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Retail CRM: Why Your Retail Business Needs Customer Relationship Management

Learn what is unique about a CRM for retail and why it’s critical for you to roll one out for your retail sales team. 

Written by

Leigh Sevin, Co-Founder @ Endear

Edited by

Danielle Bissonnette, Content Marketing Manager @ Endear

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What is a CRM?

CRM, or customer relationship management, is a software system that organizes all your business’s customers and leads so that you can easily stay in touch with them in a trackable way. A good CRM tool is critical to any business, but most CRM software is geared toward a business-to-business (B2B) model. This often revolves around a long sales cycle that typically requires a deal pipeline. 

What is a Retail CRM?

A retail CRM, on the other hand, is optimized to help support the high frequency, repeat purchasing of a business-to-consumer (B2C) model. Good retail CRM software will provide insights on when it’s best to reach out to a specific customer again and what the customer is likely looking for. For example, Endear’s CRM solution informs its users about a customer’s lifetime spend and their average order value (AOV), along with a thorough omnichannel order history so that sales associates know what to focus on in their outreach. 

As you’re deciding on what CRM you want to use for your business, it’s important to first think about what sort of data and workflows your sales team needs in order to do their jobs easily and efficiently.

A retail CRM is optimized to support the high frequency, repeat purchasing of a business-to-consumer (B2C) model. A good retail CRM will provide insights on when it’s best to reach out to a specific customer again and what the customer is likely looking for.

Benefits of Retail CRM

Have you ever tracked your customers and their contact information in a Google Sheet? If so, you’ve already built a customer database and created customer profiles without even knowing it. Many businesses do this, and some even use their point-of-sale as a stand-in for a CRM. 

While these strategies may work in the early days, eventually you’ll find yourself with something quite unwieldy or unreliable. That’s when you’ll want to find a software solution that is designed to help you manage all your customer data in an actionable way. 

There are a number of benefits to introducing a CRM into your retail stores. Moreover, equipping your sales team with this kind of tool will likely result in a much better customer experience than your competitors offer. 

Below are some key ways to take advantage of your CRM.

CRM offers the foundation for clienteling solutions

We often talk about clienteling—that’s because clienteling is one of the strongest retail strategies a brand can use when it comes to increasing customer retention and building loyalty. 

As we explain in our definition of clienteling, clienteling refers to the process of efficiently using customer data in order to create intimate customer relationships. While clienteling is easy on a small scale with just a handful of customers, larger brands can get dramatically better results with a CRM because you’ll be able to target a wider audience without sacrificing personalization. 

customer profile example

CRM builds customer loyalty

While new customers are always the goal, customer loyalty should also be celebrated.

In fact, a retail CRM can serve you best once you’ve acquired a customer and are ready to focus on cultivating loyalty. A CRM should be your go-to resource for understanding what sort of incentives and rewards your customers are most likely to respond to, and can help you keep track of what their response has been to your various offers and services. As you develop your retention strategy, you should also be able to count on your CRM to actually segment your customers to determine who is eligible for your various perks, tiers, and prizes that make up your loyalty program

CRM offers unparalleled personalization

Which brings us to a third benefit of a CRM—personalization. Emails with personalized subject lines are 26% more likely to get opened, and the more targeted you are with your audience, the higher your conversion rate on messages will be. 

A CRM can help you achieve both those things. The more data you’re tracking in your CRM, the more you’ll be able to segment and personalize your audience to ensure that the content of your message feels ultra-relevant to the final group of recipients.

A CRM is your go-to for performance tracking

Especially for brands with 10+ stores (or 100+!), CRMs are particularly helpful for management teams who want to stay on top of how each salesperson is contributing. With most CRMs, users are able to “claim” a customer or a deal. This aspect is no different for retail. 

Encouraging your retail teams to be accountable for customers’ spending behaviors will motivate them to be even more thoughtful and strategic about their work and the way they reach out. A CRM will also therefore be able to report back how each salesperson has impacted your bottom line, whether that’s on a per-transaction basis or across their customers. 

sales performance dashboard

CRMs can be used for better customer support

It goes without saying that a retail CRM can help you better serve and support your customers, both new and returning. Oftentimes there can be a disconnect between what your corporate digital team knows and what your local retail team knows about a customer. That’s where having an omnichannel CRM can truly make a difference.

The more your whole team can be on the same page about a customer’s various interactions, the happier your customer will be when she needs support and doesn’t have to start from scratch with someone who knows nothing about her past. Leveraging a CRM as a way to document a customer’s preferences will result in service a customer will remember and cherish. isn’t starting from scratch.   

Endear is by far the most robust retail CRM solution on the market. Not only does it help your retail team stay connected with your customers through thoughtfully-tracked data, but it also empowers your associates to own and improve their own sales efforts. Try Endear for free for 14 days.