• Jefrey Gomez

5 Free CRM Tools that Every SME Should Try

Let’s get started with a few questions.


  • Do you use spreadsheets to manage your clients?

  • Do you think it’s time for you to modernize your sales operations?

  • Does your budget keep you from going for a full software suite?


If your answer to any of those questions is in the affirmative, you need to get a CRM software immediately. That might mean spending a fortune on CRM tools or consultants.


Luckily, there’s no dearth of free CRM tools out there that can help you store your company's information at a central location. So, here we are with 5 awesome CRM tools that can help you keep all your work-related information at one place and make it available to anybody who might need it. And guess what, they are all free !


1. Zoho


Zoho CRM makes for a small business-friendly platform that is equipped with customisable modules, a simple user interface, excellent social media features, and smart automation.





With this software, you will be able to manage leads, rationalize daily operations, and build up and define specific workflow. It can be easily integrated with Facebook, Twitter, and Google+, thereby, allowing you to reach out to your leads at a moment’s notice.


Once you have got the hang of this CRM tool with a free subscription, you can switch to the reasonably priced Standard version, which enhances usability with strong sales forecasting and KPI tracking. The Enterprise version is even better as it includes stage-by-stage sales funnel tracking, and compares data across teams, products, and services.





If you are looking for a free CRM tool, you can sign up for their unpaid plan for up to three users.


2. Bitrix24


Bitrix24 is one of the most widely used free CRM tools in the world. From pipeline and lead management to reporting, sales tracking, and task automation, Bitrix24 offers everything.





Bitrix24 free CRM consists of many features like unlimited contacts, deals, a product catalog, social media, and live chat. It, therefore, makes an excellent choice for small teams that want a powerful CRM to communicate with customers with and each other.


Its user interface makes it very easy and simple to use. Also, it’s equipped with video channel access in-app, and mobile apps for iOS & Android, thereby ensuring that you can clinch deals at critical moments.


Its free online store, however, is possibly its most interesting feature. You can use it to create a professional-looking store without coding, connect it to a payment system, and sell online.





Its cloud CRM solution can be used by up to 12 users for free, with a 5 GB cap on data storage.


3. Streak


Streak offers a fully integrated Gmail CRM built into your inbox and makes CRM adoption quite easy for new users. With its email templates, you can personalize and send them at high volume, which is far more effective than generic email marketing.





You can fetch contact information and customer data from Google Sheets with the Streak CRM Importer add-on. It means that you would no longer have to send emails out to everyone one-by-one.


The email tracking feature lets you know who read your email from which part of the world and the number of times your email was read. This not only boosts visibility across your team but also your sales.


When you know about the people who read your message and form a better understanding of their behavior, you can further your sales process by following up in a way that’s appropriate and well-timed.





Streak is free for individual users but if you want more features, you can opt for any of the paid subscriptions, starting at $49 per user every month, billed annually.


4. Freshsales


Freshsales, the CRM component of Freshworks 360 suite, is touted as the contemporary makeover of Excel spreadsheets. It offers a free version for up to 10 users, with a cap of 10,000 accounts, contacts, leads, and deal records.





Freshsales provides fantastic collaborative tools and is equipped with an easy-to-learn user interface that can drive everyone to the path of smart working. It comes with features like in-depth task delegation and time-zone sensitive reminders for teams working remotely.


Also, the in-app telephony module boosts your sales team’s capabilities by providing them with features like automatic dialing, call recording, and call routing.


If you want to get the “free forever startup plan”, you will have to sign up for a 21-day free trial, which will give you access to the features of the highest-tier paid plan. After the expiry of your free trial, you can subscribe to any of the four paid plans or continue using it in its basic-yet-free form.





The basic ‘Sprout’ plan is free for up to 10 users. If you have more members in your team, you can go for paid subscriptions, starting at $12 per user every month, billed annually.


5. Insightly


Insightly is a full-stack CRM that offers lead routing and sales pipeline tools, automates workflow, and assists in customer management. There are training videos available that can take you through how to use this CRM tool.





Insightly lets you create custom apps and data visualizations to keep track of key metrics without requiring any developer skills. All you have to do is click through options and drag-and-drop elements to wherever you want.


With Insightly, you can set permissions by business role and department to manage organizational security for specific modules and contact records. Also, it is integrated with both G Suite and Microsoft 365 along with Slack, Mailchimp, QuickBooks, Dropbox and a host of other apps.





The free version can be used by up to 2 users, who can access project management features and contact records within a cleanly designed user interface. If you have more members in your team, you can subscribe to any of the paid plans, starting at $29 per user every month, billed annually.


The Final Pick: Which Free CRM Tool Should You Go For?


Review the features that will be crucial in helping you meet your business needs. Also, compare the free usage limits like number of free emails or contacts and shortlist tools according to your current requirement. Also, compare the costs of upgradation of the different tools listed above and try going for the one that will fit your budget should you choose to upgrade it in the future.



References:

  1. https://blog.capterra.com/free-and-open-source-crm/

  2. https://zapier.com/blog/best-free-crm/

  3. https://fitsmallbusiness.com/best-free-crm/

  4. https://www.selecthub.com/customer-relationship-management/free-crm/






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