For the last few months, I’ve been looking for a good CRM system to help me manage customer contacts, sales processes, and all the other tasks related to gathering prospects and converting some of them into paying clients.
I’ve looked at quite a few systems such as SalesForce and InfusionSoft and could not find one that was really a good fit for a solo entrepreneur and/or microbusiness.
I had just about decided to buy a new relational database app and create my own system (which would have taken months), but did not want the diversion from my current business goals. I have a background in developing these types of systems, but then I’d get tied up in all the maintenance and upgrading and just didn’t want to go there.
Yet, at this stage of my business, I could not find an affordable CRM solution that I could grow into as my business expands.
Then, yesterday, I found Zoho CRM and it looks like it may be what I’ve been looking for.
(That is not an affiliate link, but they do have a nice affiliate program. If Zoho CRM turns out to be a good solution for my business, I’ll join their affiliate program. But, not until I know it is a good, reliable solution to my sales management needs.)
They offer a free account for up to three users and their paid plans are very affordable: Standard for $12/user/month; Professional for $20/user/month; and Enterprise for $35/user/month.
About the only thing that the Standard Edition offers that the Professional Edition doesn’t (for my particular needs) is integration.
So, if it proves to be useful for helping me manage my sales process, then it will be easily worth $12/user/month. One new client and it would more than pay for itself for a whole year. That’s the kind of ROI I look for.
I don’t know why it took me so long to find Zoho CRM, but I’m happy that I did.
Now, it’s just a matter of putting it to use and seeing how it works for my business.
It has to be comprehensive enough to help me organize everything and to easily see where each prospect is in my marketing funnel, without being so feature-laden that it becomes too complex to use every day.
I’ll let you know in a month or two how it’s going.
If it works for me, it’s going to be a relief. I’m tired of flying by the seat of my pants, and my main goals for this year are to build systems to organize and manage the sales process for myself and my clients.