As big as Tencent is, the WeChat backend system is far from perfect:
- Only stores customer messages for 3 days
- No CRM function
- Not easy to send targeted message to groups based on location/gender/age or other user characteristics
- Very limited data analytics for WeChat shop’s performance
- Cannot track WeChat website’s performance
- Cannot schedule a specific time to push messages
- And many other limitations….
This leaves opportunities for third party companies to build better performing WeChat backend/CRM systems. There are many CRM systems in the Chinese market, not all are compatible with WeChat. Here we pick 5 very useful WeChat CRM systems (or third party WeChat backends with CRM function) that work well with WeChat: Drip, Youzan, Weimob, MikeCRM and Dodoca. Some of them are focused on CRM (MikeCRM), some are focused on managing the WeChat backend (Drip) and others are focused on WeChat shop (Youzan). Depending on your business, you can find the system that’s best for your WeChat.
Here is a summary of the 5 WeChat CRM systems:
- Basic WeChat backend functions
- Receive customer messages directly on WeChat
- Making HTML5 slides
- Multiple QR code to follow the account (Verified Service Account only)
- Lottery game
- Customer tags
- WeChat website
- Can manage Weibo
Advantage: Completely integrates with WeChat; simple webpage creation; WeChat website blog; backend is simple to navigate
Disadvantage: Does not have WeChat shop function
Drip is a nicely designed system focusing on managing WeChat backend with some CRM functions. The interface is beautifully designed, clean, and easy to navigate. You can easily integrated your WeChat with Drip to manage customer messages, article posting and other basic account operation functions. It also has many advanced function including managing multiple QR code, enables you to create simple webpages like introduction slides, coupons and lottery games. Drip allows you to view customer messages on your WeChat.
The biggest advantage of using Drip is it enables you to create a simple WeChat website blog without any programming knowledge. Here is a website we created in 5 minutes.
The biggest drawback is drip does not have WeChat shop function or order management backend. It’s good choice if you need a simple website that focused on content.
- Basic WeChat backend functions
- WeChat shop order management system
- Schedule posting time
- Build an webpage article to send as auto-reply
- Connect with Weibo
Advantage: Integrated with WeChat, WeChat shop template, order management, data analytics
Disadvantage: may not be the best fit if you do not selling product on WeChat
Youzan is known for it’s well designed WeChat shop template library. What many people don’t know is it can also fully integrate with WeChat and is a great CRM system. You can filter the users who have visited Youzan shop by purchase amount, VIP status, gender, location and purchase behaviour, and send targeted messages accordingly.
Youzan also has great data analytics backend that enables you to create to track the performance of your WeChat shop.
- The conversion funnel
- Track click rate of each product
- Track the overall performance of the WeChat website/WeChat shop
Another interesting function of Youzan is to create a WeChat post that is web based (for automatic reply). This means that when users visit this blog page, you will have a lot more information about them than the basic WeChat post would reveal. The famous WeChat account Luojisewei uses Youzan to create all of it’s post when users reply specific key words.
Cost: annual fee of 10,000 RMB – 30,000 RMB
- Basic WeChat backend management
- WeChat website templates
- VIP member management
- WeChat shop
- Targeted messaging
- Data analytics backend
- And more…
Advantage: Specifically designed for WeChat, easy integration, offers many advanced functions
Disadvantage: Backend navigation is complicated, lack of design
Weimob is one of the biggest third party WeChat CRM in China. Compared with the other CRM systems, Weimob offers more functions. Anything you have seem in the market, it’s likely Weimob will have a module for it. It is a good option if you are focused on building a website with the functions that your competitors offer (or that they don’t leverage yet).
The drawback of Weimob is that the backend is complicated to navigate. It has many sub modules for functions like WeChat shop, and customer service module (with a separate login system). The backend for building a WeChat website is separate from the backend to manage WeChat shop. Since each function has a separate module, the final website can give customers inconsistent user experience as they move from page to page. Make sure to give your staff some time to learn about this backend, it does have a bit of a learning curve.
Overall, Weimob is an affordable enterprise solution to manage WeChat.
- Signup form
- Simple product promotion page with WeChat / Alipay payment available. Up to 1.2% transaction fee
- Can send out email (same as MailChimp)
Advantage: advanced CRM system, great template for building interactive mobile webpage
Limitation: cannot integrate directly with WeChat
Among the 5 systems, MikeCRM is the most advanced CRM system. It has many template including hotel registration, voting pages, event signup, hiring post and many more.
You can send emails with MikeCRM just like MailChimp.
MickCRM even let you integrate payment (WeChat payment and Alipay) for set up a very simple one-page mobile shop with a few products. Although here, the e-commerce function is more meant for collecting fees for an event.
MickCRM is a great tool for internal communication, driving engagement and posting one off events on WeChat.
Cost: annual fee, depends on industry
- Industry focused template
- Connection to hardware
Advantage: provides industry-focused solution
The best part about Dodoca is it has 20 industry-specific templates for WeChat website as well as WeChat shops. Like Weimob, Dodoca offers a lot of advanced functions for each industry with an easier backend to navigate.
Each industry template has functions which are most relevant for the specific vertical: booking and VIP cards for hotels, store locator for offline businesses, sleaker design templates for fashion, etc…
Thanks to the competitive WeChat market, businesses have many affordable and high quality WeChat CRM systems to choose from. When choosing which platform to use, research with a clear WeChat strategy in mind, register for a trial account, and test to see if it is the best platform for you. Given the low cost of each platform, trial-and-error is the best way to figure out which of these platforms best fits your specific business.