2019 has passed and I hope it has elevated your business in the way you had imagined in 2018.
Now is the time for better goals and new achievements. I believe, in 2020, your top priority should be fixing business processes. If you have faced friction in major areas like sales or marketing, you must pick tools that can make tasks easier for your team.
In this article, we’re going to talk about one such tool that is extremely important for every kind of business. Whether it is a startup or an enterprise, strong Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a must.
We’re talking about the 10 best CRM in the market, and why you should pick one of these in 2020.
Before we check out the best CRM, we must understand what exactly a business should look for in a CRM:
1. Contact management
The first and the most basic requirement for any size of a business is contact management. Without this feature, it would be hard to maintain data, leads, and eventually, the entire business.
You should also check if the CRM offers a clear view of the contact. Kind of like, which company does it belong to, associated deals, transactions from the contact, on-going communication with the contact, etc.
Basically, just by clicking on the contact, you should be able to see everything associated with it.
An eagle-eye view of the contact.
2. Pipeline management
This is probably why you’re buying a CRM in the first place. You have to make sure your CRM is flexible in terms of creating and managing multiple pipelines at the same time.
You should be able to create multiple pipelines and assign deals with them. You must have the freedom to create stages according to your business model.
That’s the kind of freedom you must ask for in a CRM.
3. Sales reporting
Tracking sales performance is crucial to make sure your efforts are going in the right direction. Many CRM has started providing interactive dashboards to let sales teams know about their performance.
You can fetch details like monthly sales numbers, your best performing teammate, individual sales efforts, etc. Your CRM should give a clear picture of what is happening in sales, and everything around it.
It’s a big concern for every business because you’ll be spending dollars for every user, every month.
Especially if you’re owning an SMB, you must consider this factor and make sure you’re opting for a package full of features at reasonable rates.
Let’s quickly check out the list of best CRM for 2020, and why you should pick one of these.
1. Salesmate CRM
Salesmate is one of the best small business CRMs for sales teams. In fact, the entire product is built in a way to bring out the best out of your sales reps.
Pipeline and deal management are two of the strongest suits of Salesmate CRM. You can create multiple pipelines for your multiple products/services and assign deals to them.
Another advantage of Salesmate CRM is contact management. You can have a 360° view of your contacts consisting of every information related to that particular person or company.
Let’s say John is connected with you in multiple deals. You can check out recent conversations, deals details, and everything around. If you connect QuickBooks with Salesmate, you can also check out the revenue details from the contact or company, right in the 360° view.
Plus, you can make direct calls and texts from a built-in virtual phone system. Not many CRM provides this feature.
Other useful features of Salesmate CRM:
- Contact management
- Workflow automation
- Pipeline management with drag & drop deals.
- Built-in calling and texts
- Team inbox
- Activity tracking
- Email tracking
- Product and service management
- Sales follow up email sequences
- Text sequences
- Data entry automation
- Goal tracking and sales forecasting
- Smart sales reports
- Integrations with business tools
Salesmate is definitely a great choice for startups and small businesses with an annual plan starting at just $12/user/month.
2. Zoho CRM
Zoho is a strong CRM, especially for small and medium cap businesses. The CRM is popular for its sales force automation. You can easily create multiple workflows and speed up your sales process.
Necessary features like deal management, lead management, and contact management will make your routine a lot easier with Zoho.
Zoho has put a lot of effort into combining your channels to bring all the client interactions to a single platform. You can get notifications from emails, telephony, social accounts, and customer portals.
Zoho does not provide a built-in telephony feature but it has ample integrations, so there’s no need to worry. Of course, you have to pay extra bucks to your telephony service provider.
Other useful features from Zoho CRM:
- Process management
- Reports and analytics
- Performance management
- Sales intelligence
- Marketing automation
- Team collaboration
Zoho has multiple plans starting at $12/user/month to $100/user/month. Because of its wide structure in pricing, you can see all kinds of businesses opting for Zoho.
3. Pipedrive CRM
Pipedrive CRM is best known for its effective and hassle-free pipeline management. You can easily manage leads & deals and track every communication with Pipedrive CRM.
Pipedrive can also assist you with workflow automation. You can set up triggers and desired actions to save yourself from manual tasks.
Other important features from Pipedrive CRM:
- Create multiple pipelines and easily move deals to the next stages
- Personalized email automation
- Pull data from social media accounts of your contacts
- Activity reminders
- Connect Pipedrive with other software using free API
- Automate meeting bookings with the chatbot
Pipedrive pricing starts at $12.05/user/month, ranging to $99.00/user/month. If efficient pipeline management is your top priority, Pipedrive is a great option for your business.
4. Agile CRM
Agile is an interesting CRM with a combination of sales and marketing features. With necessary features like contact management and deal management, you also get useful features like project management and gamification.
In terms of Marketing, you can use marketing automation, landing page builder, email marketing & tracking, etc. For customer support, you can get ticketing facilities.
Other important features of Agile CRM:
- Helpdesk to provide better customer support.
- Prioritize tickets with Smart Views.
- Integrations with important sales and marketing tools.
- eDocs and sales enablements.
- Telephony integrations with Twilio.
Agile comes free for up to 10 users, but with limited features of course. For Agile CRM, the pricing starts at $8.99/user/month, ranging up to $47.99/user/month.
One problem that I see with Agile CRM is that it offers a tide of features that it becomes a messy system to work with. But you can be mindful of it and pick the right plan according to your needs.
5. Freshsales CRM
Freshsales CRM has a good mix of features to support a small or medium scale business. The CRM comes with a lead scoring feature that helps you identify leads with the highest potential. Freshsales comes with a lot of handy integrations with Freshworks apps and other sales & marketing tools.
Other important features of Freshsales CRM:
- Built-in phone system by Freshcaller
- Pipeline management with drag and drop deal switching
- 360° contact view
- Multiple sales pipelines
- Sales & forecasting reports
Freshsales comes with 4 different plans starting from $12/user/month to $79/user/month. This CRM is a great option for small businesses but for some of the most basic features like multiple sales pipelines, web-to-lead capture, and custom reports, you have to spend big bucks.
6. Streak CRM
Streak is a slightly different CRM compared to its peers. It’s a simple Chrome browser add-on. You can have every important feature of a CRM in your Gmail. Streak CRM operates in multiple areas like sales, project management, business development, support, hiring, etc.
Streak allows you to track information about your pipelines, contacts, and tasks directly in your Gmail inbox. That is very convenient for many users as there’s no juggling between multiple apps.
Check out some other feature from Streak CRM:
- Creates a timeline of client conversation to see the progress
- Create, rearrange, and customize your pipeline stages
- Collaborative email inbox
- Notes available on the Gmail sidebar about every deal
Streak does offer a free plan but covers only 3 basic features. To use this add-on to its max, you can pick from two plans at $49/user/month and $129/user/month.
7. Nimble CRM
Nimble CRM is another great choice for small and medium-sized businesses. Nimber offers a lot of relief to G suite and Office 365 users to bring data into the platform. The CRM works amazingly well with 160+ apps to pull contact data.
Nimble CRM offers great help in areas like pipeline management, email marketing, sales forecasting, deal management, etc.
Here are some important features from Nimble:
- Unified message inbox
- Calendar sync
- Customer profile enrichment
- Email & activity tracking
- Follow-up reminders
- Browser extension
Nimble comes with a single plan at $19/user/month. For a startup or a growing business, it would be a tough call. They might have to pay for the features that they don’t need.
8. Copper CRM
Copper is another system best-suited for G Suite users. With Copper, you can effectively manage contact, files, deals, etc. The CRM is very intuitive for some of the manual tasks like adding a contact or updating a detail in profile.
Here are some important features from Copper CRM;
- G Suite integration
- Bulk emailing
- Workflow automation
- Goal tracking and sales forecasting
- Integrations with tools like Slack, MailChimp, QuickBooks, Xero, etc.
Copper CRM comes with three plans starting at $19/user/month to $119/user/month. I found the basic plan ($19/user/month) has very limited features, so you might have to go for the Professional plan ($49/user/month).
9. Close CRM
Close is a sales CRM with all the basic (and advanced) features like deal management, pipeline management, activity & task management, bulk emails, email sequences, etc. Close also offers built-in calling and SMS features to connect with prospects, right from the system.
Here are some other features from Close:
- Power and predictive dialers
- Call recording, forwarding and transferring
- Pipeline tracking
- Real-time sales reports and tracking
- Email sequences
Close CRM comes with four plans starting from $35/user/month to $145/user/month. One thing I really disliked about Close CRM is the support charges. They charge $750/month for premium support.
Lastly, Insightly is a good option for small and medium scale businesses. You can easily manage contacts and deals with Insightly. The platform has also come up with marketing solutions recently offering lead capture, marketing automation, business intelligence, etc.
Here are some important features from Insightly for sales and marketing teams:
- Integrated phone dialers to make calls from the system
- Call analysis and reporting
- Integrated project management
- Configurable project processes
- Over 250 application integrations
- Hosted landing pages
- Lead capturing and nurturing
- Lead scoring and grading
In order to use marketing and CRM features, you have to pay heavily to Insightly. CRM pricing starts at $29/user/month to $99/user/month. For the marketing bundle, you can pick from 3 plans starting at $299/month to $1299/month.
I sincerely hope this list of best CRM software can help you find the right tool in 2020. Of course, not every CRM mentioned will be right for your business. But this list can be a starting point for you if you’re fresh in the business or activity looking for a CRM alternative.
Melissa Burns is an education blogger, and a new teacher. She was studying in Columbia and those years inspired her to dedicate her life to teaching. She graduated from Iowa State University and is passionately interested in informatics, writing, and educational activism. She has already visited 38 countries and is planning to travel around the globe. Follow her @melissaburns and contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org