Best Cloud Based CRM Software: Top Cloud Based Solutions
When a CRM is "hosted on the cloud," it means the software and its data are stored on remote servers (the "cloud"). Users can access it anytime via the internet, much like using an online photo service instead of storing photos directly on your phone.
In this article, we delve deep into the top 10 cloud-based CRM systems, offering a comprehensive comparison of their features, pros, cons, and pricing to guide you in making the best choice for your business needs.
In today's fast-paced digital age, how businesses interact with their customers can make or break their success. Enter the realm of Cloud-based Customer Relationship Management (CRM), the unsung hero quietly reshaping the backbone of customer-centric operations.
If you're wondering what this jargon-filled term really means, or how it can be the game-changer for your business, you're in the right place. This article unravels the intricacies of CRM hosted on the cloud, offering you a clear lens into its significance, workings, and benefits.
From the basics to in-depth comparisons of the top platforms, we've got it all covered. This article walks you through the cloud, and shows you the top CRMs out there for cloud based solutions.
So, sit tight as we embark on a journey to decode and harness the power of cloud-based CRM for your business success.
What is cloud based CRM?
Cloud-based CRM is a customer relationship management system that depends more on an internet connection than on downloading software on-premise; that is, it is a cloud computing setup.
What is customer relationship management on the cloud like?
Cloud-based customer relationship management is much more popular than on-site SaaS these days. It’s easier to set up and learn how to use and requires very little-to-no servicing. When going through cloud based CRM examples, be sure that the vendor does regular fixes and updates.
What can web based CRM software be used for?
CRM solutions that are hosted in the cloud can be used for all the major customer relationship management purposes.
They keep track of customer information and log all customer interactions. They let you communicate with contacts across multiple channels. You can often use CRMs to set up marketing automations and plan email marketing campaigns. It streamlines the leads gained from marketing and hands them over to sales. At this point it helps reps manage their sales pipelines and close more deals. Many cloud based CRMs have customer support and helpdesk software too. Finally, CRMs in the cloud offer analytics based on many metrics, and from there produce great reports.
CRM in the cloud vs other tools
So why choose cloud based solutions over on-premise tools? The major reasons are simplicity of set up, ease of use, lower costs, and less updating and servicing. What’s more, cloud based CRMs are accessible from any device, and are therefore ideal for teams who collaborate even remotely.
Benefits of cloud CRM software
There are many clear benefits to the best CRM systems that are fully hosted in the cloud. They are cheaper, easier to use, and great for collaboration. They can also be very customizable to your needs, and are great for scalability for businesses who have growth in their sights.
Cloud CRM applications aren’t heavy systems you need to install and run on your own expensive on-premise CRM servers. This means you don’t have to employ IT specialists full-time, or pay to keep the system up-to-date and free of bugs. Those costs are built into the cloud subscription fees.
Easy & trouble-free installation
When you get a cloud CRM software, signing up is as fast as any typical online registration process. The CRM can help you migrate your customer information into their database in a few simple steps. Often there are fun tutorials or even personalized training sessions to get your team up to speed in no time.
Ease of use & collaboration
Online CRM dashboards are designed to be visual, intuitive and customizable to your team’s needs and preferences. The added bonus of doing it all on the cloud is that any workforce, no matter how remote or dispersed over offices or locations, all have access to the same info, updated in real-time whenever anyone makes a change.
Some CRMs are all-encompassing, while others are industry-specific or carve out departmental niches for marketing, sales or customer service. The cloud advantage lets you pick the right platform, but change it up as your company pivots. Plus, cloud SaaS easily integrates with other third-party apps.
A heavy-duty on-premise CRM system needs to be designed to cater to a specific company's needs and scope. However, cloud-based CRMs are light and nimbly scalable with little time or effort. You can start on a small package and constantly add modules, users, or data capacity in lockstep as your business needs change.
CRM cloud solutions comparison chart (top 10 highest rated systems)
Here’s a quick sneak peek at the best web based CRM solutions. Where we can we list prices and whether there is a free version.
Pricing starts at
Best cloud CRM overall
$9.99 /user /month
Best cloud based CRM software for Google users
$25 /user /month
Top cloud based CRM system for customer support
$80 /user /month
Great hosted CRM solution for integrations
$11.99 /user /month
Great web based CRM solution for sales teams
$29 /user /month
Top cloud CRM for marketing automation
$45 /user /month
Great web based CRM solution for sales teams
Less Annoying CRM
Best cloud based CRM for ease of use
$15 /user /month
Good cloud CRM software for mobile devices
$14 /user /month
Top free hosted CRM solution
$8 /user /month
What is the best cloud based CRM software? Here’s our top 10 list:
The benefits of cloud based customer relationship management software should now be obvious. So the next phase is checking out the top CRMs applications that are web based. These 10 CRM platforms are described in terms of pros, cons and pricing. We also state which apps are best for which purposes.
1. Agile CRM (Best cloud CRM overall)
Why we chose it:
Agile CRM stands out in the crowded CRM market primarily for its holistic approach to customer relationship management. It seamlessly integrates sales, marketing, and service automation, ensuring that no aspect of the customer journey is overlooked.
One particularly distinctive feature is its 360-degree contact view, which presents an in-depth profile of each customer, allowing businesses to tailor their interactions more precisely.
Moreover, with an impressive claim of serving over 15,000 businesses globally, its reputation isn't just built on features but on widespread trust. For these reasons and its cloud-based convenience, Agile CRM easily earns its spot on the top of our CRM roundup.
For more details, read our Agile CRM review.
Hosted on the Google cloud, the platform prioritizes top speeds and good data encryption. There is a huge collection of seamless integrations including social plugins for LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, as well as support, email, telephony, SMS and billing apps.
Agile CRM gives you an unlimited amount of deals, tasks, and documents even with the free version.
There can be difficulties with the functionality of the mobile app. Throughout its development history, a good number of bugs have been reported and there are often time-consuming updates.
Agile CRM has a free version for 10 users
Starter plan is $9.99 per user/month billed annually
Regular plan is $39.99 per user/month billed annually
Enterprise plan is $64.99 per user/month billed annually
Go to Agile CRM’s official website
2. Copper CRM (Best cloud based CRM software for Google users)
Why we chose it:
We’ll always recommend Copper to anyone using Google Workspace. Copper’s main angle is that it is a CRM system designed and built to work in real-time harmony inside G Suite, working with Gmail, Google Calendar, Docs, Slides and more.
A standout feature is its automatic data entry, which captures and fills in data points from emails, eliminating tedious manual input. What's also impressive is that users have touted its ability to visualize complex sales processes through its intuitive pipeline management system.
We prepared a detailed Copper CRM review for you, if you’d like to familiarize yourself with the tool’s features.
Copper has all the basic CRM tools like contact management, deal tracking, workflow automation, and reports. It does decent data enrichment for you by gathering customer data from social media profiles, company information, and phone numbers to fill out contact details.
It integrates with a solid stack of necessary tools like Slack, Quickbooks, Zendesk and MailChimp. This CRM puts a ton of emphasis on data protection, including independent third-party audits of their systems and data security training for all their staff.
Copper sometimes requires refreshing your Gmail inbox in order to get the Copper panel up to date. Setting it all up requires some time and patience. The workflow automation is not as robust as those of some other competing CRMs
Basic plan is $25 per user/month billed annually
Professional plan is $59 per user/month billed annually
Business plan is $119 per user/month billed annually
Go to Copper CRM’s official website
3. SugarCRM (Top cloud based CRM system for customer support)
Why we chose it:
Our favorite thing about Sugar CRM is its unparalleled flexibility and robust features. Tailored for businesses that seek a highly customizable solution, Sugar allows for deep personalization to match specific workflows and processes.
A noteworthy feature is its 'Hint' tool, an automatic intelligence service that rapidly gathers and populates customer data from various external sources.
Additionally, its Time-Aware core lets businesses track changes over time, offering insights into historical data and predictive analytics. Given its powerful toolset and adaptability, it's no surprise that Sugar CRM often shines brightly in top cloud-based CRM discussions.
Our SugarCRM review will give you all the details you need to decide if this is the right CRM for you.
The marketing wing of SugarCRM offers useful SEO and SEM suggestions when planning email marketing campaigns, landing pages, and social media ads. It combines insights from various social and business data resources to keep your sales team ahead of top-priority opportunities.
This is helpful when planning project management and sales forecasting. The customer support console is key for maintaining customer experience. It helps keep track of SLAs and ticket progress and provides constantly up-to-date reports on how the support department is faring.
While they can boast ease of use, this does mean a shallow offering of features with little customization. The file management module is not so intuitive here. Customer service has been known to take a little while to respond from time to time. Creating reports seems to take up a lot of processing power, slowing down the software.
Sugar Market starts at $1,000 per month billed annually
Sugar Sell starts at $80 per user/month billed annually
Sugar Serve starts at $80 per user/month billed annually
Sugar Enterprise starts at $85 per user/month billed annually
Sugar Pro starts at $52 per user/month billed annually
Go to Sugar CRM’s official website
4. EngageBay (Great hosted CRM solution for integrations)
Why we chose it:
If you’re looking for something basic – EngageBay has a free CRM system for basic contact organization and sales pipeline management. And, if you develop more requirements over time, then you can always get paid marketing and service modules and all-in-one packages.
Engagebay’s standout attraction is the unified platform design, which ensures that companies don't have to juggle between multiple tools, enhancing both productivity and user experience.
Unique to Engagebay is its robust marketing automation capabilities combined with a free CRM, ensuring that businesses can nurture leads without breaking the bank. Moreover, their visual deal pipeline provides clarity on sales processes, helping teams to prioritize efforts effectively.
It logs every customer interaction like email with contacts directly into the CRM database, and also lets you write emails or make calls from within the system. You can publish your calendar online for customers to easily pick dates for meetings or phone calls, and also get useful follow-up reminders.
The seamless integration with Zapier, Mailgun, SendGrid and more help streamline everything from business processes and transactional emails for invoicing and payment tracking. There is also free migration of all your contact data from your previous CRM software.
The dashboard is aesthetically old-school, and not as intuitive as one has come to expect from modern CRM interfaces. Some of the automation features like email notifications can be a bit on the wonky side. More advanced searching might sometimes feel slow.
Users have mentioned the email templates aren’t great or numerous but supposedly the vendor is working on improving the issue.
CRM and Sales Bay has a free version
Basic plan is $11.99 per user/month billed annually
Growth plan is $39.99 per user/month billed annually
Pro plan is $63.99 per user/month billed annually
Go to EngageBay’s official website
5. Salesflare (Good cloud CRM system for task management)
Why we chose it:
We recommend Salesflare to any company that desires an intuitive yet powerful CRM, especially those in the small to medium business sector.
One of its most distinct features is the automatic data input. While many CRMs claim automation, Salesflare takes it up a notch by actively pulling relevant data from emails, calendars, phone calls, and even social profiles, reducing manual data entry to nearly zero.
Additionally, it boasts a visual pipeline that is not just a mere representation but an interactive tool that allows dragging and dropping of deals between stages, offering a tactile experience.
Data from your calendar, your phone, and other mobile apps get logged into their system automatically. It’s got solid document uploading, organizing, quick search, and retrieval functionality.
It scans your data and tasks intelligently and sends mobile notifications about top-priority tasks in real-time updates. Team collaboration is made easier by giving teams great accessibility, letting them work directly in your Gmail or Microsoft Outlook email inbox.
While there is a mobile app, some of the features are a bit finicky compared to the web browser version. It could use more shortcuts and simple buttons to mark things as favorites or important.
Growth plan is $29 per user/month billed annually
Pro plan is $49 per user/month billed annually
Enterprise plan is $99 per user/month billed annually
Go to Salesflare’s official website
6. HubSpot CRM (Top cloud CRM for marketing automation)
Why we chose it:
HubSpot CRM stands out in the cloud-based realm for its seamless blend of functionality and user-friendliness. As a pioneer of inbound marketing, HubSpot puts an emphasis on the sales process. This means tools to generate leads, close more deals, and keep customers returning.
The real gem here is its real-time chat tool, allowing companies to instantly engage with website visitors, facilitating a more dynamic lead generation process directly from the cloud.
Plus, HubSpot isn't just about the tool itself; with its "HubSpot Academy," users can access a cloud of knowledge filled with resources and tutorials.
Read our Hubspot CRM review for more details on the tool’s features.
Contact records are enriched with data that HubSpot collects from its connections to over 20 million worldwide businesses. There’s a library builder where all team members can contribute useful sales material and monitor which works best for reuse.
You get awesome template generators to create business plans, invoices, blog suggestions, email signatures, and marketing plans. The basic CRM is totally free for unlimited numbers of users and unlimited data.
The learning curve might be a bit steep, not only in terms of using the features, but the overall HubSpot language and terminology are unique. Spotting repeated data and de-duplicating contacts does not always work so well.
The free version does have limits regarding things like bulk actions, notifications, templates, and document uploads.
HubSpot CRM is free
CRM Suite Starter starts at $45 per month billed annually
CRM Suite Professional starts at $1,600 per month billed annually
CRM Suite Enterprise starts at $4,000 per month billed annually
Go to HubSpot CRM’s official website
7. Less Annoying CRM (Best cloud based CRM for ease of use)
Why we chose it:
Less Annoying CRM (LACRM) is as straightforward as its name suggests, ensuring businesses have a cloud-based solution that truly lives up to the promise of being, well, less annoying.
Positioned as one of the most accessible cloud CRMs, it's ideal for small businesses looking for a no-fuss, straight-to-the-point tool. What sets LACRM apart is its incredibly transparent pricing—no hidden fees, just one flat rate, making budgeting a breeze.
Feature-wise, it boasts a shared calendar and task report, allowing team members to collaborate in real time on the cloud without any cumbersome setup. This ensures that everyone's on the same page, quite literally, regardless of where they are.
Our Less Annoying CRM review brings you many more details on the tool and its features, so make sure to check it out.
While the basic interface is set up for maximal ease of use, there is also a great deal of customization options. LACRM makes the most out of being cloud-based, meaning: fast, easy and reliable access on any device anywhere, including mobile devices.
It also comes with full auto backups and top data security. What’s more, LACRM is known for great reliability and always-available customer support. If customer satisfaction on a budget is your goal, LACRM is a great option.
Some of the collaborative functions are lacking. While they’ve put a lot of effort into making their mobile web version as great as possible, some users still prefer a dedicated app which they do not have.
Once one gets used to the minimal features and their simplicity, some might crave added tools with more complex functions.
LACRM is $15 per user/month
Go to LACRM’s official website
8. Zoho CRM (Good cloud CRM software for mobile devices)
Why we chose it:
Zoho CRM is often hailed as one of the dynamos in the cloud-based CRM universe, and for good reason. It caters to a wide spectrum of businesses, from budding startups to seasoned enterprises, making it versatile and scalable.
What we love about Zoho is its AI-powered sales assistant, "Zia," which provides predictive sales analytics, trend predictions, and even sentiment analysis - all in the cloud. This means data-driven insights are just a click away, regardless of where you're working from.
Additionally, its multichannel communication lets you connect with customers via email, phone, chat, and social media, all integrated under one cloud umbrella. In essence, Zoho CRM doesn’t just provide a cloud solution; it ensures that every aspect of it amplifies efficiency and connectivity.
Check out our Zoho CRM review for more details!
This is a good platform for serious customer information organization. Zoho CRM has an AI tool called ‘Zia’ which has pre-programmed macros to automate repetitive tasks, and you can create your own custom macros.
It sends you real-time notifications and follow-ups around the clock to any device whenever your contacts engage with you across any channel.
Includes a range of data security systems as well as assignable roles so admins can decide who gets what kind of access. The mobile CRM app for iOS and Android is uncrowded and a breeze to use
Importing leads directly from email or from a web browser could be easier. Reporting bugs to the customer support department does not always get a speedy resolution. A lot of the better features like workflow and marketing automation and Zia are reserved for the more expensive plans.
Zoho CRM has a free version
Starter plan is $14 per user/month billed annually
Standard plan is $23 per user/month billed annually
Professional plan is $40 per user/month billed annually
Enterprise plan is $52 per user/month billed annually
Go to Zoho CRM’s official website
9. Apptivo (Top free hosted CRM solution)
Why we chose it:
Apptivo is like a Swiss Army knife in the world of cloud-based CRMs, packing in versatility and adaptability. We would recommend it for businesses that require a more tailored approach, as Apptivo offers a suite of integrated apps that can be mixed and matched to fit unique business needs.
One of its standout features is its 360-degree view, which, unlike many other CRMs, doesn't just focus on contacts. Instead, it gives you a panoramic view of everything from contacts and sales to projects and invoicing, all in one cloud dashboard.
This holistic approach ensures no detail slips through the cracks. Couple that with its seamless integrations with popular cloud platforms like G Suite and Office 365, and you have a CRM that's not just in the cloud, but truly optimized for it.
Our Apptivo CRM review has much more details on the tool and its features, so hop over and read it.
With Apptivo, there is extensive lead sourcing, which uses web forms, emails, and other APIs. Your CRM data is amenable to highly advanced searching and various customizable viewing options.
Every contact is considered an ‘opportunity’ for which you can quickly create orders, estimates, invoices, and project plans. The contact management available on the mobile app runs very smoothly.
Some of the other features on the mobile version are somewhat buggy, like calendar features and email syncing. At times the program experiences latency issues particularly when switching between modules. The interface is very crowded but what’s more, it falls short of capturing more common youthful CRM aesthetics.
Apptivo CRM has a free version
Lite plan is $8 per user/month billed annually
Premium plan is $12 per user/month billed annually
The ultimate plan is $20 per user/month billed annually
For the price of the Enterprise plan, contact the vendor
Go to Apptivo’s official website
10. Salesforce (Great web based CRM solution for sales teams)
Why we chose it:
When people think cloud-based CRM, Salesforce often springs to mind, and it's not by chance. As one of the pioneers in the cloud CRM space, Salesforce has honed its platform to cater to a vast array of business needs, from SMBs to global enterprises.
What sets it apart is its robust "AppExchange" marketplace. Think of it as an app store but for your CRM—offering thousands of solutions that can be plugged into Salesforce, enhancing its capabilities to suit almost any niche requirement.
Another defining feature is its AI-driven tool, "Einstein," which makes predictive insights, trend analyses, and personalized recommendations, harnessing the power of cloud data analytics like few others can. This means businesses aren't just storing data in the cloud; they're actively drawing actionable insights from it.
Read our Salesforce review for more details!
This is way more than a basic CRM application. Salesforce has dozens of packages based on specific needs, business size, or industry solutions. There is something for everybody here.
As a CRM provider, you get all the basic tools at a relatively good price. While most people think of Salesforce as an enterprise-level on-premise CRM, the truth is this app has good scalability for even startups to begin using.
The cons are obvious. There are so many CRM tools and features and a plethora of packages and deals it can be overwhelming to know where to start. Salesforce will also require a bit of time to learn all the ins and outs of the app, especially if your sales team is not used to CRM platforms.
Visit Salesforce’s website or contact the vendor to find out more about pricing for your specific needs
Go to Salesforce’s official website
What is the best CRM cloud software for me? Our key takeaways
In the vast landscape of cloud-based CRM solutions, choosing the right tool can feel akin to finding a needle in a haystack. However, after diving deep into some of the top contenders, a few key takeaways emerge:
Adaptability is Key: Whether it's HubSpot's educational resources, Zoho's AI-powered insights, or Apptivo's tailored approach, the best CRMs offer adaptability to fit a range of business needs.
Cloud Power: Salesforce, often regarded as the gold standard, underscores the importance of leveraging the cloud's potential, not just for storage, but for actionable insights. Similarly, Zoho and HubSpot bring cloud-centric features that enhance connectivity and efficiency.
Unique Features Matter: Each CRM brings something unique to the table. From LACRM's transparency in pricing to Apptivo's 360-degree view, and Salesforce's AppExchange, it's these distinguishing features that can tip the scales in favor of one solution over another for specific business requirements.
Our top pick, Agile CRM, stands out not just because of its impressive array of features but because it offers an optimal balance of functionality, user experience, and value for money. Its holistic approach to sales, marketing, and service provides businesses with a seamless experience, making it a worthy leader in this list.
Copper CRM, hot on Agile's heels as the runner-up, offers an intuitive user interface and a deep integration with Google Workspace, making it a favorite for businesses deeply embedded in the Google ecosystem.
In conclusion, the right cloud-based CRM for your business hinges on your unique needs, the size of your operation, and the specific features you value most. While this list provides a snapshot of the best in the market, it's essential to take a test drive, explore integrations, and assess scalability before settling on your perfect cloud companion. Here's to smarter, cloud-powered customer relationships!