In today’s highly competitive world, it is indeed a challenge for small businesses to have a high growth rate. This is particularly true in its initial days when the organization has limited exposure. Lesser exposure translates to a lesser number of customers availing the product or service but it also signals lesser employees, lesser revenue, and so on.

An efficient way for organizations to overcome this hurdle would be by investing in CRM software to streamline the workflow. CRM software facilitates having an organized process flow which in turn facilitates the growth of a business.

To understand how a small business stands to benefit from the adaptation of CRM software, here are some examples.

  •  Tracking and Scheduling

Scheduling of tasks manually often results in process loopholes. With CRM software, small businesses will be able to monitor all their activities in one portal and schedule campaigns accordingly.

  • Better client communication

When dealing with several client point-of-contact (POCs), vendors, potential clients, etc, it is understandable that one’s email inbox becomes cluttered. An easy way to tackle that would be by using a CRM tool. With a dedicated platform, you can view client emails easily and efficiently respond to them. This allows small businesses to provide a much superior quality of customer service.

  • Customer Data Analysis

With CRM, small businesses will also be in a position to track their customer movements. With tools that can focus on the business’ target audience, organizations can apply their marketing campaigns more effectively. Not only will this allow them to understand customer tastes and cater to that, but it will also enable businesses to sniff out leads for potential customers.

  • Better Collaboration

In the case of small businesses, different teams such as sales, HR, finance, operations, marketing, etc operate out of different office locations. Due to financial and practical constraints, it may not be feasible to have frequent meetings among the different teams. With all the required data saved in one accessible place, CRM tools facilitate better brainstorming sessions and foster collaboration between the different teams.

  • Integration and Automation

Most small businesses use more than one program. CRM systems can be integrated with their existing data processing, project management, or accounting software. Such integrations allow business processes to be streamlined in a way that will generate the maximum result. Repetitive tasks that small businesses undertake daily (such as routine follow-ups, monthly customer report generation, etc) can be automated by a CRM tool.

Best CRM Software to choose for small businesses

With a host of CRM software available, small businesses often find it difficult to identify which one is best suited to their needs. In this article, we will discuss some of the best CRM software for small businesses.

  1. Zoho

As a small business owner, one would like to have software that works in sync with all the existing tools. Zoho is a preferred choice for such businesses because it not just works well with other tools, but it can also be customized to mix the data from different tools and produce a result that is useful to the decision-makers. Zoho also boasts of sales features such as tracking website visitors, sales signals, lead scoring, etc.

As a small business, everyone eyes on growth and it is natural that with a growing enterprise, the budget allocation for CRM also changes. Zoho has different plans to cater to different business needs. There is a free version that small businesses can begin with. To access the advanced features, one can upgrade to Standard, professional and enterprise version (the cost of which is $12, $20 and $35 per month respectively).


  • Offers visitor tracking, pop-up notification about sales signals and a host of advanced marketing features

  • Multiple plans to cater to different budgets and data storage needs

  • As a small business grows in size, Zoho gives them the luxury of changing their subscription plan to meet the growing needs. Additionally, one can pay $5 per month for every extra 100MB of storage that they want to use.

  1. Salesforce

As one of the most widely used CRM tools, there is a myth that Salesforce is only for those who have a high CRM budget. However, the Lightning Essentials edition of Salesforce is specially designed for small businesses. With the package available at $25 per month for each user, there is ample room for customization. Users can make the most of the easy-to-use dashboards, email follow up automated reminders, email integration, and other features that are unique to Salesforce. Some small businesses also opt for the Salesforce Lightning Professional version that comes with an advanced contact manager and is available for $75 per month.


  • The setup for Lightning Essentials is easy to implement and takes minimal time.

  • Small businesses can make the most of their in-built intelligence features to boost their sales

  •  Highly customizable as compared to most other CRM tools in this budget.

  1. Mailchimp

Mailchimp is an easy to implement CRM tool that small businesses can use for their email marketing purposes. With a wide range of built-in templates and report generation tools, this software allows has some of the industry-best editors for marketing campaign customizations. The software is available free of cost and many small businesses rely on it for their third-party integration needs.


  • Easier data aggregation thereby allowing small businesses to manage all types of audience data from one place.

  • Multiple report generation tools that have built-in formats for easy customization.

  • The healthy contact management tools of Mailchimp allow small business to design their advertising campaigns more efficiently.

  1. Streak

Small businesses that use the GSuite are most likely to benefit from this CRM software. Ideal for teams with a strength of fewer than 10 members, this allows one the luxury of catering to all sort of business needs from their Gmail inbox itself. One can schedule email or send mass emails at a go, track views and do so much more with it. It will be fair to say that Streak is more of a browser plugin. However, its diverse utility makes it worth the $49 that users need to pay for a month of service. For small business owners, Streak has a unique feature wherein you can create separate email threads for your different teams such as marketing, HR, sales, etc.


  • It is a browser plug-in and allows one to use CRM features from their Gmail inbox.

  • Provides advanced features like email tracking, thread spitter, snippets, custom columns, meeting notes, etc

  • One of the few small-budget CRM tools to offer distinct private and shared pipelines

  1. Capsule CRM

The Capsule CRM is recommended for those small businesses where most of the employees are not very tech-savvy. The software has facts to the point and its GUI is designed in a way such that it is extremely easy to use (on your desktop, iOS, or Android device). Capsule CRM has a free package that supports all its features for up to 2 users. Small businesses that want to make the most of the software’s sales pipeline and relationship tracking features can opt for the professional package that is priced at £12 per month for every user.


  • The interface has five distinct groups (viz people and organizations, sales pipeline, cases, calendars and tasks, dashboard). Such clear demarcation makes things easier for the user.

  • Capsule CRM comes with the simple addition of contacts and quick addition of notes and other information about the contacts. This allows for better document management.

  • Compatible with Windows, Linux, and Mac OS, it allows controlled access and high data security

The tables below give you a quick glance at the comparison of the best CRM software for small businesses.


Special feature



Data Storage


Advanced marketing feature like visitor tracking, pop-up notification about sales signals, etc


Professional- $20/month

Enterprise $35/month

Free – 10 MB

Standard – 200MB

Professional – 5GB

Enterprise – 10GB


Easy to implement, highly customizable, in-built intelligence feature to boost sales

Starts at $12/month/user

Lightning Essentials -1O GB


Easier data aggregation, multiple report generation tools that have built-in templates to choose from


No data storage


Offers distinct private and shared pipelines, works on Android and iOS phones

Personal- Free


Enterprise- $129/month/user

Not applicable as this is a browser plugin for chrome

Capsule CRM

High data security, compatible with multiple OS, better document management

Free package (for up to 2 users)

Professional at £12/month/ user

Free- 10 MB

Professional- 10GB

Thus, one only has to choose which of the above software has the most relevant features and fits best in the budget. By leveraging the power of CRM, small businesses can set on the path of entrepreneurial success.


Manjunath Chowdary

Digital Marketing Expert, consultant, Mentor and
Director of KandraDigital Marketing
Solutions Pvt Ltd.

-Kandra Digital

An agency that’s been built with the core purpose of delivering the quality digital marketing in the era where Digital marketing services are just business rather than the value for the business, business owners and their resources/time.

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