10 Best CRM for Startups in 2022

Person pressing CRM button on screen.

When it comes to selecting the best customer relationship management (CRM) software for startups, there are a number of different options available. However, CRM systems can vary depending on the company's specific needs. Some of the most important tasks a startup must manage are its marketing automation, lead management, communication, and sales automation processes — thus the need to choose the best CRM software and project management tools.

Best CRM for Startups: Salesforce

CRM Software for Startups

     

Salesforce

4.8/5 star rating.

4.8/5

Best CRM for Startups

  • Highly customizable
  • Large number of essential features
  • Trusted brand with high authority
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HubSpot

4.6/5 star rating.

4.6/5

Best Free CRM for Startups

  • Helpful features and integrations
  • HubSpot for Startups program with discounts for eligible companies
  • Streamlined interface and mobile-friendly
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Freshsales

4.4/5 star rating.

4.4/5

  • Easy to set up and use
  • Visual sales pipeline management
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Zoho

4.2/5 star rating.

4.2/5

  • More cost-effective than similar software
  • Excellent customer support
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Monday

4/5 star rating.

4/5

 

  • Accessible online dashboard
  • Flexible and easy to customize
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There are several qualities startups should look out for in CRM apps:

  • Startups should look for CRM services that are easy to use and can provide the necessary features to manage their business (e.g., marketing automation tools, automating sales processes, contact management, sales forecasting, task management, tracking and analyzing detailed customer purchase histories, and other key features).
  • Good CRM systems should be able to integrate with other systems used by the startup throughout the sales pipeline, such as accounting and workflow automation systems, contact automation software, and contact management software, to help streamline operations.
  • It is important to find a CRM tool that has an intuitive interface so that startup employees can manage business processes, a sales team, and customer service tools, and easily get accurate sales forecasting reports, access data and even track multiple sales pipelines to improve business operations.
  • Some advanced features to consider when choosing the top CRM software include robust reporting capabilities that track customer interaction, CRM tools that streamline marketing automation, lead management, the sales process, help to manage sales and marketing teams, and help to improve customer relations and business operations throughout the entire sales process (sales cycle).

Skip Ahead:

  • Salesforce (Best CRM for Startups)
  • HubSpot (Best Free CRM for Startups)
  • Freshsales (Best CRM Software for Sales Teams)
  • Zoho (Best CRM Software for Customer-Facing Teams)
  • Monday (Best CRM Software for Tracking Client Relationships)
  • Pipedrive (Best CRM Software for Pipeline Management)
  • Salesmate (Best CRM Software for Revenue Growth)
  • Insightly (Best CRM Software for Building Customer Connections)
  • ClickUp (Best CRM Software for Project Management)
  • Agile CRM (Best CRM Software for Sales Enablement)
  • Review Methodology
  • FAQ

Recommended CRM: Salesforce

We recommend Salesforce CRM for startups because of its large number of features and easy-to-use platform.

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1. Best CRM for Startups Overall: Salesforce

Salesforce CRM offers a wide range of features, capabilities, app exchange, and open APIs which make it ideal for businesses of all sizes. 

With Salesforce, businesses can easily oversee their contact management, sales management, and marketing campaigns. Additionally, it offers an array of integrations with other systems, making it one of the most comprehensive CRMs available. Overall, Salesforce is an excellent CRM software choice for businesses of all sizes.

Notable Features

  • Build reports and dashboards for everything
  • Create new leads for potential customers
  • Manage leads
  • Create a campaign to send to potential customers
  • Manage opportunities
  • Find leads that match specific criteria
  • Find leads that have been contacted in the past week
  • Custom forms
  • Track customer interactions
  • Centralized contact record
  • Manage tasks
  • Mobile app integration (API access, Zappier, etc.)

Pricing

  • Essentials: $25/user/month
  • Professional: $75/user/month
  • Enterprise: $150/user/month
  • Unlimited: $300/user/month

Pros

  • Extremely user-friendly and easy to use, making it perfect for startups who want a simple solution that they can manage themselves.
  • A wide variety of features and available plugins, so you can customize it to fit your needs perfectly to keep track of customer data, no matter how complex it gets.
  • Backed by a strong company with a long history of success.

Cons

  • The initial setup and configuration can be time-consuming and challenging.
  • The user interface can be overwhelming and challenging to use for beginners.
  • It can be expensive to maintain and upgrade the software.

Want to learn more? Read our full Salesforce CRM Review.

Recommended: Get Salesforce today!

2. Best Free CRM for Startups: HubSpot

HubSpot is an excellent free sales CRM software for startups. It offers a streamlined interface and powerful features that make managing your business easier. With HubSpot CRM, you can keep track of all your contacts, leads, and sales activities in one place. You can also create custom reports to analyze your data in detail. What's more, HubSpot CRM is mobile-friendly, so you can access it from anywhere.

Notable Features

  • Track leads and prospects
  • Monitor emails and phone calls
  • Powerful marketing features
  • Measure social media activity
  • Analyze website visits
  • Track marketing campaigns
  • Track sales activities
  • Measure customer service activities
  • Analyze sales activities

Pricing

  • Free Sales CRM Tools: $0
  • Sales Hub:
    • Starter: $45/month for two users ($23/user/month for each additional user)
    • Professional: $450/month for five users ($90/user/month for each additional user)
    • Enterprise: $1,200/month for 10 users ($120/user/month for each additional user)

Pros

  • Free forever plan
  • Fully integrated
  • Browser extension available
  • Intuitive interface
  • Robust professional plan with lead generation tools
  • Import email information exceptionally well
  • Easy to use, requiring minimal training
  • Friendly user interface and user experience (UI/UX)

Cons

  • The free plan is quite limited
  • Many HubSpot CRM systems need management
  • Pricing runs high on the Enterprise plan

Want to learn more? Read our full HubSpot CRM Review.

Get HubSpot today!

3. Freshsales

Freshsales is a sales automation platform that lets businesses shorten their sales cycles, personalize customer engagement, and ultimately grow their business and increase revenues. The platform's key features include 360-degree customer views, allowing you to see all of your customer’s interactions and leverage data to deliver personalized experiences, as well as tools that make it simple to have a streamlined sales process. 

Freshsales gives you the functionality you need to focus on the best leads, generate solid opportunities, and shorten your sales cycle by having conversations with prospects in the context of where they are in the buying process. 

Notable Features

  • Fully-fledged sales automation platform
  • Artificial intelligence (AI) powered chatbots
  • Capture information from visitors with Web Forms
  • Track visitor actions and viewed pages to understand user intent
  • Use contact scoring to identify the best leads
  • Communicate with prospects across multiple channels, including SMS, chat, email, and phone
  • Have a birds-eye view of the sales process with an activity timeline that shows you support, marketing, and sales touchpoints
  • Improve your revenue forecasting with the dynamic forecasting feature

Pricing (Billed Annually)

  • Free: $0
  • Growth: $15/user/month
  • Pro: $39/user/month
  • Enterprise: $69/user/month

Pros

  • Easily access customer accounts and get a birds-eye view of the sales process with each prospect
  • Excellent documentation and support
  • A great tool for tracking, planning, selling, and auditing processes that complements your business
  • Easy onboarding and quick setup
  • Has numerous integrations with commonly used software and tools, including Freshdesk for customer support
  • Allows users to cross-sell and upsell products with automated sales campaigns
  • AI-powered insights let you improve conversion rates and drive deals to closure

Cons

  • Some customers reported sync times with integrations, and internal tools can have slight delays
  • Could have additional sales sequence functionality, such as trail runs, etc.
  • Lacking integrations with major email providers like Gmail
  • No keyword or “search by keyword” option in the common search function

Get Freshsales today!

4. Zoho

Zoho CRM is an excellent customer relationship management (CRM) platform that works especially well for customer-facing teams. It provides features such as comprehensive analytics, robust automation, and personalized solutions for making the sales process as smooth and efficient as possible. Teams will be able to use Zoho to build up excellent customer relationships, engage with customers through the best sales-driven channels, and give them the right message at the right time for maximum engagement and results.

Notable Features

  • Comprehensive and rich analytics for making decisions
  • Robust automation solutions
  • Dedicated administrative panel
  • State-of-the-art customization
  • Integrations with 500+ third-party apps through the Zoho Marketplace
  • Dedicated programs for training, deployment, and migration
  • No hidden costs

Pricing (Monthly Pricing)

  • Standard: $20/user/month
  • Professional: $35/user/month
  • Enterprise: $50/user/month
  • Ultimate: $65/user/month

Pros

  • Excellent economical pricing options for all business types and sizes
  • Can be deployed without hiring a technical specialist
  • Includes all of the features a business would need from a CRM
  • Helpful customer service
  • Ease of integration across the Zoho suite of products is excellent
  • Easy to deploy, upscale, and customize
  • Includes an extensive developer platform

Cons

  • The interface can be a bit clunky
  • The community is still growing and not as strong as more established platforms like Salesforce
  • Customizing additional features isn’t free
  • Lack of detailed tutorial videos or slide decks when first implementing Zoho into an organization

Want to learn more? Read our full Zoho CRM Review.

Get Zoho CRM today!

5. Monday

The Monday Sales CRM is an excellent customer relationship management (CRM) software solution that’s perfect for gaining visibility into your sales pipeline and boosting the productivity of your sales and customer management teams. You can customize the Monday CRM to fit the requirements and personalized aspects of your sales cycle and tailor every aspect of the platform to work for you. It includes emails and activities for central client communication, integrations with third-party tools, and beautiful dashboards to show you exactly what’s happening at every step of your sales cycle. 

Notable Features

  • Offers excellent visibility into the sales pipeline
  • Fully customizable sales cycle that you can tailor to your business
  • Central client communication center and email integrations
  • Sales process automation functionality
  • Instant overviews of every deal made to give you the complete picture
  • Beautiful and customizable dashboards that can be built in real-time
  • Hundreds of integrations with commonly used third-party platforms and tools

Pricing

  • Individual CRM: $0
  • Basic CRM: $10/seat/month
  • Standard CRM: $14/seat/month
  • Pro CRM: $24/seat/month
  • Enterprise CRM: Varies

Pros

  • Extensive template library allows you to start from proven layouts
  • Centralized software platform for everything CRM-related
  • Very flexible, with multiple features for managing and using the platform
  • Incredibly easy to customize and tailor to your company
  • The user interface is very intuitive to use
  • Platform lets you keep track of your customers with ease
  • Visually appealing platform and dashboards

Cons

  • Additional functionality and limits may require upgrading to the next pricing level
  • The user interface (UI) can become bogged down if you have lots of data in the system
  • Could have better reporting capabilities

Want to learn more? Check out our full Monday CRM Review.

Get Monday Sales CRM today!

6. Pipedrive

Pipedrive is a cloud-based software platform that helps companies manage customer relationships more effectively. It provides a centralized platform for managing customer data and offers various features to help businesses reach their customer goals. Pipedrive CRM is perfect for companies that want to improve their customer interactions.

Notable Features

  • CRM tool for assigning tasks to the sales team
  • Create to-do lists for improved business processes
  • Prioritize tasks within the CRM platform
  • Drag and drop functionality
  • Import sales data and track deals
  • Account management
  • Free CRM (for up to three users)
  • Sales forecasting

Pricing

  • Essential: $18/user/month
  • Advanced: $33/user/month
  • Professional: $59/user/month
  • Enterprise: $119/user/month

Pros

  • Call tracking and lead management
  • Sales automation and workflow automation
  • Great customer service
  • Built by salespeople
  • Low service costs

Cons

  • Limited analytics

Want to learn more? Read our full Pipedrive CRM Review.

Get Pipedrive today!

7. Salesmate

Salesmate is a customer relationship management (CRM) and automation software platform that was built to offer personalized and productive experiences to customers and sales teams. Salesmate is currently being used in over 70 countries by 4,000+ sales teams, helping them grow revenue, create happy customers, and win more deals. Some of the features in Salesmate include prospect management, lead management, sales pipeline tracking, sales activity tracking, sales automation sequences, sales intelligence and reporting, and extensive third-party integrations with all of the additional tools your sales teams use regularly. 

Notable Features

  • Reach even more prospects with lead and prospect engagement features
  • Send bulk texts and emails, track emails with ease, and utilize a calling power dialer if required
  • Visualize your entire sales pipeline and track all sales activity
  • Eliminate everyday repetitive tasks through sales automation sequences
  • Deep insights and reporting, including sales forecasting, custom reports, and custom dashboards
  • Integrate with 700+ business apps, including Microsoft, Google Apps, and even Zapier
  • Includes built-in collaboration tools for your entire team

Pricing (Monthly Pricing)

  • Starter: $15/user/month
  • Growth: $30/user/month
  • Boost: $50/user/month
  • Enterprise: Varies

Pros

  • Easy and simple user experience for sales teams of every shape and size
  • Affordable for small teams compared to alternative CRM solutions
  • Integrated email, SMS, phone, and other platforms
  • Sales pipeline graphical representations are intuitive and easily digestible
  • Helpful and kind customer service and support personnel 
  • Immediately improves sales representative productivity

Cons

  • Reports can be difficult to read due to their formatting
  • The structure and layout of the “deals” page have room for improvement
  • SMS messages are most reliable under 160 characters
  • Learning the platform from scratch can be overwhelming with its significant features

Get Salesmate today!

8. Insightly

Insightly is a modern and scalable CRM platform for sales teams that’s incredibly easy to set up, has integrations with numerous third-party platforms and tools, and is built specifically to support your company’s growth. By using Insightly, your company can centralize all of your customer data, use insights to close more deals, create engaging customer journeys, convert deals to projects to deliver on time, elevate your customer support, and exceed customer expectations. Insightly is an excellent solution for the job if you need to align all your teams on one platform. 

Notable Features

  • Create personalized customer journeys to attract visitors and convert them into prospects
  • Use A/B testing and multivariate testing 
  • Comes with flexible and beautiful email templates
  • Includes a convenient customer support portal
  • In-depth analytics and data to get a detailed look at customer health
  • Very easy to use and adopt across multiple teams
  • Delivers very quick time-to-value

Pricing

  • Plus: $29/user/month
  • Professional: $49/user/month
  • Enterprise: $99/user/month

Pros

  • Excellent set of features that are good enough to uphold any sales workflow
  • Perfect platform for making customers happy and improving your business reputation
  • A reliable tool that lets you document everything from start to finish
  • User-friendly with a perfect, minimalist design 
  • Great set of integrations across tools you may already use
  • Easy to keep track of all moving parts in your business
  • Can be easily customized and scaled to fit the needs of any business

Cons

  • The extensive feature range can make it confusing to configure at first
  • Doesn’t include time-tracking functionality
  • Chrome extensions can be a bit clunky
  • Project management functions are very basic

9. ClickUp

ClickUp is one of the best CRMs for teams and businesses that are heavily focused on project management and would like to visualize their organization’s key processes and sales pipelines through beautiful graphics, data, and illustrations. When your organization decides to use ClickUp, you’ll likely never lose any client information ever again. The platform includes account management features, communication tools, sales pipelines, and everything in between. 

Notable Features

  • See all of your client's orders at a glance with intuitive CRM views
  • Analyze your data for customer insights with high-level views
  • 50+ dashboard widgets for beautiful visuals and reporting
  • Centralized customer outreach with email integrations and a single email hub
  • Designed to allow your business to build the perfect customer database quickly
  • Easily collect account info through forms and automation
  • Simplify your account management through an organized workflow

Pricing (Monthly Pricing)

  • Free: $0
  • Unlimited: $9/user/month
  • Business: $19/user/month
  • Business Plus: $29/user/month
  • Enterprise: Varies

Pros

  • Excellent platform for capturing client feedback
  • Great for marketing teams to keep all projects organized
  • Simple automation setups
  • Offers nearly every solution a company can think of, all in one platform
  • Easy to use compared to alternative specialized platforms, like Jira
  • User-friendly, intuitive, and feature-rich
  • Includes employee and user time-tracking

Cons

  • The font and text themes on certain pages can be difficult to read
  • Subtasks don’t show up on the homepage, allowing you to click down a level
  • Lots of features that you can get lost in
  • Gantt chart functionality can take some time to become familiar with

10. Agile CRM

Agile CRM is a sales enablement, customer service, and marketing automation platform used by over 15,000+ happy businesses worldwide to grow their revenues and make more deals. The Agile CRM platform includes an all-in-one CRM for automated sales, marketing, and service and is a next-generation cloud-based tool that’s fast, simple to use, and mobile-ready. Users can take advantage of contact management, telephony, project management, gamification, and appointment scheduling. There’s no better way to build relationships with your valuable customer base and close more deals than through a reliable CRM platform like Agile CRM. 

Notable Features

  • Includes sales automation, marketing, and service all in one platform
  • Easy implementation and affordable pricing compared to the competition
  • Sales features such as contact management, telephony, deal stage tracking, and project management
  • Marketing features include a landing page builder, marketing automation, email marketing, mobile marketing, and even email tracking
  • Service features such as customer feedback, ticketing, knowledge base, canned responses, and a helpdesk
  • Integrations with popular apps such as Twitter, Facebook, Google Apps, RingCentral, LinkedIn, Twilio, and more
  • An excellent platform for sales enablement and marketing

Pricing (Monthly Pricing)

  • Free: $0
  • Starter: $14.99/user/month
  • Regular: $49.99/user/month
  • Enterprise: $79.99/user/month

Pros

  • Includes an extensive range of features perfect for any business or sales team
  • The ideal solution for businesses looking for an “all-in-one” platform
  • Perfect balance between structure and flexibility
  • Impressive tracking and marketing capabilities
  • Contains ample support documentation for getting up to speed
  • The ideal platform for optimizing marketing, sales, and report generation
  • Simple to view tracked processes and logged interactions

Cons

  • Canceling your subscription may require writing to customer support
  • Documentation of automation tools could benefit from an update
  • Lacks integration with several niche/specialized APIs

Review Methodology

The CRM software market is constantly growing and evolving as businesses seek to find the best CRM solution that meets their specific needs. In order to help readers decide which CRM solutions are best for their business, we evaluated the following criteria: ease of use, customer support, key features, pricing customization, and customizability. 

We evaluated the top CRM software based on the following criteria:

  • Ease of Use: CRMs that have a clean UI/UX and easy navigation will help users quickly learn how to use them.
  • Customer Support: Customer support should be available via phone, email, chat, live chat, social media, etc. The more plans a CRM has, the better it is. We looked at the number of different types of customer service options when determining which were the best CRMs for startups.
  • Features: CRMs that have base features like customer management, sales, and marketing tools. Mobile CRM is a software application designed to run on mobile devices such as smartphones or tablets. It allows users to access their customer data from anywhere at any time.
  • Pricing: Low pricing makes using a CRM easy and affordable for startups and new businesses.
  • Customization: Being able to customize a CRM system to a specific business is one of the most important features that any CRM should have. This can be done in many ways, such as by using templates or custom fields and reports. However, it’s also possible to use a third-party service that integrates with the CRM, adding extra usability to the software.
  • Customer Reviews: Authentic customer reviews from authority review sites like TrustAuthority and others give valuable insight into the CRM from the customer's point of view.

FAQ

What is CRM software?

CRM software is software that helps organizations manage their customer relationships. It can help with things such as managing customer data, creating and sending email campaigns, and tracking customer interactions. CRM services are often used in business-to-business (B2B) or business-to-consumer (B2C) settings.

Do startups need CRM software?

Overall, CRM software is an important tool for any startup looking to grow and scale successfully. Key benefits include customer retention and engagement, a better understanding of customer needs, and faster identification and resolution of customer issues.

What is the best CRM software?

The most selected CRMs are Salesforce, HubSpot, Monday, and Microsoft Dynamics. However, selecting a CRM is dependent on your needs and may be industry-specific.

What should you look for in CRM software?

There are a lot of CRM software options out there on the market, so choosing the best one for your business can be daunting. However, by understanding what to look for in CRM software, you can narrow down your search and find the perfect solution for your needs. Here are some key factors to keep in mind when choosing CRM software: 

  • Functionality: Will the software fulfill all of your needs? Is it easy to use and navigate? Does it have all of the features you need?
  • Price: How expensive is the software, and is it worth the price? Do you get what you pay for?
  • Scalability: Can you add more users or employees without upgrading the software? Is it suitable for a large organization?

About the Author

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TRUiC’s team of researchers, writers, and editors dedicate hours to ensure startupsavant.com’s articles are actionable and accessible for both startup founders and startup enthusiasts. From launching a startup to growing your venture, you can trust that our information is an up-to-date and reliable source.