Find the best CRM for Startups

What is crm for startups ?

CRM for startups is software that caters to the particular needs of companies in the early stages of growth. Those particular needs can be generalized. Startups generally do best with CRM software that: • Prioritizes usability with intuitive UIs and workflows, allowing staff to get up to speed with minimal training or interrupti... read more
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Pivotal CRM

Pivotal CRM is an on-premise customer relationship management (CRM) solution that caters to businesses of all sizes, helping them manage various CRM processes. It includes marketing automation, lead management, sales force automat...Read more about Pivotal CRM

3.57 (7 reviews)

NetSuite CRM

NetSuite CRM+ is a cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) solution for small and midsize organizations. NetSuite caters to thousands of customers across a wide range of industries including wholesale distribution, manu...Read more about NetSuite CRM

3.93 (190 reviews)

61 recommendations

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Genoo is a cloud-based marketing automation solution for small to mid-sized professional services, software and technology firms. The solution helps marketers in email marketing, lead management, lead scoring, microsite building a...Read more about Genoo

4.00 (3 reviews)

Salesnet CRM

Salesnet CRM is a cloud-based sales and marketing automation tool for businesses of any size with a focus on Sales Force Automation. Salesnet relies on dashboards, pipelines, forecasts, and reports to ensure that each member of th...Read more about Salesnet CRM

4.21 (12 reviews)


SysAid is a cloud-based IT Service Management, service desk and help desk solution that helps users in businesses of all sizes across various industries resolve technology-related issues. Key features include help desk automation,...Read more about SysAid

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Oracle CRM On Demand

Oracle CRM On Demand is a cloud-based suite containing integrated, business applications that enable organizations to make decisions and manage costs of operations. The suite includes customer relationship management (CRM) solutio...Read more about Oracle CRM On Demand

4.36 (28 reviews)

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SoftVu is a cloud-based marketing automation solution designed to help financial services automate their marketing operations. It caters to small and mid-size businesses. SoftVu’s marketing automation solution offers lead scoring,...Read more about Volly

3.00 (1 reviews)


Keap (formerly Infusionsoft) is a cloud-based sales and marketing solution that offers customer relationship management (CRM), marketing automation, and e-commerce functionalities in one suite. Keap helps small businesses across v...Read more about Keap

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NICE inContact is cloud-based call center software that helps businesses to maximize the quality of leads and minimize the cost of client interaction. The solution comprises many features required to process inbound support reques...Read more about NICE CXone

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Zendesk Suite

Zendesk is a cloud-based help desk management solution offering customizable tools to build customer service portal, knowledge base and online communities. The solution offers a customizable front-end portal, live chat features an...Read more about Zendesk Suite

4.39 (3259 reviews)

1 recommendations

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SAP Customer Experience

SAP Customer Experience is a cloud-based customer relationship management solution that helps small and mid-size businesses manage communication and interactions with existing and potential customers. It helps businesses to manage...Read more about SAP Customer Experience

4.19 (212 reviews)

1 recommendations

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Fision offers an integrated marketing automation and sales enablement solution to help distributed field sales and local marketers customize and distribute timely, relevant and multi-channel campaigns. Fision's distributed ma...Read more about Fision

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Maximizer CRM

Maximizer CRM is an integrated customer relationship management (CRM) solution suitable for organizations of all sizes across various industries. This solution can be deployed on both on-premise and in the cloud. Maximizer CR...Read more about Maximizer CRM

4.02 (339 reviews)

50 recommendations

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Velocify is a cloud-based lead management solution that is designed for mortgage brokers, educational institutions and insurance organizations. The solution offers different types of sales products which are velocify pulse, veloci...Read more about Velocify

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Omniprise is an on-premise as well as cloud-based customer relationship management solution designed to provide companies a view of all customer interactions on a real-time basis. The solution is suitable for businesses of all siz...Read more about Omniprise

5.00 (2 reviews)


LeadMaster is a SaaS-based all-in-one lead management solution that offers capabilities to capture, track and follow up with leads. The solution comprises of integrated modules for sales force automation, customer relationship man...Read more about LeadMaster

4.09 (37 reviews)

9 recommendations

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Oracle Cloud CX

For companies looking to meet the high service expectations of their customers, Oracle Cloud CX ensures that each and every customer is valued and supported. The customer experience suite gives businesses the tools needed to deliv...Read more about Oracle Cloud CX

4.34 (16 reviews)

HubSpot CRM

With its cloud-based, customer relationship management (CRM) platform, HubSpot CRM helps companies of all sizes track and nurture leads and analyze business metrics. HubSpot is suitable for any B2B or B2C business in a variety of ...Read more about HubSpot CRM

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IXACT Contact

IXACT Contact is a real estate CRM solution designed to support realtors and their specific needs. As a web-based system, IXACT Contact is accessible from any internet connection and also offers a wireless sync option. With the sy...Read more about IXACT Contact

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PlanPlus Online

PlanPlus Online uses the Franklin Covey business planning methodology to help organizations and professionals in real estate, insurance and finance sectors manage both time and customers. The system provides an all-in-one sol...Read more about PlanPlus Online

3.95 (85 reviews)

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Buyers Guide

Last Updated: November 22, 2022

Startups—they're not just the youngest members of the business world. Their new ideas and limitless potential draw a lot of attention. And while it's easy to poke fun at their button-down cultures, the truth is: startups regularly face some of the business world's toughest and most high-stakes decisions. Fortune 500 companies rarely encounter make-or-break decisions. For a startup, every decision can be make or break.

The selection of a CRM system is one of the most important decisions a startup can make. It's also one of the most challenging. This Buyer's Guide helps startups meet these challenges by answering and explaining the following:

What Is CRM for Startups?
A Comparison of Top CRM for Startups Solutions
Common Features of CRM for Startups
Deployment and Purchasing Options for CRM for Startups

What Is CRM for Startups?


CRM software comes in more shapes and sizes than probably any other genre of enterprise software. Aside from all-purpose CRM, there's CRM for small businesses, CRM specifically for retail establishments, for banks, insurance agencies and even casinos. That's a lot to consider!

But what about startups? That's where things get complicated. It's easy to see how banks, insurance agencies and casinos would have different requirements for CRM. After all, their Cs (customers) are different, and their Rs (relationship with their customers) are different, so it's no surprise that they'd be managed differently as well.

Collage of CRM vendor logos

A handful of vendors representing the tip of the CRM iceberg

But "startup" is a stage of growth, not an industry vertical. So unlike with banking and insurance, there's no way to generalize about the typical startup customer or a startup's typical relationship with a customer. Those things don't exist.

Instead, CRM for startups is software that caters to the particular needs of companies in the early stages of growth. Those particular needs can be generalized, so let's do that! Startups generally do best with CRM software that:

  • Prioritizes usability with intuitive UIs and workflows, allowing staff to get up to speed with minimal training or interruption
  • Is highly scalable, working equally well with a dozen or a thousand customers
  • Is flexible enough (through customizations, modules or add-ons) to pivot when the startup pivots and support changes in company strategy and policy (rather than hinder them)

With those priorities in mind, let's look now at some specific functionality.

A Comparison of Top CRM for Startups Solutions

Top Infusionsoft Comparisons Top Marketo Comparisons Top Pipedrive Comparisons
Infusionsoft vs. Ontraport
Infusionsoft vs. HubSpot
Infusionsoft vs. Salesforce
Marketo vs. Eloqua Pipedrive vs. Zoho
Pipedrive vs. Base
Pipedrive vs. Salesforce

Common Features of CRM for Startups

Despite the great variation among CRM products, most will include some or all of the following core applications:

Customer database Central repository that stores customer information, such as contact details and any records (e.g., purchase orders, RFPs) associated with that customer's account.
Interaction tracking Tracks customer interactions (usually across multiple channels) providing records of past interactions and reminders (scheduled or triggered) for following up.
Workflow automation Reduces the number of steps required for specific and commonly repeated processes, saving employees time and reducing errors and omissions.
Reporting and analytics CRM platforms typically provide many basic data visualization tools, such as graphic reports (for example, of sales activity) and real-time dashboards to monitor KPIs and metrics.

Generally speaking, CRM software is used by any and all of a company's customer-facing departments, mainly sales, marketing and customer service. So, in addition to the core functions listed above, here are some other applications that can be included with CRM, organized by department:

  • Marketing: Including email marketing, event marketing, campaign management. Can also include tools for lead management, such as lead scoring and lead nurturing.
  • Sales: Including contact and opportunity management, workflow automation, territory management, sales forecasting, pipeline analysis and reporting.
  • Customer service: Including tools for trouble ticketing, knowledge management and knowledge base systems, self-service solutions, customer experience, live chat and opinion and feedback surveys.

Startups rely on CRM software to provide the customer experiences that improve metrics such as customer acquisition and churn rates. If those metrics don't turn heads, then the startup risks losing financial backing. A startup's success with a CRM implementation comes down to how well it can select and use the tools listed above to improve their key metrics.

Deployment and Purchasing Options for CRM for Startups

Software as a Service, or SaaS, is cloud-based software, meaning the software is hosted remotely. Compared to the traditional model of on-premise deployment—in which the software is installed on the business's own servers—SaaS is the more popular choice for most startups. It offers several benefits, including:

  • Much lower initial cost. SaaS CRM is typically priced on a per user basis. So if your startup is young and small and will only have two employees using the CRM, then the company only pays for two licenses, and more can be added as the company grows.
  • Simpler IT infrastructure. On-premise CRM installations can require a company to purchase additional hardware (servers, networking equipment). With SaaS, the software can be used from any computer with internet access.
  • Easier maintenance and security. On-premise software needs to be manually updated, while SaaS gets updated by the vendor behind the scenes. SaaS CRM platforms usually have cutting-edge IT security protocols built into the platform, but the IT security for on-premise software is the responsibility of the business itself.

Aside from those deployment options, CRM for startups usually offers several different purchasing choices. As mentioned above, SaaS is usually priced on a per user basis. There are also various freemium, free and open source and free trial options:

Freemium vs. open source vs. free trial software

A CRM purchase is one of the most important decisions a company can make—it affects many of the most important moving pieces of business in the modern world. It not only helps determine how customers perceive a particular company (i.e., the customer experience), it also determines how efficiently and effectively customer-facing employees carry out their roles.

With all this in mind, startups are encouraged to choose their CRM carefully. Take advantage of the online demonstrations vendors offer, talk to the employees who will use it and consider trying the free trials offered by the vendors on your shortlist.

Of course if you need any help starting your search, completing your shortlist or setting up demonstrations or free trials, give our advisors a call at: (844) 852-3639.