Since its introduction in the 1980’s CRM software has made major advances in providing sophisticated communication between businesses and their customers facilitating development of strong customer relationships. With a New Year upon us Xperience Group review predictions for what lies ahead for CRM software in 2014.
Iain O’Kane, Managing Director of Xperience Group commented on the predictions, stating ‘The way people buy is changing, therefore CRM software needs to enable flexibility to understand and meet customer demands with ease. CRM software needs to be accessible to all users, regardless of there location and the CRM software predictions for 2014 reflect these needs, with mobile, cloud computing, social media and Big Data at the top of the list.’
Mobile CRM solutions have been around for some time, and there is no sign of them going away. In 2014, Gartner Research predicts CRM apps will grow by 500% making mobile apps one of the fastest growing trends in CRM. Not only will there be more mobile applications available to users, the mobile CRM applications are also becoming more sophisticated. Ahead of the trend is the latest release of Saleslogix Mobile, released in 2013, which offers mobile only user licenses.
In addition to mobility, predictions show the use of cloud CRM will grow further as businesses look for cost effective CRM solutions. Recent IDC cloud research show Software as a service (SaaS) will remain the largest public IT cloud services category, capturing 59.7% of revenue in 2017. Cloud and SaaS CRM options add value to businesses with limited resource, with a predictable cost structure, no hardware requirements, and upgrades and implementation taken care of.
Another trend with no signs of diminishing is social CRM. According to Gartner, social CRM is expected to grow by 28.4% annually until 2015. Social media usage is growing at a fast and steady pace giving businesses access to key customer and prospect segments. With 79% of companies currently involving social media in their content marketing strategies Social CRM is critical in gathering and harnessing customer information for better engagement.
The final buzz for 2014 is Big Data and analytics. According to IDC, the big data market was worth $58.4 million in 2011, and is likely to reach $153.1 million in 2014. As more and more companies realise the value of their customer data strategies are changing with many businesses choosing to invest in the tools, technology and skills to help them capitalise on their data. In 2014 there will be a growth in the use of CRM systems that enable advanced analytics.
The trends predicted for 2014 show an increasing demand for cost effective, accessible CRM solutions which allow all members of a business to remain productive at all times. Accessibility to better information will make this a reality.
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