InfoFlo Ranked Among the Top 40 CRM Software Vendors of 2015 just released its report of the Top 40 CRM Software Vendors of 2015. We are pleased to announce that our flagship product, InfoFlo, made the list. strives to be the most comprehensive and trusted online resource for buyers and vendors of business technology. The goal of its ranking reports is to simplify buyers’ research and help connect them with the correct software that suits their business needs. The independent research team is not related to any of the companies they rank and their advice is created based on countless hours of analyzing industry trends and market research.

This is the second time in  6 months that we’ve been recognized by a major online resource for our abilities as Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software vendor. In September, 2014, G2Crowd nominated InfoFlo as one the top 13 Top Performers in the industry.

Our team of professionals are honored to receive this special recognition. We remain  committed to bringing you the best solutions available on the market. We’re always updating and improving our software with new features for the best functionality. We invite you to check our Upgrades page on a regular basis to see if any new features and upgrades apply to you.

Please click the following link to view the 2015 report: Top 40 CRM.

Interested in learn more about our central management system? We are currently offering interested parties a free, no-obligation 30-day trial. Fill out the form to receive download and installation instructions by email right away.



Retail in Crisis: How To Stay Afloat

It’s important that entrepreneurs and c-suite executives keep a keen eye out for long-term trends. The point in doing this allows them to predict the future and grasp potential markets that will keep the business profitable and above water. This is something that many retailers this past decade were not able to do and were forced to make cutbacks and changes; Target and Mexx are perfect examples.

One such trend to look out for is e-commerce- buying and selling products on the internet. It’s a well-recognized revolution. Ecommerce is destined to change the way goods are being bought and sold all over the world. People no longer want to get out of their beds and stand in lines for hours when they could simply make all their purchases online. It’s convenient and hassle free!

What is not certain is how much change there will be.


Where Does the Future Lie?

It looks as though the long-range prospect of brick and mortar retailers is death. These businesses are slowly disappearing into oblivion. From Eaton’s to Zellers to Sears to Sony to Mexx to Target, all retailers have closed some or all their stores here in Canada. There are more to come: Jacob, Future Shop….

The ones that we think are doing well are actually in the process of enacting cutbacks because their in store sales are not as successful as those online. Just a year ago, Best Buy Canada announced that it was cutting 950 jobs in an effort to thin management. The cause of cutbacks was the decline in holiday sales.

How To Stay Afloat

As consumers increasingly engage digitally and make fewer trips in store, there are serious concerns about how brick-and-mortar stores that were once the center of attention and thriving will be able to keep up. Certainly retailers may close underperforming stores and merge locations, but more elemental changes also must occur, such as:
• Turning the store(s) into fulfillment center(s).
• Take the in-store experience to a different level.
• Integrate channels relentlessly to the point that channel disappears.

Retailers who understand their customers, leverage technology, such as Contact Management Software, to evolve the customer experience and focus on their differentiators and assets have the opportunity to thrive.


5 Tips For Warming Up Those Cold Calls

The obituary that speaks about the death of cold calling is written all wrong. While in the perfect world, your phone would be ringing off the hook all day with customers wanting to buy your products or services, the reality is that if you want business, you need to go find it. Cold calling is one effective sales tactic to lead generation if done properly. Here are 5 tips you can implement in order to “warm up” those cold calls.

Angry phone call.

1. Job Titles:

When you’re on the phone with a prospect, be 100% certain of their job title and responsibilities. Don’t rely on one source to give you accurate information. Many lead generation sites list contacts as managers and administrators, while LinkedIn profiles and websites list them as C-level executives. There’s never any harm in double checking references twice or three times. We have all done this before in our cold calls. “Hi Mark, I had you as the Marketing Manager with ABC Corp?” To their reply of “I’m the CMO” and an almost guaranteed hang up afterwards. The last thing you want to do is undermine their hard work with a junior title.

2. Name Pronunciation:

If you ever have to cold call in the business world, you will quickly realize that not everyone you call has an easy-to-pronounce name like Joe, Bob, Frank or Kelly. On your first day, you will run into names you won’t be able to pronounce. It is vital that when you come across one of these behemoths that you: 1) make note of the pronunciation of the name on the prospect’s voicemail or 2) ask the secretary or operator for the proper pronunciation before you directly reach out to them. I have found in my experience that this can go a long way and help you stand out from the average cold caller who can never do it right.

3. LinkedIn:

Never underestimate the power of social networking. Even if you get contacts or account information handed to you from a site or service that claims to know it all, you should always be verifying your information before picking up the phone. It may sound obvious, but I would say more than half of the time cold callers are calling the wrong person. By verifying that your contact actually works within the department you are selling to, you will be 90% more likely to get a meeting, sale or interest from the prospect.

4. Create a Persuasive Script:

You can’t wing it. Despite how passionate you are about your business, communicating the benefits of your product takes distinct skill. With limited time on the phone, a written script lets you focus on points you want to make. In a few short sentences, you must provide both a description of your services and good reasons why the prospect should buy your product or invest in your services.

5. Attention to Detail:

This is an important aspect to remember if you are sending out emails, meeting requests or any form of communication. You are the luckiest person on earth if you have never received an email with your name misspelled or sentences written in poor English. My name is Alex Noudelman, but I’ve seen Ale, Aleks, Noodleman, Noudleman, Nudelman, you get the point. It’s really not that hard. Again, go back to your friend, LinkedIn, and verify the spelling.


How To Create PDF Fill-In Forms

Since its arrival in the early 1990s, the Portable Document Format Standard, also known as PDF, has become an essential part of the information technology world. It is widely used today by lawyers, HR managers, publishers, and other professionals and is  the digital format of choice for any important document.


The aim of PDF standard is to make it easy for people to share their documents, irregardless of the operating systems and devices that they are using. Unlike Word Processing files, PDF documents cannot be changed and can be password protected to ensure that only authorized eyes read them. The ubiquity of free PDFD readers, such as Adobe Acrobat Reader, means that everyone with a computer or mobile device has easy access to them.


Although there are advantages to PDF, there are also some limitations that are worth noting. Particularly, when the user needs to edit or make changes to the document they saved in PDF format. Editing can only be done in a crude fashion, meaning that you will have to scribble on a printed page with a red pen or use a highlighter. There are also custom software that can help you make changes to the document, but many of them come at a cost.


The best way to create and edit PDF documents is to type them out in Microsoft Word or Open Document Format. Once done, save it as .doc. Then, make a carbon copy of the file in PDF format and send that to your recipients.


If you would like the recipient to fill out the form in PDF, here are the steps to creating an Acrobat PDF Fill-In Form:

  1. Install Adobe Acrobat from the Install Software page, and restart your computer.
  2. Then, create the PDF document.
    1. Open the document in the word processing program (Word, Wordperfect, etc) it was created in.
    2. Choose Print from the File menu.
    3. In the Printer Name drop-down menu, choose Acrobat PDFwriter
    4. Choose the file name to save the document to (must end in .pdf)
    5. Close the word processor.
  3. Go into Adobe Acrobat and open the pdf document you created.
    1. Click on the Forms tool in the left hand menu in Acrobat:
    2. Use the tool to draw a fill in field where you want the user to enter information; a field properties window will come up:
    3. Enter a unique name for the form field and choose a font and font size for the text. (If you want to make this a checkbox or other field type, you can pull down the field type from the menu in the top right.)
    4. For multiline text entry boxes, click on the Options tab and check the ‘Multi-line’ box:
    5. Click OK to have the field saved.
    6. Repeat for each fill-in section of the form.
    7. Save the file.

With the InfoFlo CRM Software’s Document Archiving feature, you can now instantly drag and drop any document, including PDF files, and link them to a contact, company, category or shared project entity. They will be automatically archived – making files quickly and easily retrievable for later use.


InfoFlo CRM Software Nominated as High Performer by G2 Crowd

The Carmel Vision team is proud to announce that G2 Crowd nominated our InfoFlo Software as one of 13 high performers in the CRM Software industry.

G2 Crowd is a trusted source of enterprise software reviews from real users. They launched the Beta version of their site in February 2013. Since then, they have garnered over 20,000 reviews of products across more than 200 categories, and more than half a million answers to the questions software buyers desire the most answers to.


Any user of business software is welcome to share their experiences with the products they use in a review on G2 Crowd. Their reviews are different from Yelp’s in that the G2 Crowd verifies reviewers to make certain they are real business professionals, and no one can review their own product or that of a competitor; essentially eliminating bias.

Our goal as a company is to now qualify as a leader by G2 Crowd. In order to become one, we must receive a high customer satisfaction score and have a substantial market presence. This is a goal that we feel is attainable and achievable by our staff who continue to strive for excellence in customer service and product offerings.

We welcome you to help us reach for the top by submitting your customer review on G2 Crowd. Your customer reviews mean the world to us. It’s the kind of selfless goodwill that feels like a pat on the back and makes all our hard work and efforts worthwhile. A big thank you goes out to G2 Crowd for the nomination and to all the individuals that took the time to write to us to express their gratitude for the services that we provide.

You can submit your review here.


About Carmel Vision

Carmel Vision, a Toronto based CRM software development company, is focused on delivering a powerful management infrastructure that is designed to collect, search, and archive all content, contact and communication activities that take place in a typical office. We understand and listen to all of our customers’ needs and strive to give excellent quality at affordable prices.

Our flagship product, InfoFlo – is a central management system specifically designed to combat one of the biggest technical challenges facing any professional organization, how to efficiently organize, archive, filter and search the vital information that bombards our desktops on a daily basis. Our infrastructure allows all office activities to coexist together under one umbrella, making all critical information readily available at your fingertips.

If you are new to InfoFlo & Carmel Vision, we welcome you to our blog and resource hub. You’re just 30 Seconds away from your free 30 Day Trial of InfoFlo! Download your free trial here.


14 Useful Keyboard Shortcuts For Quick Navigation

Unlike with search engine marketing, Windows desktops and laptop computers are equipped with hundreds shortcuts. Unfortunately, more than 50% of Windows PC users don’t use them. Some just don’t remember the keys they need to press, while others are so used to doing it manually that changing habits is often harder than reducing two to three clicks.

Whatever the reason may be for not using shortcuts, we are here to educate you about them and how they offer you an easier and quicker way of navigating and using computer software programs, such as CRM Tools. For instance, did you know that highlighting text with the keyboard and pressing Ctrl + C is much faster than taking your hand from the keyboard, highlighting the text using the mouse, right clicking copy from the file menu, and then putting your hand back in place on the keyboard? Below are top 14 keyboard shortcuts we recommend everyone print out and use with their Windows PCs and laptops.

Shortcut Keys                               Descriptions
Ctrl+z or Ctrl+y  Undo or Redo previous text change
Esc  Close a record, dialogue box or cancel a command
Ctrl + (+) Zoom In
Ctrl + (-) Zoom Out
Shift+F10  Display the Right Click Menu
Tab or Shift+Tab  Move to the next or move to previous option or option group when working in a dialogue box
Ctrl+s  Save a record
Ctrl+Shift+s  Save and then open a new form (Save and New)
Shift + Arrow Up orShift + Arrow Down Select multiple rows in a list sequentially
Tab + Space Bar Select multiple rows in a list non-sequentially
Ctrl + Backspace Delete full work instead of a single character
Ctrl + Home Move cursor to the beginning of the page.
Ctrl + End Move cursor to the end of the page.
Ctrl+Shift+5  Minimize ribbon

Using the above mentioned keyboard shortcuts can significantly increase your staff’s productivity, reduce repetitive keystrokes, and help keep you focused on the important tasks at hand.

About InfoFlo

Did you know that Windows Shortcuts is not the only thing that can improve the way you run your business, streamline your operations, and enhance your service offerings without the need to hire more resources? Let’s us introduce to you InfoFlo, the most powerful, affordable, and user-friendly CRM Software on the market today. InfoFlo offers more than 40 integrated features including automatic linking of all emails to contacts, document management, collaboration, social media integration, email marketing and much more. By providing users with 360 degree visibility into all activities linked to specific contacts and shared projects, users can easily improve the efficiency of their customer facing processes, while decreasing their software costs through InfoFlo’s revolutionary pricing model. You’re just 30 Seconds away from your free 30 Day Trial of InfoFlo! Download your free trial here.


How To Purchase CRM Software Without Breaking the Bank

You would never hire a plumber and send him to service a client without his tools, right?

It’s not just that it would be dangerous, but it wouldn’t be very proactive of you as well.

So why would you hire a sales representative without using a comprehensive and reliable CRM Software?

Having an intuitive and easy-to-use CRM platform can dramatically increase your staff performance. And yet, we continue to encounter businesses where customer inquiries are being handled using Outlook and a sticky notes all over the computer screen.

The most common excuse we hear is that CRM software is not affordable and not within their budget, too complicated, and unnecessary. But that’s not all true. Let us show you the benefit of purchasing a revenue-changing tool for you and all your employees!


Why You Should Invest in InfoFlo CRM Software?

InfoFlo’s customers are empowered to do more with less. While “Customer Service is Supreme” might been a company motto for just about ever business out there, it wasn’t until social media became mainstream that a lot more companies started to take complaints from customers, comments and feedback more seriously.

Why? It’s because one negative experience can be read by thousands, if not millions, of social media users.

To turn negative experiences into positive ones, you need to start with the right CRM Software.  Research by BrandWatch has found that over 65% of customers would recommend a brand based on a quick and effective response in social media channels.

About Carmel Vison

Carmel Vision, a Toronto based CRM software development company, is focused on delivering a powerful management infrastructure that is designed to collect, search, and archive all content, contact and communication activities that take place in a typical office. We understand and listen to all of our customers’ needs and strive to give excellent quality at affordable prices.

Download your free trial today.


4 Ways CRM Software Can Improve Customer Retention Rates

New research shows that it could cost a business 6-7 times more to acquire a new customer than to retain an existing one. Customer loyalty and retention are the biggest drivers of referrals and revenue in the commercial world. Customer retention takes time to bear fruit and it is certainly worth investing time and resources into it. Here are four ways a CRM can help you maximize your customer retention rates and inevitably increase your ROI as well.

Customer Retention

1. Helps You Understand Customer Needs

A CRM is not just a software that you input your customers’ contact information. It can be useful for a lot of other purposeful things. For instance, a CRM Software is equipped to give you information about customer’s behaviours, preferences, buying patterns, and their entire history with your organization. By having this data at your fingertips, you can better understand your customers’ needs and preferences and inevitably helps you retain them during contractual negotiations as well.

2. Improve Overall Experience

Customers aren’t too fond of seeking new relationships with new service providers, especially when it comes to implementing new software, but they will if their customer experience is not what they are looking for. CRM analytics and capabilities make it possible for organizations to improve the overall experience for their customers through well-targeted communications, improved service execution, exceptional and inimitable service offerings and more importantly excellent customer service and after-sales support.

3. Lower Operational Costs

CRM software is perfect for reducing operational costs and streamlining operations. The capabilities enabled by CRM give organizations a holistic approach to managing their customers, allowing them to identify how to serve their customers in the most efficient manner without breaking the bank. That, in turn, makes it possible for companies to further invest in the customers they already have. It’s a cycle that helps to build customer retention rates unlike those that were in place in the past.

4. Spot and Fix Problems Proactively

If you have a CRM like InfoFlo, you can easily spot changes or sudden breaks in purchasing patterns and sometimes detect drifting customers before they cancel your services. Then, you can proactively investigate and solve issues rather than letting them damage valuable business relationships and jeopardize future retention rates.

About Carmel Vison

Carmel Vision, a Toronto based CRM software development company, is focused on delivering a powerful management infrastructure that is designed to collect, search, and archive all content, contact and communication activities that take place in a typical office. We understand and listen to all of our customers’ needs and strive to give excellent quality at affordable prices.

Our flagship product, InfoFlo – is a central management system specifically designed to combat one of the biggest technical challenges facing any professional organization, how to efficiently organize, archive, filter and search the vital information that bombards our desktops on a daily basis. Our infrastructure allows all office activities to coexist together under one umbrella, making all critical information readily available at your fingertips.

Download your free trial today.


How To Be Proactive Rather Than Reactive in Customer Service

The default approach to resolving issues relating to customer service is to respond to problems when they arise. This reactive approach may satisfy the customer, but it most likely will not enchant them. In fact, many unhappy customers will not call to complain,they will simply take their business elsewhere.

Instead, imagine resolving problems before they take place. Or better yet, think about being able to address the issues before customers become aware that there is a problem in the first place. This approach, which is a proactive approach, is not only viable but possible as well. A recent survey conducted by Enkata found that being productive and proactive can reduce call volume by as much as 30%. As well, the survey found that this approach increases customer retention rates by 3-5%.

So how do you go about in being productive? What actions will you have to take in order to employ a successful, proactive customer service strategy? Here are 5 tips to follow.

customer service

1. Create Content That Answers Common Customer Questions

Many customers hope to find answers to their inquiries on their own, as opposed to them having to call or email a company for support. This means that if you make helpful information difficult or impossible to locate, you’re depriving yourself of a valuable opportunity to satisfy customers. A good place to start – create an FAQ page on your website. Include a link to the page below your signature in every correspondence you have with customers and prospects.

2. Pay Attention to Every Word Customers Say

If you’re not paying attention to what your prospects and customers are saying about you online, you’re missing out on the opportunity to resolve conflicts before they escalate. Reaching out to customers who mention your company, be it good or bad, allows you to pre-emptively address their needs and enhance their experience and satisfaction.

3. Integrate CRM Software – Empower Front Line Employees

Anyone who spends a day in an office environment knows you’re almost guaranteed to hear at least one staff member complain about the limitations of their tools, whether it’s a slow desktop PC or an application that doesn’t have the features they expect. Today, it’s much easier to give employees more choice about how they do their tasks without compromising on company policies. All you need is a powerful CRM that documents every conversation, every job order, or customer request.

4. Collaborate in the Cloud

The ability to access the most up-to-date information is essential for employee productivity. Adopting cloud solutions gives employees access to key applications and the most recent versions of documents, no matter where they are located.

5. Break Down The Barriers

You more than likely hired people for different functions, such as technical supports, sales, customer service etc. But if these people don’t collaborate, your customers may not receive the service they expect. Imagine how much better your products and services could be if sales tells technical support agents what customers are asking for and customer service shares the most frequent customer complaints with the rest of the staff. Such cross-functional collaboration could result in new productivity that boosts sales and increases customer satisfaction, which translates to more streamlined operations, increased productivity, and increased profits.


6 Tips to Boost Email Marketing Campaigns

Yesterday, I was talking with a good friend of mine about email marketing and our conversation wandered into the topics of email, spam and why people don’t read your emails. Now sitting at my desk writing this blog it got me thinking… what would change this?

Here are 6 tips, tricks and points of advice to reengage your bored and tired email marketing recipients.

email marketing

1. Stop speaking about your list. Stop speaking about who is subscribed to your lists. Write as if you’re emailing one person only. It instantly makes your email marketing campaigns more personal.

2. Be practical. Don’t email only when you need something from your readers. Be helpful. Be generous. Be friendly. Offer them tips, advice, and anything that can help them become informed decision makers.

3. Be trustworthy. Let people know what to expect. Yes, sales messages should be part of your email marketing, that’s fine. Just be clear about it what happens when they sign up. Many times businesses include these messages in the fine print and customers often learn about them after they’ve signed up; frustrating them as a result.

4. Establish success criteria. This is an important aspect of an effective email marketing campaign. Write down a couple of goals you would like to achieve at the end of the campaign. Monitor these goals using metrics and analytics. Before you send the next email marketing blast, go over the success criteria of the previous blast, see what has worked and what has not, and adapt your future campaigns based on the results.

5. Give, Give and Give More… without Expectation of Return. Members of your email list have gifted you with their attention. Honor that attention. Your responsibility is to ensure they receive value from your email. When you focus on giving useful, relevant and actionable advice you’ll be gifted with more of their attention in the future.

6. Think about mobile. If a campaign doesn’t show up on mobile devices, it’s not going to perform well and you will not be able to attain your success criteria. Everything you send should be mobile-friendly. According to the study, 63 percent of Americans and 41 percent of Europeans would either close or delete an email that’s not optimized for mobile. Might be time to start using a responsive template, if you have not done so already.

Create, Run, and manage email marketing campaigns with the click of a button. InfoFlo CRM Software will allow you to drill down into each email campaign and provide you with real-time analytics.