Jessica La

Top 5+ CRM for Startups in 2023

What you'll learn...

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In today’s world of business, an effective customer relationship management tool is a must-have for startups.

The lack of it could wear down most sales and marketing teams.

And the benefits are numerous.

According to insights, the market for these tools is expected to grow above $145 billion by 2029 from just $63 billion in 2022.

CRM tools are also ranked the most valuable software according to Financial Planning and Investment Advisory Companies. 

CRM for Startups: Most Valuable Software in 2021 Statistics

Source

CRM tools enable better customer relationships by enhancing your sales pipeline from all angles.

They help with lead management, marketing automation, sales automation, customer interactions, task management, contact management, etc.

Research shows that CRM software increases access to customer data for 74% of users while significant numbers enjoy other benefits.

CRM for Startups: How CRM Delivers Benefits Statistics

Source

Now, each CRM software will offer slightly different solutions, but below are the top options for startups.

What is the best CRM Software for Startups?

Tool Free plan/trial? Pricing Starts From Sales/ Marketing Service/ Operations Project Mgt. Social Mgt. Commerce
HubSpot CRM
$45/mo
Zoho CRM
$12/mo
Salesforce
$25/mo
Agile CRM
$9/mo
Pipedrive
$10/mo

1. HubSpot CRM (Overall Best)

CRM for Startups: HubSpot CRM Homepage

HubSpot was founded in 2015 by two MIT graduates who recognized the need to deliver customer service by helping customers and eliminating interruptions.

Today, HubSpot is one of the leading providers of CRM software for startups. Unlike many, it also includes content management alongside the usual marketing, sales, service, and operations features.

The Marketing Hub combines elements for attracting leads and converting them into customers, which should be no surprise since HubSpot is one of the best prospecting tools. HubSpot CRM lets you create landing pages and forms to build lists. 

CRM for Startups: HubSpot CRM Marketing

It also enables you to employ several effective techniques like email marketing, blogging with search engine optimization or paid ads, social and video marketing, etc.

When it’s time to sell, HubSpot Sales Hub has features and templates for tracking, engagement, automation, scheduling, and reporting. 

CRM for Startups: HubSpot CRM Email Marketing

Other notable features

  • Better business operations. With the Operations Hub from HubSpot, you and your team can collaborate better to deliver services your customers enjoy. That’s achievable with data syncing and automation, team management, and report builders, among other powerful features. 
CRM for Startups: HubSpot CRM Lead Generation
  • Content management for developers, marketers, and IT teams. Some features you’d enjoy alongside the excellent CRM include dynamic content creation, search engine optimization, seamless editing, website hosting with themes, etc.
  • Over 1,000 integrations for extreme personalization. Doing so much more with HubSpot CRM is possible through integrations with apps that let you customize how you work or add more functionality.

Pricing

HubSpot’s pricing is available depending on the services you’d like, with each starting at $45/month except for content marketing. However, there’s also a bundle pricing that combines everything at $45/month for Starter, $1,600/month for Professional, and $5,000/month for Enterprise. 

CRM for Startups: HubSpot CRM Pricing
CRM for Startups: HubSpot CRM Bundle Pricing

💬 The bottom line

As a leading CRM company, it didn’t come as a surprise to discover several impressive features. HubSpot is a fantastic CRM tool that helps you achieve the basics and more as far as building customer relationships is concerned. 

2. Zoho CRM (Best with Most Tools) 

CRM for Startups: Zoho CRM Homepage

Zoho is a powerful CRM platform founded in 1996 and launched CRM services in November 2005. 

Over the years, Zoho has added several CRM, content creation, collaboration, file management, analytics, schedule planning, etc., tools to its rich pool of software.

Its sales function is an all-in-one feature that will organize processes for increasing productivity. 

CRM for Startups: Zoho CRM Deals

While it features the usual tools for acquiring new leads and managing them, it also has an excellent contact management tool plus automation to build customer relationships in your absence. 

CRM for Startups: Zoho CRM Automations

Because each customer is different, Zoho will help with customer segmentation and targeting to attend to customers exactly how they want. When you combine that with the lead capturing and management tools, you have all you need to boost your business further. 

CRM for Startups: Zoho CRM Contacts

Other notable features

  • Engage customers and assist them quickly. Zoho helps you stay in touch in ways that are convenient for all parties. Whether through emails, phone calls, live chat, or social media, you can do it all through Zoho’s Omnichannel feature. 
CRM for Startups: Zoho CRM Segmentation
  • Monitor processes and performance. Zoho features analytics and forecasting tools to reveal your performance and realistic expectations. These are achievable in many ways, including in-depth reports, charts, KPIs, meters, maps, and many more.
CRM for Startups: Zoho CRM Analytics Sales Tracker
  • Customer relationship management from anywhere. To help you manage customers on the go, you can make leads, finalize deals, or collaborate with teams through Zoho mobile apps.

Pricing

When billed annually, Zoho pricing saves you a massive 34% on all offers. That means you’ll get the smallest plan at $12/month and the next at $20/month. The Enterprise plan is the most popular at $35/month, while the Ultimate plan goes for $45/month.

CRM for Startups: Zoho CRM Pricing

💬 The bottom line

One of the advantages you get from using Zoho is you’re certain of the level of quality on offer, which is not different with Zoho CRM. There are many impressive features with each one boosting your CRM system. 

3. Salesforce (Best Value)

CRM for Startups: Salesforce Homepage

Salesforce is one of the earliest customer relationship management software launched in 1999. It opted to host the software and customer data on the cloud — a practice that wasn’t as common then — and this informed the rationale behind its logo.

It has grown over time to provide more services, especially with Customer 360, a CRM suite that offers sales, marketing, service, commerce, IT, and other key features.

Among them is a Sales Cloud consisting of automation, lead management, contact management, mobile management, data management, and forecast. 

CRM for Startups: Salesforce Sales Cloud

Salesforce Service Cloud features artificial intelligence marketing, along with the regular customer and self-service features. Its marketing components is also complete with mobile, social, email, and paid marketing.

Other notable features

  • Commerce alongside CRM. This CRM software has dedicated features for your commerce-related needs, whether B2B or B2C. 
CRM for Startups: Salesforce Marketing Cloud
  • Build relationships even on mobile. Get personalized services on the go with mySalesforce function and do everything else no matter where you are.
  • Get each customer customized solutions. Omni-Channel Routing from Salesforce makes it possible to direct each case to relevant officers, so the queue keeps moving 
CRM for Startups: Salesforce Omni-Channel
  • In-depth analytics. With powerful reporting and analytics, you can make better business decisions and see what works.
CRM for Startups: Salesforce Analytics

Pricing

Salesforce also has different pricing for different services. Small teams or startups can opt for the Small Business package, which consists of four plans starting at $25/month for essentials. 

CRM for Startups: Salesforce Pricing

💬 The bottom line

Salesforce is one of the most popular and best CRM for startups due to its complete reliability and packed features. It is also renowned for operational services that cut across marketing, services, commerce, and IT.

4. Agile CRM (Best for Startups on a Budget)

CRM for Startups: Agile CRM Homepage

Agile CRM was built in 2013 when the team couldn’t find a CRM solution for their SaaS business. It has since grown larger than an in-house CRM solution, with more than 20,000 loyal customers worldwide.

This software is an affordable sales, marketing, and service CRM tool for startups and small businesses. The sales features include contact, appointment, and project management tools. 

And under the marketing function, you have features that help you get more customers. You can leverage automation, email marketing, landing pages, social media, and SMS marketing, amongst others. 

CRM for Startups: Agile CRM Email Marketing

With AgileCRM service features, you can make customers feel at home by providing personalized services, receiving feedback, or creating easy service avenues. 

CRM for Startups: Agile CRM Customer Service Tickets

Other notable features

  • Leverage your social media following. Social Suite from AgileCRM makes it possible to market and support customers on social media. You may also get some features of the top social listening tools
CRM for Startups: Agile CRM Social Suite
  • Powerful sales and marketing automation. Want to keep things ticking even when you’re not around? Automate processes to keep your customers attended to at all times.
CRM for Startups: Agile CRM Automation
  • A variety of AgileCRM integrations. Since AgileCRM has focused on sales, marketing, and service, it’s good news to find out they have numerous integrations to make up for it.

Pricing

The free plan may be enough for teams with not more than ten members, but its features are also limited. Agile CRM pricing is also fairly competitive, starting at just $8.99/month. In addition, there’s a Regular plan at $29.99 and an Enterprise plan at $47.99/month.

CRM for Startups: Agile CRM Pricing

💬 The bottom line

With a focus on automation, sales management, and customer service, Agile CRM is a fantastic CRM for startups. This tool makes it easy to make more sales with automation, analytics, and a lot of additional features. 

5. Pipedrive (Best Sales CRM)

CRM for Startups: Pipedrive Homepage

Having been sales reps themselves and handled the sales processes for some corporations, the founders of Pipedrive sought to provide a solution to a gap they discovered. They believed at the time that there was no CRM software helping salespeople.

The result is Pipedrive, a CRM software they describe as “made for salespeople, by salespeople.”

Therefore, many of the features of this CRM tool are tailored toward easing the sales process. There are sales automation, sales forecasting, email marketing tools, and integrations with other tools that can streamline the sales cycle. 

CRM for Startups: Pipedrive Sales Forecasting

Customer relationship management through email is one of the strong points of Pipedrive. It helps to build email campaigns, customer segmentation, and analytics.  

CRM for Startups: Pipedrive Email Campaigns

Sales automation is also worth mentioning as it helps you sell to customers in a way that keeps them coming back. With customization, insights, tracking, and other features, you won’t miss any deal or have customers waiting again. 

CRM for Startups: Pipedrive Workflow Automation

Other notable features

  • More ways to generate leads. The market moves very quickly, but with Pipedrive, there are numerous channels for capturing leads easily. You can leverage opt-in forms, chatbots, live chats, or even combine for more results. 
CRM for Startups: Pipedrive Web Forms
  • Handle documentation expertly. The way you handle documents matters. That’s why Pipedrive has Smart Docs, a feature that lets you create documents, sign contracts digitally, or leverage other document tools. 
CRM for Startups: Pipedrive Smart Docs
  • Over 300 integrations and apps. Pipedrive Marketplace gives you access to over 300 integrations for connecting with customers, sealing deals, and getting more done.

Pricing

Pipedrive has four plans in its pricing system. They are Essential at $9.90/month, Advanced at $19.90/month, Professional at $39.90, and Enterprise at $59.90. However, it gets interesting because Pipedrive has a couple of add-ons for a little extra.

CRM for Startups: Pipedrive Pricing

💬 The bottom line

While Pipedrive does not have as many features as some other CRM systems, its focus on only the most essential elements is an advantage. That’s because it affords you a streamlined use and prevents spending on features you do not need. 

Conclusion

Choosing the right tools remains a top priority for any business, especially startups.

That’s because maintaining customer relationships is increasingly more competitive with newer businesses. And success can serve as a major driving force for getting to the next level.

The best CRMs for startups combine features that make customers enjoy doing business with you. They also make it easy to collaborate and deliver customer-centric services while allowing you to scale as the business grows.

The CRM tools above are the most welcoming for new businesses for these reasons. 

HubSpot is the best CRM around. If you’re looking for as many features as possible, Zoho CRM and Salesforce come out on top. And for budget picks, you can try out Agile CRM or Pipedrive.

You can also try the free versions to see if the offerings are perfect for your business.

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Thanks for reading!

Jessica La

Content Marketing Consultant

Hi, I’m Jessica 👋 — I work with SaaS companies to implement effective Content Marketing strategies to drive organic blog growth and conversions.

 I’m greatly enthusiastic about building content driven by data and meaningful human narratives.

For me, it goes beyond reducing storytelling to brand data – I’m a stickler for uncovering the ‘why’ so that your product is noticed by the people who care.

ByJessicaLa was created as an experimental playground for SEO, Content, and Link Building. 

I write practical content that serves marketers, bloggers, and industry leaders.

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