Manage Your Customer Relations Better With CRM Software For Small Businesses

If you run a small business keeping up with your leads, prospect customers and suppliers and contacts, in general, is vital. Good organisation in this regard is as important for small businesses, start-ups and micro-businesses as it is for larger and more established companies. This is where CRM comes in. CRM stands for “Customer Relationship Management”. Good CRM software can transform the life of your small business.  So read on to find out more about the best CRM software for small businesses.

CRM systems track everything relating to customers. It helps you stay on top of emails, calls, visits, progress on sales or deals and more and keeps all this vital info stored in one place. CRM software for small businesses doesn’t necessarily have to be expensive either. There are free options out there, and then for $10-15 more per month, you can get yourself some serious business management tools.

Batchbook.com

This CRM software has a free trail available. After that, you are looking at $19.95 per month. Batchbook has a particularly good communications management component to their software. This allows you to build up a contacts database, extend this with the details you want to keep and ten track calls, emails and even what your customer is tweeting.

Things can end up being pretty expensive with Batchbook if you opt for a feature like Gmail integration, email templates or automated workflows. All this is included only in the $39.95 monthly plan.

Apptivo.com

Apptivo is good enough to offer a free basic plan that can accommodate three users. After that premium plans begin at a reasonable $10 per month. There is also a 30 day free trial of the premium service available. Apptivo is a comprehensive CRM that is regularly listed among the CRM software for small businesses. It will help you keep schedules, notes, contacts, communications and daily tasks organised in one place.

Upgrading to the premium account affords you much more storage with up to 3 GB for each user and an additional 500 MB for the business. Other extra features of the Premium account include bulk email, e-commerce integration, linking up with Google Drive, Calendar, Tasks, Paypal and Dropbox. You can also get an Apptivo app for your phone through the premium account.

This can all be a little overwhelming, especially if you are new to CRM packages. However, it doesn’t take long to master the basics, and after a while, you’ll be able to configure it to suit your needs.

CapsuleCRM.com

Here is a CRM with a difference. A lot of companies will try and win you over with the length of their feature list. Capsule instead focuses on getting the basics right. So that means solid contact management, sales pipelines, collaboration, tasks and scheduling. They have a free basic plan, much like Apptivo, and then a premium plan at $10 per month. They are also offering a 30-day free trial.

The professional plan also has added integrations with Google Apps, email tracking, VoIP and telephone services, job and time tracking, proposals, contracts, accounting, help-desks and more.

The free account is probably too small to be useful with a maximum of 2 users, 250 contacts and a measly ten MB of storage. It can give you a taste of their set up though if you want to try before you buy.

Bitrix24.com

With Bitrix24 you are getting a large suite of powerful tools for business. This includes project management, document handling, scheduling, employee management, collaboration and instant messaging.

They offer a free plan with an unusually generous 5 GB of storage. The premium plan is a little more expensive than most at $39 per month.

Hubspot.com

The core of Hubspot is essentially free. You only pay if you want additional sales or marketing features. This is great if you are on a tight budget, but need CRM.

Hubspot handles the basics of Customer Relationship Management fairly well. This includes logging emails, assigning tasks, tracking deals, building contact and company databases. The free version supports as much storage as you need and as many users. This is one of the reasons we have included it in this list of the top CRM software for small businesses.

Unfortunately, it’s not all great news. The reporting tools you get are average at best, and you’ll probably have to end up getting the free version of Hubspot sales too if you want the functionality you can find from other CRM software providers on this list.

That said there is a lot to like here. I think that among the free options, Hubspot is the best option for CRM software for small businesses.

Insightly.com

Insightly has a strong focus on project management. With this CRM you can set milestones, assign tasks, attach files and notes, define your schedule, produce reports and manage sales pipelines.

There is a free option limited to 2 users. Then they have a plan for $12 per user per month.

There is also some great features if you are interested in sales management. Other features include:

  • Social network integration.
  • Contacts management.
  • Send mass emails.
  • Tools to track leads and sales opportunities.
  • Viewed and administered from a mobile app.

There are five pricing plans to choose from, which is a little complicated. Each plan has some limitation. The free plan is just too restrictive to be useful.

Verdict

Personally, if this is your first foray into Customer Relationship Management, then I would go with what Hubspot are offering. Their free service trumps a lot of paid CRM software. You can explore what they have to offer without being out of pocket if at the end of the day you do not need or like what they have.

CRM is pretty essential for small businesses. If you are running your start-up and struggling to keep track of sales and customers, then we suggest you invest in some Customer Relationship Management software. It can take the organisation of your business to the next level.

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