CRM for startups: Opening the world of endless possibilities

Startups today have become a major driving force for the economies around the globe; they not only contribute to the GDP but also decrease the unemployment ratio of the country. Millennials everywhere are changing work dynamics and do not prefer to sit behind their desk, but to follow their dreams and take risks. Such shift has also being witnessed in India, a country with a majority young workforce that has seen successful start-ups such as Shopclues, Limeroad, OLA cabs, Zomato, and many more. With a lot of venture capitalists funding and backing startups, it is no surprise that a lot of people want to taste the entrepreneurship fruit.

Only last year over $ 3.84 billion was raised by startups in the third quarter. Such rising opportunities have also caught the eyes of many people, resulting in top minds leaving their corporate jobs and following their dreams. It wasn’t long before the Indian government saw this dynamic shift and became keen to bring these startups to unleash their full potential, increase employment opportunity and eventually enhance the economy of the country. It was truly remarkable seeing the government put their best foot forward with the launch of initiatives such as “Start-up India” and “Make in India” to encourage and promote start-ups in the country.

To add more to it, Hon’ble prime minister of India has worked hard to raise the foreign investment too, bringing in investors to venture into the countries brightest startups. If that is not enough, even top names such as Google have their reward set for the best start up plan from the country. And its outcome being a rapid surge in the number of start-ups increasing every year with the current statistics showing more than 4000 startups in the nation.

Startup India

With so much fuss over startup, an obvious question that pops up is what exactly makes a startup eligible to avail the benefits of the scheme? Which can be simply stated as one / few innovative minds putting up a unique business idea or development process in a form of a new business, aging below 5 years and a turnover not exceeding 25 crore rupees. The product should be innovative and commercial while adding value to the consumers. The said startup should be approved from the designated DIPP.


To sum up a startup under this ambitious scheme will enjoy;

  1. IT tax exemption for 3 years
  2. Easy availability of seed funding
  3. 80% return of patent fee
  4. Capital gain tax exemption and more

Since now there is a lot of focus on startups and even growing competition, the question arises: how can a startup keep itself ahead. The answer is simple: a business application platform to seamlessly integrate all processes and give greater control and visibility to the management.
CRM SoftwareCRM for Startups:

Now being compact in size, a startup can manage all the data and contacts on a spreadsheet easily in the start, however when the business grows, various process are incorporated as well as maintaining the clientele becomes a hectic chore and a proficient management of sales and customers becomes a priority. To add more burden to it, competitors keep multiplying every year, which makes retaining your customers as well as getting new ones even more tough. Thus, for efficacy and proficiency in business management, various start-ups opt in for smart business management suites like CRM.

But can CRM software solutions be helpful for startups?

Definitely yes, for a startup, building customers is among the top priorities and CRM software have their proficiency in managing and retaining customers with ease. However, its potential does not ends with it. A smart leader, who can mould out new ways of possibilities for the software, can take its usability to another level. Having said that, let us have a look at some of its cool features that have been proved helpful for the startups.

  1. Share information: When you have your teams working on different processes, sharing information amongst each other can be a tedious task and any missed data can cost you a valuable customer. Nevertheless, the CRM software can function as a platform wherein the team can share the information with ease and initiate further processes.
  1. Opportunity tracking: The saying goes as “Opportunity knocks only once” and CRM solution providers in India have made sure that you not only grab this opportunity but also nurture it until it starts giving you fruits of your hard work. Simply putting, CRM can help you find better leads and turn it into sales easily, which is something very crucial for any startup. Thus, with CRM, never miss any opportunity.
  1. Foresight: CRM for startups can generate precise sales reports on daily to yearly basis, this reports can give you a foresight of how much production is to be done and process marketing and sales strategies. It can also help you track team’s performance based on their areas of operation.
  1. Better and targeted marketing: CRM for startups can draw sales pipeline that can give information on how your marketing strategies is functioning, that can be filtered on location, products, etc. as well as analyse the requirements of the clients. Hence, it can aid you in evaluation of your marketing processes and target better prospects.
  1. Notification and reminders: CRM can automate all your notifications and reminders i.e.
  • Sending notification to your customers related to any updates, offers, packages, etc.
  • Sending reminders of upcoming deadline to submit data, pay bills, renewals, etc.
  • Email and SMS follow up to leads and prospects that can be designed with its inbuilt template designer.
  • It can also remind you for upcoming meeting, follow-ups, demo and implementation, etc.

The above-mentioned gestures can improve customer satisfaction with your start-up as well as bring in new customers. Hence, building up your start-up company in an efficient manner.

  1. Data storing: the modern day CRM software are provided with cloud server, which securely save all your data. For instance, for any mishap occurring in your company, the loss of data with others can be too much for a start-to bear. However, the data stored on the cloud are safe from any such mishaps; moreover, the encryption of your data can secure your data from online threats as well. In addition to it, these data can be made available on any device by multiple (and authorised) users irrespective of their location and time.
  1. Social Media: social media is a necessity for every company, no matter how big or small. The customers/ clients prefer following the company of their choice to get updates and stay connected to it. Moreover, social media can easily help you reach wide and better audience quickly in a cost effective manner, thus CRM software solutions like Social CRM now a days can be integrated to all your social accounts with ease, allowing you to track, monitor and stay connected to all your customers and prospects easily.
  1. Mobility: for a start-up, employing large number of employees can be taxing on their budget and you may be needed to multi task, which is not possible while sitting on a single workstation. The CRM software linked up with mobile apps and cloud servers can grant you the mobility to manage your sales and marketing process as well as manage customer complaints and feedbacks on the go.

To further continue with the list, the CRM software can increase sales, give better ROI, maintain transparency, help you set goals, and the list goes on with endless possibilities. A CRM software cannot only help you manage your start-up but also assist in every stage of its growth. Thus, a CRM software can not only help your startup, but also add wings to it to fly through the stars.

Guest Post by Kalpesh, Sage Software

Consumer Mobility and E-Commerce Zinnov study

Mobile Apps

With the raging trends in mobile adoption space and incredible growth of e-commerce, we at Zinnov recently concluded a study on “Consumer Mobility and E-Commerce”. This study overall covers mobile and ecommerce space in the NCR area. This first-of-its-kind consumer led study highlights major trends shaping the industry in the mobility space and clearly spells details like the kind of spending that is happening on devices, the various payment mechanisms, device change trends, purchasing patterns of apps and devices and their usage on different OS platforms. I am hereby sharing a few study snapshots for your reference:

  • On an average, NCR consumers spent INR 18,230 on buying a smartphone; 10% of all smartphones were bought online in NCR
  • 16% of all smartphone users in NCR also own a tablet device
  • 83% of the NCR consumers never paid for a mobile app; 63% of consumers never clicked on a mobile ad
  • 50% Consumers in NCR use E-Commerce Websites to Research on Products before Buying them Offline
  • 34% of NCR consumers shopped online at least once a month; at least 25% say that they do not intend to shop online
  • 35% of respondents use mobile devices for e-commerce purchase in NCR


The march of the product brigade!

For the last fifteen years and more, there has rarely been a meeting of visionaries and practitioners in the IT industry where somebody does not offer the view that the days of IT services are nearing an end and the product movement will create new heroes for the industry and country.  In each of those fifteen years, the gap between the revenues of the services firms and product pioneers has only widened and a cynic might be pardoned for asking “Is it really worth our while to obsess about products when the services sector continues to do well and find newer and newer avenues and models for growth?”

The truth is that the success of  product ventures is an idea which has been slow in developing but whose time has now surely come. Many successful Product Conferences conducted by NASSCOM in Bengaluru and led by the passionate  Sharad Sharma and his band of merry evangelists, the iSPIRT and ProductNation initiatives of the product group championed by former NASSCOM stalwart Avinash Raghava, the very successful Knowledge Management and Intellectual Property movement led by the Confederation of Indian Industry and the huge deals flows seen from product wannabes for funding by the Indian Angel Network all point to a renewed surge of enthusiasm for a “Made in India” wave that will sweep the industry forward and unleash a tsunami of success for many young entrepreneurs.

However there is no case for a simplistic polarization between services and product companies and there is certainly no basis for the argument that IT services firms will decline and give way to product firms. Even five years ago, when we had postulated that the industry would grow to a three hundred billion dollar level by 2020, the canvas was painted in many colours – on-premise and cloud based services, new platforms and frameworks, accelerators and shrink wrapped and embedded products. The boundaries are blurring and most of us in services have embraced IP creation as a necessary part of all our vertical solutions. At Zensar we have built a compelling “Digital Enterprise” strategy that leads our clients from systems of record through the wonderland of Cloud, Mobility, Social Media and Analytics to true systems of engagement. This strategy is delivered through an eco-system of product partners who have focused point solutions for vertical and horizontal engagement. The day is not far when all services firms will attempt to garner over thirty percent of their revenues from systems integration and carry a cohort of product partners into new markets.

This is not to say the product companies cannot succeed on their own steam. On the contrary, there is a strong sense of self-belief in the new generation of product entrepreneurs in our country even as some of the global product majors are beginning to consider themselves as services companies. A forthcoming CII Knowledge Management conference will showcase small companies in India that can provide worthy solutions that push the frontiers of knowledge, for organisations in all user domains and as well as technology savvy services organisations. A revolution is in the making in this country and the march of the product brigade will lead this revolution !