By Jess Heald on Thu 06 July 2017 in CRM
As an SME, it’s crucial that you keep your eyes wide open to see what trends and technologies could benefit and improve your business.
More importantly, you need to quickly identify which technologies would fit well with your business and existing solutions, and find out how these technologies could increase the level of efficiency of your business. Let’s face it – ultimately, you want to become as competitive and efficient as possible. But there are lots of technologies out there, so how do you know which you should prioritise for 2017?
CRM has been around for years, but the success of Software as a Service (SaaS) CRM/cloud-based CRM has only just come to fruition more recently. The pivotal point for SaaS CRM was in 2015, where Gartner advised that this marked the tipping point whereby SaaS CRM revenues exceeded on-premise. And it didn’t stop there. In 2016, SaaS revenue grew 27% while on-premise license revenue actually declined 1%. This proves how successful SaaS has become, and indicates that SMEs are more likely to be opting for a cloud-based, SaaS solution as opposed to an on-premise one going forward.
So now that we know how well SaaS CRM is performing, how does it measure up against other technologies available to SMEs? Gartner’s research found that CRM spend will in fact outstrip ERP and all other IT Categories for the first time in 2017 – a pretty impressive forecast for CRM.
It’s no wonder, therefore, that the CRM software market reached a huge $26.3bn in 2015, up from $23.2bn in 2014, representing a positive 12.3% annual growth. Not only that, but it’s forecast that the CRM market will reach a huge $36.5bn by 2017.
What are other SMEs plans for 2017 CRM spend?
But enough about what the market is doing. What are your competitors looking to do in 2017? Some results of GE Capital’s annual Capex Barometer found that almost half (48%) of UK SMEs are set to increase their spending on cloud computing services over the next 12 months. This shows that not only are SMEs willing to spend more on cloud and SaaS, but they’re embracing these technological advancements by actually adopting and incorporating them into their business right now.
Which CRM provider should I look into?
You may have heard of some key CRM providers such as SAP, Oracle, Microsoft and Salesforce, but things are looking bright for other players in the market. When all CRM vendors other than ‘the Big 4’ are summed, this group grew its collective market share from 46% in 2007 to an impressive 58% in 2015. So, when considering which provider to go with, consider all your options, and find one that best fits with your business and complements/integrates to some of your existing solutions.
In summary – IT spend on SaaS is growing, worldwide spend on CRM is growing, and UK SME spend on CRM is growing too. If you don’t get ahead now, it’s predicted that your competitors will get there before you do!