Is It Time to Replace My Legacy CRM or Website?

6 min read
March 25, 2021

Are you responsible for sales, marketing, or revenue at your company and using a “legacy” or inherited CRM or website? Do your systems work well? Or are they giving you challenges?

Do any of the following statements sound familiar? (No reason to panic if they do, just keep reading…)
  • Our CRM is a hot mess. There are so many contacts which are old or they were imported without being qualified, we might as well start over.
  • We have a CRM and marketing automation, but no one on our team was part of the implementation and we don’t know how to use much of it.
  • Our website was custom built for us, but it was a while ago and it doesn’t work for marketing and selling the way people want to buy in today’s world.
  • Our Sales team uses a CRM, but it’s not integrated with our website or any of our other systems. Getting all of the data in one place is a challenge.
  • We have marketing software, but we have to piecemeal the systems together so there is manual work required to segment our list, get accurate reporting, and we still can’t prove how much revenue marketing helped generate.

We frequently have conversations like these with business leaders about their legacy systems and can understand why a mere conversation about replacing them can trigger anxiety. Usually it’s for one of these two reasons:

  1. Everyone remembers how much investment, time, and effort it took to implement that system in the first place and can’t bear to go through it again.
  2. Changing out that one system is like the tip of the iceberg; the trickle down effect on everything else that will be impacted is huge. It’s too overwhelming to even think about.

Those scenarios are real pain. As humans, we all know how much we love change. The only reason we willingly embark upon such a project of change is because the pain of not changing is greater than the pain we will endure to make the move to an improved system (aka “The Light”).  

The Light is a system that helps us to scale. The Light helps us to be more competitive. It provides a modern and easy User Experience for our employees. And ultimately, it enables us to provide a better Customer Experience, which is truly the end-all, be-all for sales and marketing systems (it sounds like this). 

So how do we “quantify” the pain of continuing to live with our legacy CRM or website so we can compare it to the effort required to implement a new, modern version?


The Real Pain of Hanging On to a Legacy System

When we evaluate our technology, old or new, there are numerous factors to consider which can help us decide whether we’re better off maintaining the legacy system or replacing it. Ultimately, the decision will probably come down to money – the investment as well as the opportunity cost.


The Challenges of Legacy CRMs, Websites, and Other Systems

From our experience of working with clients who decide to either implement a new system or invest in optimizing an existing system, there are certain factors we recommend that they take into consideration (in no particular order).

Mobile Responsiveness

More than 50% of website traffic is from a mobile device, so if your website or CRM is not easily accessible from a phone or tablet, that’s a problem. If you’re not sure how big of a problem it is, imagine yourself as the user. Would you spend time trying to read lots of copy, or microscopic copy, on your phone? As a salesperson, are you easily able to add notes, email a contact, or update a deal from your phone?

System Security

We hear horror stories about companies whose systems have been breached all too often. In analyzing whether a legacy system is secure, the first question is whether the system is still supported. Is it built and maintained to be protected against modern world cyber security risks? Usually the cost of upgrading to a modern, secure system pales in comparison to the cost of a potential breach. 

A Positive Employee Experience

According to G2’s 2019 Survey of Software Happiness report, more than 50% of employees are unhappy at work because of the software they use. And the same survey says half of those people, 25% of employees, have considered leaving their roles because of the software they use.

Systems, and working with systems that make doing your job easier, matter. Not having the right systems can cost you good talent, which is quite a high price to pay.

employee happiness survey

Brand Image

Some of the most common ways that your systems can positively or negatively affect your brand image are the following:

  1. Your Customer Service: Is it easy for customers to contact you and get their issue resolved?
  2. Your Website: Is it modern, attractive, and accurately reflect your expertise?
  3. Your CRM: Does your sales team have the tools and presentation materials to make the sales process easy for your customers? 
  4. Your Employees: Is it easy for your sales team to organize their time and know which leads they should focus on? Can your managers get the data they need to make good decisions? 

All of these interactions with your brand can impact peoples’ impressions of your company. Are you giving the impression of your brand that you want to give?

User Experience (UX)

How much time will you spend looking for information on a website? Most people won’t spend more than 6 seconds.

If the information on your website is presented well, is the process to take the next step simple? Is it easy to book a meeting with a salesperson online? Is it easy to find pricing information? 

One client we worked with wanted to utilize automation to expedite their administrative process so they could respond faster to their customers. The result was a savings of 1,800 hours of their staff’s time per year!


Companies are dynamic. We add new services, new products, stop selling old ones, the world changes when pandemics hit, and our companies have to evolve. How easy is it to adapt your systems with those changes? Do you need to find a developer for every little tweak? Are your systems integrated so you can leverage automation to reduce manual processes as you grow?  Our systems need to be easy to change, and evolve as much as our companies do.

Customer Experience (CX) 

customer experience definition

According to HubSpot’s definition of Customer Experience above, we need to provide a positive experience for the entire buyer’s journey if we want our customers to have a positive experience. If we’re able to do it, we earn customer loyalty and brand evangelists. If we aren’t able to provide that, we stand to lose customers and receive bad reviews.

The right systems can help you to provide a positive customer experience in a number of different ways. For example, when someone is on your website and has a question, might they get an answer right away through a chatbot?  Or when a customer has an issue with something they purchased, there’s a way for them to easily contact you and get a response that resolves the issue. And you have a way to track those issues so you can permanently fix the ones which occur most frequently.

Show Me The Light

By now you might be thinking, "ok, I get it," I do need to consider replacing at least one of my systems, but which one? How do I prioritize where to start? And the only thing worse than an old system that doesn’t do what we need, is a new system that doesn’t do what we need. How do I make sure The Light really is the promised land, and not half-baked bread?

One way to start is to take this quick Find Your Friction Assessment. You may have heard about the flywheel being the new version of the sales funnel. The basic premise is that in order to get our flywheel to turn with momentum, we need to remove the friction. That’s exactly what this assessment does. In the two minutes or less that it takes to do the assessment, you will help us identify where your most significant challenges lie. Even better is to have several members of your team take the assessment to get different perspectives.

Our team will follow up with you afterwards to review the findings and give you some recommendations on how you can fix your friction, and let The Light  shine through.