Let’s talk about the client you forgot to call back and lost to the competition, or the one that got angry on you or your business because you didn’t remember you called yesterday about the same promotion. Life would be much easier if you had a system that reminded you about all these things, there is a name for this, it’s called a CRM.
In this article I will tell you how to build this system using Google Sheets, I believe that this is the ideal option for freelancers and small businesses, you will see bellow why.
Yes, you need a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system
Radu I don’t need no system, I have a great memory, I never forget my clients
Keeping track of 10 clients by yourself is pretty easy, you can just remember them or use a simple notebook. Things get however a little complex when you there are over 100 clients and if you are not the only one doing sales in the company.
You need a system that helps you in your interaction with the clients and one that tells you how effective are you in your sales efforts, sorry, your memory just won’t do after a certain point.
CRMs and small business
People understand the need and many small businesses decide to invest into a CRM, I’ve been in that situation multiple times. There are many options to choose from, maybe too many, which one should you choose? how do you customize it to your needs? what are your needs? how is your sales process?
The last question from above is very important, I believe that before investing time and money into a CRM you should define your sales process. This stage takes more than you think because you need to test it out, see how things work in practice.
Why Google Sheets?
There are many more reasons why I choose Google Sheets, my top 3 are:
- Easy to develop and change: you will see that you don’t need to be an Excel Guru to build a simple CRM; also changing fields in a spreadsheet is much easier than into a complex app
- Adoption: we all use spreadsheets, this makes adopting much easier because you don’t need to learn to use an entirely new app
- Price: how does free sound as opposed to x$ / month?
As I said above, I choose Google Sheets to build this free CRM. We will start with the structure, bellow you see the sheets that we need and the information we put in there.
- Accounts: a sheet in which we put all the relevant information about the companies that we want to approach
- Contacts: all the info that we need about a certain person from a company
- Opportunities: I am talking here about sales opportunities that we see and what we need to know about them
- Reports: 1 or more sheets that give us relevant reports, like an overview of all opportunities
- Admin: here we have all the lists that we use for validation
In my example I keep the following information about each company: name, website, address, the number of contacts (calculated automatically from the Contacts sheet) and notes.
In my case I am interested to know about each contact that I have: the name, company (this I select from the accounts tab), position, phone, email, account manager and notes.
Based on the information that we put in we can generate lots of reports, based on your needs. Bellow you can see some examples from my side.
I have used this method in my company and for a close friend. I think is the first and best step you can easily take to standardize your sales process without adding cost and complexity.
I am pleased to tell you that I implemented this system into 2 organizations and lots of people downloaded it. My conclusion is that it must work.
Test it our yourself
Click here to test out a document. If you want to download a copy in Excel that you can easily import into Google Drive, or use in Excel, give me your email address and I’ll send it to you (just in case, check the spam folder).
I would be very eager to know what you think, let’s talk more in the comments section.