CRM software helps businesses manage relationships with customers and prospects using sales pipelines and other organizational tools. We compared more than 20 products offering a range of options to determine the 10 best CRMs for small businesses in terms of price, features, customization, integrations, and reporting, arriving at the best overall CRM for small business.
Top 10 CRMs for Small Business 2019
|Best CRM for Small Business||Best For|
|Freshsales||(Best Overall) B2B businesses needing a customizable, robust, and competitively-priced CRM with built-in phone|
|Zoho CRM||Organizations wanting a robust CRM with social media integration and order management tools|
|Agile CRM||Small businesses needing a CRM with built-in, advanced marketing capabilities|
|Pipedrive||Teams wanting a user-friendly and visual pipeline to manage sales|
|Bitrix24||Organizations that need an inexpensive, all-in-one CRM|
|HubSpot||Businesses wanting a free, no-frills CRM with basic features and unlimited users|
|Insightly||Businesses wanting a CRM for project management and G Suite Integration|
|Vtiger||Teams wanting a CRM with excellent customer support, onboarding, and training|
|Dubsado||Consultants or freelancers wanting a CRM to manage one-off jobs and track hourly billings|
|Streak||Individuals and startups that want a simple CRM living directly in their Gmail inbox|
How We Evaluated the Best CRM for Small Business
The best CRM for small business should be relatively inexpensive and provide a simple process for managing and tracking customers and prospects. Upgrade plans should allow companies to expand efficiently and include features such as process automation, system integrations, email marketing, customization, and advanced reporting.
Therefore, the criteria we used to evaluate the best CRM for small business include:
- Price: Monthly user costs should not exceed about $80 per user; many vendors offer free plans and trials to get started.
- Contact management: Creating, editing, and searching for contacts should be simple and integrated with functions such as email, phone calls, and other tasks.
- Deal and opportunity management: Deal and pipeline creation should be customizable, visualize, and easy to manage.
- Workflow automation: These features automate functions such as the sales process, follow-up tasks, and other reminders.
- Reporting tools: Reporting tools track data such as sales, rep activities, and forecasting.
- System integrations: A good CRM will integrate with other software such as accounting, ecommerce, and marketing.
- Customization: Customization of items such as contact fields, opportunity fields, pipelines, and sales processes is typically standard with high-tiered plans.
- Customer satisfaction: CRMs should have mostly positive user reviews and multichannel customer support options.
Based on these criteria, we determined Freshsales is the best CRM for small businesses because it’s a fully featured and competitively priced solution that is easy to use and completely customizable. Freshsales also has great lead management capabilities and a built-in phone system, making it particularly best for field sales teams or consulting businesses with longer sales cycles.
Best Overall CRM for Small Business: Freshsales
Freshsales is a fully featured and customizable CRM offering contact and lead management designed for businesses with long sales cycles. It offers a basic free plan and three paid options from $12 to $49 per user, per month. You can even make calls or send emails without leaving the tool, and it is great for business-to-business (B2B) teams that want highly customizable CRM software or that have remote users.
Freshsales offers a free forever plan for unlimited users with basic contact management and a built-in phone system. Additional functionality, including deal management, bulk emailing, advanced analytics, and additional integrations with third-party apps, are available in its paid plans, which range from a competitive $12 per user, per month to $49 per user, per month.
Freshsales Tiered Features
|Contact and Task Management|
|Lead Assignment Routing|
|Multiple Sales Pipelines|
|Custom Opportunity Fields|
|Configurable Dashboards and Reports|
|Customized Sales Processes|
|Website Visitor Tracking|
The Sprout plan is Freshsales’ free entry-level plan; it provides basic sales management functions such as lead, deal, and contact management. It also offers rules-based scoring to help you better prioritize lead follow-up (not often found in the other free plans we compared) and web-to-lead capture forms that can help speed up the data entry process. Its mobile version shows your calendar and appointments at a glance and will even summon an Uber for you.
Missing are the reporting and email marketing functions found in Agile CRM and Bitrix24’s free plans. While there is no limit on the number of users, the Sprout plan is best for teams looking for an affordable tool that can manage their contact relationship details, tasks, and appointments but don’t require more robust marketing, opportunity tracking, or reporting features.
The Blossom plan costs $12 per user, per month, which is in line with the other entry-level paid plans we compared. In addition to helping you manage your contact relationships, the Blossom plan offers opportunity management, bulk emails with templates, and email tracking, making it a powerful alternative compared to CRMs designed for larger businesses. It also lets you dial contacts and log your phone call activities without a third-party integration.
The Blossom plan does not include custom reporting like what’s found in Zoho CRM, Agile CRM, and Bitrix24 at a similar price. Therefore, the Blossom plan is best for individuals or highly independent sales teams that want to track their calls or send mass emails.
The Garden plan provides the team management functionality the Blossom plan lacks for $25 per user, per month. This plan also automates the lead process by allowing lead assignment and automated routing, which is a feature only offered by Insightly and Zoho CRM. The Garden plan, however, does not allow you to create custom sales activities like you can do with the Estate plan, nor does it provide time-based workflows or include a dashboard.
However, it does include multiple sales pipelines, configurable dashboards, and lead assignment rules. For these reasons, the Garden plan is best for sales teams that have different teams (e.g., inside, outside, renewal) handling multiple leads that want the ability to see sales productivity to make data-driven decisions.
The Estate plan, which costs $49 per user, per month, includes dashboards as part of its reporting features and extends the tool’s contact relationship management and lead scoring functionality, such as giving you a way to trace and prioritize a lead based on a contact’s activities on your website. Users also have more ability to customize their sales processes than offered by the lower-tiered plans.
This makes it a good fit for sales teams that want to better use their website as part of their lead prioritization strategy. However, while these additional features are great, the plan can be expensive for small teams. Therefore, if you need a highly customizable sales process and don’t need features like call logging, voicemail recording, or website activity analytics, you may also want to consider Pipedrive.
What Freshsales Is Missing
Freshsales lacks the ability to issue quotes, manage orders, and invoice directly in the tool. Nor does it include pricing books, which is a feature Zoho CRM provides, or product statistics like Pipedrive does. For this reason, Freshsales may not be the best choice for businesses that manage inventory (such as retail or distribution) or offer catalog-style pricing for products or services.
What Users Think About Freshsales
Freshsales users like the deals page and how Freshsales displays the entire sales process. They praise the customer service for technical support and how easy it is to customize the CRM. However, they give the tool lower marks for the quality of the standard reports, and have complained the software can be slow depending on the internet connection. You can read more in-depth reviews on our Freshsales review page.
Where to Find Freshsales
Freshsales is great CRM software for B2B businesses. It can also help you manage your relationships with very little setup time and without the need to employ someone with prior CRM knowledge. It’s why we chose it as our best CRM for small business. While Freshsales offers a free forever plan, you can also give the professional features a try by taking advantage of their free trial.
Best CRM for Social Media Management: Zoho CRM
Zoho CRM is an all-in-one small business CRM with sales management and a robust social media suite, which allows you to incorporate social media into your relationship management, tracking interactions, and publishing on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram. There’s a free plan and paid plans starting at $12 per user, per month. This makes it perfect for sales teams wanting an affordable way to prospect and connect with leads on social media sites.
Zoho CRM Pricing
Zoho CRM offers a free plan for up to three users that includes contact and opportunity management and social media connections. Additional sales and social functionality and customizations are offered through its paid plans ranging between $12 per user, per month and $20 per user, per month, keeping it in line with other products we compared.
Zoho CRM Tiered Features
|Contact and Task Management|
|Configurable Dashboards and Reports|
|Zoho Social Lite|
|Product Price Books and Order Management|
|Action Follow-up Rules|
Zoho CRM’s Free plan supports up to three users and includes lead and contact management like the other CRM products we compared. It also has unique activity tracking features, such as phone logging and social media connections, which are not available on many other free plans. The Free plan, however, lacks the ability to route leads to specific users, manage orders, or customize the interface.
It also lacks email marketing, unlike the free plans from Agile CRM and Bitrix24. Therefore, the Free plan is best for teams of three or less that require little customization but want to track their social media interactions. It is also best for teams that manage their quotes and orders through another accounting tool.
The Standard plan costs $12 per user, per month and allows users to add custom fields and create custom reports that can then be scheduled and delivered to users. It comes with Social Lite, a social media management suite allowing unlimited publishing on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
It also allows you to send bulk emails, track website visitors, and forecast sales, which is a feature not found in any of the other plans at this price. Email insights provide real-time monitoring of email deliveries, bounces, and opens. The Standard plan is, therefore, best for sales teams that want more insights into a lead’s behavior as well as being able to track emails, social media, and visitor tracking.
The Professional plan offers product management functionality, like Pipedrive, but also offers purchase order and invoice management. It costs $20 per user, per month, keeping it in line with similar product pricing tiers. The Professional plan also includes access to Zoho CRM’s proprietary SalesSignals functionality, which automates lead scoring, helps you better prioritize lead follow-up, and lets you add up to 150 custom fields per module.
Its custom field offering and conditional follow-up rules that can be tied to CRM field updates make it great for teams looking for either a tool with a high degree of customization potential or workflow automation. The Professional plan is also best for those who would like to capture leads directly from social media.
What Zoho CRM Is Missing
Zoho CRM’s included storage of 1GB per user is paltry; even though you can add additional storage at a cost, that can add up quickly. Pipedrive, by contrast, offers unlimited storage on all of their accounts. While users have the ability to customize contact and opportunity fields, it is not as easy to customize the sales pipeline process, nor does it include the project management capability of Zoho alternatives like Insightly.
What Users Think About Zoho CRM
Zoho CRM users report that the tool makes it easy to customize, track prospects, and set future tasks. They say data is easy to import from existing CRM software, making the switch less painful. However, they do say that technical support could be improved. Fixes and new features are slow to roll out and the user interface could be easier to navigate. For more user reviews, you can visit our Zoho CRM review page.
Where to Find Zoho CRM
Zoho CRM allows you to engage with your contacts on whatever channel works best for them. Its customization and extended integration make it a great solution for teams that depend on being able to adapt their sales techniques to match the next social media trend. Best of all, you can give Zoho a try for as long as you would like by signing up for a free account on their website.
Best CRM With Powerful Built-in Marketing Automation: Agile CRM
Agile CRM includes a powerful built-in marketing automation platform that uses customized triggers to engage prospects via email, social, and text. These features give small businesses advanced marketing capabilities without spending on an additional platform. Monthly paid plans start at $9.99 per user and there’s a feature-rich free plan. Agile CRM is ideal for companies that want a CRM with multichannel marketing automation capabilities.
Agile CRM Pricing
Manage up to 1,000 contacts, create email campaigns, and capture and score leads with Agile CRM’s free plan. The Starter plan adds marketing automation and social monitoring and increases contacts to 10,000 for $9.99 per user, per month. The Regular plan costs $39.99 per user, per month and includes SMS marketing.
Agile CRM Tiered Features
|Contacts & Companies|
|Email Templates Builder|
|Contact Level Analytics|
|Custom Data Fields|
The Free plan allows for up to 10 users and includes contact and deal management, email tracking, and lead scoring. The platform’s email marketing with automation triggers is what makes it stand out from all the other CRMs, as none of the CRMs reviewed included this feature in their free plans. You can create and send emails for newsletters, onboarding, cart abandonment, and others.
The plan’s Achilles heel is its limit to one integration, which the company calls widgets. Those needing more than one third-party software connected in a free plan should look at Freshsales, Bitrix24, and HubSpot. Also, the limit for contacts is 1,000, whereas Bitrix24 allows unlimited contacts and HubSpot up to 1 million. This plan is ideal for startups with limited contacts that want to use a CRM with some email marketing capability.
The Starter plan costs $9.99 per user, per month, bumping contacts to 10,000. It includes marketing automation and social monitoring, and increases integrations to three. The drag-and-drop marketing automation function lets you create campaigns using “if/then” workflows based on actions taken. There’s also A/B email testing, a feature not found built in any of the other CRMs.
With social monitoring, you can integrate up to three accounts and avoid using a third-party paid app to monitor social streams for keywords, post updates, and interact with customers and prospects. This plan is best for businesses that want marketing automation and social media management functionality integrated into a CRM.
This plan costs $29.99 per user, per month and includes 50,000 contacts. It lets you run 10 campaign workflows using 10 automation triggers, doubling the Standard plan’s limits. The other key difference is the addition of mobile marketing, which lets you create campaigns using SMS and text as the messaging channel. This feature, when incorporated into campaign workflows, is not found in any of the plans we reviewed (Bitrix24 only has bulk text marketing).
In addition, you can integrate over 50 third-party apps such as RingCentral, Stripe, PayPal, and Shopify. The ability to market using so many channels makes this ideal for small businesses that want a powerful marketing automation platform built into their CRM.
What Agile CRM Is Missing
Unlike Zoho CRM and HubSpot, there is no ability to track website visitors, which can be valuable intelligence for sales, marketing, and service teams, and there’s no built-in live chat feature like what’s offered with Zoho CRM, Bitrix24, and HubSpot.
What Users Think About Agile CRM
The ability to manage sales, marketing, and service under one roof appeals to a lot of users. The Free version was noted for its 10-user capacity and as a great place to begin for startups. Visit our Agile CRM reviews page to learn more about the platform.
Where to Find Agile CRM
The features of Agile CRM, including its multichannel marketing automation platform (email, social, text), make it a contact management system that will appeal to sales, marketing, and service teams. Start a free 14-day trial by visiting their website.
Best CRM for Visual Pipeline Management: Pipedrive
Pipedrive is a small business CRM designed to simplify the sales pipeline process. Starting at $12.50 per user, per month, its highly intuitive and easy-to-use pipeline management tool gives you the ability to see what is in your sales pipeline at a glance while helping to manage sales of standardized products and services. Pipedrive is best for teams wanting a highly visual and user-friendly pipeline to manage sales.
Pipedrive offers three tiered plans that range between $12.50 per user, per month and $49.17 per user, per month. This pricing makes the product slightly more expensive than other products we compared, and there is no forever free plan. Pipedrive does, however, offer a free trial, giving you the opportunity to test it out before you buy.
Pipedrive Tiered Features
|Contact and Task Management|
|Customized Sales Processes|
|Configurable Dashboards and Reports|
|Meeting & Task Scheduler|
|Unlimited Permission Settings|
The Silver plan costs $12.50 per user, per month and includes Pipedrive’s visual pipeline homepage as well as contact management and a configurable report. Like Freshsales, Pipedrive is easy to customize, even in its entry-level plan, giving you the option of creating a unique process to fit the needs of your business. It allows for unlimited storage and unlimited pipelines, a combo not found in any of the other CRM software we reviewed.
There is, however, no lead scoring like what’s found in Freshsales and Zoho CRM. As a result, the Silver plan is best for businesses looking for a way to better manage their leads as well as their contacts, but don’t require lead scoring. It is also best for those who want a software program that is tailored to their individual processes rather than being forced to adapt their process to the tool.
The Gold Plan adds email tracking capability to Pipedrive’s contact management platform as well as the meeting and task scheduler not found in the Silver plan. The Gold plan also provides account insights that can help you better focus your follow-up efforts on the leads who are most ready to buy. Unlike most of the CRMs we compared, Pipedrive also provides insights into your products, such as sales splits and average discount, helping you identify your best performers.
At $24.20 per user, per month, the Gold plan is best for teams that want to take advantage of Pipedrive’s visual pipeline with additional analytics. It is also best for those who want to better manage their sales tasks and efforts with its built-in scheduling tool.
The Platinum plan offers the same features as the Gold plan but includes additional sales forecasting functionality and advanced reporting features for $49.17 per user, per month. The plan also lets you set specific permissions-based on roles, which is something only Freshsales also does out of the products we compared, giving you more control over what your team needs to do or see. It also comes with access to live phone support.
As the Platinum’s chief benefit over the less expensive plans is its additional analytics, role-based permissions, and support, it is best for hierarchical teams and those that have truly unique requirements for sales management. However, it is also the most expensive plan on our list.
What Pipedrive Is Missing
Pipedrive lacks lead assignment and lead-based routing, which makes it a less viable alternative for account-based sales requiring multiple points of contacts. While leads can be prioritized based on time since last contact, it does not have lead scoring like what’s found in Freshsales and Zoho CRM, or project management like offered by Insightly. Pipedrive also lacks a mass marketing email feature like those found in other tools we compared.
What Users Think About Pipedrive
While Pipedrive may not be as feature-rich as some of the others, what it does, it does well. Users of the software like its user-friendly interface, available integrations with other third-party tools, and short learning curve. You can read more about Pipedrive and what other users are saying on our Pipedrive review page.
Where to Find Pipedrive
Pipedrive simplifies the sales process while giving you a means of managing your contact relationships. While other tools require several clicks to navigate deals and locate specific customer activities, Pipedrive organizes information in easy-to-digest visual homepages. Get started with Pipedrive’s easy-to-use, visual pipeline by trying it free.
Best Low-cost, All-in-One CRM: Bitrix24
Bitrix24 is a CRM with a free tier that includes all of the basic features needed to run a small business, including contact and project management, invoicing, help desk, telephony, and live chat. Paid plans start at $69 per month for six users ($11.50 per user), with many additional features such as email and text marketing, CRM automations, and unlimited pipelines. Therefore, it is best for small businesses that want an inexpensive, all-in-one CRM.
All three Bitrix24 plans include unlimited contacts, integrated telephony, live chat, social integration, and leads from forms. The free plan allows for up to 12 users, the Plus costs $69 per month for 6 users, and the Standard is $99 per month for up to 50 users with customization and automation features.
Bitrix24 Tiered Features
|Website Live Chat|
|Custom Task Fields|
This plan is free for up to 12 users and includes contact management, integrated phone system, live chat, project management, and invoicing. Its social media function connects Facebook, Instagram, and Slack, among others, letting you manage all of your social interactions from the dashboard. You can have unlimited contacts, which makes this plan stand out from all the other free plans—and even some of the paid plans.
You can create an online store with 100 SKUs and process unlimited orders, a feature not found in any of the other free plans we reviewed. However, missing from this version is the email marketing functionality found in their paid plans and also included in Agile CRM’s free plan. This makes it ideal for small businesses that want a free, feature-rich CRM but doesn’t have an immediate need for built-in email marketing.
The Plus plan adds CRM automation with triggers, bulk email, and SMS and text sends, unlimited call recording, and voice broadcasting, which lets you deliver prerecorded phone messages with an auto-dialer. This feature is not found in any of the other CRMs we reviewed.
There’s a document builder that allows you to create and share documents with your team, prospects, and customers. At $69 per month for up to six users, this plan is one of the least expensive per user, all-in-one CRMs we reviewed. This makes it ideal for teams of at least six that want to manage multiple business tasks within their CRM.
The Standard plan costs $99 per month and allows for up to 50 users, which makes it by far the least expensive per user CRM we reviewed. Many of the main features found in the other two plans are bulked up. For example, you can create 10 online stores with up to 5,000 products and send 50,000 monthly marketing emails.
Configure the live chat messenger to send an automated reply or immediately respond from the chat window. For new contacts, leads will automatically be created and an existing contact’s conversation will be added to their record. All of the varied business applications combine to make this plan incredibly inexpensive for businesses with 10 or more users.
What Bitrix24 Is Missing
The free plan is missing the email marketing functions found in Agile CRM. The user interface—though not missing anything—can feel busy (if not overwhelming) because of its multiple business functions. As a result, it doesn’t feel as ordered and user-friendly as most of the other CRMs.
What Users Think About Bitrix24
Users like the platform’s many business application uses, citing the free version as a great place to start because it includes many of the same features as the paid plans. Some, however, complained about the user interface, saying there’s a steep learning curve to using the software.
Where to Find Bitrix24
Bitrix24 includes a lot of features such as telephony, contact management, social integrations, marketing automation, and live chat. On a per-user basis, this all-in-one CRM is the most affordable option of those we reviewed. You can sign up for a free, 30-day trial.
Best Free, No-frills CRM for Small Businesses: HubSpot
HubSpot is known more as a marketing platform, but it offers a free, no-frills CRM that gives businesses a way to manage their contacts and gain insights into recent prospect activity. In addition to providing email and deal tracking, HubSpot CRM offers web forms, live chat, and lead qualification bots. This makes it a great option for budget-conscious businesses of any size needing basic CRM software for contact and lead management.
HubSpot is the best free CRM and supports an unlimited number of users. As your business grows, you can add additional functionality by signing up for one or more of their other offerings, like their Marketing Hub, Sales Hub, or Service Hub programs, which range from $50 to $400 per month, depending on the plan.
HubSpot CRM’s best feature is its simplistic user interface, making it easy to learn. For very small businesses or first-time CRM users, HubSpot’s free plan is an ideal introduction to basic CRM features such as contact management and lead or deal tracking. The live chat and bots are a nice customer service and lead generation feature. And with over 200 integration options, it has one of the largest app ecosystems of those we reviewed.
HubSpot’s key features include:
HubSpot CRM includes contact management, which gives you the ability to organize contacts by company (with a million-record capacity) and provides insights such as a newly added contact’s recent activity on your website. You can also see which contacts are opening your emails and schedule meetings from their record. However, its contact management tools, overall, are not as robust as the other products we compared.
Upgrading to their Sales Starter package ($50 per user, per month) increases the limits on templates, storage, and reporting and adds sales email follow-up automation. Their Sales Professional package ($400 per month for five users) also adds custom reporting, product management, and automated email campaigns, putting HubSpot more in line with products like Freshsales and Pipedrive, but at a significantly higher price.
Lead & Task Management
HubSpot CRM helps you prequalify leads that come to your website with live chat and conversational bots that require no programming and very little time to start using. These features, while found in Freshsales’ and Zoho CRM’s add-on products, are built directly into the HubSpot CRM. They can be set up and deployed within a few minutes.
The software gives you the ability to schedule tasks for later follow-up with email reminders. It also gives you the ability to organize your deals by pipeline stage in a visual Kanban-style format similar to Pipedrive, Freshsales, Zoho CRM, and Bitrix24. You must upgrade to the expensive Sales Professional to create multiple pipelines—a feature found in most of the higher-tiered CRM plans reviewed and significantly less expensive.
HubSpot CRM integrates with Gmail and Outlook, making it easy to add contacts to the CRM. It also automatically updates contacts with their social media handles. However, it does not automatically log social media interactions like Zoho CRM does unless you pay for the Marketing Hub’s $200 per month Basic plan.
The Chrome email extension automatically pulls in company, contact, and activity data for contacts. HubSpot CRM also integrates with hundreds of other third-party products like Mailchimp, UberConference, and Slack. These integrations can greatly extend HubSpot’s functionality without requiring businesses to upgrade to the company’s Sales, Marketing, or Service Hub plans. However, these integrations may require additional paid subscriptions.
Customer Service & Ease of Use
HubSpot offers a comprehensive online knowledge base, including an extensive library of tutorials called “HubSpot Academy,” as well as an active community of users who offer support and answer people’s questions. However, it should be noted that email, live chat, and phone support are only available to users with a paid package. If you’re using their free package, support is limited to self-service options.
What HubSpot Is Missing
The main disadvantages of HubSpot CRM are that some features that you get with other alternatives, such as workflow management and customer support, are only available if you subscribe to one of their paid packages. Also, if you decide to upgrade to their advanced package, pricing starts at $50 per user, per month. This puts it in the range of more fully featured CRMs with built-in marketing, project management, and other business applications.
What Users Think About HubSpot
HubSpot CRM users are highly complimentary of its ease of use but wish the product offered more reports and workflow automation. Some users complain that it doesn’t sync with Google and Outlook calendars, and that’s a fair criticism that HubSpot is evidently working on. You can read more on our HubSpot CRM review page.
Where to Find HubSpot
HubSpot CRM is a good option for businesses that need free software to help them manage their contacts but don’t want to spend a lot of time learning how to use the features of their CRM. You can get started using HubSpot CRM by visiting their website and signing up for your free forever account today.
Best CRM for Project Management: Insightly
Insightly is a competitively priced small business CRM with powerful project management functionality and sales pipeline customization options. Monthly plans start at $29 per user and there’s a free starter plan. It also includes tools to help you manage vendors, prospects, and customers and has numerous custom reporting options. Therefore, Insightly is a great solution for businesses looking for CRM software that can help them manage both sales and projects.
Insightly’s basic core features, including project management, pipeline tracking, custom CRM fields, and contact management, are free for up to two users. Monthly paid plans cost between $29 (Plus) and $49 (Professional) per user and include lead assignment routing, email tracking, and customizable sales processes. The two paid plans also have extensive, customizable reporting options.
Insightly Tiered Features
|Contact and Task Management|
|Sales Pipeline Tracking|
|Custom CRM Fields|
|Bulk Email Campaigns|
|Lead Assignment Routing|
|Customized Sales Processes|
|Dashboards and Configurable Reports|
|Custom Object Creation|
Insightly provides two users access to core functionality such as contact records, task, opportunity, and project management, which is a feature not found in the majority of other CRMs we compared. It also offers relationship tracking, voice notes, and bulk email campaigns, a feature not found in the free plans of Freshsales, Zoho CRM, and HubSpot.
However, unlike free plans from Bitrix24, Agile CRM, and HubSpot, this plan does not include email tracking, which delivers notifications on emails opened and clicked. The Free plan is, therefore, best for solopreneurs or teams of two that manage projects as well as sales. It is also best for users who want to use another program’s calendar tools for managing their appointments.
At $29 per user, per month, Insightly’s Plus plan allows users to manage contact relationships after the deal is closed by linking a contact with any one of multiple, customizable project pipelines. In addition, users can add and manage 100,000 records and send 2,500 bulk emails a month. Like Freshsales, leads resulting from those contacts and marketing messages are then tracked and managed through a sales pipeline process.
The Plus plan does not include marketing automation and social media management like those found in similarly priced plans from Freshsales, Zoho CRM, Agile CRM, and Bitrix24. It also doesn’t include lead scoring like what’s found in Freshsales, Zoho CRM, and Agile CRM. For this reason, it is best for solopreneurs, highly independent sales representatives, and those who don’t need marketing automation built in.
The Professional plan costs $49 per user, per month. It lets you customize your dashboard, which is a feature not offered by many of the CRM software we compared. But its many customized reporting options are where it really stands out among the others. Reporting options include tasks, contacts, leads, opportunities, organization, and others. Each of these has customizable fields to slice down as specifically as you’d want to go.
Dashboards can be created for categories such as lead sources, activities, forecast dates, pipeline, and stages, with several dozen ways to present and share the data using various visual options. It is, however, missing the marketing automation, lead scoring, and social management found in other top CRMs like Freshsales, Zoho CRM, and Agile CRM. This plan is best for teams that want a high degree of dashboard and reporting customization for sales and projects.
What Insightly Is Missing
While you can manage your projects within Insightly, the tool does not offer product statistics like those found in Pipedrive or a means for managing quotes and orders like Zoho CRM does, unless you upgrade to an enterprise-level plan. As mentioned, it’s also missing the marketing automation, lead scoring, and social media management found in Freshsales, Zoho CRM, Agile CRM, and Bitrix24.
What Users Think About Insightly
We use Insightly ourselves and appreciate the ease in which contacts can be added to the database directly from a native email client as well as its ability to manage projects in our pipeline. Other users appreciate the ease in which fields can be added and reports can be created. However, use of the tool does require more clicks to navigate to specific record information than other CRMs. You can read more about Insightly on our Insightly review page.
Where to Find Insightly
You can use Insightly to coordinate internal tasks and vendor relationships and the activities needed to close a sale. Insightly knows that relationships continue well beyond a deal’s close, which is why their project management functionality is such a benefit. Even better, they give you a chance to try out their Professional plan for free for 14 days. Give it a try today.
Best CRM With Award-winning Customer Service & Training: Vtiger
Vtiger is a customizable CRM that combines sales, marketing, and service features with excellent customer support. Monthly pricing starts at $10 per user and there’s also a free open source version. Additional features include billing, project management, and customization options. Vtiger is best for small businesses looking for a robust CRM solution that comes with industry-leading customer support, onboarding, and training.
Monthly paid plans per user are $10, $20, and $30. All plans include contact management, email marketing, custom reporting, web forms, workflow automation, and integration capability. Also included is an initial 2-hour onboarding session and email and phone support. The open source edition is free to download with no limits on the number of users.
In addition, Vtiger offers these training, onboarding, and success plans at flat rates:
- Kickstart Onboarding: Starting at $3,000 for 40 hours
- CRM Administrator Training: $590 (six two-hour sessions)
- Sales Manager Training Package: $590
- Sales Person Training Package: $390
- Support Manager Training Package: $390
- Support Agent Training Package: $195
- Single 90-minute Training Session: $113
Vtiger Tiered Features
|Contacts, Organization, Deal, and Opportunity Management|
|Phone & Email Support|
Vtiger’s Starter plan costs $10 per user, per month and includes contacts, organization, and lead management. It also has product price books, out-of-the-box reports, profile scoring, visual pipeline management, and email tracking. There’s also marketing automation with list segmentation, mass email campaigns, and email tracking.
It includes initial two-hour onboarding—a feature not found in any other CRM we reviewed. However, it does not include project management functionality like what you’ll find in entry-level plans from Insightly, Bitrix24, and Dubsado. As a result, the Starter plan is best for teams looking for a strictly sales CRM solution without the need for post-sales management.
The Professional Plan costs $20 per user, per month and includes shopping carts, sales orders, and payment tracking. It also includes multiple pipelines, round-robin lead assignment from web forms, sales pipeline forecasts, sales insights, more custom reports, and assignment rules. It also adds auto-responder and SMS and text campaigns to marketing and social integration with Twitter, allowing interactions with leads and contacts.
The marketing automation features with segmentation, triggers, and SMS and text campaigns rival those of Agile CRM, Bitrix24, and Zoho CRM. The Professional plan, therefore, is best for teams that want robust contact management and marketing automation. It is also best for teams that do not require a CRM with customer service, help desk, or support ticket functionality.
Vtiger’s All-In-One plan costs $30 per user, per month and combines Vtiger’s sales CRM Professional Plan with their Help Desk software. This combination adds automated case routing, customer portal, satisfaction surveys, and real-time insights to the functionality of the Professional plan. The Twitter integration adds lead and case capture to round out the social media component.
However, live chat requires a paid subscription to Olark; basic chat is free with Freshsales (Freshchat), Zoho CRM, Bitrix24, and HubSpot. That said, the combination of features makes the All-In-One plan best for businesses wanting to consolidate sales and service management into a single CRM tool and that appreciate on-going training and support.
What Vtiger Is Missing
Vtiger is a powerful all-in-one CRM with sales, marketing, and service platform, but it does lack integrations with other software. I counted less than a dozen in their extension store, which is far less than the other top platforms we reviewed. For most small businesses, this shouldn’t be an issue as Vtiger includes so many features out-of-the-box.
What Users Think About Vtiger
Most user reviews describe customer support as the main benefit of using Vtiger: issues are resolved the same day; live chat reps are very patient; and feedback is taken seriously. I also found this to be the case when I contacted the company through live chat and by phone—both support reps were patient and very helpful. The most consistent negative from users is that it can feel overwhelming because of all the features.
Where to Find Vtiger
Vtiger is a powerful and user-friendly CRM for businesses that want an all-in-one platform with client onboarding, excellent customer service, and additional training options. Sign up for their Enterprise edition, free with a 15-day trial, and you can also download the open source version.
Best CRM for Consultants & Freelancers: Dubsado
Dubsado is a CRM and lead management tool designed for solopreneurs and small teams, letting you manage contacts and organize tasks related to one-off jobs for $20 per month. You can share project status through a customer portal, track billable hours, store digital design proof approvals, and manage recurring billing. This makes it great for consultant businesses and design or other creative freelance professionals.
Dubsado is free for three users. Monthly paid plans start at $35, or you can pay for a full year’s service for $350. You can add additional brands to keep businesses separate for an additional $10 per month. The base paid plan supports an unlimited number of clients and up to three users.
Additional users can be added on to your base monthly plan per the following:
- Four to 10 users: $25 per month additional to your main plan
- 11 to 20 users: $45 per month additional to your main plan
- 21 to 30 users: $60 per month additional to your main plan
- 30 or more users: Contact Dubsado for custom pricing
Dubsado offers lead management and tools specifically designed with freelancers and digital creative consultants in mind, such as recurring billing, client portals, contract storage, and digital proof approval. While Dubsado is slightly more expensive than the other products we compared, its ability to process payments, manage one-off jobs, and manage billable project hours from within the tool distinguishes it from most of the CRM software products we reviewed.
Dubsado’s key features and benefits include the following:
As a contact management tool, Dubsado allows you to store proposals, quotes, and client questionnaires. It also gives you and your clients the ability to sign and execute legally binding contracts online and approve digital proof documents without requiring additional third-party integrations, which is unlike the other CRM products we compared.
In addition, Dubsado gives you the ability to issue recurring invoices and process payments, and it also lets your clients add tips. This provides you not only with insights related to a client’s potential future deals, but also their existing recurring revenue statistics.
Lead & Task Management
Dubsado includes lead capture forms that you can embed on your website or share elsewhere as a link. The tool then sends automated email responses, including necessary documents required to do the job based on what a lead selects within the form. Jobs-in-process are then tracked using a visual Kanban-style task board, which users can keep private or share with clients.
The software also includes a time tracker, giving you the ability to either bill clients based on an hourly rate or issue a flat-rate invoice. While you can adapt the product and price-book features found in Pipedrive or Zoho CRM for a similar blend of quotation and invoice management, Dubsado’s tracker is optimized for this style of billing.
Dubsado syncs with iCal, Google Calendars, and Outlook calendars. In addition, the software works with other G Suite apps as well as Square, PayPal, Stripe, Zapier, QuickBooks, iCloud, and CloudSpot. While the majority of other products we compared offer integrations with automation tools like Zapier, Dubsado’s focus on point-of-sale payment tools reinforces its focus on business-to-consumer (B2C)-focused businesses.
Customer Service & Ease of Use
The user interface and web forms include highly visual elements and easy-to-use drop-down menus or radio buttons, making them easy to use and understand. It also features drag-and-drop functionality, allowing you to quickly and easily customize the layout of job boards.
Dubsado has a Facebook group that lets you connect with other users as well as their customer support. Customer support is also available Monday through Friday from 1 a.m. to 9 p.m. as well as from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the weekend. It is also accessible by chat through their website.
What Dubsado Is Missing
Dubsado is designed more for small project sales with a focus on web-lead and job management rather than marketing. There are no mass marketing email features, email templates, or email tracking. Nor is there a built-in phone dialer or call logging like what is found in Freshsales, Agile CRM, and Bitrix24. It simply doesn’t have the features an aggressive sales team needs to prospect.
What Users Think About Dubsado
Dubsado is a relatively new product, but its users love how the tool helps them automate their business processes and its integrated payment options. Users also love how easy it is to collaborate with clients, handle contracts, and set payment schedules.
Where to Find Dubsado
Dubsado is a CRM designed for creative entrepreneurs and freelance consultants with tools built for collaboration and client management. You can use Dubsado to manage up to three clients for as long as you’d like for free or sign up for a paid plan.
Best CRM That Integrates Directly Into Gmail Inbox: Streak
Streak CRM resides in your Gmail account’s inbox, where you can create and manage contacts, deals, pipelines, and communications. There is a free plan and monthly paid plans starting at $49 per user. Because of these capabilities, this platform is best for solopreneurs or small businesses that want to manage contacts and deals directly from Gmail.
Streak’s free plan includes two users, integrates with G Suite, and has unlimited pipelines. It also includes email scheduling and tracking, a mobile app, and tasks. A monthly Professional plan costs $49 per user and includes permissions, call logs, email filtering, and reporting. They offer a free 14-day trial that integrates with Gmail in seconds.
Streak Tiered Features
|G Suite Integration|
|Task & Reminders|
|Import & Export|
Streak integrates with Gmail as an extension populating within the side navigation list of your inbox, where all pipelines and leads are found. Settings, updates, and integrations are found in a drop-down menu at the top right. Visually, the pipelines are color-coded by pipeline or project stage. This is the only free version to allow unlimited pipelines.
Within pipelines, there are templates for support ticket tracking, job applications, event bookings, project management, and other business uses. However, unlike free plans from Zoho CRM, Agile CRM, Bitrix24, and HubSpot, this plan does not include reporting. Therefore the free plan is ideal for individuals who want to work entirely from their Gmail and don’t need the ability to create reports.
The Professional plan costs $49 per user, per month and adds integrations, reporting, and email support. Other features include call logs, leads by source, and meeting notes, which can be timed and followed up on easily. Integrations are limited to Google Sheets and Hangouts plus the limited capability of Zapier. This puts it at a disadvantage compared to all of the other CRMs at this price that offer dozens of integrations.
Pipeline reporting is highly customizable with filters that can pull in a variety of data such as deal amounts, close rate, interactions, time in each stage, and others. Though you can send mass emails, there is no marketing automation feature, unlike Freshsales, Zoho CRM, Agile CRM, and Bitrix24. Therefore, this plan is for teams that need multiple pipeline management with highly customized reporting options, but who don’t need marketing functions built in.
What Streak Is Missing
Because Streak lives in Gmail, it doesn’t have marketing automation features as offered by Freshsales, Zoho CRM, Vtiger, and Agile CRM. There’s also no inbound or outbound call feature option that’s also found in these CRMs.
What Users Think About Streak
Users like that their CRM lives in Gmail, especially sales reps who spend lots of time working out of their email. The multiple pipeline features is also appreciated by users. A few users, however, found the import and export feature to be “clunky.” To read in-depth reviews, visit our Streak user reviews page.
Where to Find Streak
Because Streak is literally an extension of your Gmail account, it eliminates the need to have a separate app or cloud-based software. Its multiple pipeline capability and Excel-like feel make it a familiar option for both individual users and small teams. Sign up for a free trial.
Small business CRM software is essential for managing contacts and the sales process. Most vendors also bundle other business applications such as marketing, project management, and service features into their plans. The best CRM software for your small business will depend largely on the number of users, use needs, and budget.
We recommend Freshsales as the best CRM for small businesses overall due to its affordability and features like 360-degree customer insights, activity tracking, and appointment and lead management capability. Its suite of additional business applications also make it attractive as a do-it-all platform for growing companies. Visit Freshsales and sign up for their risk-free, 30-day free trial.