Christmas can strike either joy or apprehension into the hearts of business owners.
Many rely on this time of year to generate their highest volumes of sales, so they will look forward to this short yet important period of high activity. However, managing this huge increase in orders and completing the sales cycle quickly and efficiently remains a challenge for many companies (even those who think they already have an efficient data management system in place).
Here, we take a look at the standard lifecycle of a Christmas purchase and how a fully integrated CRM software from Sage can assist in the various stages of your sale and greatly enhance your ERP system.
When they’re ready to buy, the customer will add their details into the system, which will feed into your CRM. The system will identify whether the visitor is new or returning, and can then apply variable pricing based on this information – for example, it may deploy details of a special promotion for customers who have used the company before, or a different type of discount for those who are new to the business. Personalisation is key to a great customer experience, after all.
Normally, the customer will commit to their purchase by providing their card details or making a payment via Paypal. In either case, this payment information will feed into the accounting part of your ERP system so it’s on record.
Your sales team will then receive these details, and the order will be processed.
The order will proceed to your warehouse, where it will be prepared.
Next, it’s time to ship the purchase. It will be passed to the distribution team for delivery.
The delivery team will feed timely updates back into the ERP system to ensure that your team, and indeed the customer, are able to track the progress of their purchase right until it reaches their doorstep.
The order completes its journey and arrives with the customer.
The cycle doesn’t end with the delivery. The after sales procedure is extremely important, as it will cement the customer’s impression of your company and secure their loyalty. All after sales information can be recorded in your ERP platform to ensure that staff have crucial data to hand when responding to queries regarding a particular purchase.
As you can see, the success of this straightforward Christmas sales process relies on the correct information being recorded at the very start of the cycle. A standard accounting system will not be able to automate your business processes to ensure flawless interaction between all departments; its functionality ends with managing the financial aspect of the transaction.
However, Sage CRM can be used to ensure there are no discrepancies in the information that is being passed down from the top of the funnel. It ensures all data can be accessed by everyone who’s involved in the sale, from the marketing manager all the way through to the courier – and this also aids the delivery of a more robust experience for the customer.
Contact Oakley today to learn more about the myriad of benefits of Sage CRM. We’ll explain how this product can be linked to various other elements of our ERP software packages to create a seamless internal system that will aid productivity and encourage better accountability for your sales division, not only during the festive season, but throughout the rest of the year.