A CRM, or customer relationship management software, is how you ensure that your clients are getting the right meaningful moments in their purchasing journey. With a CRM system, you can examine the sales process, and ensure that your small business is having the right impact on your customer.
CRM technology is the ultimate way to manage all of your customer information, track leads, and ensure follow-up for purchasing opportunities. The right software will tie all of your sales, marketing, and service solutions into an intuitive interface.
The question is, how do you know which CRM technology is right for your company? Today, we’re going to examine some of the best CRM system solutions on the market to help businesses of all sizes transform their chances of customer conversion, and loyalty.
What is the Best CRM Software for Small Business?
When it comes to choosing the best CRM for small business operations, there are a lot of points you need to consider. The ideal CRM comes with everything from social media marketing, to immersive tracking tools. That’s exactly what you get from Hubspot CRM.
HubSpot CRM comes with a wide variety of inbound marketing tools to experiment with, from guidance that helps you improve your SEO performance, to tools for ongoing lead nurturing. HubSpot CRM works with both Microsoft Office and G-Suite, so no matter what your business prefers, you can get an all-in-one environment for productivity.
Hubspot CRM makes it simple to see what’s going on in your sales pipeline. You can track whether customers are opening your emails, and implement advanced packages into your service that allow you to access things like artificial intelligence and advanced automation tools. Unfortunately, there are some limitations to your customization options with HubSpot.
Although the free version is very generous, you might eventually need to upgrade to one of the higher tiers or access some add-on packages to improve your results.
Pricing for HubSpot starts with a completely free tier for an unlimited number of users. If you want a more advanced experience, then you can pay for the HubSpot Sales Hub, HubSpot Service Hub, or HubSpot Marketing Hub, which all start at around $50 per user per month. You can also access the full HubSpot CMS for around $300 per month, and a starter growth package that comes for $113 per month, per user.
- Excellent free option for beginners
- Intuitive and easy-to-use interface
- Excellent range of email marketing features
- Works with a lot of leading tools, like G-Suite
- Easy to use with your entire team
- The free tier won’t be enough forever
- Can be limited on customization options
Who is it Best For? ✅
We’d recommend HubSpot CRM for beginners and small businesses who are just making their way into the customer relationship management market. There’s a free version to get you started and a variety of training resources to help you get the most out of your new investment too. The bonus add-ons will allow you to grow at your own pace when you’re ready.
👉 For more info check out our HubSpot CRM review.
Freshsales is part of Freshworks, a comprehensive set of software tools, created to enhance your relationships with both customers and employees. There’s a wide selection of features in the Freshworks suite, including Freshchat for live chat and bots, Freshcaller, and Freshdesk, for omnichannel customer service collaboration.
Depending on the needs of your business, you can tap into everything from comprehensive views of the sales pipelines to extensive AI technology for self-service. There’s even cloud calling technology available so you can access a wider range of communication channels. Other features of the CRM include AI-powered contact scoring and forecasting, predictive analytics, and accelerated revenue opportunities.
Alongside some of the most intelligent tools on the market, Freshsales also offers things like tailored email campaigns, landing page creation, page visit tracking, and intuitive, easy-to-use platform access, so you don’t have to spend long training employees.
There’s a free version of Freshsales available for basic contact management.
After that, the Freshsales CRM pricing structure starts at a price of £12 per month for growth, which offers visual sales pipelines and sales sequences. You can also access Pro for £29 per month with multiple sales pipelines and time-based workflows, or Enterprise for £55 per month with audit logs and dedicated account managers.
- Easy to use functionality
- Intelligent and predictive insights
- Access to comprehensive integrations
- Complete views of your target audience
- Highly secure technology
- Mobile apps for mobile workers
- Billing per user is expensive for big teams
- Can take a while to understand all the features
Who is it Best For? ✅
If you want to take an end-to-end approach to customer service, support, and relationship tracking, Freshsales is a great tool. This solution focuses heavily on making sure you can connect with your target audience, and generate both sales and loyalty.
Sendinblue is better known for email marketing software than any customer relationship management tools. However, this solution can be a very powerful way to manage your contacts. Sendinblue is a handy solution for businesses of all sizes, with an easy-to-use backend and no need for any complex installations and updates.
Alongside management for your customer details, you’ll also get fantastic email marketing solutions and automations included. Transactional emails and SMS marketing options are both available, and you get fantastic smart segmentation. Thanks to a variety of listing options, you can organize contacts according to their behavior and characteristics.
Unlike most leading CRMs, Sendinblue goes beyond the basics of things like email marketing and follow up. You also get SMS marketing and live chat to improve the way you connect with your audience and get more leads in real-time. There’s also access to top-tier customer support, so you can get started as quickly as possible.
Sendinblue has a free option to get you started, which supports unlimited contacts and up to 300 emails per day. If you need support for more customers and features, you can access the Lite package for $25 per month, which offers up to 100,000 emails per day. The premium package is $65 per month for up to 1 million emails per day. You can also access a custom package with Enterprise, which gives you a whole host of extra features.
- Excellent ease of use with convenient functionality
- Lots of segmentation options for your customers
- Handy email marketing integrations
- Helpful SMS marketing and live chat tools
- Free option for beginners
- Lacks some more advanced CRM features
- Free plan is quite limited
Who is it Best For? ✅
If you’re already using Sendinblue for your email marketing, then it makes sense to use it for your CRM system too. The technology is convenient and easy to use for beginners, and it’s great for those who want to go beyond email. SMS marketing and live chat options really make this tool stand out from the crowd.
👉 For more info check out our Sendinblue review.
If you're looking for an all-in-one CRM, then Close CRM is certainly worth a second glance – particularly if you're managing your sales team remotely.
Close CRM centers a lot of its attention on customer/prospect outreach via phone calls (local and global), SMS, video conferencing (via its Zoom integration), and email.
When it comes to calling prospects, sales reps benefit from automatic calling and logging. This is handy for keeping track of customer interactions, and of course, for training and monitoring purposes. It's also effortless to leave prospects pre-recorded voicemails, transfer calls, and reach over 200 countries!
On top of that, Close CRM also comes with features explicitly designed for sales leaders, including reporting, call coaching, custom fields, activities, and integrations.
We also love that Close CRM goes a long way to centralizing your lead generation, communications, and sales pipeline so that you don't have to chop and change between interfaces. Instead, your sales team can focus their time and effort on what they do best – making sales.
Firstly, there's a 14-day free trial. After that, there are four pricing plans to choose from, which you can pay either monthly or annually (the latter comes with a discount. Annual billing is quoted here. You'll pay $25 a month per user for the starter plan. After that, fees snowball to $59 a month (per user) for the Basic plan, $89 a month (per user) for the Professional program, and, finally, $129 a month (per user) for the Business plan.
- Thanks to its staggered pricing plans, this platform is relatively scalable
- Omnichannel communications are supported
- There aren't any hidden fees.
- You can call over 200 countries
- Customer support is reportedly excellent
- There isn't a free version available
- Phone support isn't available
Who is it Best For? ✅
We would recommend Close CRM for mid-sized remote and sales teams and their managers looking to turbocharge their sales activities and convert their leads into significant sales.
When you’re looking for ways to automate your sales and connect with customers on a deeper level, then Salesforce is one of the first names that will often come to mind. More than just a CRM software, Salesforce makes it easier to track every part of the customer journey, so you can really connect with your clients. You can integrate Salesforce with a range of tools like Gmail.
Startups and small businesses alike have access to a robust selection of CRM tools and resources, from templates to support email marketing, to artificial intelligence for helping you to score your leads. There are tons of predictive features to help make this the best CRM software too. More than just a tool for contact management and lead management, the CRM tools from Salesforce help to strengthen your connection with your customers.
You can personalize website content based on user behavior and collaborate with team members on finding the best way to encourage new sales. You can even access a mobile app for your small busines CRM that helps to streamline operations on the go.
Salesforce pricing depends on what you need. The Essentials package for all-in-one sales and support starts at around $25 per user per month. The Professional solution is $75 per user per month, while the Enterprise offering is $150 per month per user. You an also get unlimited power and support for your CRM service for $300 per month per user. If you want to add on extra features, there may be an additional charge there too.
- Excellent for helping companies to manage and find leads
- Landing page and email builders to interact with
- Lots of automation tools and features for teams
- Easy to forecast sales and lead value with AI insights
- Cross-selling and upselling features
- Takes a while to get used to the functionality
- Can get a little expensive
Who is it Best For? ✅
We’d recommend Salesforce CRM for companies that want to get the most out of their sales strategy with a selection of AI tools. Integrations and new product updates means that Salesforce is constantly rolling out exciting new technology, ranging from predictive analytics, to advanced lead management and assessment options.
If you’re looking for a better way to manage your customer data and customer interactions, then Zoho CRM has you covered, designed to upgrade your eCommerce strategy and email campaigns, Zoho CRM targets small companies with its convenient user interface, automation options, customizable modules, and so much more.
With the Zoho CRM software, you can define workflows and manage leads, check out everyday tasks quickly and support employees and marketing campaigns with a convenient SaaS solution. SMBs will have no problem taking advantage of the user-friendly backend. This technology also comes with a huge selection of features for a relatively low price.
There’s KPI tracking and sales forecasting to help you increase your potential revenue. If you’re willing to spend a little more on your CRM platform, Zoho can go beyond tracking contact information. The enterprise version offers sales funnel analytics, custom data comparisons, and so much more.
Pricing for Zoho CRM starts with a free version that up to 3 users can access at once. This product is mostly targeted at smaller home-run companies. If you want to upgrade to the Standard package, then you’ll pay $12 per user per month. The Enterprise package is around $35 per month per user, billed on an annual basis.
- Excellent free version to get you started
- Lots of handy features including funnel analytics
- Powerful analytics and reports and integrations with Google
- Gamification tools for teams and competitions
- Excellent sales forecasting
- The best features can be expensive to get hold of
- Some slow and clunky components in the UI
Who is it Best For? ✅
We’d recommend Zoho CRM if you’re looking for a state-of-the-art solution that gives you a complete view of what’s happening in the backend of your business conversations and potential sales. You can access a huge range of reporting and analytics tools that give you handy metrics and insights into your sales activities. This popular CRM also comes with tons of workflow automation tools.
If you’re a startup and need business software that really pulls its weight, Engagebay is an excellent option. This modular marketing and lead generation tool provides everything you need from capture to conversion.
Engagebay has three distinct products for marketing, sales, and customer service. All of which are designed to work with one another. You can opt into one, two, or all three to create precisely the toolkit you need.
Engagebay makes it easy to capture all the contact info you require using contact forms, web pop-ups, and live chat. Then, once you've started building your list, you can engage them via email marketing automation. Engagebay also compiles thorough customer files to help your sales team get a holistic insight into whoever they're conversing with. This goes a long way to ensuring reps provide the best possible customer service.
Staying organized is simple with Engagebay's contact management features. Plus, you can set and analyze lead scores based on the potential fruitfulness of each lead. Consequently, you and your team have a better idea of who to prioritize.
As we've just said, you can opt for Engagebay's individual products or their all-in-one solution. With the latter, there are four pricing plans available.
First, there's their free package. Here, you can accumulate up to 1,000 contacts and send 1,000 branded emails.
If you need more features, including email templates, you can upgrade to the Basic program for $11.99 per user per month (annual billing). Marketing automation and advanced A/B testing are unlocked in the Growth Plan for $39.99 per user per month. However, you’ll get even more control over your team, reporting, and analytics with the Pro Plan, which will set you back $63.99 per user per month.
- There's a free plan available
- Engagebay's software is incredibly flexible and scalable
- Engagebay provides an all-in-one solution to help businesses track and enhance the entire customer journey
- Although Engagebay's products are feature-rich, they've managed to keep the interface pretty simple.
- Service Bay comes with a free helpdesk and live chat features.
- There isn't a mobile app
- Marketing automation and advanced analytics are only accessible with Engagebay's more expensive plans
- Engagebay's pricing can be confusing as there are so many options to think about
- The per-user, per-month pricing model can quickly rack up
Who is it Best For? ✅
Engagebay is best suited to small and growing businesses that want one platform to manage customer interactions, lead generation, and sales.
It's also worth mentioning that the Service Bay functionality certainly benefits businesses with active support teams responding to high volumes of customer queries. It’s an all-inclusive software for those businesses that don’t want to use too many different tools.
As the name might suggest, Pipedrive CRM is all about giving you the best overview of your sales processes and contact management. The CRM comes with a very visual and straightforward interface intended to improve the customer conversation and boost your chances of ongoing profit. You can leverage this powerful tool to keep on top of deals and track contacts quickly.
With Pipedrive CRM, the intuitive user interface ensures that you have everything you need to prioritize sales activities and sync crucial information across channels. You get to consolidate your workflow in the same convenient place, so you’re not jumping between apps. Plus, there are tons of tools to fine tune the sales process.
Pipedrive CRM comes with a lot of automation features and customizations for your sales pipeline. There are reminders and notifications, as well as follow up alerts to keep you focused on the things that matter most. Mobile apps for iOS and Android give you further opportunities too. There’s even a Gmail sidebar app available.
Pricing for Pipedrive is very reasonable, with an Essentials plan that starts at $12.50 per user per month, billed on an annual basis. There’s also an Advanced plan for $24.90 and a Professional plan which will cost around $49.90 per month per user. The pricing is a bit more expensive if you choose to take the monthly purchasing option instead of going annual with your payments. Enterprise plans will cost you around $99 per month per user when billed annually.
- Excellent range of tracking features to manage your contacts
- Lots of automation options and customizations
- No need to jump between apps because everything is one place
- Intuitive back-end interface
- Reasonably affordable packages
- No inbuilt email platform so you need to use an integration
- Basic tools with features like Slack
Who is it Best For? ✅
We’d recommend Pipedrive for companies that need help making their sales processes more streamlined and convenient. This is a tool that’s excellent for increasing efficiency among your team members and improving your chances of long-term sales. You can also get a decent amount of features for a reasonably affordable price.
SharpSpring CRM is a new name in the world of marketing automation, but it’s been gaining a lot of traction in recent years. This fantastic tool stands out because it’s both highly capable and feature-rich, as well as being affordable for companies of all sizes.
The Sharpspring CRM solution is all about helping you to capture and convert more leads. You can access various features like behaviour-based email marketing, with campaign tracking tools. You also get access to chatbots for customer support, and dynamic landing pages for your ad campaigns. Sharpspring social connects you to the platforms your customers use, while the dynamic form builder makes it easy to reach clients.
Reporting and analytics features with SharpSpring CRM are particularly useful, as they give you a visual overview of how well your campaigns are doing. Plus, there are tons of integrations with your favorite tools, like Twitter and Zapier.
SharpSpring might seem expensive at first glance, but it’s actually great value, because you can access support for unlimited users, rather than buying per user licenses. For 1,500 contacts, pricing starts at around $450 per month, and you can get 10,000 contacts for $650 per month. For 20,000 contacts, you’ll pay $875 per month for unlimited users. Remember, you can also access custom packages for agencies and enterprise companies.
- Transparent full-business pricing
- Solid range of automation features
- Chatbot and social media
- Excellent dynamic form and landing page builder
- In-depth reporting and analytics
- Slight learning curve for beginners
- Some bugs and issues occasionally
Who is it Best For? ✅
We’d recommend SharpSpring for companies that have multiple users that need to access customer information for sales and marketing purposes. If you want your whole business to have access to your CRM, and you don’t want to pay for numerous licenses, then you can rely on SharpSpring to keep costs low.
👉 For more info check out our SharpSpring review.
Insightly is a convenient CRM solution available both on the web, and as an Android or Apple application. You can even integrate this tool with Microsoft 365 or G Suite. The platform comes with a fantastic range of pipeline integrations to help you manage your customer data and contacts. There are various tracking opportunities, and you can assign tasks to team members easily.
Business Intelligence features from Microsoft Power BI are often useful to add to your experience with Insightly, as you can track historical and real-time data within your CRM platform. This allows you to make more informed decisions from observable metrics and trends. Insightly also offers a range of clear and concise dashboards for tracking.
If you want a convenient solution that works with a wide range of environments – including your Chrome browser, then Insightly is a great choice.
There’s a free trial option available which will give you an insight into the kind of features that you can expect – although you can’t test some enterprise features for free. The Plus version of the tool comes at a price of $29 per user per month, while Professional is $49 per person per month. Enterprise is $99 per month per user, when billed annually
- Use on any platform, including your smartphone
- Excellent integrations with Chrome browsers
- Wide range of tracking and analytics features
- Real-time insights into your sales
- Decent usability on the backend
- Limited free version
- Some syncing features don’t work as well as they should
Who is it Best For? ✅
We’d recommend Insightly if you’re looking for a CRM you can use alongside your existing business management tools. This fantastic solution comes with access to everything from a Browser app for Chrome, to intuitive tools that you can access through your smartphone.
A CRM solution is more than just a way to track outlook email and Gmail addresses. The best small business CRM can assist with everything from project management, to help desk ticketing, and more. If you want a solution that can strengthen your email marketing efforts, then Streak CRM could be the tool for you. This service uses email integration to give you a collection of effective tools for your inbox.
Streak CRM builds directly into Gmail and comes with various tools for lead generation and management. There are mobile and desktop apps, so you can track your campaigns anywhere. The platform also automatically captures information rom your contacts and emails using an intelligent API. This means that you can set up notifications to inform you of your customer’s position in the pipeline.
Far more appealing than a standard excel spreadsheet, Streak CRM makes sure that you can respond to inquiries and issues that your customers might be having in a timely manner. Although it’s a different experience to tools like agile CRM and on-premise customer management tools, it’s great for improving customer templates.
If you want a free CRM for personal use, then Streak is the perfect choice. Just remember that you won’t be able to access all of the features with this package. You only get basic features so you can try out what integrated email CRMs are like. The Solo package is for single users and small companies with a price of $15 per month, while the Pro package is the most popular, at $49 per month. There’s an Enterprise version of Streak for $129 per month which comes with priority support and data validation.
- Integrates directly with your email service
- Makes sure you can respond to queries quickly
- Improves the productivity of your sales reps instantly
- Makes it easy to track customer relationships and sales leads
- Easy to use back-end environment
- Runs as a chrome extension, so you’ll need to download it again when you get a new device
- Pricing can be a little steep for some
Choosing the best CRM for Small Business Use
These days, there’s no shortage of CRM options out there suitable for small businesses. In the past, it used to be that you needed a huge budget and a massive sales team to access the functionality of a CRM. Now anyone can get started in no time with an affordable package, or even a free tier. The challenge is finding the one CRM that’s suitable for you.
The right CRM might be something that allows you to combine all of your sales pipelines to track the complete customer journey, from phone calls through to emails. Maybe you want something that can help you to track your MailChimp campaigns or see how customers are responding to certain messages with lead scoring.
From Freshsales and Pipedrive, to Agile CRM and Sugar CRM, there are plenty of options out there. Our advice is to try one of the products with a free trial or free tier initially. That way, you can see first-hand how much the features available will transform your customer relationships, before you invest too much.
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