Connectably finally puts an end to the pain of disconnected sales, marketing and finance processes in your service or trades business. In a software marketplace that doesn’t prioritise solving these problems, we want to be recommended as the Best CRM for Xero Users.
Until you’ve run a service or trades services business as a coach or consultant, accountant or marketing agency, home servicing business or support organisation, it’s difficult to appreciate how challenging it is to manage core business processes in silos of disconnected software, isn’t it?
You end up wondering why business often feels over-complicated by technology, and frustrated that your sales and marketing software doesn’t run as seamlessly as Xero manages your bookkeeping and accounting.
No nonsense CRM since 2017
Connectably is a relatively new company – founded in 2017, launched in March 2018 – but is born of over ten years of experiences implementing and managing other people’s CRM and automation software.
Prior to founding Connectably, I’d established a really solid track record, even winning global awards for implementations with my clients and got a reputation for being a “go-to” person in my market around follow-up ‘nurture’ marketing and getting conversions.
But one thing kept annoying clients and I: every marketing product was so awkwardly disconnected from the software these clients used to get paid and manage their finances. The majority were Xero users and one look at the Xero marketplace shows lots of CRM products that supposedly integrate with Xero, but when you look closer, almost all are really quite limited in what they do.
And so Connectably was born and in the space of 18 months, I moved from consulting and implementating others’ products to running a software company. It brings a unique user-focused perspective because I’ve walked in our users’ shoes and experienced their frustrations as an implementor of other people’s software.
Within months of launching, our approach and experience in the market fast-tracked Connectably into integration partner programmes of some of the leading global names in small business online software: Xero, Stripe, GoCardless, Google, Microsoft, Zoom and Zapier.
Along the way, we were building a passionate and supportive ‘early adopter’ user base and getting shortlisted for a variety of different awards:
We don’t have all the answers
‘Fully automated marketing’, ‘set it and forget it’, ‘make money whilst you sleep’, or frankly anything with the word ‘hack’ in it…. for the majority of businesses, this kind of language is both unhelpful and unachievable because our businesses involve real people we interact with.
Right from the start, I can tell you honestly and frankly that “We don’t have all the answers” at Connectably. In fact, any software company that does pretend to have all the answers to your business’ problems doesn’t have a true perspective of running a service or trades businesses.
Before founding Connectably, I implemented Infusionsoft (now also called ‘Keap’) with more than 250 small businesses, so I’ve had a good insight into seeing what other software does and doesn’t do. Although my career has always had a degree of software development thread through it, I’ve also been a consulting and marketing services business owner for over twelve years.
So we have a good number of answers to what small businesses need and do not need, what they have a desire to achieve, and how they’d like to run their businesses in a joined up way.
To experience part of that thought process, just take a look at the Connectably Features page.
Simpler, quicker, more connected business
“Simpler, Quicker, More Connected Business” is our mantra at Connectably. We’re obsessed by simplification of the technology around sales and marketing processes.
As you have no doubt discovered as you’ve searched for the right software over the years you’ve run your business, infinite choice does not equate to simplicity, nor speed, nor well-connected.
Connectably provides you with the service connections you need to focus on and be organised with the workflows that matter in your business.
A CRM for Xero for business with a services and trades focus
Connectably operates in a very different market and comes at the problems of a services or trades business in a very alternative way to the way that the an Infusionsoft, Hubspot, Ontraport, or ActiveCampaign would do so. Connectably is built from its very foundations to be a CRM for Xero accounting software users.
The outcome you want to see of running a profitable service or trades business is being able to see the fruits of your labours in a simple profit and loss report in Xero. Connectably syncs tightly with Xero to ensure no important data gets lost. So when you review your business’ performance yourself or with your accountant the information across your two most important pieces of business software, Xero and Connectably, all tallies up and there’s a clear context to what you’re seeing in both. Not doing so loses clarity and focus, and makes success harder to achieve.
What’s a ‘CRM’?
The lines are becoming increasingly blurred on what a CRM is, aren’t they?
Connectably does both what you or I might have heard described previously as ‘CRM’ (customer relationship management) and marketing automation.
But I’d argue that these days, good CRM needs to do marketing automation anyway, and to be a good marketing automation product you need to have good CRM element to your software as well:
- Hubspot has a suite that does both brilliantly well but is accused of becoming expensive quickly. It’s often considered a solution for those small businesses getting towards the ‘M’, the ‘medium’, part of the ‘SME’ marketplace.
- Infusionsoft (now ‘Keap’) does segmented marketing automation very well. It can become expensive from a total cost of ownership perspective if integrated extensively with other products, like Xero, or payment services it doesn’t support and require 3rd party integrations.
- ActiveCampaign and Drip do (email) marketing automation well but are widely considered more limited when it comes to traditional CRM.
- Mailchimp is possibly the world’s leading email marketing platform but needs to be integrated with a CRM system to manage contacts effectively.
Connectably provides a simple, quick and better connected alternative to all the above.
So why is Connectably’s approach different?
Well, the majority of the online marketing software industry starts with a lead, usually a web enquiry. Their models work towards getting that lead to take a next action towards working with you, usually via automated email marketing, segmenting activities as the lead progresses.
Connectably, however, starts at the opposite end of the funnel: with first focus on making sure the sales transaction and delivery of the service works effectively. Integrating with Xero, and managing workflows as first priority, Connectably starts from a focus on integrated and seamless business systems. Because when you run a services or trades business, wasted time is your most expensive cost; it’s a missed opportunity to make more revenue doing what you do. Filling your funnel with leads isn’t usually the first priority; you do need leads, but they’re not the most critical part of your sales, marketing and business operations.
Working back from the sale, Connectably is focused on all the engagement activities that lead to that sale:
- having simple and secure online order forms so you don’t have to chase manual invoices;
- being able to quickly produce professional quotes and proposals;
- being able to have prospects book time for the sales / enquiry meeting directly into your diary;
- being able to manage your sales pipeline with simple to manage workflows;
- being able to run simple automated marketing, combining sending emails, physical mail and set follow-up tasks;
- having a simple contact management system that works on desktops, tablets and mobiles allowing you to share insights on prospects and customers with your team and not let opportunities slip through the cracks, and at the very start of the enquiry;
- being able to capture leads on your website, or add them straight into the software via simple contact add forms or file uploads.
Simply put: with our core target market – services or trades businesses who use Xero accounting software – we’ve tried to address a lot of the common challenges that you face using business software with Connectably.
First things first: what’s a services or trades business? Am I in the right place? Is this for me?
If you’re a current or future Xero accountancy software user where you get paid on a recurring basis or via projects and packages for your work, then Connectably is probably a good fit for you. Connectably is a great fit for these two types of business:
- ‘helping services’ businesses: coaching, consulting, accounting, marketing, support services, or;
- ‘home-services’ businesses – flooring, cleaning services, plumbing / HVAC, gardening and landscaping etc
The other important factor in determining if you’re a good fit is your attitude to serving your clients. Compared to your peers, do you take a more professional approach than the vast majority to the way your market and deliver your services? And quite possibly, already charge more, or aspire to charging more for your services than most do?
If these descriptions summarise ‘you’ well, then you may well be in the right place. I’d encourage you to take a look at our ‘Features’ page to discover more about the way Connectably helps businesses like yours and things to look out for as you make your decision.
I appreciate that time is scarce for any business owner, so thanks for finding the time to visit our site today.
If I can help further, please don’t hesitate to jump on the chat that you can access via the green button at the bottom right of the page. It’s often me picking up those enquiries…
Simpler, Quicker, More Connected Business