A vast majority of small businesses aren’t leveraging a CRM and are missing out on software features to help increase productivity and sales. See how with these CRM statistics.
This article is part of a larger series on CRM.
Customer relationship management (CRM) software is a popular tool to keep a sales operation organized and productive. By leveraging the facts with industry data relating to CRMs, their use cases, and benefits, you can incorporate key insights into your business to improve overall sales performance. Broken down by category and use case, here are 20 must-know CRM statistics to help solve your software challenges and optimize every stage of your sales process.
General CRM Stats
These general stats provide a broader view of the software. They outline things like CRM usage, popularity, marketplace breakdown, and specific challenges you’ll need to overcome when adopting a CRM. You’ll also gain insight into the latest trends in the CRM industry and the potential return on investment (ROI).
1. The CRM market is expected to grow 12.5% year-over-year until 2030.
Summary: Industry data shows the U.S. CRM market was valued at $20.5 billion in 2022—a substantial size that’s expected to hit $51.53 billion by 2030. The primary reason for such CRM growth is that more businesses recognize the value it has to offer. Additionally, providers are incorporating more features and integrations each year that expand into other business processes outside of traditional sales and marketing.
Takeaway: Get in the CRM game early and adopt all the features it has to offer to support your entire business.
(Source: Grand View Research)
2. Anywhere between 20% to 70% of all CRM implementation projects fail.
Summary: Successfully implementing a new CRM is a significant challenge for businesses. In an analysis that looked at 18 years of research data from various groups, the conclusion was that CRM adoption failure rates are high—most hovering in the 40% to 60% range. The main reasons cited were unclear CRM goals, lack of end-user involvement in planning, poor quality data, and low top-down support. Regardless of the actual number, it can be a costly risk to implement a new CRM without the right plan.
Takeaway: Don’t implement a new system without understanding your goals and preparing a robust CRM adoption plan.
3. Only 37% of reps feel their organization fully utilizes their CRM.
Summary: CRMs have tons of features, from contact storage to email marketing to workflow automation to sales reporting. Unfortunately, when it comes to CRM usage, most reps feel their organization isn’t leveraging enough of the capabilities. Businesses often entrap themselves in purchasing a product for one or a few modules or choosing not to invest time into learning other tools.
Takeaway: Create a culture of continuous learning and tool experimentation to make sure every CRM feature is leveraged.
4. 26% of small & midsize businesses (SMBs) currently have a CRM in their tech stack.
Summary: This report uncovered a discrepancy. For small businesses using a CRM, 83% saw a positive return on investment (ROI), 61% cited they improved customer retention, and 86% felt the CRM helped achieve business goals. Yet only about a quarter of all small businesses have actually adopted a CRM.
Takeaway: As a small business, simply taking the step of adopting a CRM can help outpace your competition.
5. At 35% CRM market share, Salesforce is still the top software used by small businesses.
Summary: The CRM juggernaut Salesforce continues its prominence in the marketplace thanks to its many productivity-enhancing integration options and robust features. When looking at other contenders of CRM by market share, Microsoft Dynamics 365 is at 16% while HubSpot is at 7%.
Takeaway: While Salesforce has name recognition in the CRM industry, different products could be better suited based on your feature and attitude needs. Check out our guide on the best CRM for small businesses for product insights.
6. 32% of CRM users find lack of technical expertise the biggest roadblock.
Summary: There are many challenges to CRM implementation and maximizing value. For small businesses, the lack of expertise in using a CRM system was the largest. Next was the cost of a CRM (31%), followed by data migration issues (30%), user adoption (27%), and lack of app integrations (23%).
Takeaway: Everything starts with selecting the right CRM for your organization based on feature needs, budget, data requirements, and prior experience using business software. Our how-to guide on choosing a CRM can help you best navigate the crowded marketplace.
Pro tip: With the right knowledge, your users can take full advantage of a CRM’s amazing features. Administering that knowledge, however, requires a planned, evaluated, and repeated training regime that keeps your team up to date on all CRM functions and procedures. Check out our seven-step guide on CRM team training for small businesses.
CRM Statistics for Lead Management
These CRM stats cover one of the top use cases of a CRM system—overseeing sales leads. From generating new opportunities to qualifying prospects and everything in between, here’s how CRMs support lead management activities.
7. At 27.8%, lead management &d retention are the number one use cases for CRMs.
Summary: In one of the CRM industry trends that has remained for a long time, most users simply want to generate and retain customers with their CRM. Specifically for lead generation, you can connect a CRM to third-party tools, such as Facebook Ads or your website forms, to create new contacts for form submissions. Many CRM products also let you directly engage prospects via email, phone, chat, and text to produce new leads.
Takeaway: Utilize both built-in features and integrations to let your CRM work for you for lead generation.
(Source: Fortune Business Insights)
8. 51% of small businesses that adopt a CRM see an increase in lead conversion rates.
Summary: Similarly, this survey also revealed that 33% of small business users see a significant decrease in the cost per lead conversion. Either way, these are solid outcome metrics and likely a result of the sales tools offered by a CRM system. For instance, there’s lead scoring that lets reps prioritize their time on good opportunities, drip campaigns that put email nurturing on auto-pilot, and task management tools that keep reps on track for their activity goals.
Takeaway: With the right CRM features at your disposal, you can see an immediate impact on lead management activities.
9. Sales reps only spend 28% of their week on selling activities.
Summary: Salesforce studied how reps spend their time each week to find a discrepancy—particularly how much time is spent on selling and lead management activities. For example, only 9.3% is spent on prospect research, 8.7% on prospect outreach, and 19.8% on customer meetings. Most teams are bogged down with administrative, data entry, quote generation, and day-planning tasks, many of which a CRM can handle for you.
Takeaway: Utilize built-in data enrichment features, automation tools, and lead generation databases to handle the tedious workflows so you can spend more time selling.
Pro tip: Use a CRM like HubSpot to store lead data, track sales progress, and monitor recent activity. HubSpot offers free lead management features and an intuitive interface—making it easy for users of all budgets and backgrounds to produce more leads and increase conversions.
CRM Stats on Communications
Communication tools in CRMs enable teams to engage leads or customers via phone, live chat, email, and text from the same interface where they store their data. They also let you create and deploy bulk communications, such as a mass email marketing campaign, to your contacts. Let’s cover some stats on CRM communication features.
10. 57% of buyers prefer to engage providers via digital channels.
Summary: Rather than doing so in person or over the phone, most customers want to connect on channels like online chat or email. Nearly all CRMs already offer email integrations with Outlook and Gmail—letting you manage your inbox and receive messages from your CRM. Many are also adopting live chat functions to enable more omnichannel functions for users.
Takeaway: Take advantage of an opportunity to simultaneously support customers on their preferred channels and centralize all communications on one interface by investing in a CRM with live chat and email capabilities.
11. 63% of sales professionals believe email follow-ups are the best cross-selling strategy.
Summary: This same study found that 43% of reps feel email is an effective email channel for conducting outreach and that 32% find email templates to be one of the best sales enablement content. CRMs ultimately can serve as centralized email systems. Once integrated, you can directly contact leads, store email templates, and manage mass marketing campaigns all in one place.
Takeaway: Don’t skip connecting your email system with your CRM. By doing so, you can keep contact records in sync with your email data and handle all sales activity in one interface.
12. 73% of customers find live chat the most satisfying way to engage a business.
Summary: In an era where people want answers quickly and in real time, it’s only fitting that live chat takes the crown as the most preferred channel. Live chat in CRMs will soon become like email—an assumed, must-have feature. This is especially true for products with customer ticketing modules for service teams and sales tools.
Takeaway: Hop on the live chat bandwagon now while you can. Our list of the best customer service software outlines products with chat functions and includes both CRM systems and products naive to CRMs.
Pro tip: HubSpot offers an array of communication tools that let you keep up with CRM trends. In addition to email, phone, and artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot, users can directly engage visitors through their website using live chat widgets to generate leads and help them navigate.
CRM Stats for Improving the Sales Pipeline
Getting deals quickly through the pipeline is a huge priority for sales teams. A CRM plays a significant role in pipeline management in terms of generating opportunities and getting them through the sales stages. These stats show the value a CRM has in boosting pipeline efficiency and helping reps increase productivity.
13. 27% of small business users find sales tracking tools the most important CRM feature for achieving company goals.
Summary: Especially popular in business-to-business (B2B) sales, sales tracking features via deal or pipeline management are crucial to seeing where an opportunity is in the sales process. These CRM features are also typically supplemented with forecasting tools to predict revenue based on deal size and likelihood of closing—helping plan growth. If that survey was only for B2B organizations, the number would be much higher than 27%.
Takeaway: Invest in a CRM with robust pipeline management tools to stay on track for revenue goals and help with scalability. Our guide on the best B2B CRMs includes products with top-notch deal-tracking features.
14. At 29%, one of the top sales goals for 2023 was making the sales process more efficient.
Summary: The more efficient your sales pipeline, the more deals you close. Businesses often lose prospects because the process takes too long, there’s poor communication, or they struggle to get all decision-makers on board with their product or service. Deal management tools in a CRM, paired with activity tracking, contact storage, and communication features, let you stay productive at every stage.
Takeaway: Use a CRM so you can engage prospects, keep track of pipeline activity, collaborate with reps, and monitor deals in one platform.
15. 81% of sales reps say an entire team helps them close the deal.
Summary: Essentially, this survey found that most deals aren’t closed by one rep. Its marketing, finance, customer service, and IT teams, other sellers, and sales leaders that often are involved to get a deal through the pipeline. CRMs have shifted from supporting just sales teams to providing complete revenue operations (RevOps) solutions for sales, marketing, and service teams—letting them work with the same data and communicate with one another.
Takeaway: Invest in a CRM, such as HubSpot, Zoho CRM, or EngageBay, that offer all-in-one sales, marketing, and service features to let you align team resources and goals.
CRM Statistics on Data Management & Reporting
CRMs offer an elaborate database for insights on leads, rep activity, and sales performance. These statistics outline the value of a CRM in helping businesses store and organize their data and generate reports that drive decision-making.
16. 37% of small businesses find the CRM reporting & analytics tools the most beneficial to supporting company goals.
Summary: CRM reporting and analytics tools were the number one ranked features most important to small businesses. Assuming you keep a clean and up-to-date database, these tools are super valuable. They can tell you how you’re performing in terms of revenue and deals closed, your pipeline efficiency, where your leads are coming from, and sales activity numbers. CRMs also come with forecasting capabilities to predict revenue for growth planning.
Takeaway: Keep a solid database in your CRM and take what the numbers give you. For example, if your highest deal conversion rates are for leads from a specific source, invest more heavily in that source. Alternatively, if one pipeline stage seems to jam the whole process, adopt sales enablement tools to streamline that stage.
17. CRM usage, calls made & emails sent are the top three most tracked productivity metrics for sales managers.
Summary: HubSpot reviewed various activities that sales managers track for reporting purposes. Forty-seven percent track CRM usage, 41% track calls made, and 37% track emails sent. Additionally, 36% monitor lead conversations, 35% track the use of sales tools, and 33% monitor the number of proposals sent. Activity tracking, which can be done in a CRM, is useful as input data to ensure reps are meeting quotas and predicting revenue numbers.
Takeaway: Track sales activity, such as calls, emails, proposals, meetings, and follow-ups, in your CRM lead and deal records. It helps guide your weekly objectives, so you know exactly how much your team needs to put in to generate a new lead or close a deal.
Pro tip: Use CRMs like HubSpot to track sales activity. HubSpot comes with an intuitive dashboard and report generation features for managers to create visually appealing reports on sales tasks completed. These can be aggregated for the whole company or broken down by team and individual rep—letting you keep your team accountable and reward high performers.
Stats on Artificial Intelligence (AI) & CRM Automation
Emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) have made their way into CRM systems to help provide data insights and automate sales tasks. These statistics dive into where companies are in their AI-CRM adoption journey and the value it can provide.
18. AI tools can decrease customer response times from 10 to 30%.
Summary: AI in customer service is one of the most popular use cases of the technology—specifically, using it to auto-engage website visitors and respond to support inquiries. CRM providers are fully aware of this trend and the time-saving benefits it can offer. Many now provide chatbot communications in their systems, where users can put entire conversations on auto-pilot to focus on other activities.
Takeaway: Find a CRM with AI chatbot features, such as HubSpot CRM, Freshsales, and Zendesk, and automate customer engagement.
(Source: Nucleus Research)
19. AI can automate more than 50% of CRM functionalities.
Summary: This was arguably the most intriguing CRM stat on the list. If you think about everything you do in a CRM, such as creating and editing data records, sending emails, analyzing reports, and handling incoming inquiries, you slowly realize AI tools can do these for you. The technology keeps improving—doing everything from auto-enriching data to drafting emails for users to provide performance recommendations based on stored and analyzed CRM data.
Takeaway: Find a product with AI functions that can handle and automate your most time-consuming CRM tasks. Our guide on the best AI CRM can help you navigate the marketplace for this particular feature.
20. Businesses that use AI in their customer journey see a 20% increase in customer satisfaction.
Summary: The same source also indicated that AI in the CRM market is expected to grow from $7.9 billion in 2020 to $25.5 billion by 2025—a 26.2% annual increase. That’s a massive jump. It’s likely due to the potential end result: a happier customer. AI can reduce response times for faster ticket resolutions and automate tasks so businesses can focus more on the customer and improve their product offerings.
Takeaway: Start learning how AI can help your business before everyone else does. Since the technology will quickly evolve, you want to get as much AI functionally in your CRM as possible to best support customers.
Pro tip: Leverage AI tools in your CRM to automate content generation, data management, and analytics tasks. HubSpot CRM offers various AI capabilities, some of which are included for free, including content generation for emails, social posts, and campaign templates.
Keeping up with CRM industry trends lets you make better decisions on the products and features you invest in. By taking these CRM statistics and applying them to your business, you can level up your sales performance in terms of lead management, customer communications, and the sales pipeline. You can also improve how you manage your data and automate tasks using emerging article intelligence (AI) tools.