Create project with your Certified Freelancer and get free $100
SoftwareSupp name and brand

As some of you might have realized, we’ve changed our name to SoftwareSupp.

Hey Software Users!

As some of you might have realized, we’ve changed our name to SoftwareSupp which we believe is a much better way of communicating our value proposition to customers and partners.

This decision has been on our minds for some time and together with the release of our brand new software support platform, it’s a good moment to make it live.

What does it mean to our customers/ongoing projects?

There are no changes to the services performed for our customers. 

All the projects we run with customers are performed in line with the initially agreed schedule.

Also, the name of our legal entity stays the same.

What does SoftwareSupp company do?

We deliver technical/software support, integration and consulting services to customers.

We work within our network of 250+ software professionals from all over the world ready to start working instantly on your software project.

These services include:
- CRM implementation/integration
- E-commerce store building/setup
- Website building/setup
- Marketplace development
- Telephony system setup/implementation
- Software integration/development
- Custom app development
- Project management integration/implementation
- Analytics setup
- Marketing automation setup
- Chatbot/live chat setup
- Email system setup/integration

Also for all projects we run, we deliver a dedicated software support platform and a project manager, helping you communicate with us and go through the project more efficiently.

How do we differ from agencies and other platforms?

We provide 250+ software/technology experts’ network ready to support you on your software project, straight away.

Thanks to our freelance-based model, we estimate projects and deliver services faster, at the same time maintaining high quality of services (NPS monitoring, project management, escrow mechanism) and matching the budgets of most businesses.

We do the verification and interviewing process for you, so you don’t have to worry about the quality of people you hire with us. 

There are tons of additional values we provide and you can learn more about them on our website:
https://www.softwaresupp.com/softwaresupp-features

What customers do we work with?

We’ve been on the market for over 3 years and we’ve worked with several dozen companies of all-sizes and numerous industries from all over the world.

Some of our customers include:

  • Photovoltaics company from Sweden [medium] / CRM
  • Financial transactions company from Poland [large] / CRM
  • Automotive retailer from USA [small] / Integration
  • Pharmaceutical company from Switzerland [medium] / Integration
  • Production company from UK [medium] / Integration
  • Software company from Poland [small] / website

The above are only examples of customers we’ve worked with so far. 

You can find selected customer success stories on our blog:
https://softwaresupp.com/blog

We’re also happy to say that our av. NPS per project is 8.0 🎉

How to start working with us?

Just post your job/project and start work in 1h-24h time:
https://softwaresupp.com/l/newJob

Matt Pliszka

Consultant at SoftwareSupp

How to set up a Usability Testing Session as a Developer

As developers, we often live in a bubble-like environment where we build software based on a prepared backlog, user stories, and contact with product owners or other stakeholders that are integrated into our team.

Users might look at our product in a completely different way than us. There is a quote that makes a lot of sense after your first Usability Testing session with a real-life user:

“Design isn’t finished until somebody is using it.”

- Brenda Laurel (Ph.D., Independent Scholar)

As a developer in a software marketplace, I didn’t think that I need to have any contact with our users and that there should be a layer between programmers and customers. “Someone more experienced in UX should talk to users” – I thought. What I failed to comprehend was the fact that in everyday developer’s job we make a lot of small decisions everywhere. 

By avoidance of talking to users, we create a gap of misconceptions that is widening every day.  No intermediate layer of UX experts and business-related team members, or how I like to call it, “middleware”, can point to us every little UI detail and every little tweak in apps behavior, that end-users will not be happy about. 

Don’t just take my word for it, try it yourself. What you will find below is shorthand of how to prepare your first Usability Testing Session – written by a developer for developers.

Why is UX so important?

First things first, what you have to understand is why UX is so important in the software development process and how an ideal Usability Testing Session should look like. 

Remember all those times when you were using someone else’s software and grumbling about design and functionalities? All these times, there were some developers on the other side who most certainly thought that this software is their magnum opus - the greatest thing that they ever created. Remember Windows Vista? 😊 

UX is all about getting real users into your app and letting you look at your software through their eyes. To see how it looks in practice I strongly encourage you to check out Steve Krug’s Usability Testing Demo which was shared for free on YouTube. 

Steve Krug is one of the most influential and respected UX experts so his work is definitely worth checking. I also strongly recommend his book “Don’t make me think” which is a bestseller on UX worldwide. 

Are you ready to try? Why don’t we make this article practical now and help you set up your first session in 7 simple steps that summarize my experiences:

7-points checklist for Usability Testing Session:

1. Get in touch with end-users. You can ask your project manager for contacts or you can try to reach them by yourself. Gather e-mails and other contact info and write to them politely asking for their time. Be concise, try to reserve no more than 20-30 minutes, and describe what it is about upfront. Don’t be discouraged! In my case 10 contacts resulted in 2 responses from customers that actually agreed to meet with me.

2. Prepare location, let your customer decide on date and time:

a) In COVID-19 times I went for organizing online meetings via whereby.com, there is a lot of software that can help you with that.

b) To make decisions on date and time I published my free time slots on calendly.com and sent links with possible options to my counterparts.

3. Prepare what you will say when on the meeting which should include:

a) Thanking your participants for devoted time. Make sure to let your client know that you appreciate their time.

b) Asking for consent to record the whole session, mentioning that it will be only used internally by you and other developers in your team. Don’t grumble when you will hear no!

c) Creating a safe space for those who you speak with, it’s worth mentioning that they are not judged, they can’t make any mistakes and they should not be shy with criticism because you want to make your product better and you appreciate their honesty.

d) At the end of the meeting you should include a value proposition connecting your customer and your product. Think of ways you can pay back for a devoted time.

4. Prepare scenarios that you would like your user to perform. It could be something as basic as reading your landing page and telling you out loud what they think and how they understand it. It can be also something more advanced like creating a user profile on your website. Depending on how much time you have you should prepare one or many scenarios. Remember to test how much time they take ahead of the meeting so you won’t take extra time from your user’s schedule.

5. Prepare software for a meeting, test your camera and microphone beforehand. Also, test your recording software for case in which you will be allowed to record meetings.

6. Secure location and time where you will be able to go through the meeting. Some quiet space in your office or home, remember to let your co-workers know that you will be unavailable when the meeting will happen.

7. After the meeting check your recording and make notes as fast as possible. Every minute after the session you will forget more and more valuable details. Share your findings with your team and make plans to act on them in order to produce valuable results. You can also share the results of this meeting with your user when you and other developers will make some meaningful changes based on your conversation.

I hope you find these tips useful!

My story was based on experiences gained in developing the SoftwareSupp marketplace platform with our customers. We are helping to hire the best software support for commercial projects using software technologies. If you or your company need verified freelancers and you value your time consider posting your job on SoftwareSupp.

Learn about other reasons to post your freelancer job at @SoftwareSuppp!

Filip Ogonowski

JavaScript Developer

How to Become a SoftwareSupp Expert?‍

How can you join our network? Apply, fill in your profile, and get verified. Get access to potential leads for your services, receive instant notifications about new job offers available, and apply for the ones matching your skills and experience. 

You may probably not know that SoftwareSupp is a network of +250 software experts from 4 continents and still growing. We work with experts skilled in Pipedrive, HubSpot, Zoho, Salesforce, Shopify, and many more. How can you join our network? It is easy to start. Apply, fill in your profile, and get verified. Then, get access to potential leads for your services, receive instant notifications about new job offers available, and apply for the ones matching your skills and experience. 

Let me show you the process of how we match you with the role that best suits your potential.

Registration and profile submission

The only thing you need to do is to set up your profile and get verified in 24h. Creating your profile can be as short as 1 minute. In your profile, you can present your technology stack and skills to potential customers. You can add your portfolio, LinkedIn profile, and website to improve credibility and increase chances of closing new deals.

Verification process

We verify the information provided in your profile, cross-checking on your social profiles and projects. We focus on confirming your skills, portfolio, and experience. If we're not able to confirm your experience, you might need to go through additional verification, assessment, and/or interview.

To apply for job offers, you will also need to go through the identity confirmation process.

Learn more about our verification process, here.

Important! You don't need to be certified by a software vendor to go through our verification process (we have our verification process in place) but if you are, you will get an additional verification badge.

Marketing and project matching

After the profile’s verification, we promote it in our social media/newsletter and match you with currently available projects. You can also provide materials you'd like to promote through our channels such as blog posts/case studies. You can find our stories and content on our blog.

Get projects as SoftwareSupp expert

Applying for a job

We publish job offers on the platform and send you an email notification about details: timeline, scope, sending proposal deadline. You can apply for a job sending information about your experience in similar projects, availability, projects estimation, and financial expectations. As a software expert, you should be able to provide business and/or technical support in selected technology. We will confirm your experience before sending your offer to a client. Regardless of the client's feedback, you will receive the confirmation that the project was approved or the information that the offer was declined. 

Matching process

We match you with available job offers by sending you email notifications about new projects in the area of your expertise, we might also send you a personal message whenever a new project is available specifically for your profile.

Proposal completed

As SoftwareSupp, we send information to the customers about the offers' summary and they can decide to engage with you and/or ask for more questions.

Pre-brief

Sometimes the client wants to know experts before making the final decision. Thanks to the meeting system they can arrange an interview with you. If needed, we assist during the interviewing process. For selected projects, we also run additional recruitment and verification.

Contract and payment

All of the work at SoftwareSupp is based on an agreement and NDA between the client, SoftwareSupp, and a freelancer. You do not need to worry about paperwork. Moreover, we offer a flexible and safe billing system for any kind of project. 

Welcome on board!

We run a project kick-off to introduce you to the client. You will be invited to regular status updates with the PM to make sure that the project is on the right way or to react in any emergency cases. 

Project workflow

We also provide project management service and support to help you finish the project successfully. We help you manage tasks and backlog to deliver the solutions in time. We recommend tools to track the project progress. Everything is to help you and the client effectively communicate and collaborate.

Secure access sharing

We provide a way to submit access to software solutions with our support. We intermediate in the process, making sure the customer's data is secure and allowing you to collect data from the customer faster and easier.

Ticketing system

For all projects we run, we provide a ticketing system helping you communicate with the customer in an organized and efficient way. With the ticketing system in place, you can submit support tickets to be handled by our internal team. Customers will also be able to submit their support queries using tickets to be solved by you. By using the ticketing system, you also make sure that your work is stored and can be reported to the customer.

Evaluation and NPS score

We do like any kind of feedback, so we send our NPS questionnaire regularly. We want to also know your feedback to improve our service and approach to work after the project. Transparent communication is more than welcome!

Want to see how a perfect profile looks like? Check the profile of Marek, one of our CRM Consultants.

If you have any questions, please see our landing page: https://www.softwaresupp.com/softwaresupp-expert or not hesitate to contact us.

Klaudia Żmuda

People and communication-oriented specialist

How to build a reverse marketplace with Sharetribe Flex

A reverse marketplace is an unusual type of service. The difference from a regular marketplace is that the sellers are bidding for a particular offer. The creator of the tender can then choose whom to pay for the services.

A reverse marketplace is an unusual type of service. The difference from a regular marketplace is that the sellers are bidding for a particular offer. The creator of the tender can then choose whom to pay for the services.

Image for post

Building a reverse marketplace with Sharetribe Flex seemed difficult, because here, at SoftwareSupp, we have an environment where experts are bidding for specific job offers. The tool does not provide any help for this type of feature. The creator of the tender (called “listing” in Sharetribe) cannot be the same person paying for the service. In other words, only the owner of the listing can receive payments. At first, we thought about it as a huge challenge to solve, but as you will see, the solution is quite simple.

Step 1: Divide listing types

The only way for the expert to receive payments was for him to have a listing. We did not want to lose the possibility for the users to post their job propositions. The only solution was to add a category to the data. The listing can now have one of two types: job or expert. The best way to do this is to create an additional public data field called “category” and set it at the beginning of the listing creation.

Image for post

The best choice to accomplish this is to create two separate URL routes that redirect you to:

  • the buyers create an offer page
  • the seller’s create profile page

Of course, both of the listing types will have different data. Inserting the category variable right at the commencement gives us the occasion to exhibit different paths for the user. In our case, this decision was crucial because the buyer can see all the fundamental data about the expert who applies for the job.

Step 2: Configure the transaction process

In Sharetribe Flex, payments work within the transaction process. There is practically no possibility to transfer data between users outside the transaction. Because of this, the solution to make the platform work was to connect two transaction paths.

  1. The expert applies for the job: This transaction process starts when the specialist types in the quote of the service and send it to the buyer. Before it can occur, the marketplace needs to examine if the user applying has a seller profile. This operation can be managed in the user.duck file by fetching all current user listings and filtering them by the “expert” category. Setting up the price in the transaction is also tricky because, by default, the price is set based on the listing. One can solve this issue in two ways: set the private data of the transaction or fix the negotiated total value. The chosen method is not significant in this step because no payment is happening. The only reason is to preserve the price data. All the transitions in this path need to be configured based on the marketplace owners’ needs.
  2. The buyer accepts the particular expert offer:

Here is where the reverse marketplace changes back to the regular one. Here the user can pay for the seller’s services, get a refund, etc. The default Sharetribe Flex transaction process is a perfect example of how such a path can look.

Step 3: Connect both processes

When the bidding is coming to an end, and the client decides to accept one of the provided bids, he needs to make an action. For example, every transaction can have an accept button that redirects to a particular seller profile. For that to occur, the other-party bidder profile needs to get fetched. You can either choose to do this every time you open a transaction page or store the necessary seller’s information in the transaction’s private data. The second solution is vulnerable to every change in the bidder’s listing data.

From here now on, there are many possibilities to finish the bidding. You can either choose to close every other bid, allow to chose multiple offers, close the listing, etc. It all depends on the service you are providing.

Robert Mazelle

Certified Sharetribe & React Freelance Developer

How to Build a Perfect Sales Process With the Help of Your CRM?

Without having practical knowledge and experience, it's difficult to understand the reason why sales processes exist at all but in this article, we will show you steps to building an effective sales process based on our experiences with enterprises...

Learn more about Matt and hire for services on his SoftwareSupp Expert profile page.

There is a 10x drop in lead qualification when you wait longer than 5 minutes to respond, and a 400% decrease when you respond within 10 minutes versus 5 minutes.

Source:
Harvard Business Review

No doubt, the best way to understand the nature of building an effective sales process is to engage or work with a large company. Without having practical knowledge and experience, it's difficult to understand the reason why sales processes exist at all but in this article, we will show you steps to building an effective sales process based on our experiences with mostly larger enterprises implementing and integrating CRM systems with our experts' support.

What is the sales process?

Imagine your business experiences a higher than average inflow of new leads and customers during a seasonal period. If you're the only salesperson in the company, you might not be able to handle the incoming traffic by yourself, anymore. Hence, you'd need to employ additional sales power to process all the inquiries. But as you grow your team to a few members, how do you set guidelines for them to follow, based on your experience and know-how? How do you make sure that you're able to measure their activities and performance, accurately?

Also as the number of your sales leads increases, how do you make sure that your sales team is effective and connects only with the relevant ones?

Sales processes are exactly this type of guideline for your team to follow, including lead qualification to focus on the most important prospects.

Why create and follow a sales process?

"If you can't describe what you are doing as a process, you don't know what you are doing"

Edward Deming

Sales processes can be designed for both a few people smaller teams as well as for large enterprises with the teams comprising dozens of professionals.

No matter the size of the team, sales processes will provide you most importantly the below values:

  • A clear guide for new sales team members to follow (onboarding new team members)
  • A way to measure and assess sales performance and conversion
  • A benchmark to optimize your sales activities, hence improve sales/conversion

The above are only a few reasons for sales processes to exist and there can be a lot more reasons behind implementing and using sales processes. These include:

  • Aligning 2 different departments to follow a similar process
  • Shifting from on-site to remote work
  • Improving the team's efficiency
  • Sales automation
  • CRM implementation

Once you have your sales process in place, following it is necessary for your process to work. Without your team following a designed process, you will not be able to analyze statistics and numbers related to each part of the process.

An essential thing to make it work is to put a CRM system in place, allowing your team to follow the process, record activities, and report results.

Why optimize your sales process?

Once/if you already have your sales process in place, why would you refine and modify it?

There are a lot of reasons behind sales process optimization, these include:

  • Improving metrics (with the sales process in place you can measure them)
  • Keeping up to date with the current sales and technology trends (a new tech allowing you to reach/qualify customers might be available, like Gong)
  • Growing your team or shifting between on-site/off-site sales (an extended team might need a refined sales process and a team shifting to on-site visits might need a different process to follow)

Steps to building an effective sales process

So how to start building your sales process? Let's look into the below steps:

1. Start with customer

Example customer contact journey

I won't surprise you that the first step to the sales process building is... learning about your customer's needs and behavior.

The steps they take on their journey to a successful purchase and the way they interact with you is essential to building an effective sales process.

The best way to do it is to use your own executive experiences, statistics (if you collect ones, e.g. in spreadsheets) or run a questionnaire about customer behavior with your team.

2. Learn about the current team’s and team members’ behavior.

Example activities

If you learn the behavior on the customer's side, it's good to take your team's perspective and learn their way of approaching customers.

The team or your salespeople might already have a sales process in place they're not even aware of.

Use your current team's sales process as a starting point to build an optimal one. Why? If you don't align an optimal sales process to their actual behavior, they might ultimately just not follow it.

3. Draft stages based on the team & customer's behavior.

Example sales process stages

If you know your team's and customer's behavior, you will now be able to set us specific steps in the sales process, allowing you to plan your team's and customer's journey.

These steps will probably not be your ultimate and optimal sales process but will help you on your road to reaching one.

Use the stages as a benchmark for drafting your perfect process.

4. Analyze the time to complete each step of the process.

Example days spent on sales process stages

Time to completion is crucial to make sure you understand your sales process.

This will provide you with a benchmark for analyzing your sales performance.

Use real-life data and statistics as well as customer interactions to estimate the time required for each stage's completion.

5. Analyze actions taken on each step.

Activities performed per account on a specific stage of the sales process

If you have the time to completion for each stage of the customer interaction, you should now draft the specific actions you take. These can be:

  • Call
  • Email
  • Offer preparation
  • Design preparation
  • Meeting

The above should be connected with the stages in your process to make sure you draft and understand the difference between actions taken on particular sales stages.

6. Search for areas to optimize/enhance.

Example stats for sales process stages

Now that you know the status quo and you understand how your team operates, it's time for improvement and optimization, matching your actual operations with the perfect sales process.

Look at the current stages your team uses and perform the below operations:

  • Cut out the non-relevant stages
  • Shorten the time to completion for each stage
  • Maximize the efficiency of activities performed on each stage

Searching for optimization areas will let you build your perfect process for you and/or your team to follow.

7. Align with other processes in your business.

Example project management process

Creating a perfect sales process does not mean that you will be able to implement it.

First, you need to check that this will be possible by verifying how it matches other processes in your business.

Make sure that it doesn't interrupt operations, customer service or project management. The sales process should align and sometimes, also support other processes.

8. Confirm with your team.

Example sales process specification

Now that you have your sales process in place, you need to make sure your team agrees with its design and way of work.

If you skip this one, you might end up building something your team is not going to use.

Make sure your team agrees on the sales process stages and confirms its design.

9. Train your team on the sales process.

Zoom video training

To launch your sales process, your team needs to understand it well.

But to understand it, first, they need to learn how to handle it properly.

Hence, team training is an essential part of the sales process building.

10. Reflect on the CRM system.

With an already designed sales process, you can now implement it and reflect in your CRM system.

This will be a separate process, called CRM implementation/integration which comprises of both business planning and technical setup.

We'll look into this in more detail in the next part of the article or you can read our Guide to Successful CRM implementation.

Steps to setting up a sales process in CRM

1. Reflect your sales process on your pipeline.

Sales process building in Pipedrive

Build your sales process by setting up your sales pipeline reflecting steps you need to take to reach a successful sale.

When setting up your pipeline, you should also make use of the rotting days feature displaying the number of days your team needs to take to complete each step as well as the probability of closing a particular deal which will support your sales forecasting.

With the sales pipeline in place, you will be able to start using basic features of your CRM system.

2. Lead sources integration and attribution.

Example lead sources

This one would be more complicated and would require expertise CRM support but setting up your lead sources is essential to making it work correctly.

Integrate your website forms, Facebook Ads, Google Ads, and other sources, to make sure new leads land straight in your CRM pipeline.

If you have your lead sources in place, analyzing your sales process efficiency, divided by the source of acquisition will be a piece of cake.

3. Slack notifications/reminders.

Example notifications for overdue activities

If you have a perfect team (I have seen this kind of team only in one business/customer), they will follow the sales process by heart without any additional trigger to take action.

But if you don't have one (yet), you can make use of additional reminders and incentives to make sure they use their CRM and follow the sales process.

Set up reminders for leads that exceed the time to be spent on a specific stage of the sales process or not lagging in planning the activities.

+ use sales tools to fasten your sales process and improve conversion

You will find many tools on the market that will help you make your sales process successful and some of them can become a distractor rather than a helper, so I will show you a few most interesting ones to us:

  • Leadworx

Learworx is a data enrichment solution allowing you to identify prospects in your CRM system, match them with website visits, and enrich with proper contact information (like the company, email address, phone number).

  • Outfunnel

Outfunnel is a tool syncing the information in your CRM system with email marketing activity, notifying you about clicks and opens of your newsletters.

  • Gong

Gong is a new popular technology, helping you to manage remote sales teams, helping mostly in the lead qualification process, lead assessment process, and team monitoring/management.

Steps to optimizing your sales process

Example sales process analytics dashboard

Implementing your sales process does not meet ending your adventure with sales process building.

Once you and your team start following it, you will find plenty of areas for sales process optimization and enhancement.

So what are your steps to sales process optimization once you've already made sure your data is in place and your team is using a CRM system?

1. Analyze the data

Look into the information you store in your CRM to drive proper conclusions. This includes:

  • Stages' conversion
  • Time on each stage of the process
  • Activities efficiency

The above will give you an overall outlook on the process and on the data you already have in the system.

2. Introduce optimizations.

After you analyze your data and look for potential sales process benchmarks, you can now think of ways to optimize it.

Some of the examples for optimizations:

  • Deleting a stage seeing that it's no longer needed by your sales team (e.g. deleting a phase of contract preparation if you've managed to digitalize contract signing)
  • Reducing the time for each stage of the process (if you need an additional incentive for your team to speed up)
  • Changing the type of activities for each stage of the sales process (if you see that the current activities are not effective)

3. Introduce optimizations in your CRM.

Once you have the list of optimizations in place, you will now need to implement them in your CRM.

Without having them reflected in your CRM system, this will not have any significant impact on your team.

Any changes to the stages you make and any optimizations you introduce, make sure they're in your CRM system.

Your sales process, designed and implemented

To sum up, setting up your sales process is not that difficult. After all, it's about analyzing steps on your customer's and sales team's journey, creating a framework for making it work in a structured way, and implementing it by using technology, like a CRM system.

Make sure you implement your sales process in your CRM, measure data/progress, and aim at improving metrics.

With your sales process in place, you can now really take care of things that matter the most to you which can be growing your business or taking care of your stuff.

Need help with a proper sales process and CRM setup? In SoftwareSupp, we help you find and hire freelancers with the right software know-how and skills.

Matt Pliszka

Consultant at SoftwareSupp

Pipedrive setup and data migration for a luxury travel agency

In the travel industry, the actual sale is not always the end of the sales process. Many times, travel professionals want to track post-sales activities that are an integral part of their service.

Time of the project: 3 months

Scope:

  • Sales and post-sales funnels
  • Pipedrive customization
  • Data security setup
  • Email configuration
  • Calling system setup
  • On-site training
  • Database migration

Effect: CRM successfully implemented and integrated

Expert responsible for the service realization:
Sebastian Andruszczak, SoftwareSupp Strategy​,​ Processes​,​ Technology Expert

Across the industries, sales funnels differ in structure, the number of stages, or people involved in the process.

In the travel industry, the actual sale is not always the end of the sales process. Many times, travel professionals want to track post-sales activities that are an integral part of their service.

This is exactly the case of a luxury travel agency that we supported in their CRM implementation. With Pipedrive, which is a highly customizable tool, we created workflows that match their actual sales process.

Travel consultants assist their customers during the entire trip or stay. They make sure that all reservations are made, sell additional services, or apply changes to the travelers’ schedules. The travel agency we worked with needed this process to be mirrored in their CRM.

Before they implemented Pipedrive, the client used an external database with a VPN to manage their sales and after-sales funnel. It was not the most efficient way to store customer information, travel itineraries, or financial details. The system worked as follows: there was a folder with the name of the customer, and inside there were all relevant files. The data wasn’t well structured and it was hard to find anything in these folders.

One of the most important reasons why this travel agency wanted to switch to a professional CRM solution was data security. In the past, the company experienced several breaches because of the database’s weak security measures. Having a system where they can safely store all customer details and confidential information was a priority.

Together with the client we mapped out the scope of the project and divided it into 2 stages. The most important aspects of this project were:

  • improving data security
  • creating a custom tool to import the database to Pipedrive
  • custom email integration with Pipedrive
  • on-site training for their team

On the SoftwareSupp platform, we posted the job offer and helped the client to find the most suitable consultants for the project. We made sure to match the client with consultants from Poland to simplify the on-site training logistics. The additional advantage was that both consultants spoke the native language of the client which simplified the communication between them.

Apart from that, Sebastian, the consultant who worked on the first stage of the project, had experience in CRM implementation for the travel industry. The client received support from a person who knows best practices for this particular business context.

As SoftwareSupp, we connected the client with the right consultants, monitored the project’s progress, and updated the client on its status. The client received our full support at every stage of the project.

Stage 1: Pipedrive funnels, custom setup, and on-site training

Sebastian started Pipedrive implementation at the travel agency right away. The project was designed to provide full assistance in Pipedrive implementation.

The first stage consisted of:

  • creating two separate funnels: sales and after-sales
  • setting up custom fields, deals, contacts, and organizations
  • creating user permissions and visibility groups
  • email and calling system configuration
  • on-site training for the client’s team

Sales and post-sales funnels

For this client, the actual sale is not the end of the sales process. As a luxury travel agency, they stay in touch with the client until they return from the trip. They sell additional services and manage the logistics for them. That’s the reason why they needed two separate Pipedrive funnels.

The first funnel included 3 stages: the initial contact, preparing the offer, and the “contract sent” stage. The second funnel was designed to match the post-sales activities. It included four stages: “advance payment”, “extra charge”, “excursion scheduled”, and “client returned”.

Image for post

Both funnels were connected using Pipedrive’s workflow automation. This is a feature that allows you to automate tasks in Pipedrive without using any external tools. In this case, when the deal is closed, Pipedrive creates a duplicate version of the deal and moves it to the after-sales funnel.

Image for post

The consultant created the funnel setup based on the client’s needs. Thanks to that, they can manage the entire travel cycle in one system. They also have a clear overview of all the deals and their current stages.

Further Pipedrive customization

The next step was to create custom fields, deals, contacts, and organizations. Given the specific context of the client’s business, custom fields needed to include more information than it is usually required for the sales process.

To be able to book flights or specific activities, the team needs specific details. Together with the consultant, they figured out all the custom fields that should be added to Pipedrive.

As a certified Pipedrive partner, SoftwareSupp has access to additional functionalities that exceed Pipedrive’s general feature set. Thanks to that, we’re able to offer our clients some solutions that are not available by default in Pipedrive. For this client, we enabled two features: comments and mentions.

The client’s team can add comments to notes. They use this feature as an internal chat in the post-sales funnel. Mentions allow them to notify other users via email if they require their comments on a certain note.

Maximizing data security

For this client, data security is the most important reason for switching to Pipedrive. They needed a safe system where they could store customer information and all details about their travels.

Pipedrive stores each company’s data in a separate database. This solution prevents the risks of unwanted leaks. They also encrypt all information and use only secure HTTPS connections.

Apart from the default Pipedrive safety measures, we used additional features to further increase the level of data security. We modified user permissions, visibility groups, and alerts. We also explained to the client how to effectively use the Security Dashboard.

User permissions in Pipedrive let the client control what a specific user can do in the system. You can create different sets of permissions for “regular users” and “managers”. This is fully customizable, so the client was able to decide about each permission separately. To increase data security, the client disabled export options for regular users and prevented them from deleting certain entries.

Image for post

Another setup that improves security is defining visibility groups. The client can limit the visibility of certain items to specific people. For example, the sales representative can see only their own deals, but management can access all deals in the system. In Pipedrive, it’s possible to define the visibility of deals, people, organizations, and products separately.

Image for post

In Pipedrive’s Security Dashboard, the users can manage and control access to their Pipedrive account. There are also specific security alerts that help the user to troubleshoot the current issues. In case of unwanted activity, it’s possible to log out a specific user or delete certain devices that perform suspicious behaviors. The admin has full control over the entire Pipedrive account.

Image for post

For this client, we set up email alerts that inform the admin in case of suspicious activity on their account. This feature is also customizable, so every company can choose its own set of alerts. Suspicious activity can be someone logging in from an unknown device or deleting a certain number of contacts.

Image for post

Email configuration

Moving email communication to Pipedrive allowed the client to gather the entire conversation history in one place. This way, it’s easy to find important details and prepare more contextual offers for customers.

Setting up the Pipedrive mailbox for this client required a custom solution. The client’s team didn’t use a popular email provider like Gmail or Outlook. They used Thunderbird connected to a local email hosting. To integrate this email provider with Pipedrive, we used IMAP/SMTP. As it was an unusual configuration, the connection wasn’t stable for the first three weeks.

The client reached out to us to get help with the email issues. They submitted a ticket on the SoftwareSupp platform describing the problem. Celina from the SoftwareSupp team assisted the client in solving this issue. She was an intermediary between the hosting company, Pipedrive, and the client. She stayed in touch with all parties involved to find the best solution for the client. Having gathered input from everyone involved, she fixed the client’s email configuration.

Pipedrive implementation comes with full support via our platform. This means that in cases like this one, our clients are not left alone with the issue. We’re always ready to help them tackle more complicated setups.

Pipedrive’s calling system

In Pipedrive, the client can not only manage their emails but also their calls. With Pipedrive’s “Caller” feature, it’s possible to dial phone numbers of potential customers. The audio recording is then added to the conversation history. This way, the entire communication with a customer is always in one place and all details are saved in the system.

Image for post

On-site training

Sebastian, the SoftwareSupp consultant responsible for the project, visited the client in their office. He prepared a workshop for the team to show them how to use Pipedrive for their daily work. He answered their questions and gathered suggestions that helped him further improve and customize the client’s Pipedrive setup.

Stage 2: Database migration

To move all the client’s historical data to Pipedrive, we needed to structure and prepare their database. Patryk was the SoftwareSupp consultant responsible for this project stage.

The client used a custom-built database that consisted of folders and catalogs. It was hosted externally and accessed via a VPN. Every client had their own folder in which there were files related to their travels. The database was not well-structured and it was hard to find the right information. The client was not content with this way of managing their sales data. They were also concerned with the low level of data security and frequent incidents.

Patryk’s task was to upload all the files to clients’ profiles in Pipedrive. But first, he needed to migrate these contacts to Pipedrive. By default, you can import entries to Pipedrive only from another system or from a spreadsheet (CSV file). Patryk needed to create a custom tool for this process to work.

The client’s database was quite big. There were 55,000 files to be uploaded that equaled to over 50 GB of data.

Patryk started with structuring the database. Based on folder names, he created a spreadsheet that he imported to Pipedrive. This step allowed them to transfer all 2560 contacts to Pipedrive and create their profiles. This step was necessary to get the Pipedrive IDs assigned to each contact. With this information, Patryk was able to use Piepdrive’s API to upload the files.

He exported the list of contacts with specific Pipedrive IDs. The next step was to build a bot that uploads the files and assigns them to the right profiles.

Image for post

Then, our consultant created a local database that included the exported IDs. He built a bot that matched the files with the Pipedrive IDs. The ID-matching process was based on the location of the specific file in the old database. The bot created records with descriptions including crucial information for the upload: the IDs, the file path, and the file size.

The last step was to build another bot that uses the instruction in the database to upload the files via Pipedrive’s API. After each attempt, the record was updated with the information if the upload was successful. If any error occurred, we knew which file needed to be reuploaded.

The entire upload process lasted 40 hours. There were only a few files that caused errors. Only 10 files out of 55,000 needed to be uploaded manually.

Thanks to this migration, the client is now able to access all historical data about their customers in one place. These contacts have specific labels, so it’s easy to spot which ones were migrated from the old database.

Implementing Pipedrive for the travel sector

Data security is especially important for companies that provide VIP services for their customers. With Pipedrive, our client can be sure that all the details are stored in a system with the highest security measures in place. Additionally, Pipedrive’s customization options allow you to make sure that certain users have limited access to customer information.

With Pipedrive, the client’s team doesn’t need to switch between multiple apps, spreadsheets, and systems. They can focus on their work, as everything can be easily found in one place. They don’t need to waste time on searching for historical data. Pipedrive automation also helps them speed up the process.

Having all the conversations in Pipedrive allows the team to create more contextual offers and build better relationships with their customers.

Choosing the CRM implementation with SoftwareSupp, you can be sure that you’ll be connected with a consultant that has all the necessary skills and experience to complete the project. Apart from that, you’re always able to get additional support using the ticketing system on the SoftwareSupp platform.

Note: the customer has not decided to share their name, due to security/NDA reasons.

Sebastian Andruszczak

Strategy​,​ Processes​,​ Technology

SoftwareSupp Newsletter

Subscribe and get real-life software case studies to your mailbox.

Thank you! We're looking forward to staying in touch!
Oops! Something went wrong or your email is already in our database.