4 new CRMs your sales team should be looking at

Customer relationship management (CRM) refers to the practices, strategies, and technologies that companies use to manage and analyze customer interactions and data throughout the customer lifecycle, with the goal of improving business relationships with customers, assisting in customer retention, and driving sales growth. CRM systems are designed to compile information on customers across different channels, which could include the company’s website, telephone, live chat, direct mail, marketing materials, and social media. CRM systems can also give customer-facing staff detailed information on customers’ personal information, purchase history, buying preferences, and concerns.

Customer relationship management (CRM) software can help small and medium sized companies manage and grow their businesses.

As a small or medium sized business, you need to make the most out of your personal relationships. Today’s customer relationship management (CRM) software tools provide much more than just a simple contact list. CRMs consolidate customer information and documents into a single CRM database so business users can more easily access and manage it.

CRM software remembers the details of your interactions, whether by phone, email, social media, or other channels. Having this type of information allows you to identify strong prospects for selling, convert existing customers to new products and/or services, target new markets, and even track invoices. CRM software automates various workflow processes such as tasks, calendars, and alerts, and gives managers the ability to track performance and productivity based on information logged within the system.

Choosing the right CRM software for your business can dramatically improve your team’s collaboration and productivity, increase sales, and heighten customer satisfaction. We’ve come a long way from the Rolodexes of the past!

Here are four CRM products that are creating a buzz as we progress into the final quarter of 2016:


Salesforce is an all-in-one, cloud-based solution that has everything you need in a CRM software. Although this software is more typically associated with larger businesses and enterprises, Salesforce’s small business edition lets you take advantage of the product’s robust set of CRM tools and resources at an affordable, small-business-friendly price. Part of Salesforce Small Business Solutions, the platform is easy to use and includes key features such as contact management, lead generation, sales forecasting, workflow automation, and more.

Features of the product include:

  • Robust, all-in-one, full-featured software
  • Tons of popular third-party integrations via the Salesforce AppExchange
  • 24/7 phone and live chart support


Insightly is a simple, but feature-rich CRM software that fits the bill for very small businesses. It has all the basic capabilities that really small businesses need in a CRM software, but is also highly scalable as your business grows. Additionally, Insightly is one of the most affordable CRM solutions available; there’s a free version to help you get started, and paid plans start at a fraction of the price of comparable CRM software.

Features of the product include:

  • Simple and easy to use
  • Basic features, but scalable as your business grows
  • A fraction of the cost of similar CRM software

Zoho CRM

Zoho CRM is a powerful, free CRM software that doesn’t compromise on capabilities. Unlike other free CRMs, Zoho CRM offers all the core functionalities of CRM software and lets you add up to 10 users at no extra cost. You’ll also have access to your data anytime, anywhere using Zoho CRM’s mobile app, without having to purchase a plan.

Features of the product include:

  • Free for up to 10 users
  • Packed with premium features at no extra cost
  • Doesn’t require a service contract


Building on Infer’s pioneering lead behavior and account fit scoring models, the company’s new Account-Based Behavior Scoring allows marketing teams to focus their campaigns on the business-to-business (B2B) deals that are most likely to close quickly. Infer’s Account-Based Behavior Scoring helps marketers drive & measure engagement with targeted accounts.

Features of the product include:

  • Full-funnel behavior signals – Infer is the only solution that seamlessly connects with a company’s marketing automation platform (like Marketo, Pardot or Oracle Eloqua) to analyze the complete spectrum of activity signals across the buyer’s journey, including data about people’s email engagement, web behavior and user-defined events. The platform’s leads-to-account engine then accurately maps those individuals’ activity data to the appropriate accounts in Salesforce.
  • Quick account insights – Infer employs data science to calculate the industry’s first aggregate account behavior scores, and pushes those predictions directly into Salesforce records for easy-to-understand, actionable sales intelligence at the account level—including the amount of engaged contacts in a given account or market segment, as well as account fit and behavior scores.
  • Engagement trend reports – Infer’s account behavior scores power brand new Salesforce dashboards that show which business size, line of business, or industry segments are surging. With these visualizations, companies can understand whether they’re reaching their target markets with appropriate marketing messages.

For a full listing of CRM software and a summary of each, see Business News Daily’s Best CRM Software 2016 article.

Which CRM solutions do you use? What have been some of your biggest challenges? Please share your experience in our Comments section. We’d love to hear from you!

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