1 | Contact Management

You won’t find a CRM that doesn’t have contact management capability. If you do, chances are you aren’t actually looking at a CRM. All CRM systems allow salespeople to create customer data contact information and store and access prospect and customer information in a database in real time. However, the best systems that truly improve efficiency will reduce and streamline contact data entry as much as possible. 

What to look for:

  • Ease of use
  • Customization of data fields
2 | Deal Stages

Most CRM systems can be customized to operate on a specific sales process. Whether your company has three deal stages or 15, you should be able to program these levels into your CRM solution and attach associated values. Lead management should also be simple throughout the sales process. In HubSpot CRM, advancing a deal is as simple as dragging and dropping into a new category.

What to look for:

  • Easy customization
3 | Daily Dashboard

Salespeople need visibility into a number of metrics on a daily basis. Metrics such as their progress to date against quota, how many deals they have in their pipelines at which stages, and what outstanding tasks they need to colooking at computermplete are part of every sales person's daily work life. Similarly, sales managers and leaders need to be able to view these categories for the aggregated sales team.

What to look for:

  • Visual appeal
  • Simplicity
4 | Task Management

A sales person who has to toggle back and forth between several different systems to view and complete their daily tasks is not a happy person (though this is common). CRM systems that include task management capabilities designed to streamline salespeople’s day-to-day workflow and help them keep on top of their follow up, vastly improves their outlook on task management.

What to look for:

  • Ease of use
  • Quality of reporting

Eager to learn more? Let us help!

5 | Content Repository

According to Docurated’s State of Sales Productivity study, salespeople spend 31% of their time hunting for or creating content. To cut back on wasted time searching for content, look for a CRM system with an embedded content repository to save your team time and reduce frustration.

What to look for:

  • Ability to save go-to collateral and email templates in one place
6 | Automated Data Capture

One of the primary reasons companies decide to adopt a CRM is to keep better track of customer and potential customer interactions and outreach (emails, calls, etc.) But, beware: Many CRM applications require salespeople to copy and paste their email outreach into the CRM tool or even upload call recordings. These extra steps in the business process can be maddening for salespeople who are making 50 or 100 calls every single day, and it leaves room for human error. 

What to look for:

  • Automation tools for tracking and logging of calls made and emails sent
  • Quality of cataloguing and reporting
7 | Reporting

A CRM system is only as good as the insights it provides. Be sure that your CRM provides reporting features that make it easy to export and distribute the trends that the system reveals. A good CRM system will include important features that inform both the sales strategy and the marketing strategy, including sales forecasting, sales pipeline, segmentation, email campaigns, customer support, lead generation metrics, and other features that are key throughout the sales cycle.

What to look for:

  • Quality of reporting
  • Customization of reporting
8 | Mobile

Sales reps have seen productivity increased by 15% with mobile access to CRM applications. Tying reps to a CRM system that can only be accessed via laptop is bound to looking down at phone and laptopannoy them, especially if they’re in a role that requires travel. The majority of CRM systems today allow salespeople to log on to the application from mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones.

What to look for:

  • Mobile app or other access to critical CRM functionality
9 | Integration with Marketing Automation

And last but not least, integration between your marketing team's software tools (such as Marketo, Eloqua, Pardot, or MailChimp) and your sales platform is crucial. After all, the underlying concept of “customer relationship management” is to provide a complete lifecycle view into each prospect and client for sales and marketing, plus business owners and leaders. A gap between marketing automation and CRM can lead to lost information and lost opportunities. Your CRM is the foundation of your marketing technology (MarTech) stack and a crucial element in running effective marketing campaigns.

What to look for:

  • Ability to integrate into your MarTech programs including marketing automation, email marketing, websites, content management systems, and any others you may have.
What is the Best CRM?

As a certified HubSpot agency partner, we highly recommend HubSpot to our clients and use it ourselves in our daily sales and marketing operations. Through our partnership with HubSpot, we have access to priority support and exclusive resources to educate our team as well as our clients.  Our team members have in-depth experience in the Marketing, Sales, and Service Hubs and believe HubSpot is the top CRM for these reasons:

  • Easy-to-read reporting dashboards
  • SEO and content creation
  • Syncing with external paid ad networks
  • Nurture campaigns
  • CMS website integration (Drupal, WordPress, and others)
  • Salesforce integration
  • CRM customization, automation, and workflow setup
  • Landing page design and development
  • Software solutions and pricing that meet the business needs of small businesses through enterprise-level clients

Contact us today to see how we can help you “close the loop” and maximize revenue with HubSpot’s CRM platform.

Learn more about how to "close the loop" and maximize revenue with HubSpot's CRM platform

Blog Categories



O8 is a web and digital marketing consultancy based in Minneapolis, MN offering expert-level UX Design, CRO, and strategic consulting, as well as highly-technical capabilities in Drupal, WordPress, and HubSpot

We work differently from traditional agencies in that we extend your team with ours.