How to Increase CRM Adoption

Posted by Josh Paul on Apr 30, 2020 1:25:51 PM
Josh Paul

Getting your sales team to follow a consistent process and adopt your CRM and sales tools is critical to growing revenue at your company.

Confidence that the leads you generate will be converted into revenue is the holy grail for most executives.

If everybody uses a different tool set or process and enters data into your CRM sporadically, it limits your ability to understand your sales data, forecast accurately, and identify weak points in your sales process.

Without clear visibility of your data, how can you replicate best practices and troubleshoot issues?

CRM adoption best practices

What are the benefits of a CRM Adoption program?

Having a CRM adoption program is one of the best ways to ensure that your leads are going to be worked by your sales team. If everyone on the team uses the same playbook and your CRM processes are followed, a higher percentage of leads will (eventually) turn into revenue. 

FREE DOWNLOAD: 9 Mistakes People Make When Trying to Increase Sales Using the HubSpot CRM

When most people think about CRM adoption, they think of policies and/or training.

However, we’d like to share three important components to increasing CRM adoption and spoiler alert - they have nothing to do with policy nor training! 


The Role of Leadership in Increasing CRM Adoption

The first key to CRM Adoption is leadership. Your sales managers, sales VPs, and other executives need to understand your lead management model and how that's built into your CRM. This is incredibly important for three main reasons:

    1. Your company’s leaders need to be able to answer questions from the sales team. Having extensive knowledge of your business-specific lead management process will allow them to better manage sales issues and coach reps through different scenarios. 
    2. Your leaders need to show they are committed to this process and that they use your CRM. An executive that understands the complexity of your CRM is inspiring and shines a light on things that are important, whereas one who doesn’t take the time to understand your CRM is demotivating. 
    3. Executives and sales managers need to use the CRM and its metrics to coach sales reps, praise people, and address under performers (and help them raise their game). Simply put, CRM adoption can be a motivational tool under the right leadership. 

Sales managers and executives can set the tone for CRM adoption across your entire organization.

How to Improve CRM Adoption

By learning your lead management process and basing decisions off that CRM data, your company’s leaders can harness the sales potential of higher CRM usage and more effectively lead your sales department.  

Why Simplicity Is Critical to Increase CRM Adoption Among Your Sales Team

The second key to increasing CRM adoption with your sales team is simplicity. Now, we’ve talked before about the balance between the structure that you need as a sales manager or executive to get the right data, and the simplicity that your team requires in order to follow your sales process consistently. 

Throughout recent history, we’ve seen examples of how simplicity has driven technology adoption. Familiar case studies include:

  • Google’s simple search interface 
  • Apple’s iPhone/iOS UI design
  • YouTube’s video posting and viewing experience

While all of these systems are very complex and robust on the back end, the simple user experience drove massive adoption, which in turn led these technologies to becoming category leaders.

In regards to your team’s lead management process in your CRM, always keep in mind that the simpler the system is, the higher the adoption will be. 

What exactly do we mean by simplicity in your CRM? We’re talking about the tendency for some companies to overcomplicate their sales tracking steps.

For example, when a salesperson gets off a sales call, does your CRM require 16 fields to be filled out in order to track that lead accurately and set the next step in the sales process? 

Your sales process shouldn’t be complicated in your CRM. In fact, you need to make your CRM as simple as possible for your sales team so that they can handle more leads. 

A simple lead management process allows salespeople to keep a mental model in their head of what they need to do at each stage (whether it's a connect call, an after qualification call, a demo, or a negotiation).

By easily understanding what they need to do to keep their data clean in the CRM, your team will become more confident in their selling ability. And as a leader in your company, you’ll gain confidence that your leads are being worked thoroughly and that nothing is falling off your team’s radar. 

Do Your Sales Reps Trust Your Processes and Tools?

The third key to CRM adoption is trust. You need your sales team to trust that you have designed this system in a way to make them more successful.

Your CRM strategy shouldn’t be seen as a way to crack the whip on them, to make sure that they're doing their jobs, or to micromanage them. You're giving your sales team a simple system and the industry’s best tools to make them better at their jobs and in turn make the company more successful. 

Be sure to listen to your sales team’s feedback, as well as find ways to evaluate and adjust your system accordingly. Ultimately, they need to trust that the system, process, and tool set that you're giving them is going to make them more successful.

If you can build their trust in a seller-centric approach, they will be eager to follow your playbook and enjoy mutual success with your company. 

So remember - keep your goal of gaining and maintaining trust at your mind’s forefront as you design and optimize each step in your CRM adoption processes. 

how to increase CRM adoption

CRM Adoption Takeaway

For years, we've been helping HubSpot customers who are currently generating good leads, but can’t convert those leads into sales. Their lack of sales conversions almost always come back to the same issue - everybody is using the CRM differently! They don't have a solid sales system that executives have confidence in for turning those leads into paying customers. 

We’ve found that CRM adoption comes down to leadership, simplicity, and trust. These three concepts are the secret sauce your company needs to get your sales engine up and running smoothly.

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Topics: HubSpot, Sales, CRM, Lead Management, CRM Adoption, Sales Process