Falling hardware prices and rapidly increasing panel efficiency have made solar sales an extremely competitive industry, where margins are thin and only the most well-run companies see strong profits and long-term growth. In the quest to carve out any advantage more and more solar sales companies have been adopting customer resource management systems, and they are quickly becoming must-have software across the industry. While CRM systems offer an enormous amount of utility to companies looking to streamline and enhance their sales and support efforts, users adopting one for the first time can occasionally let their expectations exceed what is realistic, even from such a powerful tool. Understanding the utility of your CRM and keeping expectations realistic ensures your solar company can properly plan for its adoption and maximize the utility of your new software.With that in mind, the following are some of the most common unrealistic expectations you may have as a new solar CRM user and the realities behind each.
Expectation: The CRM Will Run Itself
Good customer resource management tools offer an enormous amount of automation, covering everything from lead collection to sales calling to administration and beyond. One common misconception among new users is that their CRM is some kind of autonomous robot that does everything on its own. While it’s true that your CRM’s built-in automation will take work off your plate, save you time, and make your sales process better, it isn’t a set-and-forget system.
Reality: What You Get from a Solar CRM Depends on What You Put Into It
The success of customer resource management – both as a tool and as a concept – is the lead and customer data that it runs on. Knowledge is power, and the amount of data available today, combined with our advanced ability to process it, make data-driven insights and processes the key to good business. A CRM’s output is only as good as the data that goes into it, however. Some of that input is automated – like a new lead account generated from a web signup or an automatically tracked contact note. The system still depends on the active engagement of your team to consistently focus their customer interactions through the CRM and enter any and all relevant data they can. To maximize the benefit your CRM can offer your company, it’s crucial that all of your salespeople and installers embrace and utilize it as much as possible, because the information they put in directly impacts the benefits they get out.
Expectation: The CRM Will Make up for an Inexperienced Sales Team
CRMs are an incredibly powerful sales tool that, when utilized properly, can make the entire sales process – from initial prospecting through to close – much easier. However, some new users incorrectly expect that the reduced friction a CRM offers to the sales process will make things so easy that even the greenest, least experienced salesperson will become a rainmaker. Unfortunately, that just isn’t realistic.
Reality: The Solar CRM Will Enhance and Enable the Sales Process, but Fundamentals Still Matter
A customer resource management tool is just that – a tool. Like all tools, CRMs make the work of the craftsman using them easier, but they don’t make the craftsman. Solar sales is no different. A solar CRM provides salespeople with the data, insight, and tools they need to better plan their sales pitches, =understand their prospects’ needs, address objections, and more. But a salesperson that doesn’t understand the importance or the art of addressing objections, for instance, won’t be able to get the most out of the data the CRM offers them when it comes time to perform that task. The CRM is not a replacement for experience or training, it’s an enhancement that augments them. Luckily, certain top CRM platforms, like CRMDialer, are also exceptional training tools that can be used to analyze sales agent strengths and weaknesses and develop targeted training specifically to address each agent’s individual needs.
Solar companies adopting a new CRM with the right expectations are not only in a better position to avoid disappointment, but also to ensure their entire team engages with the system to maximize ROI.
CRMDialer is the solar industry’s top customer resource management system, combining the game-changing sales and service delivery features of a standard CRM with a full-featured, built-in power dialer at no extra cost.
Reach out to a member of the CRMDialer team today to find out more about everything the platform can do to improve your processes and empower your solar sales and installation teams. Or, better yet, put all of CRMDialer’s sales and productivity tools into action by starting your 14-day free trial now.