Customer data is what makes the sales world go round. Use it intelligently and you can build customer relationships that last a lifetime, while effectively driving sales and revenue.
This can be tough to accomplish, since sales data tends to be quite dispersed (stored in different locations and formats) – an issue that’s been exacerbated by the shift to remote work. And if you are a growing SMB, having sales reps juggle multiple spreadsheets, emails, or even sticky notes won’t cut it anymore.
That’s where a good CRM (customer relationship management) software can help. It can keep track of your sales data and identify each customer’s unique needs, enabling salespeople to personalize their customer interactions.
Read on to get a better understanding of the top-ranked CRM software vendors and explore why this technology is a must-have for your business process.
As your SMB scales and grows its customer base, managing relationships becomes increasingly tedious and prone to issues.
Some of the most common complaints among sales leaders can easily be solved by a CRM system:
Your CRM platform is a centralized source of customer information that’s been gathered from different departments. From marketing to pre-sales and support, everyone pitches in.
Not only does this technology offer a holistic view of your customer interactions and sales, but it also helps manage your opportunities and automates many mundane sales processes.
That being said, there are hundreds of online CRM software out there, making it challenging to find the right fit for your small business.
If you are shopping around for solutions to eliminate sales friction, offer marketing automation, and delight customers, here is a list of the best CRM software for small business:
When you think CRM, Salesforce is usually the first brand that comes to mind. As the gold standard of CRMs, this company has some of the most well-recognized and widely adopted sales solutions the world over.
Its Sales Cloud Lightning Professional option is a cloud-based solution that lets you customize around each customer’s unique workflows. It also offers regular upgrades and patches, which ensures that you will have access to the latest innovations on the market. Best of all, it has a growing network of third-party apps and integrations.
At $75 per user per month on an annual plan, Sales Cloud Lightning Professional is costlier than most competitors. We recommend taking advantage of Salesforce’s free 30-day trial to experience the solution’s flexible and intuitive features that more than justify the premium price tag.
If budget is a concern but you still want a top-of-the-line CRM solution, then HubSpot is a great pick. This innovative CRM provider has a freemium model with helpful features such as contact management, email tracking, email campaigns, email scheduling, sales quotes, and document sharing.
As your business scales, if you wish to invest more in the solution, you could always upgrade to one of HubSpot CRM’s premium versions, which start at $45 a month for two users.
Sales leaders looking for an easy-to-use, full-featured CRM product at a competitive price point will find that Zoho CRM fits the bill. It boasts a wide range of features including lead management, mail integration, social media CRM, workflow automation, and analytics.
It even enables you to make selling fun with gamification options, wherein sales targets are set and winning teams earn badges and trophies. Another benefit is that it integrates seamlessly with Zoho’s ecosystem of products, such as Zoho Projects or Zoho Books.
Zoho CRM has a free version, wherein up to 3 employees get to use the CRM without any payment, whereas the professional version costs $30 per user per month (billed annually).
The Freshsales CRM offers a lightweight and simple solution for SMBs that want to get their sales automation technology up and running quickly. Some of its star advanced features include AI assistant, auto-renew, and contract-renewal reminders.
Freshsales offers a lifetime free basic plan with account & contact management, contact lifecycle stages, and chat/email marketing/phone features. We recommend that you go for the Growth plan, priced at $15 per month (per user) on the annual plan. This version of the solution supports salespeople with AI-powered predictive contact scoring, sales sequences, and custom reports and dashboards.
Looking for an advanced sales automation and pipeline visibility solution? Try Zendesk Sell. Apart from its ease of use and lead management, it has the potential to act as an end-to-end customer engagement platform thanks to its interoperability with other software in the Zendesk ecosystem – especially Zendesk Support.
This CRM also integrates seamlessly with productivity and business tools such as Dropbox, MailChimp, HubSpot CRM, and Intuit QuickBooks to enable selling within your existing workflow.
Zendesk Sell offers a 14-day free trial to sample the Team tier ($19 per seat per month) or the Professional plan ($49 per seat per month).
Every penny counts for bootstrapped startups. Built for SMBs, Less Annoying CRM has only one plan priced at $15 per user per month (billed annually) – and at this low price point, it provides incredible value for your sales team in terms of flexibility and performance.
Features offered include contact management, lead management, and access to reports. At the same time, it offers superior mobile website implementation and free support for clients.
Their simple, straightforward, and affordable plan makes Less Annoying CRM easily accessible to all SMBs.
Here’s the best part: you can trial the full software for 30 days, without having to enter your payment details!
At just $8 per month per user (billed annually) for the Premium tier solution, Apptivo CRM is a steal. This customizable solution is easy to use and offers excellent mobile platform support.
Salespeople can enjoy a wide range of features such as company branding, IMAP email, reports, message templates, invoicing, and third-party integrations.
To see if Apptivo is a good fit for your company, you can test-drive any plan with the 30-day trial, or sign up for the free starter plan.
Larger SMBs will derive lots of value from Insightly, which offers CRM, project management, and lead management functionalities. This visually attractive and intuitive CRM also features a wide range of integrations, including Google G-Suite and Google Docs.
The Plus tier costs $29 per user per month (billed annually). Even though Insights CRM is quite intuitive and user-friendly, SMBs with a large employee base might benefit from Insightly’s product support plans, which start at $1,500 per year.
To try before buying, you can check out this mid-market CRM’s 14-day free subscription, without having to enter any billing details.
Pipedrive is a deal-driven and sales pipeline CRM app that offers features such as a customizable lead generation chatbot for websites, in-depth reporting, call and email synchronization, and intuitive mobile apps. It also integrates with productivity tools such as Google G Suite, Google Maps, and MailChimp.
Pipedrive’s Essential tier is priced at $12.50 per user per month (billed annually), and you can sign-up for the 14-day free trial to experience the tool before investing in it.
Sage’s fully integrated CRM (with Sales, Marketing, and Service modules) ensures that you have access to the actionable insights you need to help make intelligent business decisions. According to the G2 website, its pricing starts at $39 per month per user.
Sage CRM can automate your sales workflows, from creating quotes and proposals to forecasting sales and converting sales leads into opportunities. It promises to deliver a 25% hike in sales and 60% productivity gains.
Today, mobile CRMs are at the heart of every growing business.
By 2027, the CRM market is expected to touch $113.46 billion, driven by the solution’s improved accessibility and automation features.
Here are the top four reasons for small businesses to use a client relationship management software:
To make your decision easier, here is a checklist of must-have features that will help you find the perfect CRM solution:
These options are much more affordable and easy to implement than on-premise solutions. What’s more, the storage service’s capacity can be flexibly increased or decreased as your company evolves.
This is a necessity as today’s sales reps and customers heavily depend on mobile apps to conduct business and view updates/insights remotely.
A long trial period means you get to use all the available features to understand each option’s strengths and weaknesses and see if it is a good fit for your company.
Once you are comfortable with it, you may consider switching to an annual plan that delivers greater cost savings.
Companies based out of the European Union or companies that do business with European customers must have a CRM product that is GDPR compliant.
A CRM system is a single source of truth for all your sales, customer, and prospect data. Typically, it helps with the sales team’s process automation, lead management, recording of service issues, and marketing campaign management in one centralized location.
Some of the most commonly used CRM software options are Zendesk Sell, Sales Creatio, Insightly CRM, Capsule CRM, Salesforce Sales Cloud Lightning Professional, and Freshsales.
Customer relationship management (CRM) software enables SMBs to collate, organize, analyze, and display details of each customer interaction. It also automates the sales team’s workflows. Examples of CRM systems include marketing, sales, and customer service, and support.