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Gartner Says Worldwide CRM Market Grew 12.5 Per Cent in 2008
Growth Driven by Technology Focused on Customer Retention, Analytics and On-Demand Solutions
"Despite financial market volatility, the worldwide CRM market enjoyed its fifth consecutive year of double-digit growth as businesses continued to invest in solutions across all sub-segments," said Sharon Mertz, research director at Gartner. "Actual market growth was moderated by a stronger dollar but reflects higher contributions from emerging markets."
Software as a Service (SaaS) continued to drive the market forward, representing nearly 20 per cent of total CRM software market revenue in 2008, up from just over 15 per cent in 2007. Interest in social networking and social software also escalated in 2008 as businesses were confronted with the sales, marketing, and serviceability impact of increasing consumer participation in online forums.
SAP continued to be the market leader accounting for 22.5 per cent of worldwide CRM software revenue in 2008 (see Table 1), but this is down from a 25.5 per cent share in 2007. Microsoft experienced the strongest growth rate among the top five vendors, as its revenue increased 75 per cent in 2008.
While the CRM market remains highly concentrated in Western economies, emerging markets are growing rapidly and now account collectively for nearly 16 per cent of the worldwide market, up from approximately 13.8 per cent in 2006. Although both North America and Europe underperformed in terms of CRM market growth in 2008, their share of the market remained high at 52.5 per cent and 31.6 per cent, respectively.
Overall market share of each CRM sub-segment shifted slightly in 2008, with sales remaining as the largest sub-segment, representing 42.8 per cent of the market and enjoying the highest growth of 14.7 per cent. Marketing automation also continued to grow in 2008, with a 10.4 per cent increase, representing 20.6 per cent of the CRM market. Customer service and support represented 36.6 per cent of the CRM software market, as this segment grew 11.2 per cent in 2008.
Gartner said that most vendors remain cautiously optimistic for continued growth for the worldwide CRM market. "Investments in technologies which enhance productivity, provide better visibility and insight into customer behaviours and grow online commerce, sales and marketing activities are expected to grow through 2010," said Ms Mertz. "However, while we expect overall CRM growth prospects to remain positive in 2009 we do anticipate them declining to mid single-digits due to continued economic uncertainty."
Ms Mertz advised vendors that they can benefit from strategies that drive customer value creation, which include:
- Aligning products, services and contractual agreements to enable customer business imperatives of higher client acquisition, retention and satisfaction.
- Continuing to offer creative terms to maximise revenue potential and enable businesses to consumer critical products and services.
- Extending application vertical-market functionality, whether by in-house development, acquisition or partnership agreements to take advantage of key verticals or government stimulus packages.
- Focusing product offerings on applications and technologies that provide customers with tools and capabilities to increase visibility on customer requirements and behaviours.
Additional information is available in the Gartner report "Dataquest Insight: CRM Software Market Share Analysis, Worldwide 2008." The report is available on Gartner's website at http://www.gartner.com/....
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