Customer Relationship Management or CRM is a way to identify, learn and analyze customers' needs and behaviors in order to develop
better relationships with existing customers and potential customers. CRM software systems automate the processing of managing
customer relationship. CRM applications are traditionally developed as client-server software. The future of CRM applications, however,
is Web based applications.
Characteristics of Hosted CRM
The major difference between online CRM and enterprise CRM is the user interface of the CRM systems. Enterprise CRM employees traditional
software as clients typically developed in VB, C++ or Java. Web based CRM systems use web browsers as the clientd.
Hosted CRM is a Web based CRM that the CRM system is hosted at an Application Service Provider (ASP). Organizations that use
the CRM system don't own the CRM software, instead they subscribe to the CRM services by paying a subscription fee.
Benefits of Hosted CRM
Hosted CRM option has additional benefits beside the benefits of online CRM.
- Low Initial Cost - CRM software is expensive and it costs hundreds of thousands or millions of dollars. A yearly subscription fee of
CRM services is only a fraction of that cost.
- Low Cost of Deployment - the Webbased CRM eliminated the need of deploying clients for CRM software. Hosted CRM systems doesn't require
the deployment of backend systems either,
- Rapid Implementation - the implementation of hosted CRM involves initial setup, configuration, data migration or integration.
CRM ASPs usually accommodate custom requirements at cost. Cost of implementing hosted CRM is only a fraction of traditional implementation.
- Accessibility - users can access web based CRM from anywhere as long as they have Internet access.
- Instant information sharing - information entered remotely on the web can be transmitted
back to CRM backend for instant information sharing across organizational lines and locations.
Vendors of Web Based CRM Systems
Hosted CRM systems are widely deployed for call center, workflow management, e-procurement, supply chain management,
document management, enterprise resource planning and sales force automation (SFA) among other B2B and ecommerce applications.
While CRM vendors (Siebel, Webmethods, SAP, Ariba, Jd Edwards, and salesforce.com) offer sophisticated e-CRM solutions or e business suite,
small organizations can develop their own simple CRM on the Intranet in PHP, CGI or cold fusion.
CRM Technology - Overview and Comparison
Web Based CRM, Online CRM - Benefits and Vendors
Mobile CRM and Wireless CRM - Infrastructures and Vendors