Best Sales CRM Software (Top 10 Sales Tools for 2023 Compared)
Sales CRM helps businesses manage and nurture their customer relationships, streamline sales processes, and drive revenue growth. In our comprehensive review of the top ten Sales CRM tools for 2023, we delve into the features, pros, cons, and pricing of leading solutions.
These days, the science of selling has become ever more sophisticated. There's still room for artistry, but the truth is, investing in an integrated digital tool—i.e. a sales CRM software—is pretty much now indispensable.
This type of CRM manages the entire sales cycle. That includes sales leads, sales processes, and sales teams.
Customer relationship management platforms offer features like automation and workflow management tools, which are geared to make your sales team more effective with fewer resources. It's important to understand your business needs in order to choose the top CRM system for your company.
Top 10 Sales CRM Summary:
- Freshsales by Freshworks – Best sales CRM software overall
- Pipedrive – Top CRM for sales pipeline management
- HubSpot CRM – Great free sales CRM platform
- Salesforce – Best sales CRM for large business and enterprise
- Insightly CRM – Top sales CRM software for marketing campaigns
- Zoho CRM – Good sales CRM for small business and startups
- Zendesk Sell – Good sales CRM system for pipeline management
- Copper CRM – Top sales CRM platform for Gmail users
- Sugar CRM – Good CRM software for sales automation
- Keap CRM (aka Infusionsoft) – Great sales CRM software for analytics and forecasting
What is sales CRM?
Sales CRM is customer relationship management software to help keep in touch with existing customers, get more sales leads, and convert more leads into new customers. Common tools of sales CRM include marketing campaign tools, sales pipeline management, as well sales analytics and reporting.
CRM was originally designed specifically for sales departments. They have since grown to offer full sets of features for marketing and customer service as well.
These days, you can either get a general CRM platform of more niche CRMs for specific departments, as well as ones for large and small businesses. The leading CRM platforms often include most of the basic sales tools, like contact management and other features to streamline the sales process.
Sales CRM software comparison chart (top 10 highest rated sales software)
Best sales CRM software overall
$15/user/month, billed annually
Top CRM for sales pipeline management
$12.50/user/month, billed annually
HubSpot CRM Sales Hub
Great free sales CRM platform
$45 per month
Salesforce Sales Cloud
Best sales CRM for large business and enterprise
$25/user/month, billed annually
Top sales CRM software for marketing campaigns
$29/user/month, billed annually
Good sales CRM for small business and startups
$14/user/month, billed annually
Good sales CRM system for pipeline management
$19/user/month, billed annually
Top sales CRM platform for Gmail users
$25/user/month, billed annually
Good CRM software for sales automation
$80/user/month, billed annually
Keap CRM (Infusionsoft)
Great sales CRM software for analytics and forecasting
$79 per month
What is the best sales CRM software? Here's our top 10 list:
We know there are loads of options for the best sales CRM out there. These great options can be daunting. This list of the top ten best sales CRM software was compiled with a lot of effort and analysis. They cover great sales tools, and in many cases, great marketing features as well.
1. Freshsales by Freshworks (Best sales CRM software overall)
Why We Chose It:
Freshsales by Freshworks is our top pick for sales CRM, offering an ideal mix of advanced features, pricing, and ease of use. Its combination of AI capabilities and extensive integrations positions it as a versatile, scalable solution for modern businesses and one of the best CRM for small businesses and larger businesses.
When we logged into Freshsales for the first time, it took us only a few minutes to learn how to get around. The interface is clean and minimalist; all the features are in the left sidebar. We found it easy to navigate the CRM thanks to the search bar on top of the screen.
Freshsales features everything you need for contact management, lead generation, and marketing. For example, we were impressed by how easy it was to create web forms and capture leads directly from your website with them.
Also, Freshsales offers robust pipeline and deal management tools that provide visual tracking, customizable stages, and comprehensive deal overviews, enhancing user efficiency in managing sales processes.
We were impressed with all the integrations Freshsales offers. You can find the integrations in the "Admin Settings." From there, you can choose from the quick, native integration with Freshdesk or open the Marketplace, which contains more than 1000 apps.
Check out our Freshsales review for more details.
- A free forever plan is available for up to three users.
- User-friendly interface that is easy to navigate, catering to new and experienced users.
- Freshsales excels in lead capture and management, with features such as automatic lead capture from emails, web forms, and live chat.
- Seamless integration with a wide range of apps and platforms, including Freshdesk and 1000+ other apps from the Marketplace
- Users have access to customizable reports, dashboards, and data visualization tools.
- You can easily streamline customer interactions thanks to features like live chat, SMS, and two-way email sync.
Many advanced features, particularly AI-powered tools, are only available in the more expensive plans.
While the tool is generally user-friendly, some advanced features and settings may require a learning period.
Freshsales only collects names and emails when capturing leads from emails, not other details.
Forever free plan - available for up to three users
Growth plan: $15/user/month, billed annually OR $18 /user/month, billed monthly
Pro plan: $39/user/month, billed annually OR $47/user/month, billed monthly
Enterprise plan: $69/user/month, billed annually OR $83/user/month, billed monthly
Go to Freshsales' official website
2. Pipedrive (Top CRM for sales pipeline management)
Why We Chose It:
Pipedrive is one of the best tools for contact and pipeline management. However, after testing the tool, we noticed that there aren't as many advanced features as in Freshsales.
Similarly to Freshsales, when we logged in to Pipedrive for the first time, we noticed that all the features were in the left sidebar. The main dashboard is well-organized, and navigation is straightforward, with a logical structure.
We were impressed with Pipedrive's contact management since you can input as much information for every contact as you'd like. You can also create custom fields that capture information vital to your team. When it comes to communication channels, Pipedrive supports only email and phone, unlike Freshsales, which can include SMS and other channels.
We loved the Sales Assistant feature, which uses artificial intelligence to analyze sales data and provides personalized tips and recommendations. These suggestions might include optimal times to contact leads, follow-up reminders, and strategies to advance deals in the pipeline.
The one thing we particularly didn't like is that you have to pay for certain features additionally. For example, if you want to capture leads, you need to pay for the LeadBooster pack, which costs $32/month. This feature is included in Freshsales by default.
All in all, Pipedrive is excellent for contact, deals, and pipeline management, but it lacks advanced CRM functionality. Find out more details in our Pipedrive review.
- Pipedrive's clean and intuitive interface, with a well-organized dashboard, enhances usability,
- The tool offers multiple sales pipelines, custom fields, and workflow automation, allowing for a high degree of customization to suit different business needs.
- Pipedrive excels in contact management with detailed profiles, activity feeds, and a contacts timeline feature.
- AI-driven Sales Assistant offers personalized tips and recommendations, enhancing sales strategies and improving performance.
- There is no free plan available, only a free trial.
- Lead capture is basic and requires additional payment for advanced features like LeadBooster.
- Only email and phone integrations are available natively.
- While Pipedrive offers a decent range of integrations, it may not be as extensive as some competitors.
Essential plan - $9.90/user/month
Advanced plan - $19.90/user/month
Professional plan - $39.90/user/month
Power Plan - $49.90/user/month
Enterprise Plan - $59.90/user/month
Go to Pipedrive's official website
3. HubSpot CRM Sales Hub (Great free sales CRM platform)
Why We Chose It:
One thing that surprised us when we logged in to HubSpot for the first time was the lack of a sidebar menu. Unlike other tools, HubSpot has a top menu with all the features and options - contacts, sales, marketing, etc.
We loved the help and guidance we got from the very start. For example, next to every feature is an “i” inside a small bubble which provides more information. You get more details about every feature when you click on the bubble.
HubSpot excels in comprehensive lead generation and management, standing out with its range of features, though most are available in paid packages. We captured leads through diverse methods like website forms, live chat, and a Chrome extension that gleaned contact details from emails.
In contact management, HubSpot offers detailed profiles, task scheduling, and call management, supported by a robust contact storage system with various filters and an activity feed for each contact, ensuring a thorough follow-up process.
Deal management in HubSpot is highly scalable, with customizable pipelines and efficient task management. Its workflow automation is user-friendly, ideal for both simple and complex tasks, and includes sequences for maintaining personalized client relationships.
We cover all these features in detail in our HubSpot CRM review, so check it out.
- A robust free plan makes it an excellent entry point for small businesses or those just starting with CRM.
- A combination of advanced features and intuitive design that makes HubSpot accessible for users of all skill levels.
- The platform excels in capturing leads through various channels like forms, social media, and live chat, along with detailed contact management and storage features.
- HubSpot offers user-friendly workflow automation for both simple and complex tasks, enhancing efficiency.
- While HubSpot offers a robust free plan, the cost for the full CRM suite or advanced features can be quite high.
- Many advanced lead features, such as detailed lead scoring and complex email campaigns, require additional payment.
- The lower-tiered plans have limitations, like the number of paid users, which might not suit growing teams.
- There is free HubSpot CRM available.
- Starter plan: $20/month, billed annually
- Professional plan: $1,200/month, billed annually
- Enterprise plan: $5,000/month, billed annually.
Go to HubSpot's official website
4. Salesforce Sales Cloud (Best sales CRM for large business and enterprise)
Why We Chose It:
After reviewing Salesforce, we concluded that it is an amazing sales CRM, but it gave us a bit of a headache. It is clear that Salesforce offers a powerful CRM with deep integration and advanced features for various business needs. However, with all the advanced features comes a learning curve.
When we started using Salesforce, a helpful guide and pop-up instructions assisted us in navigating features, such as importing contacts. Live chat support with responsive customer representatives is accessible via a chat bubble, and a comprehensive getting started guide helped us take all the necessary first steps.
Now, let’s talk features! This platform offers advanced capabilities, though it comes with a learning curve compared to Pipedrive or Insightly. The dashboard provides a great overview, consolidating all data in one accessible place. We really liked that there were multiple views available for contacts and deals.
Speaking of contacts, it’s easy to import them. However, the import options are limited. You can choose to import contacts via your email or by uploading a .csv file. No other formats are supported, which was a bit disappointing for such a powerful tool.
For leads, Salesforce is great at capturing and nurturing them. You can use forms, emails, manual entry, or even integrate with marketing and social media. Additionally, the workflow in Salesforce automates tasks, which might be tricky to set up, while the calendar shows tasks and meetings, but it’s not as easy as other calendars.
Read our detailed Salesforce review for more information.
- Salesforce offers powerful features, including deep integration, customizable workflows, and advanced AI tools.
- Multiple views and intelligent alerts enhance pipeline management, ensuring crucial opportunities aren’t missed.
- Salesforce excels in capturing and nurturing leads through various methods, providing versatility.
- The platform integrates seamlessly with a wide array of third-party apps through AppExchange.
- There’s a wide range of products and plans that meet different needs and budgets.
- The platform has a learning curve, especially compared to simpler alternatives like Pipedrive or Insightly.
- Salesforce is on the pricier side, with advanced features, including AI, available in the higher-tier plans.
- Setting up automated workflows may be challenging, particularly for new users or small businesses without dedicated expertise.
The starter plan is $25 per user per month, billed annually
The professional plan is $80 per user per month, billed annually
The enterprise plan is $160 per user per month, billed annually
The unlimited plan is $330 per user per month, billed annually
Unlimited+ is $500 per user per month, billed annually
Go to Salesforce's official website
5. Insightly CRM (Top sales CRM software for marketing campaigns)
Why We Chose It:
We found Insightly CRM very easy to use thanks to the simple interface, easy navigation, and customizable dashboard. It's good for basic CRM needs and has many integrations, but it might not be enough for bigger companies.
Let’s start with the ease of use! Similarly to all the other tools on our list, all the features were displayed in a sidebar. The search bar at the top of the screen was very helpful to us, as it allowed us to easily search for any contacts, files, or deals we needed.
This platform simplifies data management and streamlines account and contact handling, allowing easy access to details and actions directly from each contact's card.
What we really liked was the “Opportunities” feature. Once we clicked on this feature, a pipeline opened of all the available opportunities and we could immediately see which ones needed more attention.
Next to every opportunity that didn’t have any next steps (i.e., tasks or scheduled calls), there was a warning. In addition, every opportunity is fully customizable regarding info - you can add the probability of winning, forecast date for closing the deal, etc.
You can customize fields, layouts, dashboards, and reports. Workflow automation is there for small to medium workflows, but it may not have all the advanced features for big businesses. To read about the full power of this tool, check out our Insightly review.
- Clean and simple interface with easy navigation and customizable dashboards.
- Essential CRM functionalities and a wide range of integrations, including 2000+ options in the marketplace.
- Efficient handling of leads, conversion into opportunities, and customizable pipelines.
- Users can create custom fields, design page layouts, and generate personalized dashboards and reports.
- Phone and email support, online knowledge base, webinars, and community forums.
- It may lack advanced features required by larger enterprises and might face limitations in handling complex operations.
- Suitable for small to medium-sized workflows but may not offer extensive customization or automation for larger, more complex processes.
- Slightly on the higher side, with plans ranging from $29 to $99/user/month.
There is a free plan for two users
Plus plan is $29 per user per month, billed annually
The professional plan is $49 per user per month, billed annually
The enterprise plan is $99 per user per month, billed annually
Go to Insightly's official website
6. Zoho CRM (Good sales CRM for small business and startups)
Why We Chose It:
Zoho CRM is another tool that prioritizes AI and robust lead management features. The AI-driven sales assistant, Zia, provides predictive sales insights and automation, helping sales teams make informed decisions and improve efficiency.
Zoho CRM also offers an extensive range of integrations and customizations, enabling companies to adapt the platform to their specific needs. Additionally, Zoho's gamification features foster competition and motivation within sales teams, enhancing overall performance.
Find out more details in our Zoho CRM review.
Zoho CRM for sales and marketing starts with contact management features. It lets you track engagements with customers across telephone, email, live chat, and social media. It sends you real-time notifications to stay on top of sales activity.
There are tools to automate easy tasks like data entry. This includes lead nurturing tools like event triggers and follow-ups.
Other Zoho CRM sales apps include ones for email campaigns, web forms and social media management. Zoho CRM's mobile apps are useful too.
Zoho may seem suitable only as a crm for small business.. In reality, this is not so much the case, as the platform can scale up well.
There is a free version of Zoho CRM
Standard plan is $12 per user per month billed annually
Professional plan is $20 per user per month billed annually
Enterprise plan is $35 per user per month billed annually
Ultimate plan is $40 per user per month billed annually
Go to Zoho CRM's official website
7. Zendesk Sell (Good sales CRM system for pipeline management)
Why We Chose It:
Is your team tired of boring, repetitive tasks? We believe Zendesk Sell could help you out.
Zendesk Sell excels in sales automation by providing tools that streamline repetitive tasks throughout the sales process. This includes features like automated lead and contact data capture, email tracking, and follow-up reminders.
These automation features reduce manual data entry and repetitive administrative work, allowing sales teams to allocate more time and energy to high-value activities such as building relationships with clients, identifying new opportunities, and closing deals.
With customizable reporting and analytics, Zendesk Sell offers valuable performance insights for sales strategy optimization.
There's a few more things we'd like to say about Zendesk Sell… Oh, wait, we did in our Zendesk Sell review.
Zendesk Sell is a set of tools to help sales teams get more leads and close more deals.
It has a focus on providing customer satisfaction at every touchpoint in the sales process. It helps sales reps communicate with customers via phone calls, SMS, live chats, and more.
The sales pipeline can be personalized for different customer experiences. There is also a lead prospect list builder.
You can create custom email sequences, too. Zendesk uses data to give you real-time activity reporting on your funnel. The reporting dashboards are also good for customization.
Some users have reported a slow loading time and mistakes in automated data entry. The price point may be a bit high for a startup or small business.
Sell Team plan is $19 per user per month billed annually
Sell Professional plan is $49 per user per month billed annually
Sell Enterprise plan is $99 per user per month billed annually
Go to Zendesk Sell's official website
8. Copper CRM (Top sales CRM platform for Gmail users)
Why We Chose It:
Do you and your team rely on Google Workspace? Is Gmail your preferred email client? Well then, you shouldn't consider any other tool than Copper CRM.
Copper CRM's integration with Gmail streamlines your sales process by automatically capturing contact information, tracking email interactions, and allowing task management within Gmail. It enhances collaboration and ensures that your CRM data is always up to date.
Additionally, Copper CRM places a strong emphasis on relationship management and contact engagement, providing valuable insights into interactions with clients.
What else can this software do? Read our Copper CRM review to find out.
Copper has the basic contact management features. It puts customer information and customer interaction histories all in one place. There are lots of good tools to optimize sales management. The platform helps you catch leads and put them into the sales cycle.
The sales dashboard is visual and has drag-and-drop functionality. You can automate follow-ups to customers in the funnel to move them along. Copper even gives you recommendations on when and how to reach out to a lead.
On top of many more sales tools there is also good project management.
You can't attach files to emails you send in Copper, so you have to switch over to Gmail for that. Tutorials are not always sufficient for troubleshooting.
Basic plan is $25 per user per month billed annually
Professional plan is $59 per user per month billed annually
Business plan is $119per user per month billed annually
Go to Copper CRM's official website
9. Sugar Sell (Good CRM software for sales automation)
Why We Chose It:
Sugar Sell will not only help you keep track of all your customer interactions, but also of all your team interactions as well.
One unique feature of Sugar Sell is its time-aware CRM functionality, which provides a historical view of customer interactions over time, helping sales teams understand evolving customer needs.
Additionally, it excels in predictive analytics, which leverages AI to offer insights into future sales trends and potential opportunities, giving companies a competitive edge.
Sugar Sell also focuses on collaboration with features like project management, document sharing, and team communication tools, fostering cohesion among sales teams.
Sugar combines tools for marketing, sales, and customer service teams. But, you can buy individual packages.
Sugar Sell gives sales teams data from many social media sources to enrich customer information. There is a lot of customization for different customer experiences throughout the sales lifecycle. This boosts the number of active sales opportunities.
You can sync Sugar Sell into Gmail and other apps like Google Calendar. There is a wide variety of sales automation. Creating workflows is with simple drag-and-drop functionality. Sugar also offers a connector for the LinkedIn Sales navigator.
The platform starts at minimum 3 users, so this is not ideal for solo entrepreneurs. It also requires a bit of time to learn all the tools.
Sell CRM starts at $80 per user per month billed annually
Go to Sugar CRM's official website
10. Keap CRM (aka Infusionsoft) (Great sales CRM software for analytics and forecasting)
Why We Chose It:
Keap is the tool you should choose when you want to take your lead generation game to the next level.
One unique feature of Keap is its robust marketing automation capabilities, allowing companies to automate personalized communication and marketing campaigns, streamlining lead nurturing and conversions.
Keap also stands out in lead scoring, providing insights into the quality of leads and their likelihood to convert, which helps sales teams prioritize their efforts effectively.
Read how this tool can help you boost your business in our Keap review.
With Keap you can build landing pages easily. These capture leads and qualify them for sales people. There is a lot of focus on tools for follow-ups with new leads. You can segment audiences to optimize customized messaging.
There is an automatic campaign builder to send out emails when customers trigger events. Sales teams can use Keap to reach out to contacts with many channels.
The analytics features of Keap include insights and forecasting.
It's slightly expensive for individuals and lean startup teams on a tight budget. The number of integrations with other apps is small.
Lite starts at $79 per month
Pro starts at $159 per month
Max starts at $199 per month
Go to Keap's official website
Which of These Sales CRM Tools is Best for Me? Our Conclusion
It's important to address what your specific business needs are before you commit to a paid sales CRM solution.
Do you do a lot of cold calling and want to revise your selling script in-depth, preferably with the help of AI and advanced analytics? Are you most concerned about building a customized sales pipeline for your niche product? Is social media your main avenue of communication and sales?
These are all things to keep in mind when shopping for a sales CRM.
There may be no single best CRM software for sales, but there's something out there for pretty much every need, niche or not. The first step towards realizing the right fit is figuring out the problem you want to solve. If none of these tools fit in your monthly/annual budget, then make sure to check out some of the best free CRM software currently available.
Good luck out there!