Insightly, a developer of CRM applications specifically aimed at small businesses, is making its free Insightly mobile CRM app available for iOS devices.

The mobile CRM app, which follows the release of the Insightly app for desktop/laptop users, allows users to remotely access all customer data, including contacts and leads. It also allows remote access to events and projects. In addition, users can add comments including images and video to field notes, automatically note that a contact has been called, and perform real-time data updates so all Insightly users on all platforms can immediately see the same information.

CRM Goes Mobile

As reported by CMSWire in March 2012, Forrester Research named mobile applications as one of 13 emerging CRM trends. “The impact of mobile technologies will change the way enterprises are using CRM, especially in light of the fact that e-commerce companies increasingly expect online sales to be transacted via mobile devices,” wrote CMSWire columnist David Roe, who pointed out that eBay expected to see US$ 2 billion in business transacted via mobile during this year -- up from US$ 400 million in 2009.

“Enterprises will find it difficult to keep up with mobile CRM support, which will remain fragmented,” Roe wrote. “While some platforms and solutions cater to specific industries, no mobile CRM vendor currently offers out-of-the-box cross-industry functionality. The functionality gap between desktop and mobile CRM applications will remain wide.”

Small Businesses Gain CRM Advantage with Mobile

Small businesses that learned early to use mobile technology to make them more accessible and more responsive to customers have “enjoyed a decided competitive advantage,” according to an article predicting small business mobile trends published in ITBusinessEdge in January of this year. However, ITBusinessEdge also predicted that mobile would soon become the “norm” among small businesses, meaning they would have to offer some type of mobile CRM just to remain relevant among customers.

Citing “huge growth in the installed base of smart mobile devices and the ubiquity of broadband wireless connectivity,” the article suggests that businesses of all sizes must become “super-accessible and instantly responsive from anywhere, but this is especially vital for small businesses that need good customer relationships to help avoid losing customers to larger rivals that may be able to offer lower prices or wider scope of services. Enabling field representatives and remote employees of small businesses to more effectively manage CRM “on the go” is one way to provide them with a CRM advantage, or maybe just the level of CRM needed to remain viable.

The Insightly mobile CRM app is available in the iTunes store. More than 100,000 users in 100 countries currently use the Insightly web CRM app.