CRM and CMS are required, but ERP is a solution for bigger players. Are you confused by these abbreviations? Let’s see what CMS and ERP are, what is the difference, and what they are needed for.
What is the difference between CRM, CMS, and ERP?
There are a lot of abbreviations which describe various technologies. Despite the fact that they serve for different purposes they are often confused. If we summarize all the features of a CRM system mentioned previously, we can conclude that eCommerce CRM solutions connect business and customers.
What is CMS system?
CMS is a Content Management System. There is a possibility to edit elements on a website without programming. Content is a generalized name for text and graphic materials on the site and can be represented by product descriptions, products themselves, photos, and articles. It connects business and a virtual environment.
CMS consists of the web blocks with different sections which can be formed as a user wishes. The most common example of CMS are:
What is ERP system?
ERP stands for Enterprise Resource Planning. ERP is a one step further that is why sometimes it includes CRM. With these systems you can manage production, costs, finances, etc. One of the main goals and key features is the possibility to track the left-over stock of goods in warehouses and sale items. In other words, it connects business and products.
Usually each employee has their own customized interface: a certain interface for the accountant, another one for the personnel officer, vendors work in the kind of “Purchases and Production” blocks, and an administrator receives analytics in their special tab. Examples of ERP:
- Oracle ERP Cloud
- Aptean ERP
Best CRM for eCommerce business
These are our top 7 retail CRM systems which can be perfect for eCommerce business.
PipeDrive is one of the best CRM retail system on the market. Over 90,000 companies in 179 countries use PipeDrive including Skyscanner and Vimeo. This is a cloud-based eCommerce CRM software with great scalability.
The out-of-the-box package includes all you’ll ever need to establish effective interaction with your customers: manage leads and deals, track communications, automate tasks, see analytics and reports. You can access your PipeDrive dashboard via a mobile app and integrate the CRM with your favorite sales-boosting apps.
This is the most customizable eCommerce CRM solutions on our list. It has a powerful API to integrate with popular CMS and shopping cart software, plus, there are tons of plugins available on their app market. Thanks to its customizability you can tweak the system to your liking and perfectly adapt it to your workflows.
The pricing is very flexible and starts from $12.5 per user per month.
Freshsales CRM is known for its user-friendliness and convenient interface. Freshsales is well-known as a CRM for small retail businesses and also can can become a perfect solution for a medium-sized ones. Over 15,000 customers worldwide use Freshsales, including some well-known vendors such as Dyson.
Freshsales includes all the functionality of proper CRM for online store such as contact management, activity monitoring, reports, email campaigns, customer relationship management, etc. In addition to capturing leads, this CRM scores, verifies, and nurtures them in order to boost conversion. Freshsales helps you manage contacts from multiple channels—Google Ads, blogs, websites, and others. Plus, Freshsales Phone Activity Reports help you monitor the performance of your sales reps.
There are other products from this vendor: freshdesk, freshservice, freshcaller, freshteam, and more. Some of them integrate with Freshsales CRM, making a perfectly working business ecosystem. No need for third-party integrations.
The pricing starts from $12 user/month. With the plan, you get free technical support by email, chat, and phone 24/5.
ReadyCloud is a robust CRM for online retail. It’s a perfect system amoung eCommerce CRM solutions on the market. This cloud-based CRM software has all the features you need to establish great customer relationships.
The package includes a convenient dashboard with data updated in real-time; an order management section with shipping timeline, tracking number, return information, invoice, notes, tagging, and more; tasks for your team members with the ability to attach files, add notes and tags; the contacts section to personalize your customers; the ability to write notes and schedule events via a flexible calendar.
A great thing about ReadyCloud is that you can expand its default functionality with plugins. The company has an app store where you can select from a growing list of apps and integrations that add more functionality.
The price is affordable and starts from $24 per month.
A good choice of CRM for small retail businesses is noCRM. They appreciate simplicity that is why integration can be easily adopted by your team.
With the help of this CRM for online stores you can plan your deals: synchronize the calendar and important events, schedule calls and appointments, as well as save the entire history of actions. Users have access to a 360-degree view of your sales funnels, the ability to create and monitor them, add or remove sales stages.
You can also accompany your sales teams and track their performance with special features for managers, and control access to data through privacy settings.
The price starts from 10$ per month but there is a possibility of free testing.
ACT! is one of the best eCommerce CRM softwares; it offers marketing automation tools and a CRM system. This is a great solution for small eCommerce businesses and individuals. ACT! is included in the cloud-based automation tools kit but you can also buy CRM separately and install it on your own server.
This CRM system gives you a complete overview of your customer relationships: you can see reports in the dashboard in realtime, flexibly manage contacts, launch email marketing campaigns, view history, monitor KPIs, and more.
ACT!’s notable feature is offline synchronization. If you go offline for some reason, CRM memorizes all the recent changes and pushes them to the server once you go back online. This means you can work from anywhere and sync later when you have an Internet connection.
Basic CRM and marketing tools hosted in the cloud cost €20 user/month. The optimal plan with a full-featured CRM and marketing automation costs €30 user/month. A full-featured CRM hosted on your own server will cost you €27 user/month.
Maximizer is another CRM for e-Commerce. You can get this eCommerce CRM software hosted in the cloud or deploy it on your own server. Maximizer is an all-in-one eCommerce tool with advanced CRM functionality.
The system ships with marketing, sales team management, and customer management functionality, the ability to integrate with third-party services, the ability to access the CRM from any device, the access to tech support and training.
Maximizer is available as self-hosted software as well. This means you install the system on your own server and gain full access to it. The self-hosted version allows for unlimited storage—you decide how much space you need on your server.
The price starts from $40 per user per month for a self-hosted version and $65 per user per month for a cloud-based version.
One of the best eCommerce CRM is Bitrix24. Many standard CRM functions are available in Bitrix24, and one of the most convenient additional functions is video calls and internal chats. You have the opportunity to communicate with colleagues, clients and contractors in a meeting mode. Schedules can also be set and controlled by an administrator.
You can connect mail, telephone, social networks, advertising, end-to-end analytics, and collect requests from all channels: forms on the website, online chats, phone calls and social networks. Bitrix24 also evaluates the prospects of leads and provides managers with analytics of what to look for to increase revenue. In this CRM project management is available in different modes: lists, checklists, Gantt chart, calendar for monitoring deadlines and executors.
For all the benefits and multifunctionality, Bitrix24 may seem not as user-friendly as other systems.
There is a free version of this CRM; the price for paid tariffs starts from 39$ per month.
What does eCommerce CRM software do?
CRM in online shopping business helps to centralize customer services. It provides information such as first and last names, phone number, purchase queries, and etc.; provides analytics; allows you to comment on their feedback, start marketing campaigns, and create loyalty programs.
Why do you need an ecommerce CRM software?
CRM eCommerce integration plays an important role. You can automate business processes and optimize manual work by accumulating information in one place.
Is CS-Cart a CRM?
No, CS-Cart and CS-Cart Multi-Vendor are softwares to start a website and a marketplace respectively. They both have a built-in simple CRM. Try a free demo version of a marketplace on CS-Cart Multi-Vendor.
What is the best CRM for eCommerce?
It is difficult to define the best retail CRM. But in our article we mentioned 7 reliable CRMs: PipeDrive, FreshSales, ReadyCloud, Act!, Maximizer, Bitrix24, and noCRM.
What is a CRM database?
CRM for online stores helps to collect information about customers (names, telephone numbers, emails, purchase queries, etc.) in one place called a CRM database. It is like an expanded Excel table.
In this article we went through the best CRM for retail and bulk purchases. In eCommerce CRM softwares plays a great role. They allow for optimizing customer’s sphere by centralizing information, and providing marketing and analytical tools. They are created for unity and simplicity.
Yan Anderson is the Head of Content Marketing at CS-Cart with over 10 years of experience in the eCommerce industry. He's passionate about explaining complicated things in simple terms. Yan has expertise in building, running and growing eCommerce marketplaces. He loves to educate people about best practices, new technologies, and trends in the global eCommerce industry.