July 21, 2022

What is CRM for service businesses? and why you need it

Computer with different CRM related icons around it

CRM or customer relationship management can be an amazing tool that can transform how you do business in the service industry. In 2022, more and more tradies are signing up to service CRM platforms and are benefiting from the results. But what even is a CRM and can it really help you transform your business?

Read on to find out more about CRMs and discover how they can help you.

What is CRM?

CRM is an abbreviation that stands for customer relationship management.

In simple terms, CRM is all about managing relationships between a business and its customers. How this is achieved can vary depending on how the principles of CRM are applied.

CRM is an important part of how any business works. Whether you’re an international company or a small one-person service business, customer relationship management is needed to ensure your business is as successful as possible while keeping your customers as happy as possible.

That means making communications between business and buyer straightforward and making the customer experience – whether that’s when a person makes a purchase or enquires about your services - as easy as it can be.

Of course, any successful business will already apply the principles of CRM without needing to know the definition – good customer relations are essential to any functioning business. However, the most effective CRM is achieved using a digital CRM system.

What is digital CRM?

Digital CRM or CRM software is what people usually refer to when they talk about customer relationship management. This is a digital platform designed to streamline interactions between customers and businesses. In simpler terms, it’s a user-friendly website or app, that makes purchasing a business’s services easy.

A good example of this is when you shop online via a website like Amazon or Zara. When you browse the website, click on an item and move through to purchase, this is all via a CRM platform. Every interaction with a business online, as you complete the journey to acquire that service, whatever that might be, is through a digital CRM interface.

This software isn’t just limited to sales. It can be applied across many aspects of an organisation - from customer service to recruiting, marketing, and business development.

The idea is about making interactions easy and making tracking these journeys as simple as possible. When used to its full potential, CRM can allow a business to create tailored experiences for its customers, bringing on new clients and keeping current users coming back for more.

How does customer relationship management help a business?

The great thing about CRM is that it benefits everyone. With a good digital CRM platform in place, customers will find it easier and more appealing to use a business’s service. In fact, evidence shows that customers who have had a positive experience with a company are 70% more likely to recommend that company to family and friends.

This means by using a CRM platform, a company can greatly increase its customer reach and is more likely to retain customers.

If that hasn’t convinced you enough, a recent survey of CRM users found that 47% of respondents agree that CRM has a positive impact on customer retention.

CRM is a win-win for everyone: customers have a more positive user experience, while the business is able to convert more leads. This means that customers are happier and therefore more likely to return for that service, while the business is able to increase sales by up to 30% and hold on to more customers for longer. CRM builds trust and increases customer satisfaction.

When used in conjunction with an effective marketing campaign CRM can have a massive impact on a business. By storing and applying customer data taken from a CRM platform, businesses are able to create more targeted experiences informed by customer interactions.

Apple is a great example of a business that does this. By using unique customer IDs, applied across different devices, Apple makes user interactions easier, allowing for targeted recommendations and unique offers for customers.

The other big benefit of using a CRM is how it can help a business manage its workload and other admin tasks. With an effective CRM, a company can save time and money, by simply working more efficiently. The software allows employees to better communicate and manage their tasks allowing a company to run more effectively.

All in all, customer relationship management offers a lot of benefits.

You may be thinking, that all sounds great, but how about trade businesses? How does CRM help people in the service industry?

Well, we’re getting to that…

CRM for Small businesses

For large companies, investing in CRM and using an effective CRM software is a no-brainer, but for small companies, it’s not always so easy.

In fact, a recent 2018 report found that 40% of small to medium-sized businesses without CRM software felt that they lacked the resources to implement such a program.

In particular, there is a large gap in support for small service industries. If you are a plumber, electrician, roofer or other tradesman, CRM may seem like an unnecessary or impractical tool. Even if you are interested in CRM, you may question what tools are out there.

This is a very reasonable query and for a long time, this has been a real issue for such underserved industries.

However…there is a solution.

For a long time, the tools simply weren’t available for small trade businesses to digitalise their processes and get in on the benefits that larger companies are enjoying. Even a small shop can sell their products on Shopify but for service industries, the opportunity hasn’t been there. Now the landscape is changing.

A growing number of specialist CRM providers are paving the way for the service industry. With the goal of providing CRM software to these businesses. These companies are giving tradies and small businesses access to the kinds of intuitive features that were previously only available to large companies.

CRM for service businesses

Today there are a number of big names in the service CRM industry, with large companies such as Jobber and Service Titan already making their presence felt amongst trade businesses.

Providers such as these allow service workers to access many valuable tools, allowing small businesses to complete their processes more quickly and efficiently.

From quotes to invoices, to tracking sales and updating available services and products, service CRM makes it easy for tradies to keep track of their work, and more convenient than ever for customers to purchase and enquire after a service.

These new CRM companies have helped to raise the profile of this technology, but there is still a long way to go.

UK service CRM leaders

Currently, many of the major players in service CRM are based in the US, Australia and New Zealand, however, the UK market is still lagging behind.

To address this balance, a new job management and service CRM company called Payaca has joined the market, with the aim of helping British workers.

Where Payaca stands out from its competitors is through the unique form of CRM that they offer. Most CRM providers focus on job and field management, whereas Payaca is first and foremost a quoting software. This is particularly valuable in the service industry, where the quality of quotes and invoices has traditionally been very low.

With Payaca, tradesmen can access high-quality quotes and produce them in a very short period of time. Rather than writing out paper quotes and struggling with unhelpful resources, Payaca has created an easy-to-use interface that digitalises the whole interaction between customer and company. This, combined with access to full job management and field service management capabilities, makes it an exciting new CRM in the service market.

This is a game changer for the service industry as it allows small and medium-sized businesses to save precious time and take on more clients.

In one example, Chris, who runs a Plumbing business called Plumbing Hot, has in 12 months already increased his turnover by over £30k and has taken on two new employees after using the Payaca CRM.

It is evident that CRM can have just as powerful an impact on small service businesses as it does on larger companies. The scale may be different, but the result is the same. It’s just about using the right tools.


Customer relationship management is currently the fastest growing software market out there and it’s only going to get bigger. With such a rise in popularity, now is a great time to look at incorporating a CRM into your business.

With the technology growing and developing rapidly, the list of available features and capabilities, that can help your business, is increasing all the time. The benefits to your business are guaranteed and getting set up, especially for small businesses, is very easy to do.

So, the tools are out there and there are only benefits to be reaped, why not check it out?