With 50 native telephony integrations, the Zoho CRM team is proud to offer their customers the freedom of picking their favorite phone provider to integrate with their CRM.

You might wonder what you’re missing by not integrating your phone systems with your CRM. After all, it’s how you’re used to working—calling your customers or attending calls, and then manually entering the data in your CRM. Indeed, why integrate your phone and Zoho CRM? We have some solid answers. Please read on.

Sometimes, the job of a salesperson might feel like the hardest in the world. Granted—it’s exciting to hunt down new leads, and very satisfying to close deals of all sizes. But it’s unpredictable for the simple reason that you’re dealing with people—people whose minds are vastly different from each other and whose moods can change at the drop of a hat.

 “I wish I knew exactly what to say to this customer.”

As a salesperson, how often have you had this thought? It’s common knowledge that there are five major types of customers: potential, new, impulsive, discount, and loyal. The challenge for a salesperson lies in figuring out which category their customer falls under, and building a good relationship with them, all in as few interactions as possible. Your customer’s time is sparse, and therefore precious.

To maximize the benefit of each customer interaction in a deal cycle and make sure that each conversation isn’t taxing on your customers’ patience, you should connect your phone systems with Zoho CRM. Our stats at Zoho show that 80% of all conversations with customers happen over the phone. Zoho CRM is a reservoir of useful customer information. When you put these two together, they get along fabulously.

Imagine picking up the phone with any customer, and saying things right off the bat like:

“Hi, Ms. Sully. How are things up there in San Francisco?”

“Mr. Carter! Long time. I was starting to think you were taking your Chevy to a different garage.”

“Hello again, Dr. Douglas. What did you think of our demo session last week?”

This is the level of customer engagement we’re talking about. With detailed customer history instantly available, it’s the closest you can get to reading your prospect’s mind. Now let’s go over what you can accomplish through simply making your phone system and Zoho CRM talk to each other.

Greet your customers by name

The tiniest things can make a big difference. It feels good when you’re at your favorite restaurant and the waiter recognizes you and goes, “Will it be the usual, Mr Levine? Or do you want to try something new today?” While nothing can beat a personal face-to-face interaction full of warmth and smiles, here’s how you can come pretty close.

A prospect who’s expecting an emotionless “Good afternoon. How can I help you today?” will be pleasantly surprised to be greeted familiarly by name, which can set the mood for the entire conversation to come. The business card-like snippet of information that pops up on your CRM screen when a prospect is calling is enough to prepare yourself for picking up the conversation where it left off.

Save your fingers some exercise

How many times have you entered the wrong number by mistake? Save yourself the hassle of having to look up a prospect’s phone number and entering it carefully each time you want to make a sales call. You can now directly call people from CRM records, with just a single click. Wait for the call to go through, and then pick up your desk phone or soft phone. Add this to your list of easy sales hacks, and thank us.

Missed calls don’t have to be missed opportunities 

A lot of salespeople are apprehensive about leaving their desks for prolonged periods of time. This is sales FOMO, the fear of missing calls from important prospects. Every feature inside Zoho CRM is built out of deep empathy and respect for sales reps. One such feature is SalesSignals, which delivers timely alerts and notifications designed to make sure there are no facepalm moments for you at work.

You can also build a workflow specifically for missed calls, one that alerts the salesperson in charge of that deal through email. At the same time, an email can be triggered to the prospect who called, saying they’d be called right back.

So feel free to go play that game of ping pong, clear your mind, and come right back to win those deals.


Log calls automatically, and feed your AI system

With each phone call, a deal either makes progress or gets closer to being lost. Accurately logging each call, along with the results, is crucial.

AI lives on data. If your team’s activities, successes and failures are captured, they can be fed to AI for analysis. Typically we rely on reps to enter their data into CRM. Because this is a horrible way of capturing the truth, we are all skeptical that pointing AI at the data in our CRM would produce anything of value. And we are right about that: garbage in, garbage out.

– Ken Krogue, Forbes

Ken is spot on. Apart from her wide repertoire of other skills, Zoho’s AI assistant Zia can also tell you the best time to call a prospect to maximize your chances of reaching them. But to do this, Zia needs accurate call data—when a customer called you, when you tried to call the customer, the duration of each call, and so on. A busy sales rep can’t be expected to manually log every call with precise details. In just a couple of clicks, you can connect your phone service to Zoho CRM and start logging calls automatically. This way, apart from helping Zia work her magic flawlessly, you can also:  

Get beautiful call reports 

Take a look at this report of a sales team’s follow-up performance:

Insights like these are motivating and inspire you to improve your performance and engage in healthy competition with your colleagues.

…And for all the sales managers out there, imagine how productive those end-of-the-month sales target meetings could be with data like this!

Explore more possibilities for automation 

By connecting your phone system to Zoho CRM, it’s possible to build entirely new workflows that help make your processes much more efficient. For example, you can ensure that new leads from your website are contacted within minutes by letting your CRM tap into your telephony software and prompt available sales reps on their systems. Read about some more creative possibilities in this blog by one of our telephony partners, Ozonetel.

Since integrating your phone system and Zoho CRM can bring about such massive changes, it’s natural for you to assume that it’s complicated and needs a lot of effort. We promise you that it’s not. Integrating is completely free, and only takes a couple of clicks. Why don’t you give it a shot with your preferred provider?

Our engineers have painstakingly built a platform for telephony providers to connect their services to CRM that takes care of all the back-end work for you. This unique platform is called PhoneBridge, and enables our telephony partners to make use of specifically-tailored APIs that help in building powerful, seamless integrations. Our premium partners include RingCentral, Jive, Amazon Connect, and Vonage. All you need to do is choose your preferred provider from the 50 vendors we’ve partnered with, and enable the integration. If you don’t find your provider, please let us know in the comments and we’ll work on building a partnership with them.

We’d love to know what you think. After all, we built this with you in mind, every step of the way!

Jaanu Surendran
Product Marketer | Zoho CRM

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  1. Ravi

    Very good article. Thanks

  2. Darren

    Do you have plans to actually improve the telephony integration? It’s largely useless for many businesses for a few reasons:
    1) No transferring of calls between users. This feature is available in Desk and I can’t understand why it’s not available in CRM.
    2) You can’t dial out without having a contact record with a phone #. It would be great if we could just dial out one-time numbers if we have to call a specific person instead of adding vendors/contacts that we just either delete immediately or have as clutter.

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