Top 5 Low Cost SaaS CRM Alternatives for Small and Midsized Busineses

In continuation of my last post, I want to tackle this time low cost CRM packages or services for small and mid-sized business looking to implement CRM in their organization. In this post I will focus on five CRM SaaS Vendors:

  1. Salesforce.com. Salesforce.com is an acknowledged pioneer in Software-as-a-Service applications and market leader in CRM. When you sign up for the service you can choose from different editions–ie Personal, Group, Professional, Enterprise and Unlimited. The system itself is broken down into several applications:
    Sales, Service & Support, Partner Relationship Management,
    Marketing, Content, Ideas and Analytics. Updates are done acording to seasons of the year–so they have a Winter release, Spring release and so on. Pros: Large user base; stable company; long term viability; mature infrastructure and feature set; rich ecosystem of third party apps to extend functionality; highly configurable and extensible platform called Force.com. Cons: Purely online service; lock in a real danger; the really nice features are only available in the high end editions; expensive for large deployments.
  2. Rightnow. RightNow’s suite of applications includes multi-channel Service, Sales,
    Marketing, Customer Feedback Management, Voice Automation, and
    Analytics. Rightnow started off as a traditional on-premise CRM  vendor but now seems to focus on On-Demand. Pros: Really strong in customer service; rich feature set in customer service type applications and workflows; close partnerships with telephony vendors make it a good choice for a contact center. Cons: Premium pricing; can be expensive over time; not much third party support developing on the platform.
  3. ZohoCRM. Zoho CRM is a new entrant to the SaaS CRM market and is gaining a lot of interest I believe because of its low cost, and its relationship and integration with the Zoho suite of online SaaS applications. Its feature set seems to be primarily focused on sales force automation (like Salesforce a few releases back) and has some basic features to extend and customize its features and functionality. Updates like many of the Zoho applications are frequent. Pros: low cost; integration with Zoho apps; unique features such as online spreadsheet integration; good choice as an entry level solution. Cons: little or no extensions or 3rd party support, basic APIs, functionality geared towards small teams.
  4. LongJump CRM. Technically speaking LongJump positions itself as an application platform when it started out which can easily be configured for CRM (this is the opposite of Salesforce.com which started out focused on CRM and is now repositioning as a platform provider, or Zoho which is more of a suite of different apps than an integrated platform). Longjump is easily extensible and configurable, and templates exist to reconfigure the application into something else. Overall a promising vendor although not as well known. Pros: Highly extensible and configurable; integrated platform. Cons: Seems to have a low customer base, small company, not as well known as other competitors, purely online service; lock in a real danger.
  5. Netsuite. Netsuite originally was focused on hosted ERP but has now reached a point where they now offer a comprehensive CRM solution as well. Everything is intergated together and offered as a suite, and on top of CRM you have a mature ERP product as well as modules for SCM, E-commerce, PRM, Analytics and others. Pros: mature product; wide breadth of features and functionality; complete beyond CRM. Cons: Expensive, purely online; vendor lock in a danger; limited third party extensions.

Next time I’l try to post CRM solutions from open source vendors. If I missed anything let me know!

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23 Responses to Top 5 Low Cost SaaS CRM Alternatives for Small and Midsized Busineses

  1. Steve says:

    More info on the benefits of CRM in small business and how their needs are much different than larger companies http://is.gd/l0oa Generally they benefit more from “collaborative CRM” products that integrate their work processes as well.

  2. Mitch says:

    Curious how you can list RightNow in an article titled “Low cost SaaS CRM solutions” and then list as a Con:”Premium pricing; can be expensive over time; not much third party support developing on the platform.” It is also curious to list LongJump – I would sooner list google (email, calendaring, chat) with lots included and you can just as easily build CRM. You missed SugarCRM as well…

  3. Ben says:

    Tech support turn around time and having your data returned if you part ways are both important considerations, as well.

  4. Ken Ailes says:

    You also left out Oracle Siebel CRM OnDemand. at $70 per user per month for sales, marketing,service and business intelligence, it is almost half the cost of SFDC, is less expensive that RighNow, and provides a great deal more out of the box functionality. Release 16 has more functionality than ever, and when you add on Mobile Sales Assistant for iphone and blackberry, partner management, deal management and sales prospector, you can add even functionality. The analysts love it too.

  5. Thomas Hood says:

    Don’t forget that, in Europe we have a plenty of low cost SaaS related CRM’s available, too. As an example our PlanMill CRM SaaS starting as low as 20 € per user per month (approx. $25 / user).

  6. Darren Jones says:

    myworkspace.com … $30/month or $55 if including accounting. Also comes with PDA version.

  7. Low cost? You’ve left out a bunch of authentically low cost options. Salesboom.com, Parature.com. Aplicor.com, etc.

  8. And you could put Timelog Project (www.timelog.com) in the list as well. It has as a smooth running CRM add-on, for a good price.

  9. Jay Grady says:

    What about open source solutions like VTiger? Snag a two year old desktop PC and you can run a pretty well equipped CRM system for next to nothing.

  10. Marcos says:

    FengOffice is an Open Source alternative to a CRM.
    It is a web office, not exclusively a CRM solution. However, several of our customers use it as a CRM, project management and document collaboration all-in-one solution. It also includes time tracking, calendar, etc …
    Check out the hosted version at http://www.fengoffice.com , or the Open Source project at http://www.opengoo.org.

  11. Doreen says:

    Take a look at http://www.cas-pia.de
    New SaaS product from German market leader in CRM for SMEs – CAS Software.
    Newest technology (Eclipse, RAP), solid and experienced company, low price 19,90 Euro.

  12. Indranil Deb says:

    Hi,

    In context to low cost CRM packages or services blog you are giving you thoughts i would like to understand few more things with you.Its about the CRM tools like RightNow and SAP CRM .So if you could oblige me in understanding few things about them it wuld be of grt help.
    I am a freelance consultant from India doing a study on the CRM solutions and its market so i thought if you could help me.
    ny email is : infodeb@gmail.com

    i hope you would reply.

    Thanks

    Indranil

  13. Pingback: Top 5 Low Cost SaaS CRM Alternatives for Small and Midsized Busineses - Spunje

  14. Barbie Adair says:

    Another low-cost CRM you left out is online crm http://www.worketc.com. It is a single software solution for entire business needs — more than just a simple CRM, it is a project management tool with billing & more. Check out their prices here http://www.worketc.com/sign_up.

  15. Intelestream Inc says:

    I would add intelecrm to the list of low cost SaaS CRM alternatives. It is a web based CRM, offering a rich feature set that our team built after years of developing open source CRM customizations for major companies. Take a look at it at intelestream web page.

  16. Wynne says:

    Try Skylightit.com it allows small to midsized firms manage projects and documents, schedule resources,
    handle accounting tasks and orchestrate customer relationship management (CRM) quickly and easily
    on the web. Already a success in beta, Skylightit.com’ s powerful interface is served up at a low cost,
    and in a software-as-a-service (SaaS) format.

  17. Cliff says:

    Looks like you didn’t address Sugar. And now with Microsoft at $34, Sugar and Microsoft are both vying for market share. Should be interesting to see what this year brings.

  18. Wow, I cannot believe you left Sugar and Microsoft off the list. Even back then though, Sugar was good enough to make the list.

  19. Mark Spance says:

    The CRM system we use is WorkForceTrack (http://www.workforcetrack) In spite of affordable price, it also has PM, HRMS, Accounting and many other business tools that will be beneficial for you in term of control of business progress. However, as it is relatively new SaaS, it is constantly developed and has an excellent Customer Support Service

  20. Bob Zabiyaka says:

    Thanks for the article, jpabellon!
    I think you might consider BPMonline CRM to be listed in the next review. For as little as $29/month you get a comprehensive SaaS CRM solution with business process management functionality.
    To meet your company’s specific business needs the solution can be customized even by a user who has no programming skills.
    Take a look at bpmonline.com .

  21. Lissa says:

    Implementing Saas is great for the companies that can’t afford to have the infrastructure. The companies mentioned in the above article and also the small vendors have a great disadvantage and that is they can’t make their market value. Customer is generally not convinced about data security, reliability is another issue.

    So reliance comes with experience. So if you want your company to turn to SAP solution, find a reliable company . You can go with these companies. But you need to check all terms and conditions.

  22. Lucy says:

    We looked at Zoho when we were choosing collaborative software. We are a small company. Was your first commentator John speaking so much ahead of the game when he made his observation on collaborative CRM? It’s 2011 now and Zoho is still going strong I think but we chose Dooster which has been excellent. This software has put us in a position where our communications are so enhanced that we have been leveraged to a situation where sales have improved necessitating a new level, for our company that is, of customer relationship management. Dooster security and customer service have also been impressive.

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