Customer relationship management (also known as CRM) is used in commercial real estate to connect brokers with their existing and future clients.
Using a solid CRM combined with free commercial real estate listings only sweetens the deal as it allows brokers to manage their listings cost-effectively.
CRM comes in various software types that all have different purposes and costs. Utilizing such software allows commercial real estate brokers to focus less on how to organize and manage their properties and instead focus on closing more deals.
Choosing a CRM System
CRM systems help organize many of the small details that typically take much time to manage. Depending on which software is used, there’s a large number of tasks that can be simplified by using a CRM system.
Such tasks include:
- Grouping and managing contacts;
- Tracking marketing analytics;
- Automating real estate tasks;
- Storing and organizing documents.
Ideally, you’d want to have a program that has as many features as possible without being overly complex or difficult to use.
You should also look for a program that easily integrates into any of the existing programs or software that you use.
Like most programs and software, CRM systems vary in price. They can have either monthly, annual, or one-time fees. In most cases, systems are priced based on the number of users.
Some CRMs even have a free plan or a free trial. For example, Freshsales, a CRM that helps close deals faster with AI-powered insights, has free plans available. In the free edition, users can manage and organize their contacts.
It’s also important to factor in the cost of training, maintenance, and upgrades when determining how much you’ll be spending on your CRM software.
Using Cloud Storage
Storing important documents in the cloud is becoming popular in the commercial real estate industry. Cloud storage allows brokers and other employees the option to access information from wherever.
Other benefits of cloud storage include:
- Instant backup and recovery;
- Data security in the case of power loss or equipment malfunction;
- Scalability as your business grows;
- Reduced storage costs;
- Easily accessible data from anywhere;
- Instant software updates.
Many commercial real estate agencies are switching from their outdated software to cloud storage due to these benefits.
How to Effectively Use CRM
CRM can benefit commercial real estate brokers in many different ways if they utilize a CRM system properly. I
t should not only be considered useful software to integrate into your work routine, but also considered a strategy for creating and maintaining relationships with potential clients.
Along with cloud-based CRM, there’s also desktop CRM software. While cloud-based software is preferred, especially in the real estate industry, desktop CRM can still have its uses.
Follow Up With and Close Leads
Since CRM helps brokers organize their contacts and properties, using this software is a great way to efficiently follow up on and close leads.
Much of it is automated and can be organized by priority, allowing brokers to close on huge leads as soon as possible.
Some CRM systems can analyze a user’s activity on your website, newsletters, or ads. This allows brokers to approach potential clients more effectively since their interests are pinpointed.
Organize Essential Data
With CRM software, brokers don’t have to waste time scouring their computers or cabinets for information on a client or property. Instead, this important data is stored in one place in an accessible system.
This allows realtors to focus on connecting with clients instead of focusing on documentation.
Many forms of CRM software allow users to track their revenue and sales via in-depth reports. When a realtor knows the strengths and weaknesses of their business strategy, they can hone in on their strengths and reconsider any weak points in their strategy.
Agile CRM is a software company that is affordable but still provides users with reports that can help them improve their marketing strategy.
Manage Contracts and Other Transactions
Real estate CRM software can help manage contracts or other transactions, whether you work alone or among a team. It’s much easier to keep track of contracts when they are stored in a CRM system.
They can be shared with team members or other parties involved in the contract. You can also see why a contract failed, allowing you to avoid that failure in the future.
Network With Financiers and Other CRE Professionals
In the commercial real estate industry, it’s important to maintain a circle of professionals that are beneficial to your sales, including mortgage lenders, contractors, and more.
Sometimes, your potential or current clients could ask you for referrals to these services. Having a connection to such services can give you that edge of reliability, meaning your clients will renew contracts when possible.
Lastly, being connected to others who work in the commercial real estate industry could lead some referrals your way.
Integrate CRM With Other Useful Software
The most beneficial CRM networks would allow you to integrate their services with your social media or calendar schedules, for example.
When all of your software or services are connected, it allows you to have access to all the information you need in one place.
Here are some of the other programs or applications that can easily integrate with CRM:
- Customer support services;
- Appointment scheduling in Google calendars;
- Email marketing;
- Social media management.
Integrating CRM into other tools helps realtors further strengthen their marketing campaigns with email and social media campaigns.
Plus, many of this software have 24/5 support, meaning you can chat with a professional when any issue comes up.
Popular CRM Systems
There are many different CRM programs, and of course, the one that works best for you depends on your needs. These are the top CRM systems that are used in the commercial real estate industry:
- Pipedrive: Most well known for helping realtors manage leads.
- Hubspot: Cloud-based CRM that allows collaboration between sales and marketing;
- Freshsales: Best for managing client relationships via mass email marketing campaigns;
- Chime: Great for larger agencies that want to consolidate all their information to one platform;
- Apptivo: Affordable CRM software with built-in contract management tools;
Free trials can be helpful as a way to test how the software integrates into your business.