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Sales and Marketing Tracking Tools

Imagine a minefield of questions:

  • Where are the details of the last sales?

  • Why did we lose that last deal?

  • The budget is approved but damn! I forget what we quoted.

  • VIP customer list, pending deals, active clients...

Welcome to the world of being self-employed. But it would be pretty easy to navigate this minefield if you have a sales and marketing tracking program in place. While some people like to stick with hard-copy maintenance of all documents over e-storage, maintaining a mix has become a norm in business. You too should combine and develop a sales and marketing tracking process. Choose options that suit you personally and those that require least effort on your part and on that of your staff.

Don't go for an elaborate software or system just because it is advertised as being the best around or the most popular. Figure out what your individual business needs are. You could also seek professional advice at the time of setting up your business. It would surely help in the long run.

What are the best tools to help keep track of sales and marketing?

For now, here are some of the tools available for super sales and marketing tracking for a business of just any size.

  • ACT! - Whether you're working alone or with a team, this tool is great as a comprehensive sales and marketing management tool. Use it to stay organized with task reminders, appointment schedules, recent emails, notes jotted down during meetings and even social media profiles – all in one place. The ACT! tool comes in a Premium version for a team but takes the effort out of your sales and marketing documentation and process. It works fine with Microsoft Office.

  • Salesforce – The CRM Magazine has voted Salesforce the best CRM application for small through enterprise-size businesses as well as best sales force automation. Based on cloud computing it's completely online that allows you to access records from anywhere on the planet. It comes with real-time visibility and ease-of-use features. Salesforce is subscription based. It includes software called Chatter that lets you go for real-time collaborations with contacts. It also includes Microsoft Outlook support and choice of language.

  • Zoho CRM – Is another tool for the entire business sales and marketing lifecycle. It includes host of features like inventory management, analytics to keep track of where your business profitability is headed, workflow management, role-based security levels, plug-ins for mail and Microsoft Outlook, etc. Some people find Zoho annual costs cheaper than Salesforce but again, it depends upon what your individual business needs are.

But don't just jump at buying a CRM solution just because you find its advertisement impressive. The essential value of a CRM tool lies in how much it could help you and your staff bring ease to making business decisions, maintaining and tracking sales and getting ahead of the competition in marketing. You also have to be clear about how intensive is your requirement. Do you need a system for sales and marketing for daily use or a program that helps with a weekly use would suffice? Consider the annual subscription costs versus a one-time purchase of a software program. Also check out some online forums to see what others are using and only then decide which CRM tool would suit your business needs.

Productivity Tools

Payroll Processing

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