We are an enquiry based travel business, and receive email enquiries from a number of different sources. We currently have 2 agents sharing 1 main inbox, and a 3rd agent using her own account, with enquiries being forwarded to her to answer directly. I want to consolidate this via some kind of system that they can all work on harmoniously, so that I can add more staff without things getting even more complicated. Note, we are currently not using any CRM, as we cant find anything suitable for our specific needs :(
Agreed, you need a CRM. One challenge... there are many many CRM solutions... some are low cost... $20 per month per person... some are significantly higher... $200/mth. + $XX per user.
Some CRM's are really simple... tracking people, reps, conversations, info, etc. Others are extremely robust, that connect to your website via an API and help with e-commerce.
What you will need to do is determine what YOUR needs are.
What one person likes in a CRM, another person doesn't... thus the challenge. Understanding what YOUR needs are, knowing what success looks like, will make your choice a lot simpler.
Don't get caught up in all the fancy bells and whistles that you think are cool, stay focused on what you need and what you will need as you scale.
Will the CRM sync across multiple devices? i.e.: Phone, tablet / iPad, desktop, etc...? Good question if that's important to you.
A CRM is an investment, not an expense. Ask lots of questions. Find out it they offer any training and at what cost - training can range from zero dollars to $2000 dollars so don't forget to ask.
Lastly... regardless what the CRM company tells you about easy of use... if it's not working for you and your team, stop using it. Try something else.
I'm assuming you use something like Google Apps to handle your mail. If so, you can set up a "Group" called something like firstname.lastname@example.org. You can then add each rep's individual email as a member of that group.
Any contact forms, lead generation forms, or materials should point to that email address. Any inquiries you get will then go to all members of the group, and you can manage who is responsible for which inquiry separately.
As an alternative, if you have a "Sales Manager" type role in place, just have email@example.com go to you, and forward qualified leads to each rep in a round-robin. It takes more manual work, but would allow for an equitable lead spread.