CRM and SFA are indispensable tools in sales activities. However, there are many people who are worried about CRM and SFA, such as “I don’t really understand the difference” or “I don’t know which one to introduce”.
In order to improve the effectiveness of sales activities, it is necessary to understand the difference between CRM and SFA.
In this article, I will explain the differences between CRM and SFA in terms of functionality, purpose of use, and usage situations, and introduce which one should be introduced, CRM or SFA.
Table of Contents
- CRM and SFA
- What is CRM
- What is SFA
- CRM tools and SFA – difference in intended use
- Purpose of CRM
- Purpose of SFA
- CRM tools and SFA – functional differences
- CRM features
- Functions of SFA
- CRM Tools and SFA – Differences in Usage Scenarios
- Use cases for CRM
- Use cases for SFA
- CRM or SFA Tools – Which Should You Deploy?
- Companies suitable for introduction of CRM
- Companies suitable for introducing SFA
- Understand the difference between CRM and SFA before implementing
CRM and SFA
In the first place, some people may not know what the terms CRM and SFA refer to.
Below, we will explain “CRM and SFA” in an easy-to-understand manner with specific examples.
What is CRM
CRM is an abbreviation of “Costomer Relation Management”, which translates directly into Japanese as “customer relationship management”.
Sometimes it refers to measures for building good relationships with customers and providing optimal measures, and sometimes it refers to systems and tools that are effective in building relationships with customers.
As the number of customers increases, the amount of data to be managed increases, but by using CRM, customer information such as purchase history and number of link clicks can be understood at a glance.
Since it is possible to efficiently grasp “which customers are interested in which products and to what extent”, etc., it is possible to prioritize the customers to be approached and to implement the optimal measures for each customer.
What is SFA
SFA is an abbreviation for “Sales Force Automation”, which translates directly into Japanese as “automation of sales activities”.
It is often called a sales support system, and supports the efficiency of sales operations by centrally managing information related to sales.
Since SFA can accumulate data related to sales activities, it is possible to clearly understand what kind of products customers are looking for, and it can be used efficiently for product development and sales strategies.
CRM tools and SFA – difference in intended use
In the first place, CRM and SFA have different purposes when companies introduce them.
So, next, I will explain the difference in purpose of use of CRM and SFA.
Purpose of CRM
The purpose of CRM is to increase sales. With CRM, you can centrally manage customer information that was previously managed by each employee, and you can provide appropriate services and responses to individual customers.
By doing so, we can improve the customer’s corporate satisfaction and secure more sales and profits by developing into a loyal customer.
Purpose of SFA
The purpose of SFA is to improve sales efficiency and sales. First of all, it is important to increase the number of prospective customers in order to increase sales.
In order to increase the number of prospective customers, it is necessary to increase the number of business negotiations, let them know about your company, and have them become fans of your company, so to speak. Then, in the course of repeated business negotiations, we can improve customer satisfaction by making optimal proposals using customer feedback from past data.
In addition, the introduction of SFA can significantly reduce the time that the person in charge spends on non-sales activities such as daily reports and sales reports, and it is possible to improve sales efficiency.
In this way, the purpose of introducing SFA is to improve the quality of sales associated with the accumulation of customer data and to improve the efficiency of sales activities, which can be expected to increase profits.
CRM tools and SFA – functional differences
Next, let’s take a look at some of the often confused CRM and SFA functional differences.
CRM and SFA are both “information management and operation tools for improving operational efficiency”, but the target of information management is different. CRM is a customer information management and operation tool, and SFA is a sales activity information management and operation tool.
In the following, we will carefully explain the functions of CRM and SFA in order to clarify the above differences more clearly.
CRM is a tool that manages and operates customer information for “customer visualization” and has the following three main functions.
- Customer management
The first is customer management . It centrally manages everything from basic customer information such as name, age, and gender to customer information such as purchase history and purchasing trends that serve as indicators for measuring the effectiveness of measures. By sharing the registered information within the company, you can expect to improve the efficiency of your work.
The second is promotion . You can also manage and organize product impressions, inquiries, survey results, etc., and use them to approach customers by distributing e-mail magazines and coupons.
The third is analytics . First, based on customer data, analyze customers who are highly loyal to your company. After implementing measures such as email distribution, we can analyze the impact of the measures on sales and the time it takes for the effects of the measures to appear. It helps in retaining customers and acquiring new customers.
Functions of SFA
On the other hand, SFA is a tool for managing and operating information on sales activities for “visualization of sales”. SFA is equipped with functions that enable sales staff to operate smoothly, and there are mainly the following three functions.
- Project management function
- Activity management function
- Customer management function
The first is the project management function . This function has the most roles in SFA and manages various information related to sales.
The more cases there are, the more difficult it is to manage information, but the introduction of SFA makes it easier to share information within departments by clarifying “when, by whom, and what kind of processing”.
Another advantage of SFA is that information can be shared effectively within the department, and points for improvement can be highlighted from the perspective of a third party other than the person in charge.
The second is the activity management function . Tasks that take up a lot of time in sales work are the preparation of business negotiation lists and daily sales reports.
However, if you leave it to SFA, you can just enter the information from the office and the rest of the detailed work will be unnecessary.
With the time saved, you can visit more places, making your sales more efficient and saving you a lot of time. In addition, sharing the know-how of the person in charge with good sales performance will lead to the improvement of the entire team.
The third is the customer management function . It is a function that centrally manages everything from basic information such as company name, person in charge, and job title to business negotiation history. All customer information up to now is registered on SFA, so even if the person in charge is absent, the customer can be handled smoothly.
In addition, by registering daily activity reports such as topics with customers, atmosphere, position, progress status, etc. after sales activities are completed, sales data for each salesperson and sales data for each product can be accumulated. To go.
In this way, sales data can be analyzed from various perspectives and used for sales forecasting.
CRM Tools and SFA – Differences in Usage Scenarios
In addition, I will explain the difference between CRM and SFA use cases.
Use cases for CRM
CRM is useful when you have the following problems, such as when you want to maintain and improve relationships with customers.
- I want to increase repeat customers because customers leave early
- I want to improve customer satisfaction because there are many inquiries
- Customer information is scattered and cannot be referenced when you want to use it
Use cases for SFA
SFA is useful when you have the following problems, such as wanting to improve the efficiency of sales operations.
- It takes a lot of time and effort to write the daily business report, so you don’t go to the sales office
- I want to standardize the capabilities of team members across the team.I want the entire team to understand the progress of each person in charge, because the work will be delayed when the person in charge is absent.
CRM or SFA Tools – Which Should You Deploy?
Finally, I will explain what kind of companies should implement CRM and SFA from the perspective of the issues they face.
Companies suitable for introduction of CRM
Companies that should introduce CRM are people who have the following issues.
- Companies that already have many customers
- Companies that want to make a stronger approach to existing customers
CRM is considered to be the best way to approach existing customers who are losing their willingness to buy, such as by sending coupons and e-mail newsletters.
Companies suitable for introducing SFA
Companies that should introduce SFA are those who have the following issues.
- Companies where information sharing among sales representatives is insufficient
- Companies where each representative has multiple customers
By introducing SFA, you will be able to visualize customer information and the status of business negotiations, and you will be able to prevent miscommunications between staff members. In addition, you can expect to increase the motivation of sales personnel by improving sales efficiency.
Understand the difference between CRM and SFA before implementing
This time, I explained the meaning of CRM and SFA, the functions, the purpose of use, and which one should be introduced.
Regardless of whether CRM or SFA is introduced, results cannot be obtained just by introducing it. It is important to understand the functions required of the system before introducing it.