Best CRM Software for Businesses in 2023

As we all know, customers have a bittersweet – not to mention, sensitive relationship with businesses. This is exactly why it holds an integral position when it comes to the success of a business.  Companies can technically feed off of their customer relationships if managed properly. 

This opens the door to the question of how exactly you can leverage your relationship with customers to maximize the output. Of course, through professional CRM tools (you’re not superhuman, and you know it!)

Since the quest for finding the right CRM software can be outright overwhelming, I’ve done the work for you.  

I dug deep into many different types of tools and analyzed them to bring together the perfect one for you.  But, before moving on to the best CRM systems, let’s have a quick roundup of why it’s a good idea to invest in one:

Why Investing In a CRM Tool Is More Important Than You Think?

For starters, CRM software is probably all you need to get that streamlined communication you’ve been waiting for. Some of the major advantages of getting a CRM tool on board are:

  • Better Reporting; with CRM software at hand, you’ve technically gotten a secure customer database which otherwise can become quite a nuisance to get. The powerful reporting comes with analytical capabilities to further make things easy for you. 
  • Streamlined Customer Communication; building and tracking that one-on-one relationship with your customers can become a delightful experience with CRM tools. You know exactly what your customers’ needs are and how they can be catered to.
  • Hiked Customer Retention Rate; the mere sense of being important to a business invokes a higher sense of loyalty in customers, which ultimately results in a higher retention rate and high profit margins.
  • Real-Time Access to Information; customer relationship management software provides valuable insights and analytics about your customers. What they’re searching for, their buying patterns, likes and dislikes, and numerous other details can help you target your niche effectively.
  • Managing Leads; it goes without saying that when you have a tool in place for organizing everything, managing leads becomes easy. Possessing an integrated platform can become a powerful means of grabbing those potential leads and converting them into customers 

List of Best CRM Software 

Now that you’ve seen how CRM software can be an instant recipe for holding on to longer and more fruitful customer relationships, let’s move forward.

So, my picks for the best CRM applications that will save you from the horror of destroying a potentially good customer relationship are: 

1. Salesforce 

A gold standard in CRM systems, Salesforce probably has everything a business can ask for. The sole reason I gave the top spot to this software is the rich portfolio of features it comes with. 

A robust CRM software that comes with humongous customization options. Suitable for businesses of all kinds, Salesforce is like that perfect grocery store that knows exactly what you want. 

Starting from: $25.00/user/month

Pricing model: Subscription

Free Trial: Available (No Credit Card required)

Devices: Android, iOS, Web 

Hands down, Salesforce is one of the best CRM software programs which left me in awe. Packed with an impressive set of advanced features, it definitely delivers what it promises. The tool serves all genres of businesses, including startups, as well as non-profits. 

From the most basic contact management to advanced AI-powered assistance, Salesforce makes sure it gets things done for you. It may seem a bit pricey if you’re just starting out, but SalesForce can be the perfect solution for mid-sized or large organizations. 

Key Features 

  • Key contacts management for keeping a secured database 
  • Live chat with customers for gaining insights 
  • Visual workflow management 
  • Campaign management for better financial decisions 
  • Real-time sales forecasting 
  • Dashboards and reports for quickly glancing at critical information 
  • Google apps integration including Google cloud storage provider (Google Drive) to keep you updated anywhere you go 


  • Lead Management and Control 
  • Account and Contact Management
  • Sales Forecasting
  • Real-Time Data Visibility
  • Drag-and-Drop Interface
  • Dashboards for Reporting 
  • Workflow Automation 
  • Live Chat 
  • File Sync
  • File Sharing
  • AI-powered Assistance 
  • Campaign Management
  • Customization Options 
  • Email Templates
  • Mass Email
  • Google Apps Integrations


  • Can be overwhelming for beginners 
  • Steep learning curve 
  • A little pricey for startups/beginners 

2. Hubspot

Looking for free CRM software? Hubspot to the rescue!  It’s my personally recommended best free CRM software.

A CRM solution that offers all of its core features free of cost, HubSpot is a must-try for all small businesses as it helps them easily track their contacts, workflows, campaigns, and much more. 

Starting from: $45.00/month (Free plan available) 

Pricing model: Free and Subscription-based 

Free Trial: Available (No Credit Card required)

Devices: Windows, Android, iOS, Mac, Web

Although Hubspot is a comparatively new CRM system, it still passes the test of best CRM for small businesses with flying colors. The tool is absolutely free of cost to use, so there’s no point in not giving it a try. The highlight of the tool for me was the lightweight and user-friendly interface it came with.

Moreover, Hubspot has been able to put together a decent feature set to help you navigate through your CRM system with ease. However, if you’re more inclined towards an advanced CRM solution, it might not be best for you, as it lacks the feature depth required to run a complex CRM system. 

Key Features 

  • Live chat tool for communicating with website visitors
  • Pipeline management to take care of deals 
  • Leads and contacts management 
  • Dashboards for workflow visualization 
  • Sales performance reports along with forecasts
  • Customized privacy settings for secured log ins 
  • Email tracking and scheduling 


  • Free of Cost Core Features 
  • Smooth User-Interface 
  • Pipeline Management 
  • Contacts Management 
  • Live Chat and Conversational Bots 
  • Contacts Website Activity 
  • Marketing Automation Tools 
  • SEO and Content Management 
  • Website Traffic Analytics 
  • Custom Reporting 
  • Custom Permissions and Single Sign On 


  • Limited Free Features 
  • Premium Functionality Comes at a High Price 
  • Might Not be Suitable for Large Organizations 
  • Limited Customization Allowed 

3. FreshSales

The next best CRM for small businesses that I looked into is FreshSales. My first impression of the tool – pretty easy to set up, doesn’t shove complicated features in my face, and even beginners can pull it off pretty easily. 

A perfect combination of a reasonable price and a friendly interface. FreshSales is your go-to CRM system if you’re looking for a quick solution, but don’t want to spend a fortune. 

Starting from: $15.00/user/month (Free version also available)

Pricing model: Subscription-based 

Free Trial: Available (No Credit Card required)

Devices: Android, iOS, Web

Another best CRM for small businesses, FreshSales has managed to grab third place in my roundup. It’s an intuitive CRM system that provides all the basics pretty smartly. You don’t need to go for integrations or power-ups if you’re not looking for a hefty feature set. Freshsales does it all by itself. 

The tool makes it easy to navigate through your workflows and processes without making you pull your hair out of frustration. The key highlights of this CRM application include lead management, deal management, and a massive number of native and other integrations. 

Key Features 

  • Clean, clutter-free interface 
  • Multiple pricing models to choose from 
  • Automatic leads management through smart forms 
  • Email tracking and email templates 
  • A timeline view for managing activities/events
  • Advanced lead scoring based on activity 
  • Multiple third-party application integrations 


  • Clutter-free Interface 
  • Flat Learning Curve
  • Customization Abilities 
  • Email Tracking 
  • Pipeline Management 
  • Lead Management 
  • Streamlined Processes 
  • Automated Tasks Management 
  • Calls Management 
  • Multiple Third-Party Application Integrations 


  • Lacks Advanced Functionality 
  • Sometimes takes a longer time to load 

4. Pipedrive 

As the name suggests, Pipedrive is a fast tool that focuses primarily on users’ ease instead of extensive (read: unnecessary) advanced features.

Another solid attraction for small to midsize businesses, Pipedrive provides a clean, streamlined view of your processes while keeping everything in check. 

Starting from: $12.50/user/month 

Pricing model: Subscription-based 

Free Trial: Available (No Credit Card required)

Devices: Android, iOS, Web, Mac 

If you’ve been a victim of tiresome onboarding procedures of CRM systems in the past (like me), this software is specifically for you. By providing a lightning-fast signing up and a quick setting up of essential information, Pipedrive instantly became my favorite CRM for small businesses. 

When you first launch the program, you’re welcomed with a pleasantly clean interface with everything right in front of you. Once you dig deep, you’ll find a plethora of useful features awaiting you. The tool also comes with comprehensive guidelines (including courses) and tutorial videos in case you get stuck somewhere.  

Key Features 

  • A visual pipeline for effectively managing deals 
  • Email reminders and notifications so you never miss an update
  • Workflow automation for streamlining operations 
  • Tracking of emails, calls, and contacts history 
  • Customizable dashboards for gaining insights regarding sales 
  • Activity reports for keeping an eye on sales and their trends 
  • Multiple integrations and mobile apps available 


  • Fast and Reliable 
  • Sales Pipeline View and Sales Reporting 
  • Goal Setting & Reporting Capabilities 
  • Contacts Management and History
  • Timeline view
  • Email Tracking 
  • Google Calendar & Contacts Integration
  • Mobile Apps Available 
  • Customization Options 
  • Multi-Language Support 
  • Data Import and Export 
  • Google Apps integration


  • Reporting Requires Third-party Integrations 
  • Limited Features Available in the Essential Package 

5. Zoho CRM  

For a CRM tool associated with an empire of the company’s other successful products, Zoho CRM doesn’t disappoint at all. 

A piping hot CRM software straight out of the oven of a renowned name we’re all aware of – Zoho. 

Starting from: $14/user/month 

Pricing model: Subscription-based 

Free Trial: Available (No Credit Card required)

Devices: Android, iOS, Web, Windows

You’ve likely heard of Zoho and the behemoth of products it offers. One such addition to the product line of the company is Zoho CRM. Whether it’s owing to a strong name backing it up, or merely because it is an excellently designed product in itself, Zoho CRM might be the perfect tool you’ve been looking for. 

Navigating through this best CRM for small businesses, I’ve come to the conclusion that it puts together a smart feature set along with a small price tag pretty nicely.  The thing that caught my attention the most was the gamification feature. It allows you to turn your daily operations into a competition and take the team motivation levels up a notch. Get things done while having fun! 

Key Features 

  • Sales force automation, including lead management 
  • Live chat for website visitors, along with feeds and focus groups 
  • Multiple progress tracking charts and reports
  • Email management for customer communication management 
  • Sales forecasting using historical data for contingency planning 
  •  Gamification of deals and AI prediction for prospective customers 


  • Real-time Forecasting
  • Pipeline Analysis and Management 
  • Lead Generation & Automated Lead Management 
  • Performance Management 
  • Competitive Analysis
  • Team Collaboration Functionality 
  • Email Templates 
  • Workflow Automation 
  • Real-time Sales Reporting 
  • Integration with G-suite and Office 365


  • Starter plan comes with limitations 

6. Insightly

An insightful edition to my review of the best CRM software, Insightly brings together multiple aspects of a business into one common solution.

A single platform for the three most important insights of your business – Marketing, Sales, and Projects.  

Starting from: $29/user/month 

Pricing model: Free plan and Subscription-based 

Free Trial: Available (No Credit Card required)

Devices: Web, iOS, Android

Marketing, projects, and sales pretty much sum up the core areas of a business that require maximum attention. With Insightly, you don’t have to juggle multiple systems for managing each one of these. 

The program helps you efficiently deal with your sales, turn them into valuable insights, and manage your entire projects like a pro as if you’re using a project management software. The customization and automation features help fit the tool with any type of business requirements with ease. 

Key Features 

  • Data visualization through interactive dashboards 
  • Timeline view through activities for lead tracking
  • Emails and call management 
  • Bulk emails functionality for targeting multiple prospective leads simultaneously
  • Real-time charts and graphs for monitoring performance 
  • Workflow automation for managing business processes
  • Multiple third-party application integrations


  • Free Version Available
  • Power BI Integration 
  • Email Tracking 
  • Email Templates 
  • Custom Fields and Filters 
  • Automatic Email Reminders 
  • Sales Pipeline Management 
  • Enterprise Level Reports and Dashboards 
  • App Development According to Requirements 
  • Easy File Uploads and Fast Search 
  • Array of Integrations 


  • Workflow Automation Available at Higher Price 
  • Unavailability of Automatic Email Forwarding 
  • Pricey Compared to Other Options Available 

7. Microsoft Dynamics 365

A cloud-based CRM software that helps businesses manage their operations through a single platform.  

A ‘dynamic’ customer relationship management tool that brings together a multitude of applications into an integrated solution 

Starting from: Depends on the business area

Pricing model: Subscription-based 

Devices: Windows

Microsoft Dynamics 365 is a cloud-managed tool that comes integrated with Office 365 and multiple other Microsoft products. So, if you’re already a Microsoft user, you’ll love this tool and unlike a completely new user, setting it up would be a piece of cake for you. 

Out of many useful features, the one I particularly liked was the tool’s ability to generate sales estimates and invoices in Microsoft Outlook, which are then reflected in the accounting system automatically. 

Key Features 

  • Optimization of the sales process for maximizing output
  • Dashboards for providing insights into customer behavior 
  • Marketing module to effectively manage campaigns 
  • Customer services module for catering to all the customer concerns
  • Performance management functionality to help track employee performance 
  • Artificial intelligence for making smarter decisions


  • Valuable Customer Insights 
  • Programmatic management of product properties
  • Permission Controls 
  • Activity Management and Control
  • Server-to-Server Authentication
  • Virtual Agent for Customer Service 
  • Fraud Protection 
  • Process Management 
  • Power BI
  • Dynamics 365 app for Outlook
  • Cortana Integration


  • Steep Learning Curve 
  • Comes Off as Clunky for Beginners 
  • Mass Data Entry Can Turn into a Tedious Task 

In a nutshell, the best CRM software for you will always be the one that fits rightly with your needs. Evaluate your needs, take the plunge, and pick the right tool which makes things easy for you.  

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