Gmail CRM: CRM for Everyone

Wednesday, December 19, 2018
CRM.ORG is a knowledge hub for all things work: digital tools, customer service relationship software, and other innovative methodologies for exploring work-related relationships. In “What is a CRM?”, we break down the meaning of the three-letter monster that is CRM and explore the history, benefits, and features of the customer relationship software.  

Let’s be real. CRM doesn’t seem so crazy if it lives inside your Gmail, right? Familiar and favored for a reason, the Gmail CRM platform is user-friendly on a whole other level.

Currently used by 4 million paying enterprises worldwide, most of the large and small business world are using the Gmail inbox already. You probably are too. It’s safe to say Gmail probably isn’t going anywhere anytime soon, so CRM companies have latched on to the popularity and started to consider, “why not bring CRM to the people?”

Google’s focus on design simplicity and user experience appeals to every internet user. The user benefits of a Gmail CRM system involve a minimal learning curve and well-designed productivity tools (aka Google apps) that are intuitive to use. Whether we like to admit it or not, Gmail is where we live. It’s where we communicate, book appointments, organize meetings, store contacts, maintain relationships, build opportunities, plan new projects, and set reminders for all the essential action items of life and work.

There’s a comforting feeling of control when it comes to using a platform like G suite. There’s no need to rely on a project manager, spouse, or assistant to organize your work and personal life. And sometimes, comfort is integral to productivity. We’re talking to you sweatpants-wearing university students and free beer-WeWorker enthusiasts.

And on top of it all, having a well-integrated CRM in your Gmail means the way you interact with the software comes naturally.

The following CRMs deliver the goods to you, in the comfort of your Gmail inbox. It’s almost as enjoyable as a warm pizza delivery on a cold winter night. Almost.

With Google suite integrations, these CRMs are built for where you’re already at—a familiar, basic framework with hassle-free training and maximum user-friendliness.

There’s really no good reason not to hit, ‘order now’.

Gmail CRM delivered to your inbox


Streak is the one and only fully integrated Gmail CRM—meaning this bad boy lives directly inside your Gmail inbox for desktop or mobile (and that comes with all the G Suite integrations too). The idea behind Streak is to provide an organic extension of your existing workflow. While this CRM is more of a lightweight option, Streak still has all those juicy CRM details like pipeline and lead generation features. Streak helps break down all that scary biz jargon that comes with an acronym like CRM and provides everything you need in an incredibly accessible and readable format. In Streak, a pipeline looks more like the child of Gmail and Google Sheets. The concept? Everyone’s already using static spreadsheets, so why not supercharge the experience with data already built inside Gmail? Because, news flash, it’s not the 1980s anymore.

The platform includes customizable workflows with easy to use search, filter, group, and sort functions plus automatic tracking, data capture, and easy to view details of your pipeline right alongside your emails.

Streak truly believes in the democratization of CRM. This is no longer just a sales-centric term. They built their CRM inside Gmail to make it accessible for everyone. With a broad selection of industry customers ranging from project management, media and creative agencies, to customer support, recruitment, fundraising and more—Streak defies preconceived notions of CRM and transforms the way you’ll look at your inbox.


Copper is another first to connect the CRM and Gmail dots beyond sidebar status. Rebranding this year from ProsperWorks, the company’s mission has always been to make CRMs easy to use. This isn’t some minor integration—Copper’s Chrome Extension lives in Gmail the same way you do, while their tight G Suite integrations mean all your Google spreadsheets, docs, and slides are easily attached to each and every customer profile. The entire platform is built with Google Material Design, so you can do all things CRM—such as email tracking, call logs, and contact management—in what looks and feels like G Suite. Although, it’s important to note Copper is not fully integrated into your inbox. So while there may be some minimal tab-switching, by utilizing Google Material Design, Copper’s workflow feels organic and consistent.

Copper’s native G Suite integration translates to more AI-driven capabilities in their products to automate tedious and time-consuming tasks. The software automatically records emails, calls, events, and other productivity documents so that reps can focus on the more important stuff—actual customer relationships.

Plus, the integration is so seamless that Google itself uses and recommends Copper CRM for its millions of users. That’s a pretty convincing recommendation if we’ve ever heard one.


Insightly is a CRM built more for enterprise-size sales and relationship management, however, the company's ‘free for 2 users’ option caters to startups as well. While Insightly promotes itself as the “#1 Gmail and G Suite CRM”, what they really mean is that they are the #1 CRM that has a fairly convenient Gmail integration.

While the CRM doesn’t offer a full integration, their Insightly Sidebar Chrome browser extension is pretty helpful. It allows reps to migrate contacts and emails from their Gmail inbox or sent folder directly into Insightly, with just one click. A “handsome” Insightly logo button automatically saves contacts and emails into the CRM while the sidebar gives users easy access to Insightly with hover note features and task creation options, avoiding the dreaded switching-between-tabs action that every CRM user despises.  

Insightly is a reputable CRM with both desktop and mobile function. It’s a robust CRM with Kanban sales pipelines, custom reports, various dashboard options, and relationship maps to fuel your customer relationship fire. The company takes pride in its motto, “the CRM for lifelong customer relationships,” and if this is the kind of CRM you’re looking for, then their Gmail integration proves incredibly handy. Clearly, the company has the user in mind with their Chrome extension offering.  

Capsule CRM

Capsule CRM offers a Gmail add-on integration similar to Insightly’s Sidebar Chrome browser extension. To install Capsule into your G Suite domain, you access the add-on much like you would any of the other Google app. Once the add-on is installed, your CRM is synced up to Gmail as a sidebar host to features like storing conversation threads and customer details, linking sales opportunities and cases and adding follow-up tasks.

While the add-on is familiar to other CRM Gmail integrations, Capsule as a CRM is catered towards a more startup and small business culture, offering a simple platform designed with usability in mind (aka if you’re new to CRM, Capsule is an appealing option). Simple, intuitive, clean design—just like Gmail–Capsule offers customizable options and a mobile-friendly interface with a dedicated customer support system—because while you hope never to have to make a call, it’s always nice to know the help is there.


Pipedrive is a top-rated CRM, so it’s worth noting that the company now also offers a Gmail extension. Similar to Insightly and Capsule, Pipedrive’s Gmail integration exists as a sidebar application that allows you to schedule sales activities, make notes, and add contacts from Gmail to Pipedrive. One cool thing is that once you’ve installed the add-on, you can instantly see all sales history with each contact whenever you open an email communication with them. Pipedrive really promotes context as being integral for closing deals and their Gmail integration is catered towards fulfilling that philosophy. The company is in the big leagues, set out to take on the mega CRM giant, Salesforce. So, they’re a more established company with a Gmail integration that is geared towards sales—prospects, leads, closing deals, and all that jazz.

Get yourself a Gmail CRM-kinda workflow

The workflow of a CRM user looks a lot like this—open and read an email, identify an opportunity, assign an action item, follow up, and nurture a customer relationship. With a Gmail CRM system the user gets to maintain their workflow, naturally (and sometimes even in a single tab).

Most of the time, it all starts with an email in Gmail, so might as well get started with your very own Gmail CRM integration.