Zero BS CRM: Product Update #2 – June 2017

Zero BS CRM wrote this on June 29, 2017

Welcome to our second Product Update. In this series of monthly posts, we’re going to whip through our new features, extensions and the major product improvements we release for Zero BS CRM.

In keeping with our key principal (MED – Minimum Effective Dose), we’re not adding bloat to our CRM, we’re adding What You Ask For, plain and simple. The power is in the functionality, always. This series shares these new super powers as we release them.

If you have any requests, tell us here, and if you’re not yet on board, grab a bundle while it’s hot!

Now for this months tasty updates…

Core Updates

Precious to us, the Zero BS CRM core plugin rarely goes a week without us tweaking or fixing something within it. Both of us (Mike & Woody) find ourselves working with the core daily, and we’re obsessed focused on making it simple, powerful, and performant.

Here’s this months major core CRM developments:

New Features Added to Core

We’ve been working on your feedback and have added some new features / improved some of the existing features of the CRM.  The first one of these we will cover in this update in the ability to hide customer default fields. This helps to tidy up the user interface if  you don’t want to keep seeing fields you’ll never use.

Next up, we’ve also improved the user interface of the Client Dashboard.  While the Client Dashboard fits into your theme (between the header and the footer) we initially wrote a very rough and ready grey tabbed system (which you can, of course, modify through CSS).

However, most users just saw our ‘ugly grey tabs’ so we’ve improved the UI of the Client Dashboard out of the box. We’ve made the tabs to be at the side and used icons to help illustrate what each tab is about.

We’ve also fixed a bug in the dashboard which meant the tabs for Quotes and Invoices was still being shown even if they were disabled in the Extension Manager.  Below we’ve turned off Quotes and Invoices in the Extension Manager.

 

Over 20 Bugs Squashed

That’s almost 1 a day!… But seriously, we’ve hammered out a lot of small (non critical) bugs this month, and more importantly, we’ve discussed a new strategy to produce less bugs overall.

We’re building fast for ZBSCRM, but quality is critical, so we’re going to do our best in coming months to move fast and break things only in developmental stuff. The main core will, (like WordPress is), mostly be focused on improving usability, and trimming out the fat (bugs, language labels, docs, extra UI clicks etc.) Rather than adding new fancy stuff you don’t need!

More stability for all of us. Here’s some of the UI improvements and bug fixes we’ve made this month. There was a CSS styling issue affecting Zero BS Customer user roles. This is the role which users who have access to their Client Portal are given. We’ve fixed the bug which was colouring these in black.

We’ve also fixed a bug which meant that in Slimline Menu Mode (Full Mode is shown below) there was no easy way for users with the Invoice Manager Role to add a new invoice. There was no Add New button next to Invoices for these users. This has now been fixed.

There’s too much to mention here about all the bugs we’ve squished, if you report them, we’ll investigate and update / kill any which we can replicate, making the CRM better for everyone and more stable. Here’s an overview of some of the other fixes we’ve made since the last product update

  • Customer Logs (where you can record interactions with your customers) was not saving, they now save again
  • The ‘Zero BS CRM’ header when in Override WP mode for non admin users was trying to direct them to the admin settings (and giving a ‘access denied’ error). It now redirects them to the ZBS dashboard

Bugs keep us busy, fixing them help improve the stability and usability of the CRM….  What’s bigger news though, what widens the use of the CRM for specific cases is our Extensions.

New Extensions – we now have TWELVE

We’ve been driving with our foot to the floor in June and have released not one, not two, but three new extensions. This takes our total extensions up from 7 when we launched v2.0 up to

Contact Form 7

This has been asked for a lot. Before this extension users could use the included forms, or Gravity Forms. Now with contact form 7 support you can use the (free) contact form 7 and this extension to generate leads into your CRM

See Contact Form 7 Extension

Groove Sync

We’ve added a nifty Sync extension for Groove. It checks your Groove HQ help desk and imports customers and logs their tickets. This is great to see which customers have contacted you and when. You can see from their customer log when they first were added (as a lead or a customer)

See Groove Sync Extension

You can then see how long it took them to contact your help desk (if at all). Why use this? It helps you analyse if there’s any products that are generating an (unhealthy) level of support tickets. Likewise if you have a lot of leads who have reached out with questions, but haven’t converted to customers, then is there something else you can be doing to help convert them into a customer.

Google Contacts Sync

This one has come from a few requests. Syncing with Google Contacts is something which has been asked a lot about. It syncs to your Google Account and then allows you to import your contacts from Google Contacts into your CRM. Then you can manage your contacts using ZBS CRM (and have everything in your CRM, rather than scattered around the interwebs)

See Google Contacts Sync Extension

Why is this useful? As you can see, I personally had almost 1,000 contacts in my Google Account that (mostly) I had either forgotten about or wasn’t actively managing. Importing them into my CRM makes sure I don’t forget to keep in touch with leads, connections and customers.

What’s Next?

That really depends on you. We build the CRM based on your feedback and suggestions. Please, PLEASE, don’t suffer in silence. Reach out to us and share your feedback. We listen to all the feedback and it helps direct us to the best CRM for all of us.

 


Posted June 29, 2017

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