As competition for leads and sales grows, sales teams and business owners need a better way to track customers through every stage of the buyer journey. This is where CRM software comes into play.
Customer relationship management (CRM) software aims to nurture these customer relationships across various channels, ensuring an excellent experience for customers, and ultimately guiding them down the sales funnel.
These tools also help sales and marketing teams improve their database marketing by sending personalized messages to the right prospects at the right time.
To make your decision easier, I ranked and reviewed the best CRM software based on features, integrations, sales capabilities, marketing tools, support, pricing, and more.
Let’s get started.
After using a ton of different CRMs across numerous tech companies and testing both small business CRMs and enterprise CRMs, here are my top picks for the best CRM software.
HubSpot CRM is a full-featured marketing suite, with its CRM software being their most popular offering.
HubSpot CRM is great for sales professionals due to its great features and time-saving tools. It’s also a strong option for marketing teams with the ability to capture, track, and grow leads within a database.
They offer a 100% free version of their software, with the ability to upgrade and get access to their entire suite of marketing tools.
HubSpot CRM has a free plan that offers a lot of great features to start with. You can then choose to upgrade to one of their paid plans:
Get started with HubSpot CRM.
With Zoho CRM, you can get a 360-degree view of your business, track essential sales and marketing opportunities, and increase conversion rates. With more than 150,000 customers globally, Zoho CRM is one of the most popular tools on this list.
All three paid plans, the ‘Standard,’ ‘Professional,’ and ‘Enterprise’ cost $12, $20 and $35 per user per month (billed annually). Zoho CRM also offers a freemium plan for up to 3 users.
Get started with Zoho CRM.
Freshsales is an AI-based CRM for lead scoring, email activity, email capture, and so forth. One of its most prominent features is that it provides a 360-degree view of your business.
Freshsales offers four plans, starting from $12 up to $79 per user per month (when billed annually).
Get started with Freshsales.
Salesforce is one of the most famous names on this list and has more than a million users worldwide. It’s a cloud-based CRM software that caters to all the branches of a business, including sales, service, marketing, analytics, and more.
Salesforce offers a variety of products; therefore, the prices may vary. However, the subscription plans start at $25 per user per month, and the most expensive plan costs $1,250 per user per month (both billed annually). You can also get in touch with them for a customized plan.
The Nimble is an excellent, albeit simple CRM software tool, that works within the G-Suite inbox or Office 365. It allows you to update contacts, access company & contact insights easily, and manage deals from within your workflow, among other impressive features.
There is only one plan available. The price is $25 per month (billed monthly) and $19 per month (billed annually).
Pipedrive is a sales-focused CRM that uses AI to automated repetitive tasks and manage leads and sales. They currently support over 90,000 customers and over $24 billion in deals have passed through their platform.
Pipedrive offers four paid plans: Essential, Advanced, Professional, and Enterprise. These plans range from $12.50 per user per month to $99 per user per month.
Best Tool for Business Templates and Designs.
Canva is one of the most popular tools to help you design stunning photo templates. Its simplistic user interface has enabled millions to edit graphics without any substantial technical knowledge.
Its user-friendly drag and drop editor can be used to add several layers to your photos. Plus, it allows you to easily add fonts and other graphics to your photos for publishing on social media or your website.
Canva is a go-to tool for professionals who want to create photo designs for websites, social media, flyers, brochures, and marketing collateral.
Here are some of its key features:
Canva operates on a freemium model. The Pro version comes at a subscription price of $12.95 per month. Canva also offers a quote-based version for teams with more than 20 members.
Get started with Canva today.
NetHunt CRM offers three plans, called the ‘Professional,’ ‘Professional Plus,’ and ‘Enterprise.’ The prices start from $24 per month and go up to $48 per month.
Best Library of Image Templates.
DesignWizard is a tool that has thousands of pre-made image design templates suitable for everything from social media posts and YouTube Channel Art to birthday cards and gift certificates.
DesignWizard’s pricing includes a free plan and two paid plans at $9.99 and $49.99/month.
Their free Basic Plan allows you to view their entire library, but you have to pay $1 for each image design download. You can also add text and resize images and download your designs in JPEG, PNG, and PDF.
Their $9.99/month Pro Plan gives you up to 60 image downloads per month, plus the ability to upload your own custom images and custom fonts.
Finally, their most popular Business Plan at $49.99/month gives you access to unlimited image downloads and opens up all of their video features. You can download unlimited standard videos, upload your own videos to edit, and add text, images, and logos to your video assets.
Ultimately, your choice depends on how many images you need each month and whether or not you want to get involved in video marketing.
Overall, DesignWizard is a great tool if you’re looking for thousands of templated designs to use for personal or business use.
Nutshell CRM is a comprehensive, cloud-based software aimed at solving a multitude of business process problems. It’s a holistic tool capable of handling all facets of a business CRM and perfect for keeping detailed records. It uses an Amazon Web Services (AWS) platform.
Nutshell CRM provides two plans.
The first one is the ‘Starter’ plan $19 per user per month, and then you have the ‘Pro’ plan for $19 per user per month (billed annually).
Best Software That Includes Skills Courses.
Photo RAW is quite a popular option among photographers because it offers cutting edge photo editing capabilities for free. The software comes with a free trial version for 30 days, which can be upgraded later on.
Photo RAW is an efficient tool for photographers who want to create stunning images without spending too much time on the editing table. It can be either used as a photograph organizer or as an editing tool.
Some of its key features are unique from other popular photo editing programs present in the market.
Here they are:
On1 Photo RAW is priced at $79.99 for its new customers and $63.99 for the customers who have used any On1 product before. You can also try out its 30-day free trial version; no credit card details required.
Insightly is a modern CRM platform that can help you grow your business faster by building lasting relationships with customers.
The prices start from $29 and go up to $99 per user per month (billed annually). Insightly also offers a free plan for up to 2 users.
Engagebay is a cloud-hosted CRM that integrates all business processes and functions like sales, marketing, and finances on to a single platform. On top of that, the software primarily focuses on automation for maximum efficiency.
It has four broad segments:
The CRM & sales bay segment has four plans (one free and three paid).
The paid plans start from $7.79 and range up to $29.99 per user per month, based on features (when paid bi-annually). You can also pay annually or monthly.
PipelineDeals is an intuitive, cloud-hosted, all-in-one CRM software that is ideal for small and medium businesses. It has excellent features with a focus on sales and employee empowerment.
The paid plans start from $25 and range up to $49 per month.
Agile CRM is an all-in-one CRM with a focus on automation of your marketing and sales while pooling them on to one platform. It is a cloud-based SaaS service that is also one of the most affordable software around.
Agile CRM is a free plan with limited features. There are three paid plans starting from $8.99 and ranging up to $47.99 per user per month.
Adsoup is a multi-platform CRM software with a focus on streamlining communications between your business and clients. It is most suitable for sales and can be very useful for small and medium-sized enterprises.
For one, Adsoup offers an effective free plan. The paid subscriptions start from $19 and go up to $56 per user per month (billed monthly). The annual payment involves a discount.
Some tools not yet listed include SugarCRM, Netsuite, SAP, and Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
Customer relationship management (CRM) software is a type of online tool that helps organizations manage a sales pipeline all the way from lead generation to closing sales.
CRMs help companies access, organize, and make sense of customer data to generate more sales.
CRM collects information from various channels like social media, email campaigns, live chat, phone calls, personal interaction, feedback forms, and more. It further leverages data analytics to analyze the customer’s buying history, patterns, and needs.
The aim is to enhance the customer experience and customer satisfaction, turning leads into customers, then nurturing and upselling that relationship.
CRM has been around for a long time (earlier in paper form), but the benefits of CRM systems became apparent after widespread digitalization.
CRM systems link various departments, including sales, marketing, HR, customer service, IT, business intelligence (BI), and finance. Furthermore, data is readily accessible by any employee in real-time, which empowers teams to quick, data-driven decisions.
Overall, CRM solutions have managed to connect interdepartmental teams and increase sales while removing business silos.
Here are some of the demonstrated benefits of using a good CRM for businesses of all sizes:
CRM software allows you to streamline customer information and can help you generate insights, allowing you to serve your clients better.
Armed with knowledge about customer choice and preferences, you can easily suggest the purchase of complementary products. On top of that, you can recommend other value-added versions of the product(s) that are pricier than the one your customer has bought.
Breaking away from silos, every member of the organization can access the same data in real-time, which can lead to enhanced collaboration between team members, as well as between the different sales and marketing teams involved.
Since you are privy to information like customer preference, choice, and purchase history, the client doesn’t need to spend time explaining their requirements. You can capitalize on your knowledge, satisfy the customer, and enhance work efficiency.
Setting up a CRM software can be costly, but it is a one-time cost. On the other hand, enhanced operational efficiency and collaboration leads to increased productivity, which lowers in the long run.
Employees feel empowered when they can access data, and it results in employees taking more ownership in the day to day work. Thus, CRM solutions naturally increase employee involvement.
It is easy to start using CRM software, especially when you think about the benefits associated with it. For best results, you need to use it across all levels of your organization.
Here are some steps on how to use a CRM:
Before you add anyone else, make sure you get your salespeople on board since they’re most vital for your CRM tool.
Your sales team will ultimately rake in the revenue, and CRM is crucial for them to get more sales for the business. That’s why you also need to ensure that they find it easy to use.
Every business is different, and there are different ways a company can segment their sales funnel. The most commonly used method is by dividing your potential customers into various stages like ‘lead,’ ‘opportunity,’ and ‘customer,’ which represents them from a company standpoint.
While many small businesses use different CRM systems for various uses, it’s a good practice to use a single one. However, whether or not you’re using a single CRM, you’ve got to import your data like the contact list, past deals, and other customer information. Almost all of the CRM systems tools allow CSV file uploads.
The whole point of a CRM is to focus on the customer details and data through as many channels as possible. Therefore, you need a CRM software that provides abundant third-party integrations. Some of the essential integrations that you should be looking at are Amazon, Alibaba, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, among others.
CRM systems have the power to simplify things for you by creating a dashboard. A dashboard lets you take control of everything you need to do by displaying it on the screen.
It’s basically a visual, central control panel where you have access to all the functions of your business, and control anything you want at any time.
Here’s an infographic that depicts what a typical CRM systems dashboard looks like:
You can see and monitor project updates, task completions, statistics, visualizations, charts, and much more.
The sales team makes money for the company. That’s why you should provide them with as much information as possible, which will ease their job of selling the right value to the right customers.
Hence, it’s a good practice to create reports at regular intervals, like weekly, quarterly, or monthly, and send them to the sales reps.
These reports help the sales reps to:
The sales reps can then modify their performance accordingly.
There are a lot of CRM tools in the market, and all of them have their own strengths and benefits.
For instance, Zoho makes customer relationship management software easy and fun, while Insightly helps you focus on the project management side of things. On the other hand, Freshsales is renowned for its user-friendliness, and Nutshell is – in a nutshell, great for your sales team.
However, you know your business better than anyone, and it’s for you to decide what it needs. Look at the value you’re getting at a definite price point, and the outcome you’re looking at.
Look at things like cloud vs. on-premise deployment, features and functionality, third-party integrations, ease-of-use, pricing plans, and more. Study all the facets before choosing the perfect CRM software for your business.
Which CRM software are you planning to use for your business? Let me know in the comments below.