Types of CRMs and CRM Comparisons


Below we list the best resources offering product comparisons between CRM systems such as Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics CRM, collected by a team of expert editors.

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Management of customer relationship information directly impacts a team's ability to grow. The tool that you choose to handle this information can be an asset if you do research and choose thoughtfully.

Which Types of CRMs are There?

The tool you choose needs to provide the right amount of functionality for your team at the right price point. There are several subscription, cloud-based tools that your team might consider. Two popular tools include:

  • Salesforce: A household name in SaaS tools. It has extremely robust functionality and as a big-name company, the user can count on a reliable product and good support. However, the product can be complex and take time to learn, which makes it less appealing for smaller teams. Learn more here.
  • Close.io: A CRM more suited to small teams. Close.io has many features, including VoIP calling. Users say the interface is very intuitive. It also integrates with tools like Zapier, Zendesk, and Clearbit. However, Close.io's prices may be steep for the smaller companies that are drawn to their user-friendly interface. Learn more here.

See a complete list of commercial CRMs on this wiki site. However, companies that are just getting started with a CRM can opt for open source or free tools:

  • Open source CRMs provide their source code to users and are highly customizable, but require knowledge to configure. 
  • Free CRMs are usually offered on a freemium plan and are limited in functionality or seats. The two are not mutually exclusive.

A team should research and read reviews of several different tools when deciding which one to choose. Learning about many different tools allows you to compare and contrast to determine which one best suits the team's needs.

Main Considerations for Selecting Your CRM Tool

To determine their CRM needs that will dictate choice of tool, the team should consider:

  • The size of the team
  • The number of current customers
  • How quickly the team plans to scale / projected rate of customer acquisition
  • The steps involved in your team's specific sales, marketing, support, and feedback cycles
  • If you need any specific integration capabilities
  • How much you'll need to customize the tool

A team should begin to outline their CRM needs by first highlighting their big-picture business goals to understand what their CRM will help them achieve. Then a team can gradually get more granular to determine the steps needed to reach these goals and the functionality needed from the CRM.

Understanding Types of CRMs

CRM Software Comparisons

General Comparisons

Cost Comparisons

How to Choose a CRM System

Benefits of CRM Software

CRM for eCommerce Businesses


Further Reading

  • Sales Prospecting and SDRResources about the Sales Development or Appointment Setting function within sales, discussing the importance of this part of the sales process, techniques and best practices.
  • Sales Pipeline ManagementResources about building and managing a sales pipeline - a concept which helps sales teams track the progress of prospects through stages of the sales process.
  • Sales MaterialsResources on sales materials, such as slide decks, demo scripts, email templates, and more.
  • Inbound SalesResources about managing the sales process for leads obtained via inbound marketing activities.
  • CRM PracticesResources about CRM best practices and strategies.
  • Types of CRMs and CRM ComparisonsResources offering product comparisons between CRM systems such as Salesforce or Microsoft Dynamics CRM.
  • Salesforce CRMResources about the Salesforce Sales Cloud and other Salesforce solutions for CRM and sales, including SalesforceIQ.
  • CRM Tools for StartupsResources about CRM solutions especially suitable for startup organizations.
  • Other CRM SolutionsResources about Customer Relationship Management products, which help sales teams manage and analyze interactions with customers and automate sales processes.
  • CRM Certification and TrainingResources about training courses and certifications for various CRM systems.

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