When you first started your business, chances are you didn’t need a whole lot of bells and whistles. Managing your customers was probably easy enough using a spreadsheet – and the price tag was much nicer than investing in software. But now, as your business has grown, those same basic tools may no longer be sufficient. If you’re still of the “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” mindset, here are a few legitimate reasons you might want to consider making the transition to a CRM.

Your team has far better things to do with their time.

Your sales team might be busy, but are they spending that time and energy on the right things? If your sales reps are wasting hours scrolling through rows to look for a particular customer record, keying in new leads by hand, reformatting rows and columns, managing customer tracking by hand, trying not to duplicate efforts and other manual or administrative tasks, you’re losing out on productivity in a big way.

Now, imagine if they could find everything they need at the click of a button, with no errors or duplication of work. Then they could focus their time and expertise on other, more important things, like building relationships and converting more leads into paying customers.

Your records are probably inaccurate.

Manual data entry can spell disaster when it comes to accuracy of information. Like it or not, we’re all human, which means we are all prone to errors, some of which can prove costly – especially to a small business. Spreadsheet-driven workflows are not nearly as dependable as today’s modern software solutions.

With a CRM, you’ll avoid things like typos, accidental deletions or overwrites, double entries and formula issues – all of which can be incredibly disruptive to the day-to-day operations of your company.

You have no clue what your sales reps are up to.

Sharing one big spreadsheet does not provide any real-time insight into what each member of your sales team is up to. That can mean a significant reduction in productivity. It can also lead to missed opportunities, lack of follow-up and ultimately lost sales. So, if you’re not keeping tabs on what your sales team is working toward, your bottom line could be suffering as a result.

A CRM provides real-time, on-demand visibility into who is working on what and what the status is at any given moment. This enables you to maximize productivity, identify areas for improvement or coaching and optimize the entire sales process for best results.

You can’t measure performance easily.

Want to a breakdown of new sales versus upsells? Curious about how sales are faring in a certain geographical area or audience demographic? Need a list of sales prospects in order of probable close date? Using a spreadsheet to pull this data and compile it into something useful is next to impossible, especially as your business continues to grow. Yet, without key information like this, you could easily be missing out on additional sales opportunities or ways to improve close rate.

With a CRM, you can quickly and easily gather whatever information you need down to the minutest detail and organized in whatever way you fancy. Complex reports can be produced with a few simple keystrokes, saving everyone time and aggravation and giving business leaders the tools needed to move forward in the right direction.

You’re unable to accurately forecast and plan for the future.

The best predictor of future success is the past, but if you’re relying on an antiquated program with little to no advanced functionality to determine what your needs will be 6 months or a year from now, good luck. Add to this the fact that maintaining a spreadsheet amongst several team members is a practice prone to delays, errors and misinformation, and you’ve got some serious concerns on your hands.

Using a CRM, you can access whatever data you need, knowing it’s up-to-date and accurate, to effectively forecast, plan and strategize for your company’s future needs. This will better ensure consistent, sustainable success down the road.