Zoho CRM (70+ New ZoHo Hacks 2019)

Zoho

Business on Zoho CRM

Zoho CRM is fairly similar to other powerful CRM systems out there in terms of features and capabilities of managing your sales processes. If you come from another CRM system, you will notice some differences in lingo and other areas; however, the essence of CRM practice is more or less the same in all of these systems. 

 

At the core of Zoho CRM lie powerful sales force automation modules and tools, allowing you to fully manage your pipeline (or, funnel), that is, all the stages from when leads are collected until a deal is closed and beyond. 

 

You should design the stages of your pipeline according to your sales processes; however, it is safe to say that there are four common stages to consider for a typical sales pipeline: Lead Generation, Lead Qualification, and Opportunities. This blog explains the Zoho Tutorial 2019.

 

Sales

Sales

One key importance of the funnel (or pipeline) is that as a business owner, or decision maker, you can have a bird’s eye view of your business at any given moment and see who is where in the funnel and how close a deal is to closing.

 

Maintaining and managing an accurate funnel helps you monitor the performance of your business and strategize accordingly, with clarity and agility.

 

Leads

Leads are people or companies who fall in your target market and might turn into prospects interested in your products or services. Every business card you collect, every email address that gets registered on your website, or anyone result of executive searches on LinkedIn is considered leads. 

 

All leads should be captured in the CRM from the early stage, one by one, or in bulk and then be taken through the sales funnel until they turn into sales (or not).

 

Lead Qualification

The second stage in the funnel is Qualification. In this stage, you (or the person to whom specific leads are assigned) validates leads by contacting them, following up, and evaluating their interest level, decision-making power, and buying appetite.

 

 You should be capturing every action done on the lead in the CRM. This information will help you qualify leads and push them to the next stage, or simply disqualify them and move on to the next lead.

 

Opportunities

After a lead is qualified, it needs to get “converted.” Conversion turns a qualified lead into a contact, an account, and an opportunity (or, potential) for a deal. In the “conversion” process, Zoho CRM generates the corresponding Contact, Account, and Opportunity in the click of a button.

 

A lot needs to happen between a lead becoming an opportunity and the actual sales happeningFurther follow-ups are often needed, followed by sending quotes, sales orders, invoices, and hopefully a closed deal at the end. 

 

These steps are documented in a logical and connected way in the CRM, centralizing important data and connecting the dots more effectively while keeping valuable information safe for future use.

 

Getting Started with Sales Force Automation

Zoho CRM Tutorial

When you first open Zoho CRM (by logging onto http://creator.zoho.com), you are welcomed by the Getting Started page inviting you to perform a number of common tasks. For now, you can ignore this page.

 

To start, click on the Classic View link on the top right of the Getting Started page to switch the view.

 

The Classic View shows the bird’s eye view of your business. Of course, there is not much to see here when you first start: however, after populating CRM you will start seeing valuable information in real time. By default, the Classic View shows tasks, events, and the sales pipeline (or, funnel, whichever lingo works for you).

 

There is also a Customized View, which shows a list of open (i.e., incomplete) tasks, today’s leads, deals closing this month, and the pipeline. You can add or remove components to this page to turn it into a powerful dashboard showing the live state of your sales efforts and helping you monitor and manage the sales force more efficiently.

 

Managing Leads

Managing Leads

As mentioned in a previous section, lead management is an inseparable part of the CRM process in general and obviously Zoho CRM itself.

 

Leads module is one of the essential modules in Zoho CRM and is closely connected with other modules, such as Deals. Any organization that does some sort of sales of goods and services must take managing leads seriously.

 

No matter the quantity and quality of the leads generated, if they are not managed properly, chances are that the business is losing valuable opportunities that can turn into profitable deals in the short or the long run.

 

Adding a New Lead

Let’s start exploring the essential lead management features of Zoho CRM by creating a single lead manually:

zoho Lead

\1.\ Click on the + (plus sign) on the right-hand side of the main menu bar and then select Lead from the drop-down menu. Alternatively, you can open the Leads page (from the top menu bar) and click the New Lead button.

 

\2.\ In the Create Lead page, put in as much information as you have about a lead, especially Company, and Lead Name, as they are both mandatory fields for a lead.

 

\3.\ Once you are done with entering all the available information for the lead, click on the Save button in the bottom of the form. The new lead gets created and displayed in the lead details page.

 

\4.\ You can repeat these steps and add as many leads as you need. To see the list of all leads, click Leads on the main menu bar.

 

Note  If you don’t see the Leads item in the menu bar, click on the (…) link on the menu bar. Then find Leads in the drop-down extension of the menu. 

 

Zoho hides the item used less frequently under the (…) and shows the regularly used items. Although this is unlikely to happen for Leads, as it should be a frequently accessed module; however, it’s good to keep this in mind for other less frequent modules.

 

Interacting with Leads

information

In addition to the basic information, such as name and company, each lead comes with the ability to connect important and relevant pieces of information to it, such as notes, attachments, and tasks. You can (and you should) manage virtually every bit of information relevant to a lead from a central place, the lead detail page.

 

This centralization of information helps the person in charge of the lead and other concerned team members to stay productive and keep the information that may prove crucial in the future in a single place.

 

Now, open the lead you just created and follow these steps to add a few more pieces of information to our lead:

\1.\ In the lead page, under Notes section, click Add Note and type in some notes for the lead.

 

\2.\ Under the Attachment section, click Attach. A drop-down menu opens, providing you with different ways of attaching a document to this lead, including uploading from your computer, or from cloud storage services, such as Zoho Docs and Google Drive. Choose one of the scenarios and attach one or more files to the lead.

 

\3.\ Under Open Activities, there are three types of activities to choose from Task, Event, and Call. You can add a list of to-dos, log of phone calls, and events (e.g., future meetings) with the specific lead in here. Click New Task to continue.

 

\4.\ In the Create Task form, type in the mandatory Subject of the task and other optional fields. You can set up a due date and a reminder for the task. Zoho CRM will send you notifications to remind you about an approaching task. Click Save when you are done.

 

\5.\ When you complete an open activity and change its status to Complete, it automatically moves under Closed Activities. Open the task you created in the previous step and set it to Complete. It will automatically move from Open Activities to Closed Activities.

 

\6.\ Last, but not least, you can send emails to a lead from within the lead page. This is great because it helps you keep a complete log of your communications with a specific lead in one place along with everything else about the lead.

 

Under Emails click Send Email. In the Send Email dialog box, type in your message. Click Send after you are happy with the content of your message and it will be sent to your lead immediately.

 

Feel free to add more items for the lead and see how each section works.

 

Importing Multiple Leads

Zoho CRM Tutorial

Adding leads one by one is a straightforward task in Zoho CRM. There is also the Zoho CRM mobile app for the people on the go, so you can add new leads on your way back from a successful meeting instead of spending time on Instagram.

 

But how about when you need to add multiple leads quickly and efficiently? For instance, if a large list of leads is generated from an email campaign, or you have a helpful admin person to digitize a million business cards you accumulated in a recent exhibition you attended? 

 

Thankfully, Zoho CRM has a feature that allows you to import leads in bulk sans the joy of keying them in one by one. This is particularly easy if you have the list of leads in an Excel or CSV (Comma Separated Values) file.

 

The data in such a list must be properly organized and all mandatory fields (Lead Name and Company are mandatory by default) are populated for each row.

 

Let’s learn how this is done in Zoho CRM. If you have your leads already stored nicely and cleanly in an Excel or CSV file, you can ignore the first three steps of the following instruction set and go directly to step 4. 

 

Otherwise, for the purpose of this exercise, we need to first create a dummy list and then import it into CRM.

 

There is a lifesaving website called generatedata.com, which helps you create dummy data tables populated with random information. We use this site to create our list of dummy leads:

 

\1.\  In your web browser, log onto http://generatedata.com.

 

\2.\ Under Generate tab, enter “Leads” as filename, then create data columns starting with the First Name. You can add new rows to add more data columns by clicking the Row(s) button below the list.

 

\3.\ When you are finished with adding all the data columns, make sure the CSV tab is selected under Export Types, then enter a single comma (,) for Delimiter char(s).

 

\4.\ Leave other fields as they are and click the Generate button on the bottom of the page. The list will be generated within seconds and automatically downloads to your computer.

 

Depending on your operating system and browser settings, you may get a message box asking you to confirm the download.

 

\5.\ Open the downloaded CSV file. Quite good for random information!

 

\6.\ Now switch back to Zoho CRM, open the Leads page, and click on the Import button on the top right of the leads list. The Import Leads wizard will open.

 

\7.\ In the Import Leads page, select Import My Leads, which will set the lead owner to your name.

 

\8.\ Click Choose File button to select the leads CSV file you downloaded (or you had from before).

 

\9.\ Select Overwrite for Duplicate Record and set Find duplicates using to Email.

 

\10.\ Click Next to continue. The import wizard will upload the CSV file and load the columns it found in the file for you to map to the matching fields in the CRM Leads module.

 

\11.\ Review the fields and make sure each column is mapped to the corresponding column in CRM. Other than the mandatory fields that are indicated with a red label, you can skip mapping for the information you don’t have.

 

\12.\ Click Next to continue. In the next step, CRM may show you the columns in the CSV file that are not mapped to Leads in the CRM. Ignore the message and click Import to continue.

 

\13.\ The import wizard will import the data and show you a report of how many rows were imported in total, how many added to CRM, how many existing ones updated (because we chose to overwrite), and how many skipped due to errors.

 

Also, a sample list of imported information will be shown. Review the import and click Done if you are happy, or Undo Import if you found an issue and you want to start over. Great.

 

The import is done and you can start working with them. Feel free to navigate through leads, change values, and delete some of them to familiarize yourself more with the Leads module.

 

Bulk Operations

Bulk Operations

From the previous section, you can see that in our newly imported list, Lead Source is missing, because it was not in the CSV file and the import wizard left the value empty for all imported records. Since the lead source is an important piece of information, we want to populate this value for the leads.

 

One way is to open each lead and set the Lead Source, but that is too much work, especially if the lead source for all of these leads is the same (a trade show, or online campaign). Such scenarios happen often and you need bulk operations to perform repeated data manipulation faster and stay productive.

 

Mass Updating Leads

Zoho_mass

Fortunately, Zoho CRM offers mass updating features for leads and other modules, so we can go about changing the lead source of all newly important leads in one go following these steps:

 

\1.\ In the Leads page, click on them … the button on the top right of the page and select Mass Update in the drop-down menu.

 

\2.\ In the next page, under Criteria Component select Lead Owner for the first criterion, then select it and then type in your name. This means that the mass update will be performed only on the leads whose owner is the current user, preserving other people’s leads from being mass updated.

 

\3.\ Click the green (+) button next to criterion #1 to add another criterion. Then select Lead Status, and is empty. This ensures a mass update happens only on your leads whose Lead Status is not set yet, sparing the ones with existing lead status.

 

\4.\ Click Search to see a list of leads that match the above criteria.

 

\5.\  Click Mass Update button on the top-left side of the list. A dialog box will open asking which field you want to mass update. Select Lead Source in the drop-down list.

 

\6.\ In the next screen, a drop-down list will be shown with a list of different values for the Lead Source. Select “Trade Show” and click Save.

After clicking save, all leads matching the criteria set above will have their Lead Status set to “Trade Show.”

 

Mass Transferring Leads

Zoho CRM user

In Zoho CRM, each lead has an owner who is a registered Zoho CRM user. By default, the lead owner of a new lead (or leads) is the user who created the lead. This, of course, can change by editing a lead and transferring the lead ownership to someone else; however, there are times that you need to transfer multiple leads to another user. 

 

Suppose for the leads you imported previously, you need to distribute them among the sales team, so they can start contacting them and hopefully turn them into sales.

 

A number of factors may be considered when distributing leads, such as geographical territory, type of lead, etc.

 

In the following example, we will transfer a number of leads to a team member using the simple logic of transferring only the leads whose company names starts with an “a.” Not exactly a scientific method of leads distribution, but it serves the purpose here.

 

\1.\ In the Leads page, click on them … button on the top right of the page and select Mass Transfer from the drop-down list.

\2.\ In the Leads Mass Transfer page, put in your username in Transfer From and the username of the new lead owner in Transfer To.

\3.\  Under Specify Criteria, select Company and starts with, then enter “a” in the value text box and click Search.

\4.\ Review the search results to ensure the leads about to be transferred are correct. Then click Transfer to proceed. The leads will transfer to the new owner.

 

Finding Leads

Finding_leads

Soon you will have tens and hundreds of leads in the CRM waiting for your champion salespeople to turn into lucrative sales and loyal customers. More leads mean you can no longer rely on the list of leads to find who you are looking for. A good CRM system must offer advanced and fast search tools and Zoho CRM is no exception.

 

Searching for Leads

global search

In Zoho CRM, the quickest way of finding leads (and other information) is to use the global search. The global search is accessible throughout CRM by clicking on the magnifier button on the top menu bar.

 

Simply type in the name of a lead, company, source, or basically anything you can remember about the information you are looking for. 

 

By default, any piece of information that contains the search term (“acme,” in this example) in any of its data fields will be pulled from across the CRM and listed in the search results. that the search results show account, contacts, deals, and tasks.

 

The result will vary for you as you have different information stored in your CRM account. On the results page, you can click on any of the results found and access the corresponding information. For instance, clicking on a task will open the detail’s respective task.

 

Notice at the bottom of the results page, there is a gray info-bar listing the modules (e.g. Leads, Events, etc.) in which the search didn’t find any results. This means there were no leads in my account (i.e., current user) that contains “acme” in any shape or form.

 

Narrowing Down the Search Scope

search

Searching the CRM globally is quite handy and often finds the information you are looking for; however, these results can get crowded depending on the size of the information kept in the CRM and also how generic the search term is. 

 

One good way of quickly narrowing down the scope of your search is to choose which CRM module the global search should look into. To do so, in the search results page, click the magnifier icon on the top left of the screen and choose the target modules.

 

For example, if you are looking to extract the contact information of everyone in a company and see if there are any events scheduled for that company, you can deselect all modules in the list and only keep Contacts and Events and then click Search.

 

Filtering Through Leads

Filtering

As mentioned previously the global is powerful and easy to use, but it is designed for quick on-off searches. If you tend to look for specific information in a module (including Leads) regularly, there is a better way to find the right information: Filters.

 

As the name suggests, filters let you filter the long list of leads and see only what you are looking for more quickly and more efficiently. The big advantage of filters is that they can be saved for later use, without the need for entering the search term every time.

 

To see them in action, let’s apply a filter to the list of leads:

\1.\ In the Leads page, select Lead Owner in the list of fields on the left side of the screen and then select it and type in a username. The list of leads immediately changes, showing only the leads that match the filter.

 

\2.\ To use this filter again in the future, click Save Filter button on the bottom left of the screen and enter a suitable filter name. Click Save Filter to proceed.

The new filter will be listed under filters and is ready to use in the click of a button.

 

Views

Views

As you have seen a number of times in this blog before, when you open the Leads module, by default a list of leads is shown in the leads page.

 

These lists are called Views and are one of the powerful features of Zoho CRM. As the name suggests, View gives different ways of viewing your information.

 

One of the fundamental characteristics of good software is that users enter information once (e.g., add new leads) and output this information in different ways. The difference in the output of information is often about formatting, order, data set, and output medium.

 

For instance, one view will show all the leads in the system, while another will only show the current user’s leads entered today. Also, a view can output its data on the screen, to a CSV file, or a PDF document to be sent by email to a third party.

 

Let’s start our tour of the Views by having a look at two of the most common existing views in Zoho CRM. The first one is All Views, which is accessible by simply opening the Leads module. To open other views, you need to click on the view selector button on the top left of the screen just below the top menu bar and select any other view.

 

You can see that in the view, the Lead Owner column is not shown simply because we already know who the lead owner is. Another characteristic of good software is to show only the relevant and necessary information and avoid information clutter as much as possible.

 

You will see in the upcoming sections that you can customize and create views. Keeping this small but important point in mind helps you create useful views for your users.

 

Customizing Views

Customizing Views

There is a good collection of preexisting views in Zoho CRM; however, every business has different needs and sooner or later you will need views of your own. The quickest way to have your own views is to customize the existing ones.

 

To modify My Leads, which is an existing view, follow these steps:

  • \1.\  Open the My Leads view.
  • \2.\ Click the … button on the top right of the view and select Edit View. The view editor will open for My Leads view.
  • \3.\  Under Choose Columns section, select Lead Status from Available fields to add it to Selected fields.
  • \4.\ Click Save to apply the changes. The lead Status column is now added to the My Leads view.

 

Creating Custom Views

Sometimes you need more than just customizing a few things in an existing view. In such a case, creating a new view from scratch is the best option.

Creating Custom Views

Suppose we need a view that shows all the leads without a Lead Status in the system (i.e., for all users), so we can identify and assign a status to them. To create this view follow these steps:

\1.\  Open Leads from the top menu bar.

\2.\ Click the … button on the top right of the view and select Add View. The view editor will open.

\3.\ Enter “No-status Leads” in view name textbox where it currently reads Untitled View.

\4.\  Under Specify Criteria, select Lead Source and is empty.

\5.\ Under Choose Columns, select and add First Name, Last Name, Company, Email, and Leads Source from the Available list to the Selected list.

\6.\ Under Share, this with, select Only me to make this view available only to you (the current user).

\7.\ Click Save to create the new view. The view will be added to the list of existing views and open for use.

 

EXERCISE

zoho

As a supervisor, you need a view to show you if there are leads entered in the CRM with no action taken on them for more than 7 days, and then act accordingly. 

 

Create a new view that shows open leads created 7 days ago, with no action taken on them, that is, no status change, visible only to you, the admin user. Show lead name, email address, owner, source, and status.

 

Converting Leads

Converting Leads

If you remember from the beginning of this blog, we talked about various stages of the sales funnel. After Lead generation and qualification comes opportunity creation, which is the result of successfully converting qualified leads. 

 

In Zoho CRM, once you deem a lead qualified, you can “convert” it manually. This will create up to three new objects in the CRM: a new contact, an account, and a deal (opportunity).

 

To convert a lead, follow these steps:

\1.\  Open a lead you want to convert and in the lead detail page, click on the green Convert button.

 

\2.\ In the Convert Lead page, review the first two rows of information indicating that a new account and a new contact are going to be created in the process of conversion.

 

\3.\ Check (select) Create a new Deal for this Account and enter the deal information. Notice the important fields that indicate the projected amount of this deal (opportunity), projected closing date, and the current stage of the deal.

 

\4.\ Select Contact or Deal to move the existing attachments in the lead (if any) to the new contract or the deal.

 

\5.\ Set the Owner of the records, that is, the user who will be owning the account, contact, and the deal in the CRM.

 

\6.\ Click Convert to convert the lead and create corresponding records.

 

You can click on any of the newly created accounts, contact, and the deal (see next section) to view their details and immediately continue working on them. Notice how both the account and the contact have a section for deals giving you a quick overview of the ongoing deals for each record.

 

Similar to leads, you can fully manage (edit, export, print, send email, etc.) accounts and contacts from within the detail page. Spend a few minutes reviewing the sort of information stored for each of these records and see how you can use them in your day-to-day business.

 

Deals

Deals

Deals hold the live summary of what is happening with an opportunity. Vital information, such as contact information, the current stage of the deal in the pipeline, the history of stage change, notes, tasks, and other related information are all listed here in one place.

 

There are also other pieces of information that you can add to the deal as you go forward. Among other things, you can manage the list of competitors who may impact the deal, products being sold in this deal, the sales order sent to the potential client, and the email correspondence.

 

Once a lead is converted, this page will be the command center for the user in charge of the deal.

 

Keeping the Stage Up to Date

As you go forward with the deal in real life, the stage in which the deal is in the CRM should change too.

 

This is particularly important to keep the sales pipeline in the reports and the people concerned with sales performance in your organization up to date. You can easily do this by selecting a relevant stage from the Stage graph in the deal details page.

 

In the graph, the current stage is shown as a green circle while previous stages are indicated as green check marks and future stages are grayed out. By default, the last three stages of a deal indicate if it is a win or a loss. Visually, these stages are indicated with thumbs-up or thumbs-down icons. 

 

To select an applicable stage, simply click on the next stage (gray circle) in line or jump and select another future stage. You can hover on a stage to see its name. In an upcoming section, you will learn how to customize the deal stages to match your sales process.

 

Viewing Deals

Viewing Deals

To quickly see all active deals in the system in one place, click on Deals on the top menu bar. The All Deals view will show all deals grouped by stage. Click on each deal listed in the view to see its details. All Deals view has two ways of displaying deals: one is the default-by-stage view, and the other is the simple list view.

 

You can switch between these two by clicking on the list and bar icons on the top right of the screen. Also, there are filters for you to select (from the left sidebar) to narrow down the list, in case there are many deals listed here. You can choose to see deals only for a specific account, stage, lead source, etc.

 

Similar to other modules, you can select other available views from the view selector drop-down on the top left of the screen and see, for example, only your own deals, deals closing this month, etc.

 

 It is also worth reminding you that you can customize these views by clicking Edit next to the view selector drop-down and also create new views from scratch by clicking Create New item in the drop-down.

 

Homepage Dashboard

homepage

As you enter information in the CRM and keep it up to date, the homepage dashboard turns into a powerful place to quickly see the state of your business on one page. 

 

By default, two of the four Components (what Zoho calls the building blocks of the dashboard page) shows the list of the deals closing this month and the graph of the sales pipeline by stage, not surprisingly shaped like a funnel.you can see that there is only one deal closing this month and judging by the funnel, the majority of the deals are still in the qualification stage.

 

Now, if this were a real business, you may have needed to ask the sales team some serious questions. 

You can make the homepage more powerful and add more views and dashboards by clicking on the Add Component button (green plus sign) in the bottom of the page and choose from available views and dashboards in the CRM. I leave exploring this feature to you.

 

Customizing Stages

Customizing Stages

As you learned in a previous section, deals move forward in the pipeline from one stage to another until they are won or lost. Making sure deals are in the right stage will give you an accurate view of your business, so it is important to ensure these stages reflect your sales process correctly. 

 

By default, Zoho provisions nine different stages in which a deal can be in Qualification, Needs Analysis, Value Propositions, etc. You can modify the name of existing stages, add new ones, and remove the ones you don’t need. Note that these customizations are global (i.e., organization-wide) and will apply to affect all deals in the CRM.

 

To customize the deal stages, follow these steps:

 

\1.\ On the top bar, on the right, click on the tools icon and then click on Setup.

\2.\ In the Setup page, under Customization group, click on Modules. A new page will open with all the CRM modules listed

\3.\ In the modules list, hover the mouse cursor on Deals, click on the (…) button appearing next to Deals, and select Stage-Probability Mapping in the context menu.

 

\4.\ In the Stage-Probability Mapping dialog box, modify stage name, probability, forecast type, and forecast category for each stage you need to customize. Use the + and – buttons next to each stage to add a new stage or remove the respective stage.

 

\5.\  Click Save to apply the changes.

 

Quotes

Quotes

As mentioned in the previous section, a deal goes through various stages in the sales pipeline. By default, one of these stages is Proposal/Price Quote, which as the name suggests, is for when you reach a point in your deal that you need to send the potential (or returning) client a quotation for the products or services you intend to sell to them. 

 

Sending quotations is a common stage in any deal. In fact, you may send multiple quotes with adjusted prices and terms, until the client is happy to proceed with the deal.

 

You can create quotes for an ongoing deal or directly in the Quotes module. I recommend the former because it makes creating the quote easier and attaches it to the deal automatically.

 

Follow these steps to create a quote for a deal:

\1.\  Open the deals module and open a deal.

\2.\ In the deal detail page, click on Create + New under Quotes section.

\3.\ In the Create Quote page, enter Subject, and Valid Until. Note that Quote Owner, Quote Stage, Deal Name, Contact Name, Account Name, and Address Information are prepopulated based on the deal information.

 

\4.\ Under the Product Details section, click Add Line Items. A Choose Products form will open.

 

\5.\ In Products Details, type in the product name you want to add to the list. You can enter the product name partially. CRM will look for any similar products and will show a list for you to pick from.

 

\6.\ If the product is not found, click on the + Add New Product link to open the Quick Create: Product form.

\7.\ In the quick create a form, type in the product information and click Save when you are done.

\8.\ Repeat from step 4 and create another product. Click Save to continue.

\9.\ Back in the Choose Product form you have two products in the list. Click the Add Products button to continue.

 

\10.\ The two products are added to the quote with the total amount of the quote calculated and placed nicely below the list items. As the last step, populate Terms and Conditions and click Save to create the quote.

 

The newly created quote will be listed under the Quotes section in the deal details page. You can access the quote details or modify it from here. You can also add new quotes for the same deal. Quotes are also accessible in the Quotes module.

 

Click on Quotes on the top menu bar and a list of all quotes will be shown. You can click on each quote and see the details, modify, print, or export them to into PDF documents to send to concerned parties.

 

Emailing Quotes

Zoho_mail

To send quotes to clients, you can export them to PDF and email them to clients and other people. You can also kill more trees and print them on paper to send them by snail mail (killing even more trees) or fax them if the other party lives in the previous century.

 

 The better way, however, is to email quotes directly to the client (i.e., the contact mentioned in the quote) from within the CRM. To do this, follow these steps:

 

\1.\ In the quote detail page, open the … menu on the top right of the screen and click Send Mail on the drop-down menu. The Send Mail form will open.

 

\2.\ Choose Quote Template from Choose an Inventory Template drop-down list. The quote will be formatted based on the template chosen and a preview will be displayed on the right side. Click Next to continue.

 

\3.\ The Send Mail window will load ready for you to populate the message body. To field is already populated from the quote contact and the quote itself is attached to the message.

 

\4.\ Click Send once you are happy with the message body. Your client will receive an email from you with the quote attached.

 

Customized Templates

Customized Templates

In the previous section, you used a template for a quote. Templates in Zoho are predesigned pages that contain visual elements as well as placeholders for information to generate formatted output for quotes, invoices, emails, etc. 

 

Templates help save time and also create a uniform way of generating output compliant with the branding guidelines of your business. For example, you can design templates that feature your logo and use your brand color and typeface while mentioning a generic note in the footer.

 

Then when you send documents such as quotes and invoices, they look professional and have common elements across the board. The template you used in the previous section was quite simple and unappealing at best. Apart from design, you may want to have different templates for quotes (or other modules) that have different elements in them.

 

Zoho CRM allows you to create complex templates with a great look and feel by simply using the template designer, dragging and dropping elements into the template. There is also a more advanced option for users who want full flexibility in designing with HTML and CSS.

 

Follow these steps to create a custom template:

\1.\ Open the CRM Setup page by clicking the tools icon on the right side of the top menu bar and selecting Setup from the drop-down menu.

 

\2.\ In the Setup page, click on Templates under the Customization section. The Templates page will open, listing the existing templates.

 

\3.\ There are three template categories: Email, Inventory, and Mail Merge. Click the Inventory button on top of the page to see a list of templates specifically designed for inventory-related templates such as quotes and invoices.

 

\4.\ While in the Inventory list, click the (blue) New Template button on the left side of the list.

\5.\ In the Create Inventory Template form, select Quotes for Select Module and click Next.

 

\6.\ In the template designer page, click on the “<html>” icon (next to the smiley face) on the toolbar. Instead of using the rich text editor, we are going to paste some HTML code in here.

 

\7.\ In your browser, open https://github.com/sparksuite/ simple-HTML-invoice-template. This is a modern and minimal invoice template you can use in your template and modify to your liking.

 

\8.\ In the file list on the page, click index.html. The source file will open.

\9.\ select all the HTML code, copy it, and paste it into the Edit HTML box in the CRM Template Editor you opened in step 6.

\10.\ Click Insert to continue. The template will be shown in the editor.

 

\11.\ To make the template work for you, add Merge Fields to its body, so these fields get replaced with real data relevant to a quote when a quote is generated.

 

You can select the Merge Fields by selecting them from the two dropdowns on the top of the template designer and then copying and pasting the generated code into the content.

 

\12.\ Once you are done with designing the quote template, click the Save button. The template designer will close and you will be redirected to the list of existing templates. You can go back and edit these templates or create new ones for different purposes.

 

Converting Quotes to Sales Orders

Sales Orders

A Sales Order (SO) is a confirmation document sent to the customer before delivering goods or services. In contrast, a Purchase Order (PO) is an order placed for procuring products or services from your vendors. SO can be created once the quote is accepted by your customer often via a PO sent by the customer for further processing.

 

After sending your (the seller) the PO, the customers may request a SO to know the exact date of delivery of the goods or services. Also, the inventory/production department (if there is one) looks at the list of Sales Orders to see what needs to be shipped out and when.

 

Similar to quotes, you can create SOs directly in the Sales Orders module. The recommended way, however, is to convert a quote to a SO, so most of the information in the SO populates automatically from the quote and a logical connection between SO and other related documents are created.

 

To convert a quote to a SO simply open it and click the (green) Convert button on the top of the quote details. Then select Sales Order from the drop-down menu.

 

Once the new SO is created it is displayed for you to review and perform other tasks on it, the SO is quite similar to the corresponding quote as it gets its fields from the quote. However, there are subtle differences, such as the SO Number vs. Quote Number, Status vs. Stage, and the addition of Sales Commission field. 

 

You can also see that there is a link to the corresponding quote and deal under the Sales Order Information section, Quote Name, and Deal Name. 

 

One more thing about the SO is to make sure you change the Status field as you go forward to reflect the actual status of the SO. As mentioned in the previous sections, you can change the values in the Status list in the Setup page under Modules.

 

Converting Sales Orders to Invoices

Zoho_crm

Once the sales stage reaches its final phase, you may start working on the payment procedure and, obviously, the invoice. This is an important stage for both sales and accounting purposes as it completes the sales process and begins the accounting process.

 

An invoice usually contains the PO reference number, date, address information, payment terms, line items (products/services) with quantities and prices as well as (optional) tax and discount information. Again, you have the option of creating invoices from scratch, or converting a quote or SO to an invoice, bringing all the information from the base document.

 

Follow these steps to convert a SO to an invoice:

Not enough product in the inventory; go and change to 10 each; come back to sales order; convert. Now if you go back to the Products page and check the Quantity in Stock, you will see that the number is changed to the balance of previous stock minus the number of products in the sales order.

 

You can add to the inventory either manually as you just saw, or through issuing POs.

 

Exercise: Order new products for the inventory by creating a new PO.

 

Hint: You will need to add a new Vendor to be able to issue a PO. If you get stuck, refer to Zoho CRM documentation. This basic inventory management is handy, but for complex operations, it will never replace proper inventory management.

 

You can email or print invoices similar to sales orders and quotes. By default, there is one minimal invoice template available in the CRM. You can create nicely designed invoice templates similar to the ones you created for the quotes in a previous section.

 

\1.\  Open the SO you created in the previous section.

\2.\ In the SO page, click on the (green) Convert button on top of the SO details and select Invoice in the drop-down menu.

 

\3.\ Depending on how much stock you have of the products that are in the quote list items, you may get a warning about low inventory level. Click Cancel to proceed.

 

\4.\ Open Products page and find the products with a low quantity in the stock.

 

Note  By default the All Products view doesn’t show the value of Quantity in Stock. You need to either check the products one by one, to see the quantity for each one, which is a pain; or you can quickly edit the view and add the extra column Quantity in Stock to it.

 

\5.\ In the product details page change the Quantity in Stock value to an arbitrary number (because we are testing; otherwise this should match the real number in your inventory). Then click Save to apply the changes.

 

\6.\ Now go back to the SO and convert it to an invoice. The invoice gets created immediately and you will be redirected to the invoice detail page.

 

Take a moment and review the fields in the invoice. Many values are brought from the underlying SO (or quote, depending which one you converted). Quite similar to quotes and SOs, you can print invoices, export them to PDFs, and send them via email to your clients directly from CRM.

 

Reports

Reports

You remember from the beginning of this blog when we argued that one of the fundamental traits of good software is that you (the user) enters information once and then you can extract it by different means, each serving a specific purpose. We have learned how to create leads, deals, quotes, etc., in Zoho CRM.

 

We also learned that we can see this information through various avenues, by navigating through views and detail pages or searching through each module, or globally.

 

Zoho CRM provides yet another way of outputting information that it reports. Reports are read-only (you can’t edit the data in a report), formatted, and often a complex representation of the information in the CRM.

 

 Similar to other entities, such as quotes and invoices, you can print, export, or email them. You can also define user-level and role-based access to the reports to specify who sees which report.

 

Using Existing Reports

Existing Reports

Zoho CRM comes with a host of pre-made reports for most common scenarios. In many cases, they are quite usable out-of-the-box, or good to go with a little bit of tweaking. 

 

To access the reports, you need to open the Reports module by clicking on Reports on the top menu bar. A list of all existing reports in the CRM will be shown by default.

 

These reports are divided into smaller categories based on the contents of the reports, for example, Lead Reports; or based on other criteria to make them easier to find, such as Recent Reports.

 

These categories are accessible from the left sidebar. One nifty categorization is the Favorite Reports, which as the name suggests, allows you to group your favorite reports in one place. 

 

To add a report to favorites, simply click on the gray star next to any report in the list, and the star will turn gold and the report will be added to the Favorite Reports.

 

Let’s have a look at two of the available reports. The first one is Leads by Status, which shows all the leads grouped by their status. This report has two parts, a pie chart on the top providing a quick and visual representation of the state of the leads in the organization, followed by a list of leads with more details and also grouped by the status. 

 

The second one is Pipeline by Stage, which again is a two-part report with a funnel showing the volume of the deals in each stage of the pipeline on the top of the report. There is also a detailed list of pipeline stages and the deals in each stage, including the sum of the amount per stage.

 

Creating New Reports

New Reports

Of course, Zoho CRM comes with a collection of useful reports out-of-the-box that you can use or modify to your liking; however, there are times when you need to create a report from scratch. Thankfully CRM comes with a powerful report designer.

 

Follow these steps to create a new report from scratch:

 

\1.\ Open the Reports page and click on the (green) Create Reports button on the top right of the list.

 

\2.\ In the New Report wizard, start by setting module information and selecting Deals for the main module, and Contact and Quotes for related modules.

\3.\ Click Continue to proceed with Report Type. Select Tabular Type and click Continue.

\4.\ Under Report Representation, select the columns. Then click Continue.

 

\5.\ Under Filters, Select Deal Closing Date from the first drop-down, then Current FY in the second one, and set the date range to cover the current financial year. Click Continue.

 

\6.\ Finally, under Basic Information, Select Deal Reports from the drop-down list, enter “Deals and Quotes” as the report name, and provide some description of what the report does.

 

\7.\ Click Run to see the report in action. If you like what you see click Save; otherwise click Edit to make changes in the report, once you run a report, you can export it to an Excel, CSV, or PDF document by clicking on the Export button on the top right of the report.

You can also directly send out the report via email by clicking on the Send Email button.

 

What is Zoho Mail and How Zoho Mail works

What is Zoho Mail

That was actually your first integration of an external service, that is, email with CRM. By doing so, CRM and your email account are connected to each other and exchange information to give you a better idea about your day-to-day business.

 

For instance, the moment you connect your (work) email address to CRM, the email history of your contacts will appear in their corresponding contact detail page. You can send emails directly from the contact page and they will appear in your sent items as if they were sent from your email client (e.g., Zoho Mail, Outlook, Apple Mail).

 

Note  Regardless of the email service you are using, be it Zoho, Gmail, Outlook, or others, Zoho Mail is the email client (or, email app) that manages your email account from Zoho or other services.

 

So, if you have an @zoho.com, @gmail.com, or @yourcompany.com email address, you configure Zoho Mail to be your email app and that is what actually integrates with Zoho CRM. In this blog we have to explain the What is Zoho Mail and how it works.

 

Sharing Emails with Other CRM Users

Sharing Emails

There is one more feature that you can use to enable emails in the CRM, which is the ability to share all or some of your emails with other CRM users.

 

Depending on your business process and internal policies, you have the option of letting other users see your email correspondence with your leads and contacts.

 

 For example, sometimes your superior officer may need to see past communications without asking you to be bothered with forwarding messages to them. They can simply take a peek at your emails directly.

 

Now, this may sound creepy, or even unnecessary, but there are scenarios where this feature comes in handy. Obviously, other email messages in your inbox that have nothing to do with leads or contact in the CRM will not be shared with others even if email sharing is on for your account.

 

Phew! By default, email sharing is off, which means all your email correspondence is only visible to you. An administrator or the users themselves can change this setting.

 

There are three types of email sharing available:

  • Complete: all the emails of the sharing user will be accessible to the users specified,
  • Custom: sharing user will decide which email to share with whom, and
  • Private: no emails will be shared: default state.

 

Follow these steps to adjust the email sharing settings:

 

\1.\ In Zoho CRM Open the Setup page, then click Email Settings under Generic section.

 

\2.\ On the Email Settings page, open the Email Sharing tab. Under Email Sharing Permissions, there is a list of all users with their email sharing status in front of them, Private for the CEO and User’s Choice for the rest.

 

\3.\ Click on the status of the CEO (you) and select Custom from the drop-down list. Notice the value Emails Shared With column in the list column changes to All. This essentially means that this user’s emails are now shared with everybody, which is not optimal and needs to be limited.

 

\4.\ Click on the value All in the list. The Email Sharing Setting dialog box for the user opens. A series of selected checkboxes will be listed showing the hierarchy of roles in your organization down to the users.

 

\5.\ Uncheck All, so all checkboxes are unchecked. Then select which roles or users you want to permissions to. Click Done to proceed.

 

\6.\ Emails Shard With value is now changed to a more limited and certain number of roles and users.

 

Integrating with Zoho Projects

zoho_projects

Projects are commonplace in most businesses and managing projects often need a dedicated tool.

 

Simpler projects, such as renovating the office flooring, can be easily managed with a to-do list app, or an Excel sheet, but as projects grow, the number of tasks, interdependencies, priorities, project team and stakeholders will grow too. In such case, starting off with a reliable project management app is a prudent move.

 

For those of us who use Zoho CRM, the good news is that you can use Zoho Projects alongside CRM and integrate them to make things easier for your team and your client. In an ideal scenario, you start with a lead in the CRM, convert it into a deal, and take it through the pipeline until you close a deal.

 

Suppose you are a service provider, say a web design agency that uses Zoho CRM for sales force automation. When you win a deal, it means a new project kicks off with all the bells and whistles.

 

You can easily create a project from within CRM, assign team members, track billable hours, monitor project performance, and stay in touch with the client, all from the same place. By default, CRM adds a link to the projects portal in the top menu bar. To set up the integration, follow these steps:

 

\1.\ In Zoho CRM, open the Projects page and then click on the Get Started button. Alternatively, you can open Setup ➤ Extensions & APIs ➤ Zoho ➤ Zoho Projects.

 

\2.\ If this is your first time using Zoho Projects, you may get a warning message: “Client Mapping: No client account found to match.” Ignore this and proceed.

 

\3.\ In the Zoho Projects Integration page, select Create New Portal to continue.

 

\4.\ In the Portal Configuration step, type in a Portal Name. This name needs to be a single word with no space and special characters in it. Click Create to continue.

 

\5.\   Next, under Choose Portal, select the portal you created in the previous step from the drop-down list.

 

\6.\ We will have to give permission to CRM users to access Projects. There are five different permissions to grant to users: to see the Projects tab (page) in the CRM, view projects, create projects, edit projects, and delete projects.

 

Grant Administrators access permission to all these by ticking the corresponding check marks. Then grant only Tab Visibility and View to Standard users.

 

\7.\ Click Next to finish the integration. Then review the settings and permissions and edit them if necessary by clicking on the Edit Configuration link.

 

\8.\ To test the integration open the Projects page in the CRM. You will be welcomed by a warning page saying that you are yet to create a project. Click on the New Project button, if you wish to continue with Zoho Projects at this point.

 

Integrating with Zoho Finance Suite

Zoho_finance

Arguably, CRM (any flavor) and financial software (accounting, bookkeeping, etc.) are two of the most important information systems (or software) any organization can have in their arsenal.

 

 So, it is safe to say that in most cases, if not all, having them work together under one roof would sound like a very good idea. Fortunately, if you are a Zoho user, you can integrate Zoho CRM and Zoho Finance Suite (Books, Invoice, Expense, Subscriptions) and have them work together.

 

Follow these steps to integrate Zoho CRM and Zoho Finance Suite:

\1.\ In Zoho CRM open Setup ➤ Extensions & APIs ➤ Zoho ➤ Zoho Finance Suite. Then click on the Get Started button in the integration page.

 

\2.\ In the next page, select the Finance Suite apps that you want to integrate with CRM and then click Next to continue.

 

\3.\ The page expands. Enter the organizational details of your company. This information will be used by the Finance Suite apps selected in the previous step to create an organization. Click Next when you are done.

 

\4.\ The page expands again asking you whom (in CRM) you would like to have financial transactions with. Select Accounts & their Contacts, so Finance Suite apps features get enabled for both Accounts and Contacts.

 

\5.\ Click Save to finish the integration. Details of the integration will be shown. As long as the integration is active Accounts and their Contacts, Vendors, and Products information will be synced between CRM and enable Finance Suite apps.

 

\6.\ Hover the mouse cursor over Accounts & its contacts Sync box. Then click on the settings icon (gear) to configure the sync.

 

\7.\ In the sync settings page, review syncing modules, overwrite rules, and field-mappings between CRM and Finance Suite. For now, leave the values untouched and go back to the integration summary page.

 

\8.\ In the integration page, scroll down to CRM Trigger Points. Here you can tell Zoho Books (the accounting app in the Finance Suite) what to do depending on the stage a CRM deal is in.

 

\9.\ Click on Estimate to review the available options. For instance, you can set up Zoho Books to create an estimate automatically when a deal is in the “Quote/Proposal” stage.

 

\10.\ Select Invoice. This option is simpler and has no staged settings. If you click the third option, None, then CRM won’t trigger any action in Books. Leave this at Invoice and click Save to apply the changes.

You can always come back and fine-tune the sync settings between CRM and the Finance Suite.

Reference  If you get stuck somewhere, feel free to refer to the official documentation at https://www.zoho.com/crm/help/zoho-finance-suite/.

 

Integrating with Zoho Creator

What is Zoho Mail

Zoho Creator is a powerful and easy-to-use business application creation platform. You can create simple or complex applications on the cloud: something as simple as a contact manager, a mini CRM, a complete real estate management system, or virtually any app that deals with business process and data. Zoho CRM is quite customizable.

 

Armed with features such as automation workflows, custom modules, and web forms, it can meet the requirements of most businesses. But as your business grows, your business requirements grow more complex as well.

 

In such a case, you can create customized apps with Zoho Creator and integrate them to be accessed from within the CRM. Creator apps also exchange data with CRM, meaning each can use information from the other one. Also, you might be already using Zoho Creator and now you want to connect one or more Creator apps to CRM to extend its capabilities.

 

In a real-life example, a few years ago I had a client who had a team of telemarketers working for his company. These telemarketers, would open CRM, call leads and read through a sales script to pursue the person on the phone to buy their products.

 

The sales script needed to be “smart” meaning it should have adapted itself to a person’s feedback, showing only questions that were in line with the answers to the previous question.

 

There should also be a way for the telemarketers to take note while on the phone. After evaluating the requirements and considering available resources, constraints, and user experience factors, I decided to make Creator app and embed it into CRM. It worked perfectly and the client was very happy.

 

Implementing a similar solution purely in CRM would have proved impossible. Creator, with minimal development work, improved the process dramatically. All said you should make sure you are not reinventing the wheel and what you are trying to accomplish in Zoho Creator is not possible or is much harder to accomplish with CRM alone.

 

To enable Zoho Creator integration with Zoho CRM, follow these steps:

\1.\ Open Setup ➤ Extensions & APIs ➤ Zoho ➤ Build Custom App (Powered by Zoho Creator).

\2.\ In the Build Custom Apps page, click on the Enable Custom Apps button. Here, there are two options to choose from:

to create a new Creator application, or to import an existing one from Creator.

 

Clicking on the Import from Zoho Creator link will open the Import App dialog box, listing existing apps in your CRM account. On the other hand, clicking on the Create Your Application button will open the Create Custom App dialog box where you can build a Creator app from scratch and then import it into CRM.

 

Take Control of Marketing

Zoho_marketing

 

Zoho CRM offers a number of essential tools and features that help you stay on top of your marketing game without breaking the bank or going crazy managing a toolset of apps from different vendors. There are also a number of complementing Zoho apps that can greatly boost your CRM-centric marketing efforts. 

 

The marketing department of today needs, more than ever, to stay in constant touch with other parts of the business, especially sales and client servicing. It also needs to have access to an arsenal of tools to perform effective and efficient marketing.

 

 Landing pages, email and social media campaigns, feedback collection, social listening, paid (digital) advertising, and other tools and platforms will help you better understand your market and tell your story better and to more people.

 

Campaign Management

Campaign Management

Marketing activities often happen within a defined campaign. CRM Campaigns are often time bound and have clear objectives and are goal defined. They also have success measures defined and the performance of the campaign monitored.

 

 Participating in a trade show, renting a booth in a mall, renting a billboard, and running an email campaign, all fit in the definition of a marketing campaign and can all be managed within Zoho CRM.

 

Creating Campaigns

Let’s start learning about Zoho CRM campaign management features by creating our very first campaign.

 

\1.\ On the top menu bar, click Campaigns. In the Campaigns page, click Create Campaign to continue.

 

\2.\ In the Create Campaign page, populate the campaign details. Campaign Date is the only mandatory field, but make sure you enter the Start Date, End Date, Estimated Revenue, and Budgeted Cost as every serious campaign needs to have this information in place.

 

\3.\ After entering the campaign details, click Save to store the information. Then you will be redirected to the campaign details page. The campaign details page is quite similar to leads and contacts pages in terms of look and feel. You can add notes, tasks, and attachments to the campaign. You can also add leads, contacts, and deals to the campaign.

 

We will learn more about this in a bit. When you created the campaign the Status was set to Pending by default. Come back and update this field as you go forward with the campaign.

 

Customizing Campaigns Module

Campaigns Module

Like any other standard module in Zoho CRM, you can customize the Campaigns module. You can add, edit, or remove fields to make the module match your business requirements.

 

In the next section, we will be adding leads already existing in the CRM to the campaign we just created. For that, we need a specific value to be set to a field called Campaign Member Status, which is not available in the preset values by default.

 

To fix this issue, we need to make a tiny change in the Campaigns module itself:

\1.\ In Zoho CRM, open the Setup page by clicking on the Tool icon on the top menu bar and selecting Setup in the drop-down menu.

 

\2.\ In the Setup page, under Customization, click Modules. A list of existing modules will be displayed.

 

\3.\ Find Campaigns in the list and hover the mouse cursor on it. Then click the circular (…) icon appearing next to it and click on Campaigns Member Status item in the drop-down list.

 

\4.\ In the customization form, add “Visited” to the end of the list. This indicates that a person has visited our premises (or outlet) in person.

\5.\   Click Save to apply the changes and close the form.

 

Adding Leads to Campaigns

zoho_compaigns

The main idea of running a campaign is to generate leads and turn them into paying customers down the road. To keep track of the leads generated from a specific campaign and then evaluate the performance of that campaign better, you can add leads, contacts, and deals to a campaign.

 

It is possible to add leads and contacts one by one or add them in bulk from the leads already existing in the CRM. For deals, you can only add them one by one.

 

Suppose we have generated a number of leads, thanks to our recent participation in a trade show in Vancouver, BC. The leads are already in the CRM and now we need to add them to the campaign we created previously.

 

Follow these steps to add leads whose country is set to Canada to the campaign:

\1.\ In the campaign details page, scroll down to the Leads section and click on the Add Existing Leads link. The Add existing Leads to Campaign wizard will open.

 

\2.\ For the Criteria Component, select “Country,” “is,” and type in “Canada”. Then click search to see the results, that is, the leads with the country field set to Canada.

 

\3.\ Select all or some of the leads in the result list. These selected leads will be added to the campaign.

 

\4.\ Select “Visited” in the Select Status drop-down list. This value is what we just added to the Campaigns module in the previous section.

 

\5.\ Click the Add to Campaigns button to proceed. You can see the selected leads are added to the campaign and the Member Status is set to Visited. These are the people who dropped by our stand in the trade show.

 

Webforms

Webforms

Despite the ever-growing power of social networks, such as Facebook, the most effective marketing platforms remain emails. The more you grow your email database, the more the chance of people seeing your message and acting upon it.

 

One of the most common ways of collecting email addresses and generating leads are HTML forms, often embedded in the contactor inquiry pages of websites. Sign-up forms that pop up on the screen or are placed in the footer of websites are also examples of web forms.

 

 These forms collect the name, email address, and other information and send it back to marketers via email, saving in a database, pushing to email marketing services (e.g., Zoho Campaigns, MailChimp) or to CRM solutions (e.g., Zoho CRM, Salesforce).

 

Zoho CRM offers an intuitive way to generate forms and embed them into your website to collect information from the visitors. This information can then be pushed automatically to Leads, Contacts, Cases, or any custom module created in Zoho CRM for storing and further processing.

 

Creating a Web form

Web form

To have a form on your website that automatically pushes information collected on your site back to the CRM, first you need to create a web form in the CRM. 

 

Suppose we need a simple form on our e-commerce site that collects visitors’ basic information to sign them up for our monthly special offer newsletter. Follow these steps to create a web form for this purpose:

 

\1.\ Open Zoho CRM Setup page. Under Extensions & APIs, click on Web forms. The Webforms page opens waiting for you to create your first web form.

 

\2.\ Make sure the “Leads” module is selected in the drop-down list and then click the click Create Webform button. The web form designer opens.

 

\3.\ The designer adds two fields to the form by default: Last Name and Company. Add two more fields: First Name and Email, by dragging them from the fields list on the left sidebar and dropping them on the form in the order you see above.

 

\4.\   Hover the mouse cursor on the Email field and click on the gear icon that shows up next to it

 

\5.\ In the Field Properties dialog box, tick the Mark as required field check box to make Email a mandatory field on the web form. Click Done to get back to the web form designer.

 

\6.\ Similarly, open Field Properties for the Company field and remove the required field check mark. Click Done to get back to the web form designer.

 

\7.\ Add a new field Lead Source to the bottom of the form. We don’t want visitors to see this field. Instead, we need this field to set a value to the lead (in CRM) without user input. So, we should hide this field.

 

\8.\ Open Field Properties for Lead Source. Tick Mark as a hidden field and set the Default Value to Online Store. Click Done to get back to the web form designer.

 

\9.\ Back in the web form designer feel free to use formatting tools available via icons on top of the form to change fonts, colors, etc.

 

\10.\ Click on the Preview link on the top right of the designer to see how your web form will look like in action. Close the preview when you are done reviewing the form.

 

\11.\ When you are happy with the web form, click Next Step to continue.

 

\12.\ In the Form Details page, enter Form Name, Form Location URL (where the page that contains the web form will reside on your site), and Landing Page URL (link to the web address to be displayed once the form is submitted). Also, choose a CRM user who will be assigned as the lead owner once the form data gets stored in the CRM.

 

\13.\ Under Notification, enable Notify Lead Owner and leave System Generate Mail selected. Also, enable Acknowledge Visitor to send them an acknowledgment email once they submit a form. Select Choose a default response for all visitors.

 

\14.\ Click on Select Template to choose an email template for the default response that will be sent to visitors. The Select Template window opens with no templates to choose from. Click on Create Template on the bottom.

 

If you have a template to pick, skip to step 23.

 

\15.\ The Zoho CRM email template gallery will open in a new window. Here you can choose from a collection of email ready-made templates and modify them to your liking.

 

\16.\ In the template gallery, click on Notification category on the left sidebar and choose a notification template. Click Select as your choice to continue. The template opens in a template designer ready for you to take an artistic stab on it.

 

\17.\ Click on the logo image on top of the template to change it to your organization logo. An image Selection dialog box opens, allowing you to choose a logo image. Click Insert when you are finished.

 

\18.\ Click on the body of text below the main title. You can edit the content and add merge fields to the text. Merge fields allow you to send more personalized emails by extracting personal information of the lead, such as first name (formatted as “${Leads. First Name}”) and placing in the email body for every email sent out.

 

\19.\ Feel free to change the fonts, colors, and other design elements of the email template using the toolbar placed on top of the designer window.

 

\20.\ You should name your email template and set an email subject to it too. Click on the corresponding placeholders on the top bar (left) of the designer and type in the name and the subject.

 

\21.\ When you are finished designing, click Preview on the top bar to see what your masterpiece will look like when received by the lead. Of course, those weird merge tags will be replaced by real values coming from the lead. You can click Send Test Mail to receive a copy of the email in your inbox for further reviewing. Then close the preview.

 

\22.\ Click the Save button on to the top bar (right), check the Template Name, and select Public Email Templates for Save To. Click Save to continue.

 

\23.\ Go back to Select Template screen and click the little Refresh button appearing there. The newly created template will show up in the list. Click on the template to select it.

 

\24.\ On the Form Details screen, you can see the email template is selected. Review the email address mentioned in the From field and click Save to continue.

 

\25.\ On the Embed options screen, select the code you prefer to use to embed the web form into a webpage on your site. Consult with a web developer if you have no clue what that gibberish code is. Click Done to finish the process.

 

Now you can see the new web form listed in the Webforms page. Status shows that the form is active. You can deactivate the form and it won’t take information.

 

This is quite useful as it gives you power over the forms that are published on external websites. To access the form embed code at any time in the future, you can click on Embed options.

 

Mass Email

Zoho_mail

One of the key features of Zoho CRM is that you can send emails from within the CRM and also keep a track of them too. For instance, you can perform the entire email correspondence with a lead right from the lead details page itself. However, sometimes you need to send an email to a group of people at once.

 

For instance, you may want to send a public announcement about your holiday hours to your contacts, or send a limited offer to your contacts. For such scenarios, Zoho CRM offers a mass email feature, which allows you to send hundreds of emails to a select group of leads or contact at once. 

 

This useful feature saves you a lot of time and also allows you to set up scheduled email dispatches and the possibility that your recipients can opt-out from future communications.

 

Note  There is a limit to how many emails you can send per day to your leads and contacts. See https://www.zoho.com/crm/help/email/mass-email.html to check the current limits for your edition of Zoho CRM. 

 

It is worth mentioning that although the mass email feature of Zoho CRM is quite useful in many scenarios, if you want to get serious about email marketing and send thousands of emails to different people and monitor the performance of your email campaigns among other things, you need a full-fledged email marketing service, such as Zoho Campaigns.

 

Sending Mass Emails

Sending Mass Emails

For now, let’s try the mass email feature by sending a promotional email to all of our leads:

 

\1.\ Open the Leads page. Open the … menu on top of the leads list and select Mass Email.

\2.\ In the Mass Email wizard, review the information about email sending limits and spamming considerations.

\3.\ Click the Select Template button under the Email Template section.

\4.\ In the Select Template screen, select an email template. Create a new template if you need one.

\5.\ Once you select an email template, it will be reviewed. Review the template and set the From field to the right CRM user.

\6.\ Choose the second tab, Select Record, to specify the recipients of the mass email.

 

\7.\ Under Specify Criteria, select Custom View Criteria and pick My Leads from the drop-down list. A list of all leads in My Leads view will be listed.

 

\8.\ Select all or some of the leads in the list. Then click on the Send button and proceed with confirmation to send the mass email. Et voilà!

 

After a few moments (depending on how many emails are being sent), you will be receiving a confirmation message informing you about the number of emails sent successfully.

 

Sending Schedules Mass Email

 Mass Email

As mentioned before, you can also schedule mass emails to be sent on a specific date and time in the future. This is quite similar to the previous section, so I leave exploring it to you. Feel free to refer to the official documentation if you get stuck: https://www.zoho.com/crm/help/email/mass-email.html#Schedule_Mass_Email.

 

Zoho CRM for Google AdWords

Google AdWords

Google AdWords is the Holy Grail on online advertising outside of social networks, especially if you want to advertise on Google search and a Google network of partners.

 

 Zoho CRM integrates well with Google AdWords to offer you a better understanding of possible connections between online marketing efforts and offline customer interactions with your business, such as calling in, buying, or visiting your outlet. This integration also helps with fine-tuning your AdWords campaigns by exporting information from CRM to AdWords.

 

It is safe to assume that not all readers utilize Google AdWords. Those who do either have an in-house skillset to work with the complexities of AdWords or they outsource talent to do the same. 

 

In either case, we are going to skip delving into this integration and leave it to experts who are in charge of your AdWords campaign. Just make sure that you refer to Zoho official documentation at https://www.zoho.com/crm/help/google-adwords/ before.

 

Zoho Suite Marketing Arsenal

Apart from the essential marketing tools and features offered in the CRM, Zoho suite offers three more apps that each cover a major part of digital marketing. 

 

At the beginning of this book, Zoho Suite from 10,000 feet, we mentioned the name of these apps. In this section, we will have a super quick view of how each one of these apps integrates with Zoho CRM and extends its marketing capabilities.

 

Email Marketing with Zoho Campaigns

Zoho Campaigns

Based on personal experience and recent reviews, Zoho Campaign is quickly becoming one of the best email marketing tools for SMEs finding its place among the household names, such as MailChimp. It also integrates well with Zoho CRM. An added bonus is that you get to enjoy the single sign-on to Campaigns, CRM, and all other Zoho apps.

 

 You can import existing leads and contacts from CRM into Campaigns and add them to mailing lists. You can then send emails to these lists and enjoy the advanced reporting features of Zoho Campaigns to evaluate how successful your campaign has been. 

 

Zoho Campaign also allows you to set up sign-up forms to be embedded in the websites to generate leads. You can export these newly generated leads back to CRM. 

 

By enabling two-way periodic syncing, you can configure Campaigns in a way that acts as an extension to CRM. With the CRM at the center of your of your sales force automation, Campaigns can add a lot of value to your marketing efforts. 

 

Reference  Zoho Campaigns is a full-fledged email marketing app worth learning about and using in your business, especially if you are a Zoho CRM user.

 

Refer to official documentation to learn more about Zoho Campaigns: https://www.zoho.com/campaigns/ help/ and https://www.zoho.com/campaigns/help/integrations/zoho-apps. html#Integrate_Zoho_CRM.

 

Managing Social Media Channels with Zoho Social

Zoho Social

With all the craziness in the social media space and the multitude of outlets for the marketers (or marketing departments) to take care of, social media management tools have become a de facto part of a marketer’s toolbox.

 

 Zoho Social is becoming a contender in this crowded space. Offering many useful features while being competitively priced, and also integrating well with Zoho CRM, Zoho Social is well worth the investment. 

 

The integration enables a host of useful features, such as helping you stay engaged with your clients and prospect on social media and creating leads from your social conversations and interaction with prospects on social media.

 

You can even automate some activities, setting Zoho Social to turn new “likes” or “retweets” on social media automatically into leads on CRM. 

 

Reference  Zoho Social is a full-fledged social management app worth learning about and using in your business, especially if you are a Zoho CRM user.

 

Refer to official documentation to learn more about Zoho Social: https://www.zoho.com/social/help/; https://www.zoho.com/social/help/integration-zoho-crm.html; and https://www.zoho.com/social/zohocrm-integration.html.

 

Collecting Customer Feedback with Zoho Survey

 Zoho Survey

CRM triangle consists of marketing, sales, and customer service. All three of these require staying engaged with clients and prospects alike. No matter how happy or unhappy a client is, their feedback is always golden for the success of the business. 

 

Zoho Survey is a powerful tool that helps you interact with clients and prospects by asking them key questions about their preferences, experience, feedback, etc. The output of such surveys could be invaluable for your sales force and other team members. 

 

With Survey integrated with CRM, your team can see the results of surveys in real time, sync survey responses back to CRM, and view responses in customer contexts.

 

Reference  Zoho Survey is a full-fledged survey management app worth learning about and using in your business, especially if you are a Zoho CRM user.

 

Refer to official documentation to learn more about Zoho Survey: https://www.zoho.com/survey/help/; https://www.zoho.com/survey/help/integrations.html#integrate-with-zoho-crm; and https://www.zoho.com/survey/crm-integration.html.

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