The last two years significantly impacted buying behavior, no matter the industry. Many companies were confronted with budget freezes and have been forced to put off purchases or base their purchase decisions on changing business needs and priorities.
Now more than ever, companies expect solution providers to engage in personalized ways that address their specific challenges. The buying process has become more complex in terms of time, analysis, and the number of people involved in decision-making.
Although the overall time spent completing the purchase has increased, within 30 days, more than one-third of buyers collect preliminary information on pricing (38%) and start making a list of potential providers.
So how can you make the best deal when searching for the best CRM solution for your business?
Services for CRM Implementation
To ensure that your CRM is in line with your organizational requirements, pick a small team from different departments who have an interest in the new CRM system. Let them suggest how they expect the CRM to improve their day-to-day activities and list prioritized program goals to determine your feature requirements. This will prevent you from paying for functionalities and features that probably won’t suit your business requirements.
2. Setup and Configuration
Once you decide on a particular tool, you must start setting up your new system for your business. Once you have it set, run user acceptance testing to ensure you have efficient and responsive workflows.
Training is one of the best things you can do to increase your success rate with your CRM because the system is useless if it can’t be used at its actual capacity. Also, consider the ongoing training for the new employees or users who want to specialize in specific functionality. You may choose a vendor that provides support to help you develop a successful implementation and usage plan; otherwise, you must consider hiring a consultant but add this as an expense.
4. CRM Integrations
CRM integrations make it much easier to communicate between departments and avoid manually transferring data (e.g., so much customer information can be gleaned from emails and calendared activity directly into your CRM). They add value and extend CRM deployments, increase the effectiveness of your CRM system and drive adoption.
But all custom functions and third-party add-ons might add you to your initial price, so ensure your company has enrolled in the business practices required to use those functions.
The Main Fees of CRM Implementation
The operating costs associated with CRM purchasing and implementation include:
1. Subscription Costs
Subscription is the cost of the software, whether you pay a one-time, monthly, or yearly recurring fee. Just be careful of what it’s included in the subscription price. Software maintenance, support, or data center administration might add to the initial cost.
2. Service Level Costs
Evaluate the service level agreement of your CRM provider to identify the promised system availability. This analysis is critical to ensure you have a platform you can access whenever you need it. Also, any security concerns should be addressed upfront in the Service Level Agreement (SLA).
3. Cost Per User
Many cloud-based CRMs require each user license to be purchased separately. This can become quite costly because CRM data is useful throughout the entire company and its departments.
4. Implementation Fees
There might be additional costs such as data migration or API/ developer work for integrating third-party systems. So, check if your CRM provider charges you to migrate your data over and choose a tool with as much of your needed functionality already configured.
At Sugar, we’ve been creating and delivering no-code/low-code features for years. We focus on creating domain and skillset-specific tools to rapidly configure, evolve, and imbue your competitive business advantage into your CRM.
The Hidden Fees of CRM Implementation
Sometimes it can be difficult to realize there is much more cost involved in your CRM acquisition than a first glance scan. Beyond the initial buying price, you should consider all the additional operating expenses of this new system. This may include:
If you need specific customizations built into the software, this is often an additional developer cost. This cost can be part of a custom implementation service for many cloud-based, off-the-shelf systems. CRM customization options can vary from and include:
- Custom fields
- Custom modules
- Custom layouts
- Code customizations
- Third-party plug-ins.
SugarCRM provides various tools to make our customizable CRM software your growth engine. Sugar’s flexibility allows you to configure the platform for your business needs.
2. Upgrade fees and optional features
Be aware of optional features and system update costs. They can make the base price that seemed so appealing way out of your budget. There will be frequent upgrades with each new version release, regular customer data back-ups, and required restores.
You should re-think choosing a platform you’ll quickly outgrow just to save on short-term costs. Not having a platform that decidedly empowers you to control design, deployment, reporting, and engagement will leave you pining for more sophisticated features before you know it. And ultimately, it will cost you more, both in budget and resources, to re-implement the right long-term solution.
Our new Sugar Sell Editions include capabilities for any business requirements, from starters with small teams to larger or global companies with complex requirements. When you’re ready to expand, Sugar provides an easy upgrade path to the next edition, so you can continue accelerating your business growth with CRM.
4. Additional Services
Many providers offer additional services to provide expert guidance on a recurring or project-based basis. Be careful with vendors who don’t treat this as an opportunity to build a great partnership in ensuring your successful CRM adoption—both the technology and the business practice.
Types of CRM Pricing Schemes
There are a few types of pricing schemes associated with purchasing and implementing a CRM system. You can choose between:
- Fixed monthly pricing schemes
- Quote-based pricing
- Single-payment pricing
- Free CRM software
No matter how attractive a free purchase price may seem at first, especially if you are just starting your business, be sure you have a strategy in place. Otherwise, down the road, when your business grows and needs more functionality, better data, or even more users, you will face the unpleasant situation of starting over with a new system causing you to lose data, time, and money.
Contact SugarCRM for a CRM Implementation Quote
So many different pieces go into your CRM tool’s total cost of ownership (TCO). It’s important to understand the different options you have and make the best buying decision for your business. No matter your sales team size or company history, we can assist you in delivering a high-definition customer experience.
With the introduction of Sell Editions, we simplified our price list to make it easier to understand the benefits you get from each Sugar Sell edition.
If you are interested in finding the right sales automation that fits your business needs and budget, don’t hesitate to contact our sales department.