Top CRM Software Services for Small Businesses

Attracting new customers while satisfying and retaining current customers requires a personal connection. CRM services tap into the power of the cloud to give SMBs a competitive edge.

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Image: iStock/HAKINMHAN

For many businesses, small and large, attracting new customers while satisfying and retaining current customers, requires the establishment of a personal connection in a world where there is increasingly less personal contact. Typically, these personal connections come through the use of a customer relationship management (CRM) systems and their ability to tap into the power of the cloud and business digitization.

Rather than reinvent the wheel, many small businesses rely on Software as a Service (SaaS) vendors to provide the CRM software and the infrastructure needed to deploy their CRM tool. While there are dozens of available CRM software platforms to choose from, several vendors seem to rise to the top of review lists more often than the rest. These seven vendors and their CRM platforms are not rated and are presented in alphabetical order.



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Image: Apptivo

Apptivo is a complete cloud-based CRM solution with included applications that run the gamut from lead generation to competitor tracking to contract writing. The CRM services can be modified and developed to satisfy whatever CRM solution your business needs. The Starter level of this CRM software can be used for free, but most small businesses will likely want to opt for at least the Premium level, which is priced at $8/month/user when billed annually.

Key features:

  • Lead management
  • Email marketing creation features and services
  • Segmentation and personalization
  • Marketing automation workflows
  • Detailed analytics reports
  • Mobile apps
  • 24/7 support
  • Trial period


$8 at Apptivo



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Image: Freshworks

Freshsales CRM software is part of the Freshworks suite of applications. The emphasis for Freshsales CRM is to simplify customer relationship management, in terms of interface and pricing models. The tools included with a Freshsales CRM software subscription should satisfy the CRM needs of many small businesses, with the base level Blossom version being available for $12/month/user when billed annually. Larger business operations will likely want to go with the Garden level, priced at $25/month/user when billed annually.

Key features:

  • Lead management
  • Email marketing creation features and services
  • Place phone calls right from the CRM software
  • Segmentation and personalization
  • Marketing automation workflows
  • Native integrations with popular third-party services
  • AI support for lead generation
  • Detailed analytics reports from the CRM database
  • Mobile apps
  • 24/7 support
  • 21-day trial period


$12 at Freshsales



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Image: Hubspot

Hubspot is another CRM software service that attempts to simplify customer relationship management by offering a more intuitive interface. The various facets of the CRM system are divided into task-oriented hubs that the company believes are less overwhelming than the interfaces offered by their competitors. Hubspot’s Starter level package of CRM software costs $40/month billed annually. The Professional level package costs $800/month billed annually. A limited free version of Hubspot is available. Note the lack of a per-user charge in Hubspot’s pricing model.

Key features:

  • Lead management
  • Email marketing creation features and services
  • Segmentation and personalization
  • Marketing automation workflows
  • Facebook ads and retargeting
  • Social media support
  • AI support for lead generation
  • Detailed data analytics reports
  • Mobile apps
  • 24/7 support
  • Free limited version


$40 at Hubspot



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Image: Less Annoying CRM

As you can tell from its name, the vendor Less Annoying CRM’s focus, like several others on this list, is on providing CRM software services that are simple to use. This vendor focuses on contact management, lead generation, and sales team collaboration. Less Annoying CRM software caters to small businesses that don’t need elaborate CRM marketing and social media integration services. The Less Annoying CRM platform is available for $15/month/user. There is only one pricing tier.

Key features:

  • Lead management
  • Email marketing creation features and services
  • Segmentation and personalization
  • Mobile apps
  • 24/7 support
  • 30-day free trial


$15 at Less Annoying CRM



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Image: Jose Faria/Pipedrive

Pipeline CRM software emphasizes lead development, contact management, and the automation of administrative CRM solution tasks. If the sales side of your business requires help with making and closing deals, Pipeline CRM software may be a good choice. The Essential level includes standard features but less automation and sells for $12.50/month/user billed annually. The Professional version of Pipeline CRM includes all the automation and sales growth features and sells for $49.90/month/user billed annually.

Key features:

  • Lead management
  • Email marketing creation features and services
  • Place phone calls right from the CRM software
  • Segmentation and personalization
  • Marketing campaign automation workflows
  • Social media support
  • AI support for lead generation
  • Detailed data analytics reports
  • Mobile apps
  • 24/7 support
  • 14-day trial period


$12 at Pipedrive CRM



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Image: Salesforce

When the other vendors on this list claim to be simpler than other CRM software, they are actually claiming to be simpler than Salesforce. As the cloud-based company that practically invented the industry, Salesforce’s CRM platform is the most feature-rich, programmable, and customizable software available. However, all those enterprise-ready features can also make the software intimidating and confusing. The Essentials level of Salesforce’s Small Business Solutions pricing tier is $25/month/user billed annually. The Professional level tier is priced at $75/month/user billed annually.

Key features:

  • Lead management
  • Email marketing creation features and services
  • Place phone calls right from the CRM software
  • Segmentation and personalization
  • Marketing campaign automation workflows
  • Facebook ads and retargeting
  • Social media support
  • AI support for lead generation
  • Detailed data analytics reports
  • Mobile apps
  • 24/7 support
  • 14-day trial period


$25 at Salesforce



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Image: Zoho

Zoho CRM software is part of the Zoho productivity suite of small business software. The Zoho CRM product is a comprehensive customer relationship management, lead generation, and marketing platform built for small businesses. The CRM platform features include artificial intelligence (AI), collaboration tools, and a developer platform. The Standard version of Zoho CRM is available for $12/month/user billed annually. The popular Enterprise version costs $35/month/user billed annually.

Key features:

  • Lead management
  • Email marketing creation features and services
  • Segmentation and personalization
  • Marketing automation workflows
  • AI support for lead generation
  • Detailed analytics reports
  • Mobile apps
  • 24/7 support
  • 15-day trial period


$12 at Zoho CRM

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