5 Common Miscues When Setting Up a CRM

5 Common Miscues When Setting Up a CRM

By Cali ThomsonAug 19 /2016


We are all constantly on the watch for new ways to streamline and automate processes within our organizations. One area for improvement is coordinating with your sales team.

You’ve determined it’s time to set up your customer relationship management (CRM) software to track communication and ensure you’re doing everything you can to maximize marketing and sales results.

According to BigContacts, CRMs give an average of $8.71 for every $1 spent. That’s incredible ROI! This, however, assumes you actually get past the CRM integration headaches that inevitably come up.

If this is your first time getting a CRM platform configured, you probably have a lot of questions. How do I use [insert software name here]? How do I get my sales team to use it? How do I make sure that we have a proper CRM sales flow? How do I reduce and even eliminate user error?

To complicate matters, there are certain miscues that can add to the chaos and confusion. Before you throw your arms in the air in despair, we suggest taking some time to learn about the following five common challenges that often crop up when you’re setting up a CRM.

1. The Contacts Aren’t Syncing

The CRM has been deployed. But oh, wait. Your contacts aren’t syncing because your CRM and marketing platform aren’t connecting.

A CRM is a tool for managing leads and customers, so when your contacts aren’t syncing, it defeats the purpose of using such a platform. Fortunately, this is a common problem that’s easily solved.

The likely root cause is your sync list. If a particular contact isn’t in the list information, then it won’t sync with your CRM.

To solve this issue, you will need to set up your sync list with sales defining contact properties like Lead Score or Lifecycle Stages and dictate which contacts (MQL, SQL, customers or other) you want to sync. Those not listed in the lifecycle stage won’t be synced, so be sure to double check.

2. The Data Isn’t Updating

You can see the arguments escalating already. “Wait, didn’t you say you closed the deal with [insert account here] yesterday? I don’t see it in the records.”

“No, we made sure to log it. I don’t know what happened.”

This is another common issue with the link between your marketing platform and CRM. The most likely cause is that there’s a discrepancy within the update rules for your property types.

To solve this issue, first choose which system will be your primary record, and which will be your secondary. Then choose how the data will be updated between the two systems at the property level.

There you go—now your data should start updating properly.

3. I’ve Exceeded My API Call Limit

Are you getting API Call Limitations notifications? Don’t fret—it’s not a hard problem to solve. But you might have to cut back on those API connections a little, especially if you have a lot of other tools and platforms integrated with your CRM.

What’s happening is this: Most CRM platforms have a limited number of API calls you can log within a given time period. Exceeding call limits will result in these types of notifications.

There are basically two things you can do to resolve this issue:

  1. Sync records in smaller batches instead of as one big list.
  2. Reduce the number of calls other platforms are making to your CRM as they will count toward your call total.

Once you’ve relieved your CRM of excess API calls, you should stop getting notifications.

4. My Property Types Aren’t Syncing

Mapping errors can happen frequently, depending on what CRM you’re using, so you need to educate yourself on your particular platform.

This usually happens because your property mapping types aren’t compatible, and therefore aren’t syncing properly.

Again, this is mainly an issue of creating a proper connection between your two platforms. The likely cause for this issue is that there’s a difference between the definitions for properties between your systems.

The solution is simple: You need to create consistency between the data types for both systems. The exact procedure, however, will differ from one platform to another and will require specific knowledge.

5. The Sales Reps Aren’t Attaching Contacts to Opportunities

You will likely need to define a workflow for sales reps so it’s easy to use the CRM platform of your choosing. Any unnecessary or added steps will make it a hassle for them, and they will deviate away from it.

The reason this happens is because some CRMs allow sales reps to create opportunities without attaching a primary contact. Incidentally, this is a non-issue with HubSpot.

You can probably guess what the solution is: You need a contact added to every opportunity record that’s created. Ultimately, what you should do is ensure your sales team is following a predictable process.

This might mean making a procedural document or checklist they can follow. Once they’ve gotten in the habit of adding contacts to opportunities, it will quickly become second nature for them, and opportunities will be logged properly.

Final Thoughts

According to BuddyCRM, CRMs lead to sales conversion rate improvements of more than 300 percent.

A CRM is a powerful tool that can help you connect with your leads and customers and maximize your sales results. But there can be little hiccups along the way, especially as you’re getting set up. You’ll want to be on the watch for the common issues described here, and know how to deal with them.

Although it may take considerable time and effort to get your CRM process worked out, in the end it will be worth the time and resources you put into it.

Learn more about setting up a CRM within your organization by downloading The CMO’s Guide to Sales Enablement & CRM: Advice from Top B2B Marketing Leaders for more valuable insights.

Sales Enablement and CRM guide

Cali Thomson
The Author

Cali Thomson

Cali has extensive knowledge and experience in sales and marketing with a passion for helping companies grow and drive profitability. Prior to joining Kuno Creative, she oversaw a business unit for a major healthcare manufacturing company. Cali is a graduate of Kent State University with a bachelor's degree in business management.