CRM vs Ticketing system: Features and Comparison

CRM vs ticketing system the features and comparison starting with understanding CRMs and ticketing systems include features and differences.

CRM vs ticketing system
CRM vs ticketing system | Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Understanding CRMs and Ticketing Systems

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) is a platform to manage a company’s relationship with its customers. With on-premise and cloud versions, a CRM system collects and stores vital information about customers and leads like information about a company, their deals, their association with their company, and even consumer behavior. CRM systems ensure that every stage of customer interaction goes smoothly to increase profits.

A ticketing system, either cloud or on-premise, is a software system that helps agents serve their customers better. The system gathers information about customers in one place, but it is focused on enhancing customer service. A ticketing system revolves around a ‘ticket’ or a response from a customer. This ticket is then forwarded to the appropriate help desk agent, who will try to address the issue and provide a response or collaborate with others before responding. The customer can be updated with the ticket’s progress and use the same ticket to raise further questions. Moreover, the customer or the help desk agent can close a ticket after the issue has been addressed. The customer or the help desk agent can reopen a ticket instead of creating a new one if any follow-up is required.

Features of CRMs and Ticketing systems

CRMs do the job of a database for a company’s ever-growing list of customer data. They store data in an easy-to-digest and easy-to-pull-out manner, and more importantly, serve as future reference. Companies can carry out historical tracking with CRMs by adding notes and tracking previous conversations with particular customers. CRMs convert leads into customers by tracking and moving potential leads down the sales pipeline. They allow for integration with email clients over Gmail and Outlook. CRMs can create proposals for customers and carry out repetitive tasks with workflow automation. However, a significant plus for CRM is that they are cheaper than a ticketing system. A CRM system is the best starting point for any company to collect information and expand its user base.

A ticketing system serves customers and accelerates problem-solving as mundane tasks can be off-loaded and outsourced to virtual agents. The system allows help desk agents to chat with their customers and understand their issues. This is a viable option because customers prefer to chat rather than have a telephonic conversation while seeking assistance. It comes with a customer self-service portal with FAQs and answers to help customers solve their problems before raising a ticket. A ticketing system provides multichannel customer management for companies to manage their customers’ queries from various sources like social media, email, chat, and others stored and routed to the right agent. Moreover, the system produces reports about the performance of help desk agents to help companies optimize their help desk teams.

CRM vs. Ticketing system: What is the difference?

Users criticize CRMs for suffering from a “feature crisis.” Features that are often used and rarely used are almost always clubbed together. The architecture and user interface of CRMs are designed to ensure stability and features, not simplicity and usability. Customer support is relegated to the level of one of the many tabs on the portal.

On the other hand, a ticketing system provides features but makes sure it is user-friendly. The system is organized to collect tickets from multiple channels, categorize them, and virtual agents are always within the area of focus of a customer in a ticketing system.

Most users find CRMs hard…

Most users find CRMs hard, to begin with quickly. Interconnected modules do not allow users to skip learning about any process, as one process is required to understand the workings of another process. However, help desk agents need not know everything that a CRM offers; they do not know about modules that enhance sales while handling customer support. However, a CRM does that, wasting time for upskilling and decreases employee productivity. Every aspect of a CRM—from workflows to reports—is built with the enterprise and power users in mind.

Customers’ issues can be traced through four routes in a ticketing system: telephone and walk-up, automatic detection, email, and social media channels, and direct entry by end-user. Telephone and walk-up are when customers call in or talk to a help desk agent when they have an issue and require assistance. Automatic detection is when monitoring tools communicate with the system about potential issues before the users notice them. Email and social triggers are when end users register their issues from multiple channels automatically converted into tickets assigned to the appropriate agent. In direct entry by the end-user, also known as ‘self-service,’ the users enter their issues directly into the ticketing system and use this direct access to track the status of their ticket.

A ticketing system allows…

A ticketing system allows companies to customize their help desk portals as they please. The system can be programmed to assign roles to different agents regarding who gets to access the critical data and who gets to take the critical actions. Multi-Brand Help desks with customized knowledge bases for each product or brand can be created with separate ticket forms and customer portals to provide a unique, personalized support system.

CRM solutions can be expensive, irrespective of being a one-time payment model or subscription model. Moreover, it is not a profitable venture as companies end up paying for features that they will not use anytime soon. These are primarily given out with rigid license policies instead of a pay-as-you-grow subscription model, thereby limiting the scope of upscaling the business, and it is not easy to get a discount. However, a ticketing system comes in monthly subscription plans, allowing the business to upscale with ease.

Updates and CRMs do not go well…

Updates and CRMs do not go well. Since these systems are aimed at stability rather than usability, CRMs only get minor updates, not for the features but to enhance stability and fix bugs. New features are released in major release cycles that are spread across the year. On the other hand, a ticketing system provides enterprise-grade security with advanced features, aesthetics, usability, and otherwise.

CRMs do not allow companies to integrate their CRM with third-party apps by leveraging their API. Third-party integration with CRM is most likely to be restricted to Facebook and Twitter. However, a ticketing system allows companies to integrate with any number of apps while providing the highest level of security. For example, Helpdesk, one of the most popular ticketing system providers, allows companies to integrate their Helpdesk account with multiple third-party apps like Shopify, GitHub, Microsoft Teams, and more.

CRMs are often seen as the base from which companies switch to ticketing systems. Most companies start with CRMs, but due to their limited capacity and the market’s growing demand, companies often shift to ticketing systems. That is the primary point of difference between the two: a CRM works best with limited traffic, while a ticketing system works best with growing traffic.


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