Ninety percent of CRM buyers are looking for lead management in a CRM. Given this staggering statistic– collected from over 10,000 software buyers looking for a CRM– you’re likely in the same boat as you start your CRM software evaluation journey.

Why is lead management so important? According to our research, 32 percent of CRM buyers have trouble following up on leads, while 51 percent say that disorganization is their biggest enemy.

This makes lead management an understandable priority for CRM software buyers, but making a software purchase isn’t as simple as that. It’s not just about finding any old CRM with lead management features– you need a CRM that suits your business’ needs.

Below, I’ll go through three CRM software evaluation tips to help you make the right choice during your CRM buying journey.

Tip #1: Choose an option that you can scale

One of the most important things to consider when purchasing a CRM is knowing how many people are going to use it. Pricing plans generally run on a per user, per month basis, and knowing this during the purchasing process will help you choose a solution that fits your budget.

According to our research, companies with less than 10 users are willing to spend as much as $80 per user per month on their CRM, while those with 20 or more users will go up to $91 per user per month. For example: if you have 6 users and are paying $80 a month per user, that’s roughly $480 a month you’ll be spending on your CRM. If you’re planning to add another 2 users by the end of the year, you need to make sure that you have the extra $160 per month in the budget to be able to add these users to your CRM.

The problem is that the number of users can change quickly, especially if you have a growing company. Make sure that you allocate enough budget so that if your team does expand quickly, you’ll be able to scale your chosen solution without breaking the bank.

Tip #2: Don’t settle for a fancy-looking rolodex

If you’re using manual methods to manage your contacts– and according to our data, 49 percent of you are– it’s easy to settle for a CRM that “looks” nice. In the world of CRM, however, form does not equal function.

Most CRMs offer the same, basic features for contact management including lead scoring, task management, and email integration. It’s in the way that these features work together to allow for pipeline management that really make a difference. Ask yourself questions like:

  1. Can you assign leads to different sales reps?
  2. Can you see a history of purchase data and track emails?
  3. Do you get notifications to follow-up with leads?

Many software buyers don’t even realize the full feature set and functionality available in a modern CRM. It’s important to look at a product’s full set of features before settling for a glorified contact book.

Tip #3: Make sure your CRM is social

Integrations are important for every type of software so that you can share data between applications and departments. When it comes to your CRM integrations:

  • Accounting software can ensure that your customers are paying their invoices;
  • Marketing software helps you send the right marketing campaigns to the right segment of customers;
  • Customer service software ensures that your customer service and sales department have insight into the same customer information or issues.

It’s especially important for your CRM to integrate with social media. As social selling continues to be a popular and successful way for sales teams to find leads, having an integration with social media ensures that you can capture leads without manual data entry or worrying about clients falling through the cracks.

Check out the infographic below for a summary of the top three CRM software evaluation tips to keep in mind during your CRM software hunt.

Getting started with the CRM software evaluation process

Once you have your budget, feature set, and integration list, you can start with the software selection process. GetApp offers a software selection scorecard that can help you narrow down the options based on some of this criteria. With the scorecard, you can:

  • Choose your budget
  • Choose which platform you want your tool to be available on
  • Choose which features are highest priority.

From there, you’ll be shown a list of some of the best CRM software options for your business and can compare them side by side.

Check out GetApp’s scorecard to get started on your CRM software evaluation process!

Project management software scorecard