Zoho CRM is a leading CRM software with features that include contact and lead management as well as HR functionality and social media integrations. However, it’s not always the best solution given its size and complexity. In this article, we found the six best Zoho alternatives based price, features, and functionality, arriving at the best overall.
Top 6 Zoho Alternatives for 2020
Zoho CRM Alternative
(Best Overall) Teams needing a robust CRM with support, chat, and social app integration
Organizations wanting visual pipeline management without extras like social media or productivity apps
Field sales teams seeking a powerful mobile CRM app with built-in call recording
Teams that need an alternative to Zoho CRM with built-in project management tools
Agencies and marketers looking for a free, no-frills CRM with paid marketing integrations
Larger businesses needing a fully featured alternative with service as well as sales tools
How We Evaluated the Best Zoho Alternatives
Zoho CRM is a fully featured operational customer relationship management (CRM) software with functionality that extends beyond the sales process, including support, social media, accounting, and productivity tools. For some, this might be too robust or too feature-specific. To help, we looked for Zoho competitors that offered a better solution for small businesses, assessing things like features, price, integrations, and ease of use.
To find the six best, we looked at the following criteria:
- Overall price and affordability
- Contact management features
- Ease of use
- Sales pipeline and deal management
- Additional functionality within the software ecosystem (invoicing, social media, human resources, and productivity modules)
- Integrations with marketing, productivity, and third-party sales tools
- Customer support and training availability
We concluded that Freshworks CRM is the best alternative for Zoho CRM for small business based on the overall ease of use, value, and features that matter most to sales teams. You can try it free for 21 days by clicking the button below:
Freshworks CRM: Best Overall Zoho CRM Alternative
Since we last updated:
Freshworks CRM, formerly Freshsales, recently rebranded with a new name, new service plans, and access to Freshmarketer automation software. Forever-free plans are still available and include mobile apps, 24×5 support, live chat, and more.
Freshworks CRM is a fully featured CRM with robust contact and lead management tools and an intuitive sales pipeline. Freshworks CRM is the best overall Zoho CRM alternative because of its modern, intuitive interface, ease of use, and great mobile app, as well as integration with the complete Freshworks suite of software. It’s ideal for businesses like service providers looking for comparable Zoho CRM software offerings at similar price points.
Highly intuitive interface
Lacks the ability to issue quotes, manage orders, or send invoices directly
Customizable and easy to set up
Does not include pricing books
Excellent customer support
Does not include productivity tools
Freshworks CRM Pricing
- Free Sprout Plan: Provides unlimited users with basic contact management features
- Blossom Plan: $12 per user, per month, billed annually
- Garden Plan: $25 per user, per month, billed annually
- Estate Plan: $49 per user, per month, billed annually
There is a 21-day free trial for all paid plans.
Freshworks CRM Features
- Lead and contact management
- Lead qualification and scoring
- Sales opportunities and deal pipelines
- Built-in calling and dialing features
- Territory management and lead assignment
- Reporting dashboards and advanced reporting in higher tiers
Freshworks CRM users like how intuitive the software is and how easy it is to learn. They really like its sales pipeline tool and the ease of setting up your sales process. You can read more in-depth reviews on our Freshworks CRM reviews page.
Pipedrive: Best Zoho Alternative for Visual Pipeline Management
Pipedrive is a simple-to-use CRM with a highly intuitive pipeline management tool that helps you quickly visualize your sales opportunities. Unlike Zoho, which has extensive feature sets and direct integration with an entire family of software, Pipedrive is laser-focused on making your sales process more efficient. Pipedrive is an ideal Zoho alternative for teams that don’t need the extras and want to focus on sales, service, and product management as simply as possible.
Lacks advanced lead assignment or routing functionality
Visual sales pipeline tool
No free plan
Offers 24/7 support via chat and email on all plans
No productivity tools; limited integrations compared to Zoho
- Essential Plan: $12.50 per user, per month, billed annually
- Advanced Plan: $24.90 per user, per month, billed annually
- Professional Plan: $49.90 per user, per month, billed annually
Pipedrive offers a 14-day free trial for all plans.
- Lead and contact management
- Email inbox sync
- Simple interface with a visual sales pipeline tool for tracking sales opportunities
- Intuitive and robust mobile app
- Email tracking in mid-tier plans
- Reporting and dashboards
Pipedrive users like the core set of features, especially the visual pipeline. As many salespeople prefer, the interface is intuitive and requires minimal onboarding and training. Learn more about what users are saying on our Pipedrive reviews page.
Zendesk Sell: Best Zoho Alternative for Built-in Mobile Calling Features
Zendesk Sell, formerly known as Base, is a comprehensive, full-feature CRM that fits into the overall Zendesk software suite. Like Zoho, the software suite also includes a help desk, chat, analytics, and IT management tools. What sets Zendesk Sell apart is the exceptional mobile app with built-in calling functionality that Base users are familiar with, making it best for users who need built-in mobile calling features and call recording.
Zendesk Sell Strengths
Zendesk Sell Weaknesses
Fully featured CRM for any size team with highly intuitive interface
No free option; plans more expensive than Zoho
Powerful automation and analytics tools
Software ecosystem doesn’t include productivity tools
Best-in-class mobile app
No social media lead generation
Zendesk Sell Pricing
- Team Plan: $25 per user, per month, billed annually
- Professional Plan: $59 per user, per month, billed annually
- Enterprise Plan: $125 per user, per month, billed annually
Zendesk Sell offers a 14-day free trial for all plans.
Zendesk Sell Features
- Lead and contact management
- Sales forecasting and analytics
- Customizable deal pipelines
- Mobile app with in-app calling features
- Task management
- Pricing catalogs
- Integration with Zendesk customer service platform
Zendesk Sell customers widely give it high ratings for its easy-to-use interface and well-designed mobile app. Users especially tout the in-app calling and call recording features, highly intuitive reporting, and sales pipeline tools. Visit our Zendesk Sell reviews page for more about what users think.
Insightly: Best Zoho Alternative for Project Management:
Insightly is a robust CRM with project management features for managing leads, deals, contacts, and customer projects. Unlike Zoho, Insightly does not include human resources (HR) or support features, but it does allow users to create custom project pipelines that you can use for different product types, i.e., product, service, or project. Insightly is a good choice for organizations looking for a software tool that manages both the sales process and projects.
Project management features built in to the CRM
Free plan only includes up to two users versus three with Zoho
Gmail and Outlook plugin allows CRM access from your email
Does not include pricing or inventory management
Paid plans offer guidance, phone support, and training
- Free Plan: Up to two users
- Plus Plan: $29 per user, per month, billed annually
- Professional Plan: $49 per user, per month, billed annually
Insightly offers a 14-day free trial for all paid plans.
- Contact, lead, and task management
- Sales pipeline tracking
- Project management included in the Free plan
- Email tracking and bulk email campaigns included in mid-tier plans
- Customizable dashboards, lead assignments, and customizable CRM fields
- Business card scanner in the mid and top-tier plans
Users like the level of customization Insightly allows. They find value in the Gmail plugin that allows the creation of contacts and leads directly from the email browser. Users don’t like that the interface is less refined compared to competitors, and the search features are prone to glitch. We use Insightly here at Fit Small Business and you can read more on our Insightly reviews page.
HubSpot: Best Zoho Alternative for Content Marketers & Agencies
HubSpot CRM is one of the more popular options, especially for small businesses. Its free software provides businesses with tools to generate leads, manage contacts and deals, and automate the sales process. While HubSpot does not include operational functionality like Zoho, it does integrate with HubSpot’s Sales and Marketing Hubs, providing a powerful, all-in-one option for small businesses that use content marketing strategies like blogging, lead nurturing, and social media to generate new customers.
Fully featured free CRM
Advanced features only available on paid plans
Extensive library of training and support materials
Limited number of marketing automation tools
Intuitive interface and easy-to-use mobile app
Limited customer support on the free plan
- Free version: Includes most common CRM features for up to 1 million records
- Paid upgrades: Add-on functionality available through the Sales Hub and Marketing Hub, which range from $50 to $800 per month based on the number of contacts
- Lead form capture
- Website chat widget
- Contact and lead management and nurturing
- Activity insights
- Customizable email templates and email tracking
- Auto-enrichment of contacts based social profiles and public information
HubSpot CRM users like how easy it is to use but mention that they wish the product offered more reports and workflow automation. You can read more on our HubSpot CRM reviews page.
Salesforce Sales Cloud: Best Zoho Alternative With Sales & Service Software
Salesforce Sales Cloud is a powerful CRM and one of the most popular options for all business sizes and organization types. It includes must-have features such as contact management, sales opportunities, mass emails, and customer service. Like Zoho, Salesforce offers a feature-packed suite of software, including support, marketing automation, ecommerce, and analytics apps. Its scalability and customization make it a popular choice for larger teams that want one suite to manage their entire customer relationship.
Industry-leading CRM with extensive feature set that includes customer support ticketing
Higher-priced than comparable plans from Zoho
Reporting and analytics tools
Essentials plan is limited to only 10 users
Highly customizable for different sales processes
Higher learning curve than other options
Salesforce Sales Cloud Pricing
- Essentials: $25 per user, per month, paid annually (up to 10 users)
- Professional: $75 per user, per month, paid annually
- Enterprise: $125 per user, per month, paid annually
Salesforce Sales Cloud Features
- Lead and contact management
- Lead scoring
- Email integration with Gmail and Outlook
- Customizable reporting and dashboards
- Integration with entire Salesforce ecosystem, including marketing automation
- Customer support ticketing built in
- Extensive third-party integrations available
Users rate Salesforce’s Essentials plan highly for its affordable price, as well as a simplified user interface, which is far more intuitive than the legacy Salesforce platform. As for downsides, users report that Salesforce requires extensive setup and training. For more reviews, visit our complete Salesforce reviews page.
Zoho is a comprehensive CRM and is tightly integrated into the entire Zoho software ecosystem, making it a powerful tool for managing customer relationships, sales, and support. At the same time, many organizations may not need advanced operational capabilities like HR and invoicing, or are looking for a solution that provides core CRM functions with a greater ease of use or more customization.
We recommend Freshworks CRM as an alternative to Zoho because it offers many of the same features at a better value and better overall user experience. It also offers features that don’t exist in Zoho, like calling and call recording. You can sign up for a 21-day free trial or the Freshworks CRM Sprout plan, which is free forever. Visit their website to sign up today.