As part of Solutions Review’s Premium Content Series—a collection of contributed columns written by industry experts in maturing software categories—Dmitry Azarov, the Chief Marketing Officer at Itransition, shares some insights on the value of migrating your e-commerce CRM data to a cloud environment.
Today, no sizeable online retailer can successfully operate without e-commerce CRM, which helps companies manage customer interactions and store customer data. Using it, marketing and sales teams can generate insights to plan and improve their activities. Unsurprisingly, 65-percent of sales professionals use CRM software in their day-to-day work.
However, as a business grows, so does the amount of its customer data to be managed, which can become a problem for enterprises that utilize on-premise CRM. Such organizations have to spend increasingly more resources on storing and processing customer data and ensuring its security. This article will explain why enterprises should migrate their e-commerce CRM data to the cloud and give a couple of tips on doing this correctly.
The Benefits of a Cloud-Based E-Commerce CRM
To begin with, a cloud CRM is often a more cost-effective option than an on-premise solution. Migrating to the cloud can help enterprises eliminate the costs of maintaining physical infrastructure. Coupled with the ability to install updates and patches automatically, this can help an enterprise save hundreds of thousands of dollars annually.
What’s more, the cloud can provide businesses with an unprecedented level of flexibility and scalability. CRM managers don’t need to make any tweaks to the corporate infrastructure with a cloud-based solution before configuring new users’ accounts. Still, they can do it easily in a few clicks, scaling up as needed.
Also, cloud adoption may help an enterprise improve its data security. For example, if migrating to a CRM SaaS, its provider typically takes over most of the responsibility related to cybersecurity; given that CRM providers value their reputation, they care about the security of their solutions a lot, building in advanced protection mechanisms.
One more benefit is that cloud adoption enables enterprises to access the computing capabilities they need to innovate. For instance, teams that utilize cloud-based CRMs can implement AI and machine learning models to process and analyze their CRM data. Thus, cloud migration might not be a profitable investment but one more step towards digital transformation and, as a result, greater competitiveness.
How to Ensure a Smooth CRM Data Migration
Enterprise managers that strive to move their CRM data to the cloud have multiple options. They can carry their codebases to a cloud environment, re-platform an existing e-commerce CRM system, subscribe to a CRM SaaS, or even develop their cloud-based solution from scratch. The cloud migration process can be performed either by internal IT teams (if any) or by third-party consulting experts.
Regardless of the approach, it’s necessary to take the migration seriously to avoid possible risks, which can be mitigated with a comprehensive migration strategy. For instance, it is worth mapping out enterprise data assets to understand how to transfer them to the cloud without loss. It is also worth considering whether an internal team is ready for the migration and has the relevant skills to operate with the new infrastructure.
Of course, this list of things to consider in the migration strategy is far from exhaustive, as it depends on the needs and requirements of a particular enterprise. Since data migration is a complex process, a detailed migration strategy requires an in-depth understanding of the company’s digital ecosystem. The cloud-based CRM will fit in it and take a proactive change management approach to ensure stress-free transfer to the cloud-centric operations.
CRM can be one of the most powerful tools in the tech stack of any successful e-commerce enterprise. Teams gain access to customer data and build stronger customer relationships while making intelligent business decisions using these tools. However, to accommodate a growing business’s CRM and customer data needs, it’s highly recommended to adopt a cloud-based CRM.
Enterprises have multiple options, as IT teams can migrate their codebases to the cloud, develop a custom cloud-based CRM, or implement an off-the-shelf cloud solution. Regardless of a specific choice, it’s necessary to first create a data migration strategy, carefully assess all the risks and opportunities, and only then initiate the migration project.