CRM or Customer Relationship Management helps companies manage relationships and interactions with their customers and potential customers. CRM software thus allows you to stay connected with customers, by streamlining the internal business processes that improve the company’s efficiency and profitability.
It’s a highly competitive market and while reviewing several of the popular solutions I came upon Commence CRM, manufactured by Commence Corporation. I found it interesting enough to take a deeper look and have documented my findings.
Commence Corporation was established in 1988 and works on a mantra to deliver high-quality affordable business solutions that help businesses improve how they market, sell and provide service to their customers. Commence CRM Software is a robust offering that is easy to use and has an intuitive user interface.
Commence CRM’s core focus is on driving and closing more business. Several automation tools built into the system enable you to properly quality new leads and stay on top of each stage of the sales cycle.
Companies that utilize Commence CRM have reported a 14 to 21% increase in sales in the first 9 months. What I discovered is that Commence CRM is a robust solution that offers much more than just tracking and managing sales.
The product functionality rivals higher-end products costing much more and includes; account and contact management, activity management, scheduling, ticket management, marketing campaign management, e-mail integration, analytical reporting, and even has an integrated project management module. I will discuss each of these below.
So, let us get started.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems have become an integral part of businesses globally. These systems offer myriad benefits, from streamlined operations to better customer insights.
Among the plethora of CRM solutions available, Commence CRM has emerged as a notable choice for many businesses. But what exactly is Commence CRM, and how can you get started with CRM systems in general? Let’s delve deeper.
What is Commence CRM?
Commence CRM is a customer relationship management software designed to help businesses manage their sales, marketing, customer service, and projects. Catering to small and medium enterprises, it offers a suite of tools to enhance customer relations and drive business growth.
How do you start a CRM?
- Define Objectives: Determine what you aim to achieve with the CRM. It could be better customer insights, improved sales tracking, or enhanced customer service.
- Choose the Right CRM: Based on your objectives, budget, and business size, select a CRM that fits. Commence CRM, for instance, might be suitable for SMEs looking for comprehensive functionality at a competitive price.
- Data Migration: Transfer all relevant customer and business data into the CRM system.
- Training: Ensure that your team is well-trained to use the CRM. This might involve official training sessions or self-paced online tutorials.
- Integration: Integrate the CRM with other essential business tools like email, calendar, and marketing automation software.
- Regular Updates and Maintenance: To keep the CRM running smoothly and benefit from new features, ensure regular software updates.
Commence CRM Overview
Commence Corporation provides solutions to automate and streamline your business with a range of tasks, features, and services. If you are looking for CRM software for your business Commence CRM should definitely be on your shortlist as it offers more functionality, customizability, and support services than other products at their price point.
It is also important to note that this is also a very stable company with a 30 plus year track record in the industry and outstanding customer testimonials from companies around the world.
One of the other things I learned about Commence is that they have continued to update, enhance and grow their product offering over the past three decades, and as a result, they have a very high customer retention rate. This is a sign of a quality company.
Commence CRM is an ideal CRM solution for small to mid-size businesses as it offers a comprehensive suite of functionality, is easy to use, affordable and the company’s customer support is best in class.
Let’s take a look at some of the core features.
Who introduced CRM first?
The concept of CRM has its roots in the 1970s and 1980s when businesses started to focus on customer satisfaction. However, it wasn’t until the 1990s that modern CRM systems, as we recognize them today, began to take shape. Siebel Systems, founded by Tom Siebel in 1993, is often credited with launching the first official CRM software.
Is CRM easy to use?
The ease of use for a CRM system varies based on its design, functionality, and the user’s familiarity with such tools. Most modern CRM systems, including Commence CRM, prioritize user experience, ensuring a relatively smooth learning curve.
Top 10 Features Commence CRM Software
1. Account and Contact Management
Commence helps you manage your business accounts and contacts by providing you with the ability to capture, track, manage and share vital customer information with the people and departments that need it to efficiently do their jobs.
Best of all, the information is immediately available and on one screen.
There is no flipping back and forth to see customer information as there is with other CRM offerings. Using one central database also enables access to your business history, e-mails, service tickets, projects, opportunities, quotes, activity, and documents and the information is accessible anytime, anywhere and from any device such as a PC, MAC, IPad or mobile phone.
2. Sales Opportunity
Commence CRM’s automated processes play a critical role in managing your company’s sales opportunities by giving your sales representatives immediate access to all the sales activity and managing the sales cycle from introduction to closure.
Along with this, Commence provides benefits such as:
- Workflow processes to schedule follow-up appointments and activities.
- Powerful reporting provides sales analysis, custom reports, and graphical reporting for all sales activity.
3. Lead Management
Capture, manage, and automatically qualify new leads and turn those leads into successful sales with the Commence lead management module. The lead management system will allow you to capture leads from multiple sources, automatically qualify and rate each lead, then distribute them to the appropriate sales representative.
The lead scoring system ensures that your sales team is working on the most promising new business opportunities and not chasing unqualified ones.
- Auto qualify and score lead based on initial criteria.
- Use automated workflow to put unqualified leads into future marketing campaigns.
With Commence’s marketing campaign management feature, you can maximize your company’s campaign efficiency. Apart from this, your marketing team will be provided with tools & services that will help them to easily create targeted campaigns to drive real interest for your clients & create new business opportunities.
Commence CRM software with their Drip Marketing feature helps their clients build brand recognition, generate more quality leads, close more & more deals, and excel in their business.
You can create as many campaigns as you think will help your business grow and can pre-schedule them run automatically; you will be kept updated every time.
Commence CRM marketing feature provides tools such as:
- Manage all lead generation, conversions, and close ratios, and you can quickly determine the value & profits of each campaign.
- It allows you to immediately follow-up with new opportunities.
- Analytical reports illustrate each campaign according to industry, source, and outcome.
5. Project Management
Commence CRM offers you a centralized project management feature to easily plan & organize all project activities and enable access to all authorized personnel/employees.
Commence CRM project management feature allows you to collaborate across each project by planning, tracking & monitoring the entire lifecycle of the project and doing corrections whenever or wherever required.
Commence CRM manages & optimizes each of your projects to meet essential deliverables via complete planning & resource management.
The project management feature provides tools such as:
- Stay coordinated with your schedules & calendars to ensure resource availability.
- Continually manage all your business tasks, project timesheets, resource assignments, and their cost & scope to redeploy resources if the situation arises quickly.
- It allows you to pre-build and customizes the reporting of each project so that it stays on track.
- It helps you to identify project issues (if it arises) on any stage and ensure corrective measures to resolve.
6. Email Integration
Another fantastic feature of Commence CRM is its seamless email integration with popular domains, i.e., Microsoft Outlook, Gmail, Yahoo, mail for the Apple Mac, and many others. Thus, if your business comprises a mixed environment, don’t worry because they have got you all covered.
With their seamless e-mail integration service, every time you review an account or a contact, you will see their complete e-mail history. You can quickly log-in with just a single click, and all your e-mail will be arranged & stored under the account/contact record.
Other things that you can do with Commence CRM Software e-mail integration feature are:
- Share vital information about sales, marketing, contact information, customer data, and another service via e-mail with permission,
- It allows you to associate e-mails with its corresponding account, contact & leads to track them all under Commence easily.
7. Reporting and Analytics
Commence CRM offers a powerful set of reporting features that include pre-built reports, ad hoc custom reports, and graphical reporting capabilities. This feature helps by giving you full & quick access to the history of interactive data and gaining in-depth knowledge about your business & about your customer so you can make informed decisions.
It allows you complete visibility about your whole business, be it sales opportunities, campaigns, marketing programs, service ticket management, schedules, cost analysis, etc. from a summary to a complete detailed report, everything you need to keep a track of is available.
A built-in report generator helps you make a report of any type or against any data in your system with graphical representation quickly & efficiently.
- Reporting via graphical analysis gives you a quick, efficient, and understandable view of your leads, business deals, profit/ loss analysis, average deal size, etc.
- Additional tools include pre-built, ad-hoc reporting.
8. Social CRM
Well, with upgrading technology & various social media platforms present in the market, social media has taken building brand recognition to a new level and has proven to be highly effective in such an area.
All the credit goes to Twitter, Facebook & LinkedIn for changing the way business interacts with other organizations, communities, and individuals nowadays, and thus Commence also upgraded the way for people, clients or customers to interact internally with the real staff with their unique social CRM tool called “Conversations.”
Just like any other social interacting tool, Conversations allow you to chat, but in this, you will be interacting/or doing a real-time collaboration with internal staff.
Like any other social interacting site Conversation tool, you could create groups of people who follow you or people you follow; you can send instant messages and chat with people with instant alerts in real-time.
All you will need to do is begin the conversation with a dialogue/greeting, and in no time, you will be getting responses from people working internally or remotely.
Conversations tool of Commence CRM will improve your business, by enabling you to connect with organizationss, communities, groups, and individuals.
9. Contact Support
Commence understands that your customers are the lifeline of your business, and how important it is to respond quickly when your customer needs your service.
Commence CRM provides service representatives a quick, single-click immediate access to your client records data, which further enables them to capture, track and manage all the activities easily; to give quick & efficient responses to customer inquiries.
Give your customers a delightful and world-class customer service with features such as:
- Commence CRM allows you to create, track, escalate resolve customer service request and queries with the help of their service ticket management tool,
- You can easily manage each of your customer’s case activity through various departments, divisions in a quick & efficient manner with consistent customer responses,
- Their real-time customer support dashboard measures your staff productivity and provides you analytical report so that you can improve it (if it is not satisfying),
- You can also increase cross-sell opportunities by introducing your new products to your customers in between the conversation.
10. Customer Portal
This is a new feature in Commence CRM that will also be a clear differentiator in the small to the mid-size business sector.
With their Channel Partner Portal, you can efficiently provide online customer service by giving your customers a central stage/place to enter service tickets, access to a knowledge base, and find an answer to common & frequently asked questions.
With the help of self-automated tools offered by Commence CRM gives you a delightful service to your customer, boost their confidence & satisfaction in your services, reduce calls to your support staff, and increase your staff productivity.
A built-in Knowledge Base and FAQ enable Commence customers to find answers to their questions 24/7.
Which Industries Can Use Commence CRM Software
You may be wondering if Commence CRM is right for your business or what type of industries, companies or businesses use Commence CRM software and services?
Commence is a general-purpose CRM solution but unlike competitive products that are cookie-cutter designs, Commence CRM can be quickly and easily tailored to address specific industry requirements. As a result, the product is used across a myriad of industries. Testimonials are available in the following industry segments.
- Manufacturing & Distribution Companies
- Financial Services
- Wealth Management
- Business Services
Commence Plans and Pricing
|Customer||Marketing CRM||Project Management CRM||Customer CRM Service|
|29$ user/month||39$ user/month||50$ user/month||65$ user/month|
|Accounts & Contacts||Marketing Automation||Project Management||Automated Ticketing|
|Task, Reminders, Alerts||Drip Marketing||Project Tasks||System|
|Lead Scoring||Marketing Analytics||Group Calendaring||Reporting|
|Assignment||Document Library||Project Dashboard||Support Analytics|
|Sales Opportunity||Web to Lead Capture||Gantt Chart||Support Dashboard|
|Forecast & Reporting|
Above are the affordable packages along with the features offered by Commence CRM Software. You can choose any edition or simply select the modules you need for your business.
Commence corporation is a renowned name in providing world-class service to its customers with a team of skilled, experienced, and friendly personal.
Their team of engineers & product experts are ready, available at every step from initial implementation, data migration, customization, instructional training, consultation, and third-party system integration.
Benefits of Commence CRM:
- Comprehensive Functionality: Commence CRM offers tools for sales, marketing, customer service, and project management in one platform.
- Customizability: Tailor the CRM according to your specific business needs.
- Cloud-based: Accessible anywhere, anytime, facilitating remote work and flexibility.
- Enhanced Security: Robust security measures to ensure data protection.
- Affordable Pricing: Especially geared towards SMEs, it offers competitive pricing models.
Is Commence CRM Safe?
Commence CRM has built-in security features, ensuring that your business data remains protected. Always ensure that you follow best practices, such as regular password updates and restricting access where necessary.
Is Commence CRM Free?
While Commence CRM isn’t entirely free, they often offer trial versions or demo periods for potential users to explore the platform. For detailed pricing, it’s recommended to consult the official Commence CRM website or contact their sales team.
Finding the right CRM solution for your business can be a challenging exercise. In addition to the industry giants Salesforce.com, Microsoft Dynamics CRM, and Oracle CRM that serve the enterprise market, there are several hundred basic low-cost solutions to choose from.
What’s been missing is a product that offers more functionality, flexibility, and customer support then the basic low-cost solutions provide, but without the cost and complexity of the enterprise products listed above.
Commence CRM is uniquely positioned to serve this market segment. You can also use Commence CRM Test Drive to know more about Commence.
It’s a comprehensive offering that’s easy to use, customizable, and affordable from a company with an impressive track record in the CRM space. If you are looking for a CRM solution, Commence CRM should be on your shortlist.
In the competitive business landscape, CRM systems like Commence CRM can be game-changers. They not only streamline operations but also offer invaluable insights into customer behavior. If you’re on the verge of implementing a CRM, understanding your objectives and ensuring team training can set you on the path to success.