Not totally sure if using this forum for this purpose is frowned upon but I thought I would try it as a way to start a debate focussed less on simply reviewing current market offerings and more on looking at what customers want.
We are currently designing a customer relationship management / Sales Team Management package (nothing to show yet) aimed at Small and Medium businesses who want something more aimed at maximising sales effort rather than just a fancy version of MS Access or at the other end of the spectrum something like salesforce.com that can be really overwhelming if you aren't a Fortune 500 company.
I read the recent question about recommending peoples favourite CRM package (a real popular thread) but though I would take it in another direction:
So, I thought I would ask the general question that rather than which package do you use and what does it do well (or not), "looking solely at your business, what do you look for in a CSM/sales software package? What functionality is key for your business? How much customisation do you use? How much customisation is too much or too little? Is there anything that you feel isn't offered by the current market incumbents?"
To also help focus this wide ranging question, I will also give some options that people can rank in terms of importance:
- Simplicity of use ("I want to be selling not spending all day on this!")
- Package helping to guide you though the sales process (with tips etc)
- Easy Communication between users (i.e. spreading good news)
- Quick and easy e-mail marketing
- Sales force automation (i.e. workflow management)
- Storage and easy access to customer sales information (& track against targets)
- Record customer activity (meetings, phone call, support cases)
- Produce quotations
- Management information (i.e what are my sales team doing?)