When I first started using CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software in the late 80’s, they were based on DOS, desktop only, and we called them Contact Managers. Most early adopters were using these applications primarily as selling tools.
Jump forward to 2022 and CRM has evolved to a cloud-based application and its primary use, at least for SMB or even solopreneurs, is still likely going to be sales. However, CRM is now being touted as a single-source application for sales, marketing, customer service, and more.
That’s great, but these added capabilities will likely come at a cost in terms of dollars and man-hours. The more sophisticated the application, the higher the investment and to expect this type of functionality to come with a CRM that costs under $250 per user annually … it probably ain’t gonna’ happen. If it does happen, you probably ain’t gonna’ like it.
Now, there may be the occasion where you will be able to integrate your low-cost CRM with a third-party application in order to achieve some of these goals. How seamless this integration will be varies widely. Then, you will also have the investment needed for this third-party application and maybe even another application such as Zapier (a data connector) which will facilitate this integration.
In my humble opinion, and there are certainly exceptions which will be based on your specific needs, adding these capabilities to a low-cost CRM can be clumsy, costly, and limited in their effectiveness. However, if for example you want inquiries from your website to go directly into your CRM via a connection with your contact form … good application.
If more advanced integrations are that important to you, you may be better off with a more sophisticated CRM solution right out of the gate. Or … really explore your lower-cost options and find a CRM solution that will do most of, not all, of what you would like to see. I like to see increased sales revenues and those will buy me a lot of other stuff … like a higher-end CRM and the needed support that will go with that.
There is also a case to be made for starting out small and growing into something larger. You master CRM basics and you clearly define your processes. If you are new to CRM, and you are not even fully comfortable with its basic functions, adding on more complex applications can result in a huge cluster.
For that matter, your low-cost CRM may actually be capable of providing you with most of what you want. You may just need to dig a little deeper. I represent Nimble and you might be amazed by what this low-cost solution is capable of providing and right out of the box.
If and when needed, you can always move to a higher-level solution. If this is your end goal, my caution might be to investigate exactly what data you will be able to extract from your current CRM and move to your new CRM.
If you have questions about Nimble, please feel free to book a free 30-minute Zoom consultation with me!