Top 10 CRM Tools – Beginners Guide To CRM Software

image of crm tool on a laptop
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CRM tools are great for improving your overall business management and ROI. These tools streamline workflow and automate mundane and repetitive tasks. However, what exactly is a CRM tool, what are the categories, and what are the best CRM software tools currently available? These are all questions you might be wondering. Luckily, this article covers everything you need to know about CRM software from a beginner’s perspective.

1) Accelo

picture of accelo tool

A CRM tool is there to help you improve productivity and, ultimately, profitability through increased ROI – this is why Accelo is at our #1 spot. The tool specializes in six aspects of your business:

  • Sales & Quotes
  • Project management
  • Customer service (tickets)
  • Retainers
  • Billing (invoices)
  • Analytics and useful reports

I have found that in terms of overall best CRM software tools, Accelo takes the cake! This CRM platform is easy to use and very effective in streamlining workflow. You can expect an incremental shift in your productivity and ROI.

2) Scoro

Scoro is a great option for business owners who want to simplify yet gain more control over their team management – basically, handle the team more effectively. What makes Scoro so unique is that the tool provides a holistic approach to team management with a very effective team collaborative platform. It tracks the time of all the team members and how much the time they spent is worth – in USD value.

3) monday.com

Monday.com has a plethora of tools at its disposal – servicing many aspects of a business environment. However, monday sales CRM is the only tool we are currently interested in. The tool specializes in contact management, post-sales management, sales pipeline, and lead management. When monday.com is effectively utilized, you will see a dramatic jump in your team’s productivity.

4) Zendesk CRM

picture of Zendesk CRM

What really stood out about Zendesk CRM for me is its simplistic user interface – making it much easier to learn and use the CRM tools. Zendesk offers CRM services for productivity improvements, such as email integration, task player, sales engagement tools, and six other tools as well.

Additionally, the tool improves customer experience by providing tools to make it easier for the customer to shop and interact with the business. Finally, the tool also provides powerful insights and social analytics into your business processes.

5) Salesforce CRM

Salesforce uses the power of AI in their customer360 CRM product to deliver quality and useful tools to a business. Numerous products fall under the customer360 product and discussing each will need an article on its own. However, you can choose which ones you think your business will best benefit from and integrate them into your team’s workflow.

6) Pipedrive CRM

Sales, sales, sales! Pipedrive is probably the best CRM software if you want something specific to improve sales management. The tool has an easy-to-follow sales funnel that makes creating and managing sales much easier. Additionally, the tool also provides analytics and helps identify new potential customers. Finally, the tool also does workflow automation.

7) Sugar CRM

Minimalistic yet very effective. Sugar CRM helps you with marketing automation, sales automation, customer service, and useful insights. In addition to the automation services, the tool also has integrations with office and other tools to increase ease of use and productivity over multiple channels.

Sugar CRM also does predictive forecasting for your sales – guiding your sales team with powerful insights.

8) WORKetc

WORKetc is a CRM software that has an abundance of tools integrated into the platform. The company believes that small businesses should have access to the same tools that big enterprises have. Therefore it is priced very competitively and makes it a very attractive CRM option for businesses.

The software provides workflow solutions, project management software, billing software, power features (integrations and API), customer service, and sales tools.

9) Insightly

What stood out to me with Insightly is its wide selection of integrations (551, to be exact) – thanks to Insightly’s AppConnect. Chances are that the social media platforms, business software, and other software and apps you work with are integrated with Insightly. Additionally, Insightly also provides tools for sales, marketing, and customer service.

10) Freshdesk

Freshdesk is definitely the tool for you if you want something specifically for customer service. Freshdesk’s Messaging API helps your customer service agents engage with customers easier in the appropriate customer channels. Additionally, the tool also helps with collaboration between team members, and automation and provides useful analytics. Tools like this work great when integrated with social media calendar apps and other tools!

What Are CRM Tools?

picture of a computer with a CRM software displayed

Customer relationship management CRM tools are tools that incorporate processes or strategies to help improve the organization and management of customer data. The tools are specifically designed to improve productivity, time management, and ROI.

What Are CRM Tools Used For?

CRM tools are used for all kinds of business processes. There are many use cases, but these are the main ones:

  • Sales tracking and creation of invoices
  • Improve communication with customers through useful app integrations and AI
  • Powerful sales and customer analytics and reports
  • Tools to improve team collaboration and management
  • Streamlining workflows

They work great in addition to the best social media management software that business owners use!

Benefits Of CRM Software

1) Great Summary Dashboards

CRM software can gather all your data, reports, and analytics to display them in one easy-to-interpret dashboard. The summaries are usually very comprehensive and provide you with everything you need to know about your business process, including where you can improve and what your marketing, customer, and sales teams spend the most amount of time on.

2) Improves Trustworthy Reporting

Customer relationship management software, as the name suggests, helps improve the business’s interaction and relationship with its customers. This means that your employees can interact with customers in a more engaging way through App interactions.

Not only that, but it also improves your reliability and, ultimately, your trustworthy rating. CRM apps collect and display all your customer interactions into one platform and remind your team of tasks and unread messages associated with each customer/ client. This allows you to stay in constant communication with clients and reassure them that their needs are well taken care of – a principle all clients want!

3) Increase Efficiency With Automation

We all know how automation can improve our everyday tasks. It can be as simple as the automated coffee machine that goes off at 6 am, and you wake up with a fresh brew aroma. Whichever automation process is present in your life, it is there to save you time doing simple tasks so that you can spend more time on what is really important – a CRM tool does that for your business process.

The tool can automate repetitive tasks such as invoicing, meetings, or even customer support. By automating all these tasks, your team has more time to be innovative and creative – coming up with ideas to move your business forward and help it grow.

5 Types of CRM Tools

1) Operational CRM

Operational CRM ties in perfectly with the last benefit of using a CRM tool – automation. These types of CRM tools are designed to automate repetitive tasks and instead focus on building customer relationships. These tools automate lead storing, invoicing, contact management, etc. The tools also help you track a customer’s journey through the business from initial contact to eventual sale and follow-up.

2) Collaborative CRM

Every business has different departments, from marketing and sales to customer support. Getting all these departments on the same page and in sync can be challenging, especially with a big company. Collaborative CRM tools provide your team with real-time updates on every customer’s progress and data. This allows your team to check the progress of any client, from lead interaction and purchases to customer feedback.

All your team members will have access to client data to structure the business strategy around each client’s specific needs to ensure they have the best experience.

3) Campaign management CRM

Campaign management CRM is a tool specifically for everything that is marketing. These CRM solutions help launch, schedule, coordinate, and monitor marketing campaigns on multiple channels. The tool also helps save time for your sales and marketing team through marketing automation.

Finally, a campaign management tool can help identify potential customers in a sales cycle and then plan and optimize your marketing campaign to increase the chances of a person buying your product.

4) Analytical CRM

Knowledge is power – and it is exactly what an analytical CRM provides you. Analytical CRM tools provide helpful data summarised in easy-to-follow reports. The data include: marketing campaign efficacy, sales efficacy, recurring customers, how each team member spends their time, etc.

You can use these reports to identify areas where your business might need improvement.

5) Strategic CRM

It is important to get new customers to ensure the growth of your business. However, it is just as important to ensure that existing customers become recurring customers. Not only do they provide income, but the ROI on recurring customers is just that much higher.

Think about it this way, your marketing team created a great ad that reeled in a couple of customers. If you are able to make that one-time sale into a recurring theme, then that one ad indirectly creates sales at no extra cost – boosting your ROI.

Therefore a strategic CRM is very important. A strategic CRM is specifically designed to gather knowledge about existing customers. And use that knowledge to optimize interactions between customers and the business to build and maintain a long-term relationship with them – providing customer satisfaction and recurring sales.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best CRM tool?

The best CRM tool currently available is Accelo. The tools Accelo provides boost productivity and helps you save the most money in terms of the sales and customer pipeline.

Is Excel a CRM tool?

Excel is a CRM tool, but a very basic one. You can use database functions to collect data, manage and then evaluate them. Although not as powerful as the CRM systems listed in this article, it can be a great one to start with.

Which CRM is easiest to use?

Accelo is the easiest CRM to use. The dashboard and user interface are very simplistic, and you can learn them very fast.

What are the 4 P’s of CRM?

The 4 P’s of CRM are Planning, People, Process, and Platform. Alternatively, it can be Product, Process, Policy, and People.

What is a CRM framework?

A CRM framework is the method a company chooses to approach and manage its customers. This includes the initial marketing phase and sales pipeline to ensuring recurrent sales.

Is SAP a CRM system?

SAP is a good customer relationship management option. It provides sales force automation, pipeline management, and cloud access.

The Bottom Line

CRM software tools are powerful tools in your business arsenal you should use to improve your team’s efficacy in dealing with customers. CRM tools provide a plethora of services for your business, these services are designed to streamline your team’s workflow from marketing to ensuring recurring customers – ultimately boosting ROI. CRMs can, however, be overwhelming at first, which is why I would recommend you first try a trial or demo of the 10 CRM tools listed above.

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