Zoho CRM Review (2023) – How Good Is It Actually?

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In this Zoho CRM review, we’ll be walking you through one of the top-rated customer relationship management tools on the market. Zoho CRM is an extremely popular tool for business leaders hoping to develop stronger connections with their target audience.

Feature-rich and easy to use, Zoho CRM supports around 250,000 businesses across 180 countries to ensure you can convert more leads, grow revenue, and engage with customers. Current users include brands like Amazon and Bose.

Let’s take a close look at Zoho CRM.

What is Zoho CRM?

Zoho CRM is a state-of-the-art customer relationship management software delivered by Zoho, a popular SaaS provider. The software acts as a central environment where companies can bring sales, marketing, and customer support solutions together, to access more conversions.

Zoho CRM is actually part of a vast suite of digital tools available from Zoho, which also includes helpdesk management tools. The flexible software promises to bring the best “general purpose” solutions vertical-specific CRM systems under one roof.

Zoho CRM is designed with flexibility in mind, to ensure that all kinds of business, from every background can leverage the features. Zoho CRM supports:

  • B2C companies: B2C companies with shorter customer lifecycles can access features like instant surveys, lead management, marketing automation and more.
  • B2B companies: Zoho CRM supports B2B brands in maintaining and building stronger client relationships with deal tracking, payments, and reports.
  • SMBs: Small companies can access a host of handy tools within the Zoho CRM free package, and upgrade when they’re ready to expand.
  • Enterprises: Advanced CRM features like analytics, workflow management, marketing automation, and territory management support large companies.

Zoho CRM is essentially an all-in-one environment where companies can find the tools they need to identify their potential leads, nurture connections and boost sales. Technology for everything from tactical decision making to workforce management helps to drive better customer satisfaction and bigger conversions for your business.

For people in search of convenient, flexible, and easy-to-use solutions, Zoho CRM ranks among the best CRM software available.

Zoho CRM Features: Sales force Automation

One of the first, and most important features of Zoho CRM is the salesforce automation technology. With Salesforce automation, you can automate a range of routine sales, support, and marketing functions that would otherwise take up valuable time for your staff. This means your people have more time to focus on customers.

The salesforce management tools fall into four sections:

Lead management

With lead management, you can identify quality leads, track return on investment your ad spend, work on turning promising leads to conversions, and engage with leads closely across a host of omnichannel touchpoints. Zoho CRM gives a bunch of great features for lead management, including:

  • Smart web forms for lead generation, with Captcha and custom field forms
  • Business card scanning and QR scanning to collect contacts on the go
  • Live chat for your website to communicate with incoming leads
  • Twitter access within your CRM
  • Facebook connections to your CRM
  • Zia artificial intelligence for lead scoring
  • Scoring rules for better lead engagement
  • Automatic workflow distribution for qualified leads
  • Omnichannel communication and email campaigns (with segmentation)
  • Zoho CRM mobile app
  • Zoho CRM and Google Ad integration
  • Built-in analytics with custom reports

Deal management

Deal management tools on Zoho CRM promise a convenient way to prioritize, track, and monitor all the deals you have lined up. The software ensures businesses can focus on the deals with the highest chances of closing, learn crucial information about deals at any moment, and increase upselling and cross-selling opportunities. There’s even the option to build custom sales processes for teams, and design custom pipelines. Some of the deal management capabilities include:

  • Advanced filters and organization to track your deals
  • Sales pipelines for different sales processes
  • Zia artificial intelligence for lead scoring
  • Deal stage insights at a glance
  • CRM-based quotes
  • Competition tracking
  • Deal pipeline tracking to help you find bottle necks
  • Workflow alerts for all users

Contact management

The contact management tools on Zoho CRM provide companies with a reliable way of turning their existing customers into brand ambassadors. Multichannel communication capabilities mean you can exceed customer expectations whenever they interact with you. There’s even the option to view all of your customer conversations at once. Features include:

  • Omnichannel communication with a unified inbox
  • Integration with other CRM tools and helpdesk features
  • Email insights and analytics
  • Social media integrations with Facebook and Twitter
  • Zia AI assistance to tell you the best time to contact leads
  • One-click calling straight from the CRM
  • Meeting logging and recording

Workflow rules

The workflow automation rules within Zoho CRM ensures you can chain various important actions together in your business, to improve efficiency. Zoho allows for the creation of multiple aligned rules, with custom developer access for special requirements. You can:

  • Automate post-email activities
  • Find patterns and get workflow suggestions with Zia
  • Analyze and optimize your workflows with reports
  • Examine workflow performance and success rates
  • Integrate the apps team members use
  • Extend functionality with custom functions

Over all, you get a lot of user-friendly tools for account management and sales tracking from Zoho. You can even access webinars to help teach you how to use the technology effectively.

Zoho CRM Review: Omnichannel Communications

At the heart of Zoho CRM, is the ability to bring all of your critical customer conversations together, in one trackable environment. Channels include:

  • Email: With Zoho CRM, you can connect your email client directly to your CRM software, so you can see exactly how deals are going in a glance. There’s access to detailed reports for your emails, and templates to help you reduce bounce rates and improve click rates. You can even set up automation every time someone opens an email.
  • Telephony: Zoho allows for the integration of telephony tools. The “Phonebridge” integration means you can link to more than 50 telephony partners, to make calls, record them, and view information about customers in one place. You can update the call results in your CRM automatically and track the status of calls or remind team members to follow up.
  • Social media: Connect social media profiles, like LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, to help with monitoring brand conversations. Zoho CRM allows users to search for keywords suitable to their business and demonstrate if accounts using those keywords are existing leads, or someone new to the business. You can even respond to posts in real-time and use automatic lead generation tools to save contacts in your database.
  • Live chat: Embedding live chat into your website ensure you can connect with customers on the messaging platform they love most. When you integrate your chat system, Zoho will tell you if you’re talking to a returning customer or prospect. Plus, you can save transcripts for more advanced information.
  • Webforms: Designed to help you capture leads for nurturing, webforms ensure you can collect the contact details of people who arrive on your site. You can even integrate the Zoho SalesIQ technology to determine where customers drop out of the purchasing cycle
  • Self-service: If you’re serving a digitally-savvy audience, it might be easier to make a sale if you can give them a little more control. Providing greater accessibility to vendors, customers, and partners through portals is a great way to delight your audience.
  • Web conferencing: Ideal for showing off your items through presentations and meetings, Zoho integrates with Zoho ShowTime and Zoho Meetings to help salespeople engage in crucial conversations with prospects.

Perhaps the most exciting part of the omnichannel solution from Zoho, is that you get context every step of the way. You’ll collect necessary data about your audience and their purchases as they move through the buying journey, which ensures you can keep conversations specific.

There’s also team collaboration functionality, so your team members can work more effectively together in groups. Plus, “SalesSignals” ensures you can keep track of all your customer communications with notifications in real-time. You can even set notifications for every time a customer interacts with your brand.

Zoho CRM review: Automation and AI

Perhaps one of the most exciting capabilities of Zoho CRM is the ability to automate your campaigns and improve productivity. The Zoho CRM workflow automation system ensure you can automate sales routines instantly, chain rules together, and keep staff on track. Even better, integration with Zoho’s AI “Zia” means you can also analyze your team’s performance as they work.

Zoho’s workflow rules allow you to set 10 conditions for a single rule, so you can be more specific with your automations. There are various “pre-defined actions” available, like scheduling tasks, sending emails, and updating essential fields. This gives you a “beginner-friendly” place to start from when working on your automations.

There are even various tools to help you automate your post-email activities. For instance, you can automatically create new contacts when a new address gets in touch and notify your team when you reach out to certain prospects. Developers can call in webhooks and automate the updating of fields automatically too.

Part of what makes the automation on Zoho CRM so special, is access to the proprietary AI. The Zoho CRM Zia AI system finds patterns and suggests possible workflows, combing through audit logs and history to identify data patterns. There’s even the option to set pre-built workflows to makes sales processes simple.

As you implement your workflows, in-depth reports will demonstrate just how effective each process is at helping you to reach your sales goals. The “Workflow Insights” feature uses Zia technology to analyze what makes your business truly successful.

As an added benefit, you can also use webhooks to connect other third-party applications into your workflows. With this functionality, it’s easy to ensure all the tools your teams use each day are properly linked and sharing vital data. There’s even the option to extend your CRM functionality with “custom functions”, like being able to view data from a third-party application within Zoho CRM.

Outside of helping with suggestions and enhancing reports, the Zia conversational assistant can also answer your questions via call or chat, predict sales opportunities with immersive win probability calculations, and even detect anomalies in your sales patterns.

The Zia assistant also:

  • Enhances emails by suggesting information you may need to include
  • Tracks and reports on customer sentiment
  • Delivers personalized suggestions to each member of your team
  • Provides instant notifications on competitor behavior
  • Enriches contact data and ensures accuracy
  • Boosts productivity with recommendations
  • Automatically assigns records to the right people
  • Shows the best time for contacting a prospect
  • Validates images added to a CRM

You can even access the Zoho CRM Prediction Builder to build Zia predictions from the ground up for any module within Zoho CRM.

Zoho CRM review: Analytics

Analytics are one of the most important features of a CRM solution. The more in-depth your reports, the more you can learn about your customers.

Zoho CRM has plenty of insights to help you monitor all the components of your sales cycle. You can create custom dashboards with analytical widgets for sales, with charts, funnels, and KPIs. Even more importantly, Zoho ensures everyone in your team can understand your reports. You can blend CRM data in a host of ways to better understand underlying trends.

Some of the analytics features Zoho CRM offers include:

  • Filtering: Powerful filtering options allow for sifting through information at speed.
  • Share and export: You can export reports in a range of formats for sharing.
  • Templates: Choose templates for your reports to help set them up faster.
  • Real time reporting: Get insights on sales and marketing trends as they happen
  • Custom reports: Build your own reports and dashboards from scratch
  • Anomalies: Get AI-powered overviews of potential anomalies in your data.
  • Cohorts: Break down aspects of your business into cohorts for precise analytics.
  • Quadrants: Use quadrant analysis to compare and correlate various metrics.
  • KPIs: Access a scorecard following top deals and dashboards to monitor growth.
  • Compare: Compare and contrast a host of metrics across multiple modules (like teams and territories).
  • Funnels: Find potential blocks in your sales process with funnels, and a comprehensive measurement strategy.
  • · Target meter: Provide your entire team with achievable targets to keep them focused and motivated.

Your analytics system will also integrate with the other insightful technology you already use, like Office 365, G-Suite, LinkedIn, Google Analytics, Zapier, and Sheets. You can also adjust report page layouts for more convenient insights.

Zoho CRM Review: Pricing

One particularly appealing thing about Zoho CRM, is how transparent the pricing is. There’s a free option for up to 3 users, which gives you some basic functionality, like incorporation of social media accounts, sales task logging, notes, and call logs. You can also save up to 10 email templates within the free version. After that, options include:

  • Standard: £12 per month when billed annually: This includes everything in the free package, as well as scoring rules, workflows, mass emails, pipelines, custom dashboards, and Canvas.
  • Professional: £18 per month paid annually: All the features of Standard, plus “SalesSignals”, Blueprint, validation rules, inventory management, web-to-case forms, and Canvas for 3 views.
  • Enterprise: £35 per month when billed annually: This includes everything in Professional, as well as Zia AI, CommandCenter, Advanced Customization, Multi-user portals, Mobile SDK and MDM, and Canvas technology for up to 5 views.
  • Ultimate: £42 per month when billed annually: This includes Advanced BI (bundled with Zoho analytics), enhanced feature limits, a 30-day trial, and Canvas for up to 25 views.

There’s also the option to access further add-ons, like “Bigin” – the pipeline-centric CRM for small businesses. Bigin allows for the management of customer relationships with incredible ease. Or, you can look at “Zoho CRM Plus”, which is a unified customer experience platform available from £47 per month when billed annually. This solution allows companies to access all stages of the customer lifecycle, as well as extra functionalities like social and email marketing, helpdesk access, analytics, surveys, and CRM opportunities.

Zoho CRM Review: Verdict

If you’re looking for a highly customizable CRM solution with tons of bonus features, Zoho CRM is a good choice. One of the best CRM solutions on the market, often ranked alongside HubSpot, and , Microsoft Dynamics, Salesforce, Zoho CRM is an easy-to-use and efficient tool for tracking and managing customer relationships. There are reports with multiple layouts to guide your sales team, invoicing tools, and integrations with a range of other Zoho products.

You can access the Zoho CRM API to create solutions to match your own business needs and ensure teams can access customer data anywhere with Android and iOS apps. Though the layout of this tool might require a little update to improve ease of use, there’s not much of a learning curve for beginners, so reps can start taking advantage immediately.

Zoho CRM also benefits from a range of features for sales management, sales forecasting, process management, and more, to help ensure success. Though there’s no free plan, like you’d get with Hubspot CRM, you do get a lot more functionality than you would from base tools like Mailchimp CRM. Overall, this is a great tool for all kinds of companies.

Rebekah Carter

Rebekah Carter is an experienced content creator, news reporter, and blogger specializing in marketing, business development, and technology. Her expertise covers everything from artificial intelligence to email marketing software and extended reality devices. When she’s not writing, Rebekah spends most of her time reading, exploring the great outdoors, and gaming.

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