In the world of CRM, online CRM has become a hot topic. But what is it exactly? What are the options? And what does it have to do with SaaS, the Cloud, and hosting?
First of all, online CRM simply means accessing CRM software through the Internet. You go to a website and enter your username and password. This gives you access to all the data available in the CRM system. When accessing CRM data via the Internet, we also speak about cloud computing.
Advantages of online CRM
The big advantage of online CRM is that you can work anywhere with an Internet connection. At home, at the customer’s premises, at a conference, or at a hotel. And this is not limited to PCs. The CRM data can also be accessed from, e.g., an iPad, iPhone, or Samsung Galaxy.
Hosted CRM software
Another term for online software is web-based software. In this form, the CRM software can be installed on the company’s server. But a second possibility is for the software to be hosted remotely; for example, by a hosting provider. However, when the software is hosted by its vendor, this is called SaaS (Software as a Service). The major advantage of hosted CRM software is that you don’t need to worry about backups or keeping the software up to date, all of which is taken care of by the hosting provider (which may or may not be the CRM vendor).
Features of online CRM
The features of the CRM software remain the same in each case. So you can of course expect basic functions like relationship management, activities, mail, correspondence, sales records, and management information. Online CRM software often also gives you the opportunity to rearrange your screen according to your own preferences. For example, you could create a view of the web version showing only activities, mail, and RSS feeds.