Best Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Software of 2021

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imageBest CRM Software of 2021

U.S.News 360 Reviews takes an unbiased approach to our recommendations.When you use our links to buy products, we may earn a commission but that in no way affects our editorial independence.

Popular CRM Software

Best Budget Small Business CRM

– 360 Overall Rating

3.8 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $9/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

[See Review]

Best Free CRM of 2021

– 360 Overall Rating

4.1 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $35/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Annual

– Mobile App

[See Review]

– 360 Overall Rating

3.7 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $79/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

[See Review]

In an age where customers can find someone else to do business with just a quick internet search away, building strong customer relationships is a must.Customer relationship management (CRM) software is designed to do just that.In 2020, the global CRM market grew 10% compared to the average annual growth over previous years, according to Fortune Business Insights .This is a likely response from companies trying to keep up with the shift in customer’s buying habits associated with COVID-19.With e-commerce booming, email marketing and digital customer interactions are pivotal to companies’ customer retention success.

By organizing information from various customer-facing teams (marketing, sales, customer service, etc.) into one place, CRM software makes sure a company’s employees have access to the same efficiently organized, real-time information.

Organizing all your company’s customer data and storing it in one place allows your teams to operate more effectively, minimizes miscommunications, and ensures everyone on your team has up-to-date information.

Typically, CRM systems fall into the software-as-a-service (SaaS) model.

You pay a licensing fee (usually called a subscription) on an ongoing basis to access the service instead of paying a one-time software fee.Companies typically quote prices as a fee per user, per month.For example, (/360-reviews/crm/less-annoying-crm) costs $15 per user, per month.

With all the different CRM software companies offering a wide variety of features and prices, it can be challenging to narrow down your search and decide which CRM software is best for your business.We highlight the Best CRMs of 2021, [Best Free CRMs of 2021](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/crm/best-free-crm) , and [Best CRMs for Small Business](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/crm/best-small-business-crm) , and also provide information and insights on [how to choose the best CRM for your business](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/crm/how-to-choose-crm) .

(PeopleImages)

#1 Less Annoying CRM

#1 [Nimble](/360-reviews/crm/nimble)

#3 [Freshworks CRM](/360-reviews/crm/freshworks-crm)

#4 [HubSpot](/360-reviews/crm/hubspot)

#5 [Agile CRM](/360-reviews/crm/agile-crm)

#5 [Pipedrive](/360-reviews/crm/pipedrive)

#5 [Salesforce](/360-reviews/crm/salesforce)

#5 [Zoho](/360-reviews/crm/zoho)

#5 [Insightly](/360-reviews/crm/insightly)

#10 [Apptivo](/360-reviews/crm/apptivo)

#10 [Keap](/360-reviews/crm/keap)

#12 [Zendesk Sell](/360-reviews/crm/zendesk-sell)

The Best CRM Software of 2021

|Monthly Cost $15/User & Up|

|Subscription Plan Monthly|

|Trial Period 30 days|

[Less Annoying CRM »]

[View Plans »]

|Monthly Cost $25/User & Up|

|Subscription Plan Monthly or Annual|

|Trial Period 14 days|

[Nimble »]

[View Plans »]

|Monthly Cost $35/User & Up|

|Subscription Plan Annual|

|Trial Period 21 days|

[Freshworks CRM »]

[View Plans »]

|Monthly Cost $25/User & Up|

|Subscription Plan Monthly or Annual|

|Trial Period 14 days|

[HubSpot »]

[View Plans »]

|Monthly Cost $14.99/User & Up|

|Subscription Plan Monthly or Annual|

|Trial Period N/A|

[Agile CRM »]

[View Plans »]

|$15/User & Up||Monthly||30 days|

|$25/User & Up||Monthly or Annual||14 days|

|$35/User & Up||Annual||21 days|

|$25/User & Up||Monthly or Annual||14 days|

|$14.99/User & Up||Monthly or Annual||N/A|

Company

Monthly Cost

Subscription Plan

Trial Period

Learn More

[Less Annoying CRM »]

[View Plans »]

[Nimble »]

[View Plans »]

[Freshworks CRM »]

[View Plans »]

[HubSpot »]

[View Plans »]

[Agile CRM »]

[View Plans »]

Compare Quotes for CRM Software

Fill out this questionnaire to get customized pricing from providers that meet your needs.

To help you find the best CRM for your business we’ve compiled a list of the Best CRM Companies of 2021.We also compare the prices, features, third-party integrations, ease-of-use, and access to customer support for each CRM.Below are summaries of each of the top CRM companies along with links to their profile pages for more information.

Less Annoying CRM – Best CRM Software of 2021 (Tie)

Less Annoying CRM »

Best CRM of 2021 (Tie)

– 360 Overall Rating

4.2 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $15/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly

– Mobile App

Less Annoying CRM: Less Annoying CRM ties as our No.

1 CRM Software of 2021, with a score of 4.2 out of 5.It’s designed specifically for small businesses and charges a flat fee of $15 per user per month.

It offers a single tier of service that gives subscribers access to all of Less Annoying’s CRM features.If you’re a small business owner, Less Annoying CRM is a great option for your company because it also places No.1 in our rating of the [Best CRM for Small Business of 2021](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/crm/best-small-business-crm) .Less Annoying CRM is simple, all-inclusive, and reasonably priced.

Learn more in our [Less Annoying CRM review](/360-reviews/crm/less-annoying-crm) .

Nimble – Best CRM Software of 2021 (Tie)

Nimble »

Best CRM of 2021 (Tie)

– 360 Overall Rating

4.2 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $25/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

Nimble: Nimble ties with Less Annoying CRM for No.1 in our Best CRM Software and Best Small Business CRM Software of 2021 ratings.Similar to Less Annoying CRM, Nimble provides access to all of its CRM system features with a single tier of service that costs $25 per month per user.You can save on Nimble by opting for an annual plan that costs $19 per month per user, but you may want to take advantage of its 14-day free trial before committing to the CRM for a year.

Learn more in our [Nimble review](/360-reviews/crm/nimble) .

Freshworks CRM – Best Free CRM of 2021

Freshworks CRM »

Best Free CRM of 2021

– 360 Overall Rating

4.1 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $35/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Annual

– Mobile App

Freshworks CRM: Freshworks CRM (formerly known as Freshsales) is No.3 in our rating of the Best CRMs with a score of 4.1.

It’s part of the Freshworks series of products, so if your company wishes to stay within that ecosystem, you can complement your Freshworks CRM with marketing, customer service, project management, and other products.Freshworks also takes the No.1 spot on our [Best Free CRMs of 2021](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/crm/best-free-crm) rating.Its Forever Free plan is our best free CRM.

It allows an unlimited number of users access to the CRM platform and provides customer support to help troubleshoot any issues.

Learn more in our [Freshworks CRM review](/360-reviews/crm/freshworks-crm) .

HubSpot CRM – Best CRM with In-Person Training

HubSpot »

Best CRM for In-Person Training

– 360 Overall Rating

3.9 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $25/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

HubSpot: HubSpot is our No.4 Best CRM of 2021 and our No.

2 Free CRM Software with a score of 3.9.The basic HubSpot CRM is free for an unlimited number of users.From there you can upgrade to HubSpot’s more specialized products that focus on either sales, marketing, customer service, or content management.

Learn more in our [HubSpot review](/360-reviews/crm/hubspot) .

Agile CRM

Agile CRM »

– 360 Overall Rating

3.8 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $14.99/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

Agile CRM: Agile CRM places at No.5 in our Best CRM Software of 2021 rating with a score of 3.8.It also takes No.

2 in our Best Small Business CRM Software rating and No.3 in our Best Free CRM Software rating.Its free CRM accommodates up to 10 users and includes access to some of its sales and marketing features.To gain access to all of Agile’s CRM features, you’ll need to upgrade to its higher tiers of service.Agile’s most expensive plan adds features such as unlimited campaign workflows, automation triggers, and a personalized onboarding coach.

Learn more in our [Agile CRM review](/360-reviews/crm/agile-crm) .

Pipedrive

Pipedrive »

– 360 Overall Rating

3.8 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $15/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

Pipedrive: Pipedrive CRM ties for No.

5 in our ratings with a score of 3.8.Pipedrive is a sales-focused CRM that boasts support for up to 16 languages, access to its App marketplace, and an artificial intelligence (AI) “Sales Assistant” with even its entry-level CRM solution.

Learn more in our [Pipedrive review](/360-reviews/crm/pipedrive) .

Salesforce CRM – Best CRM for Third-Party Applications

Salesforce »

Best CRM for Third-Party Applications

– 360 Overall Rating

3.8 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $35/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Annual

– Mobile App

Salesforce: Arguably the most recognizable name in CRMs, Salesforce also ties for the No.

5 spot on our list of Best CRMs with a score of 3.8.Salesforce stands out with its sheer number of third-party apps and integrations, an active community of users, and the ability to scale its products to accommodate even the largest of corporations.

Learn more in our [Salesforce review](/360-reviews/crm/salesforce) .

Zoho CRM – Best Budget Small Business CRM

Zoho »

Best Budget Small Business CRM

– 360 Overall Rating

3.8 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $9/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

Zoho: With a score of 3.8, Zoho ties for the No.5 position on the Best CRMs of 2021 list, No.

3 on the Best CRM Software for Small Business rating, and No.3 on the Best Free CRMs list.Its free version is good for up to three users.But where Zoho really shines is its Bigin CRM plan for small businesses.

The month-to-month plan is our most budget-friendly option for small businesses, costing only $9 a month per user when billed monthly.Zoho also offers a variety of CRM tiers and services with higher-priced plans, which grant users access to Zoho’s Zia AI and enhanced analytics.

Learn more in our [Zoho review](/360-reviews/crm/zoho) .

Insightly CRM

Insightly »

– 360 Overall Rating

3.8 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $35/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

Insightly: Earning a score of 3.8, Insightly ties for the No.5 position on our Best CRMs list and ties for No.3 on our Best Free CRMs list.Insightly’s free CRM is limited to two users and is a no-frills system.While the least expensive plan starts at $29 per user, per month, it includes integrations with Google and Microsoft products, as well as project management and collaboration features.

Learn more in our [Insightly review](/360-reviews/crm/insightly) .

Apptivo

Apptivo »

– 360 Overall Rating

3.7 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $10/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

Apptivo: The No.10 position in our Best CRMs of 2021 rating, Apptivo earns a score of 3.7.

Apptivo also places No.5 on our list of the Best CRM Software for Small Business and No.6 on our rating of the Best Free CRMs of 2021.While Apptivo caps its free plan at one user and supports a limited number of third-party integrations, its least expensive paid plan starts at only $10 per user, per month on a monthly contract.

The CRM’s paid plans grant you access to their marketing tools and integrate with several popular programs from companies like Google, Microsoft, and [Intuit](/360-reviews/credit-card-processing/intuit-quickbooks-payment) .

Learn more in our [Apptivo review](/360-reviews/crm/apptivo) .

Keap

Keap »

– 360 Overall Rating

3.7 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $79/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

Keap: Keap ties for No.10 in our Best CRM Software rating with a score of 3.7 out of 5.Keap offers four plans of CRM service.All plans start with 500 contacts for one user.Additional contacts can be added to your plan for a higher monthly fee.You also will need to pay a one-time expert coaching fee of $499 when you start with any of Keap’s plans.

The Keap Max Classic plan was formerly known as Infusionsoft.

Learn more in our [Keap review](/360-reviews/crm/keap) .

Zendesk Sell – Best CRM for Multilingual Support

Zendesk Sell »

Best CRM for Multilingual Support

– 360 Overall Rating

3.3 out of 5

– Monthly Plan Cost

– $25/User & Up

– Subscription Plan

– Monthly or Annual

– Mobile App

Zendesk Sell: Rounding out our rating of the Best CRM Software of 2021 is Zendesk Sell.It scores a 3.3 out of 5.

This CRM is great for companies that work internationally.It has the largest reported language support in our rating.You can choose from 29 languages, allowing you to send marketing and sales communications to people around the world without the fear of a language barrier.

Learn more in our [Zendesk Sell review](/360-reviews/crm/zendesk-sell) .

There is no one-size-fits-all business solution, including when it comes to CRMs..What’s best for one company may not work for another, and what a larger enterprise business needs may be completely different from what a small business is looking for.

Based on the companies to make our Best CRM Software of 2021 rating, we created a list of the Best CRM Software for Small Businesses of 2021.

Our rating takes into account the CRM features small businesses need and the likely budget constraints they’re under.(/360-reviews/crm/less-annoying-crm) and [Nimble](/360-reviews/crm/nimble) offer small businesses a single tier of CRM service with straightforward pricing.On the other hand, [Zoho CRM](/360-reviews/crm/zoho) gives small businesses a tier of service designed specifically for companies on a tight budget.

Check out our rating of the [Best CRM Software for Small Businesses](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/crm/best-small-business-crm) to learn more about how one of these CRM providers may be able to help your company.

The Best Free CRM Software of 2021

|User Cap Unlimited|

|Mobile App|

|On-Premise|

|Cloud-Based|

[Freshworks CRM »]

[View Plans »]

|User Cap Unlimited|

|Mobile App|

|On-Premise|

|Cloud-Based|

[HubSpot »]

[View Plans »]

|User Cap 10 users|

|Mobile App|

|On-Premise|

|Cloud-Based|

[Agile CRM »]

[View Plans »]

|User Cap 3 users|

|Mobile App|

|On-Premise|

|Cloud-Based|

[Zoho »]

[View Plans »]

|User Cap 2 users|

|Mobile App|

|On-Premise|

|Cloud-Based|

[Insightly »]

[View Plans »]

|Unlimited|

|Unlimited|

|10 users|

|3 users|

|2 users|

Company

User Cap

Mobile App

On-Premise

Cloud-Based

Learn More

[Freshworks CRM »]

[View Plans »]

[HubSpot »]

[View Plans »]

[Agile CRM »]

[View Plans »]

[Zoho »]

[View Plans »]

[Insightly »]

[View Plans »]

With some CRM solutions, you can easily spend several thousand dollars a month to provide access to every user on all your different teams.

Plus, you’ll find the bill can add up quickly when you purchase higher-tier plans to get the necessary CRM features and add-ons you may need.For smaller businesses and startups, free CRM software might make more sense.

Our list of the Best Free CRM Software of 2021 highlights six different free plans.

As with most free things, there are some downsides.

The drawbacks of free CRMs are usually a limited number of users, features, and integrations.

For example, [HubSpot](/360-reviews/crm/hubspot) , our No.2 Best Free CRM, offers an unlimited number of users but reserves its most advanced features for its paid tiers.

[Apptivo](/360-reviews/crm/apptivo) , No.6 in our rating of free CRMs, limits the number of users to one.You have to upgrade to a paid subscription to get access to its marketing features and to enable integrations with other software.

While at first this may sound like you are missing out on a lot, remember that these are free products.If you’re just starting out or have a small business, you may not need many advanced features.Plus, if the free CRM is working well for you, your company can always upgrade to a paid plan when it needs to.

For more information on free CRMs, visit our [Best Free CRMs of 2021](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/crm/best-free-crm) page.

According to Grand View Research’s 2021 Customer Relationship Management Market Report , as many as 91% of businesses with more than 10 employees use customer relationship management software.A CRM system is a type of software designed to maintain and strengthen a company’s existing customer relationships and help cultivate new ones.It does this via several different methods, including lead and contact management.Among other things, a CRM gathers all of the customer information on prospects, including contact history, into one location.

This allows team members to see the contact history of the potential client and where they are in the sales pipeline.

What differentiates a CRM from a complex spreadsheet or simple database are the extra features that have been integrated into the software.For example, a CRM can automatically assign leads to a specific salesperson, anticipate when a lead is ready to move onto the next step of the sales process, and even identify new leads based on things like the results generated from a marketing campaign.

CRMs are often cloud-based, although there are some companies that offer on-premises CRMs.You’re usually billed monthly, but sometimes you can save money by signing up for a yearlong subscription.CRM costs are often based on the number of users who have access to the system.

A CRM is a data-driven software application that works by organizing and analyzing customer and lead data in real-time to better facilitate business processes like sales, marketing, and customer service.

Instead of having marketing, sales, and customer service data spread throughout several databases, a CRM organizes the information in an all-in-one platform so everyone in your organization has access to the same information.For example, your marketing team can use a CRM to optimize a marketing campaign with A/B testing or search engine optimization to generate potential new customers.It then passes this information onto the sales team.Once the sales team converts these leads into customers, the customer service team can use the information gathered from the sales team to add context if called upon by these clients to provide support.

Most of the CRM companies in our ratings are cloud-hosted and subscription-based.These two factors mean that companies won’t have to worry about hosting and supporting the software on-premises, which cuts down on labor, hardware, and maintenance costs.

Comparison of the Best CRM Software of 2021

|On-Premise|

|Cloud-Based|

|Free CRM|

|Language Support English|

[Less Annoying CRM »]

|On-Premise|

|Cloud-Based|

|Free CRM|

|Language Support English|

[Nimble »]

|On-Premise|

|Cloud-Based|

|Free CRM|

|Language Support Over 10 Languages|

[Freshworks CRM »]

|On-Premise|

|Cloud-Based|

|Free CRM|

|Language Support 7 Languages|

[HubSpot »]

|On-Premise|

|Cloud-Based|

|Free CRM|

|Language Support 2 Languages|

[Agile CRM »]

|English|

|English|

|Over 10 Languages|

|7 Languages|

|2 Languages|

Company

On-Premise

Cloud-Based

Free CRM

Language Support

[Less Annoying CRM »]

[Nimble »]

[Freshworks CRM »]

[HubSpot »]

[Agile CRM »]

After deciding to purchase CRM software the next step is to decide which CRM tools are most useful for your business.

Here is a list of some of the top features and CRM tools:

– Mobile App: Given the prevalence of smartphones and [tablets] , a CRM with a mobile app lets your team members access your CRM even when they are away from their desks.

– Lead Management: Lead management allows you to organize, track, and analyze your customer leads.

– Contact Management: This feature keeps track of all your client leads and customer interactions in your CRM system.

– Training: Some CRMs offer specific services to help train your employees on how to use the CRM system.Note that this may come at an extra cost.

– Customer Service: If you need help, what support will your CRM provider offer? Some companies only offer access to materials published on their website or access to a community of users, while others supply your team members with their own customer service representative.

– On-Premise: This means your company hosts the CRM in a system with your own hardware in your offices.On-premise hosting is usually more expensive (given that you have to have the hardware and staff to host and maintain the CRM), but it gives your business more flexibility in terms of security and maintenance.

– Cloud-Based: This is when a CRM is hosted in the cloud.It’s usually a less expensive option, but you are reliant on the CRM company for maintenance and data security.

– Industry-Specific Customizations: Several CRMs offer variations of their core CRMs tailored to specific industries such as finance, real estate, manufacturing, and nonprofits.

– Integrations: This refers to the other programs or apps that are compatible with your chosen CRM.

Some CRMs offer integrations already built-in, while others require the use of a third-party app.Popular integrations include Google’s G Suite (such as Gmail, Drive, Docs, and Calendar), Microsoft products (such as Microsoft Office and Outlook), Mailchimp, LinkedIn, WordPress, and Slack.

Given the increasing flexibility of CRMs, these features may be just a starting point.What features you end up needing will entirely depend on what you want a CRM to do for your company.Other features worth looking at are search engine optimization (SEO) and A/B testing for marketing campaigns, content management features for integration into social media platforms and your website, the ability to customize reports, and AI-enhanced analyses and chatbots.

CRM Price Comparison Chart

|Yearly Cost – Billed Monthly $180|

|Yearly Cost – Billed Annually $180|

|Cost Difference $0|

[Less Annoying CRM »]

[View Plans »]

|Yearly Cost – Billed Monthly $300|

|Yearly Cost – Billed Annually $228|

|Cost Difference $72|

[Nimble »]

[View Plans »]

|Yearly Cost – Billed Monthly $420|

|Yearly Cost – Billed Annually $348|

|Cost Difference $72|

[Freshworks CRM »]

[View Plans »]

|Yearly Cost – Billed Monthly $600|

|Yearly Cost – Billed Annually $540|

|Cost Difference $60|

[HubSpot »]

[View Plans »]

|Yearly Cost – Billed Monthly $179.88|

|Yearly Cost – Billed Annually $107.88|

|Cost Difference $72.00|

[Agile CRM »]

[View Plans »]

|$180||$180||$0|

|$300||$228||$72|

|$420||$348||$72|

|$600||$540||$60|

|$179.88||$107.88||$72.00|

Company

Yearly Cost – Billed Monthly

Yearly Cost – Billed Annually

Cost Difference

Learn More

[Less Annoying CRM »]

[View Plans »]

[Nimble »]

[View Plans »]

[Freshworks CRM »]

[View Plans »]

[HubSpot »]

[View Plans »]

[Agile CRM »]

[View Plans »]

Starting prices for the CRM companies in our ratings range from free to $79 per user per month.How much CRM software costs is usually based on two things: the number of people who will be using the software and the tier of service you’re subscribed to.

CRM systems are subscription-based products and will often advertise their prices on a per-month basis, although companies may offer yearly subscriptions for a lower price.

Many companies will have a tiered pricing structure in which the most advanced features are reserved for the priciest tiers.These features can range from enhanced customer support (up to including your own customer support representative) to more advanced analysis capabilities and even support for multiple languages.

Another factor affecting the cost of a CRM is whether it’s cloud-based or hosted on-premises.Cloud-based CRMs are generally less expensive for companies because they don’t require your business to hire technical staff or purchase equipment to host in your office.Instead, you can simply run the CRM system from your [laptop](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/laptops) , smartphone, or [tablet](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/tablets) .

You will often see CRMs listed as costing a certain amount per user per month.While an out-of-the-box or standard CRM offering from a company might be affordable, once you start adding extra features and third-party software, the price can begin to snowball.Customization can also greatly increase the cost of your CRM, so make sure to weigh the potential benefits versus the added cost.

CRMs may also be split into separate services.A company might offer a sales-focused CRM, one with a marketing focus, and another with a customer service focus.

This allows you to choose what features are most important.These services can usually be bundled to save money.

While there are many [free CRMs](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/crm/best-free-crm) , these can often be limited either in features or the number of users.Free CRMs are most beneficial to either [small businesses](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/crm/best-small-business-crm) on a limited budget or those using a CRM for the first time.

Comparison of CRM Training Methods

|Online Courses|

|In-Person Courses|

|Video Tutorials|

|Training Guides|

|API Documentation|

[Less Annoying CRM »]

|Online Courses|

|In-Person Courses|

|Video Tutorials|

|Training Guides|

|API Documentation|

[Nimble »]

|Online Courses|

|In-Person Courses|

|Video Tutorials|

|Training Guides|

|API Documentation|

[Freshworks CRM »]

|Online Courses|

|In-Person Courses|

|Video Tutorials|

|Training Guides|

|API Documentation|

[HubSpot »]

|Online Courses|

|In-Person Courses|

|Video Tutorials|

|Training Guides|

|API Documentation|

[Agile CRM »]

Company

Online Courses

In-Person Courses

Video Tutorials

Training Guides

API Documentation

[Less Annoying CRM »]

[Nimble »]

[Freshworks CRM »]

[HubSpot »]

[Agile CRM »]

There are many things to consider when choosing customer relationship management software.Below is a list of questions to consider as you search.

For more information on how to select a CRM, see our page [How to Choose a CRM](//www.usnews.com/360-reviews/crm/how-to-choose-crm) .

1.What will you use a CRM for? Will you be using it for sales-focused purposes, marketing, customer service, or some combination of all of these? For example, if your goal is to improve customer service, then you may want to focus your search on companies that offer specific customer service plans, as those will likely include more of the features you’re looking for than a generic CRM.

2.If different departments are using the CRM software, will it work well for all of them? What works well for your sales team may not work as well for marketing or customer support teams.Make sure that the CRM solution you choose will work equally well for all the teams using it.

3.

How many people will be using the CRM? Many CRM companies charge on a per-user basis, so knowing how many people will be using the software will help you estimate your total cost.

4.Does it integrate smoothly with other programs you are already using? Do a quick inventory of what programs your team is currently using and check to see if the CRM you are considering will integrate with them.If it doesn’t, find out if there are any add-ons that facilitate integration between them.

5.Will it scale up effectively as your company grows? Company size can be a big determining factor in what CRM you choose.A CRM that works well for a massive multinational corporation may not work as well for a small business and vice versa.Choose a CRM that can grow with you.

6.

Is the training sufficient for your employees? Not all CRM systems are easy to use out of the box.Check to see what sort of training the CRM company offers.For some, this may be a series of online articles, videos, or FAQ pages.Others have more formal training involving online courses or even in-person training.For these more extensive options, see if they are included in your CRM package or require an additional fee.

7.What sort of customer support is available? Once you have subscribed to a CRM, what sort of after-sales care does it offer? Does it have 24/7 support via chat, email, or phone? Free or lower-priced plans may limit customer support to information available on the CRM’s website, whether it is videos and articles or a community section where other users may be able to help you.Determine what level of support you are comfortable with and whether or not you will need to pay extra for it.

8.

How much does it cost? Several factors can contribute to cost.The two main ones are the number of users and product tier.Other factors to consider are whether your business will require any customizations or third-party apps.

9.What security measures does the CRM company provide? Take a hard look at the measures the CRM company takes to secure your data, protect it from breaches, and how it backs up your data.

Other factors to consider are whether or not the CRM provides a free demo or free trial.A demo might give you a better sense of how that particular CRM works, while a trial typically gives you extra time to see if it’s the right fit for your company.

Learn More

For more information on CRM software, please see our pages:

CRM Software

Before choosing a CRM software for your business, look at our other reviews to determine which CRM is most suitable for your unique business needs.

Other Ratings from 360 Reviews

For more insight into other business services to help grow your company size, look at our other reviews.

The following describes our 360 approach to researching and analyzing CRM software to guide prospective businesses.

1.We researched the companies and products people care most about.

U.S.News analyzed and compared a variety of publicly available data, including internet search data, to determine which CRM software businesses are most interested in.

We found 31 companies that stood out for further evaluation using the volume of searches and consumer research.After conducting a thorough analysis, we were able to condense the initial list to the 12 overall best CRM software.We also determined which of these CRM software would be the best for small businesses.

U.S.News researched the most important features of CRM services to create a general layout of what readers should know to assist with their purchasing decisions.

We evaluated the various plans along with the monthly costs.The plans highlighted features that would aim to enhance businesses’ functionality and productivity, including integrations, automation, data reporting and analytics, customizations, scalability, and security.From this, a service with the proper requirements can be selected to get the most comprehensive package.With these factors in mind, we created a thorough report that provides a 360 overview of what businesses should consider.

2.

We created objective 360 Overall Ratings based on an analysis of third-party reviews.

U.S.News’ 360 Reviews team applied an unbiased methodology that includes opinions from professional reviews as well as consumer reviews.

Our scoring methodology is based on a composite analysis of the ratings and reviews published by credible third-party professional and consumer review sources.The ratings are not based on personal opinions or experiences of U.S.News.

To calculate the ratings:

(a) We compiled two types of third-party ratings and reviews:

– Professional Ratings and Reviews.Many independent evaluating sources have published their assessments of CRM software companies and their products online.

We consider several of these third-party reviews to be reputable and well-researched.However, professional reviewers often make recommendations that contradict one another.Rather than relying on a single source, U.S.News believes consumers benefit most when these opinions and recommendations are considered and analyzed collectively with an objective, consensus-based methodology.

– Consumer Ratings and Reviews.U.S.News also reviewed published consumer ratings and reviews of CRM software providers.

Sources with a sufficient number of quality consumer ratings and reviews were included in our scoring model.

***Please note that not all professional and consumer rating sources met our criteria for objectivity.Therefore, some sources were excluded from our model.

(b) We standardized the inputs to create a common scale.

The third-party review source data were collected in a variety of forms, including ratings, recommendations, and accolades.Before including each third-party data point into our scoring equation, we had to standardize it so that it could be compared accurately with data points from other review sources.We used the scoring methodology described below to convert these systems to a comparable scale.

The 360 scoring process first converted each third-party rating into a common 0 to 5 scale.

To balance the distribution of scores within each source’s scale, we used a standard deviation (or Z-Score) calculation to determine how each company’s score compared to the source’s mean score.

We then used the Z-Score to create a standardized U.S.News score using the method outlined below:

– Calculating the Z-Score: The Z-Score represents a data point’s relation to the mean measurement of the data set.The Z-Score is negative when the data point is below the mean and positive when it’s above the mean; a Z-Score of 0 means it’s equal to the mean.

To determine the Z-Score for each third-party rating of a company, we calculated the mean of the ratings across all companies evaluated by that third-party source.We then subtracted the mean from the company’s rating and divided it by the standard deviation to produce the Z-Score.

– Calculating the T-Score: We used a T-Score calculation to convert the Z-Score to a 0-100 scale by multiplying the Z-Score by 10.

To ensure that the mean was equal across all data points, we added our desired scoring mean (between 0 and 10) to the T-Score to create an adjusted T-Score.

– Calculating the common-scale rating: We divided the adjusted T-Score, which is on a 100-point scale, by 20 to convert the third-party rating to a common 0-5 point system.

(c) We calculated the 360 Overall Score based on a weighted-average model.

We assigned “source weights” to each source used in the consensus scoring model based on our assessment of how much the source is trusted and recognized by consumers and how much its published review process indicates that it is both comprehensive and editorially independent.The source weights are assigned on a 1-5 scale.Any source with an assigned weight less than two was excluded from the consensus scoring model.

Finally, we combined the converted third-party data points using a weighted average formula based on source weight.This formula calculated the consensus score for each product, which we call the 360 Overall Rating.

U.S.News 360 Reviews takes an unbiased approach to our recommendations.

When you use our links to buy products, we may earn a commission but that in no way affects our editorial independence..

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