If your business relies on having a healthy sales pipeline and continuous customer engagement, then you’re likely in the market for a reliable customer relationship management (CRM) system. 

Based on that definition, it seems that every company could use a CRM system. While that may be true, it’s also true that not every company understands how to find the best CRM system for their specific business needs. Not all CRM systems are created equal, and it’s critical to take the time to understand the nuances of different software systems that are available to you.

Understanding what CRM is and How to Choose One for Your Company

CRM systems help companies of all sizes keep track of their existing customers and build relationships with potential customers who will (hopefully) turn into long-term loyal clients. In addition to helping you develop and maintain customer relationships, CRM software can improve your sales management, vendor relationships, productivity, forecasting, and more. 

We often think of CRM as a sales tool, but it can also be used by marketing, recruiting, and customer service teams. Essentially, any team that touches any part of the customer experience can benefit from using a CRM system. Companies will save time by automating certain time-consuming tasks. That time can be allocated to people who can solve more complex customer challenges.

CRM is not the same thing as enterprise resource planning (ERP) software. CRM focuses on all aspects of the customer relationship and lifecycle. In contrast, ERP is useful for managing your business’s operations and financial processes. With some systems, like Odoo, you can integrate your CRM with your ERP to have all the tools you need for different aspects of your business in one spot.

Understanding Zoho CRM

Zoho Office Suite launched in 2005 as a web-based word processor. It was developed by the Zoho Corporation, which has been around since 1996. 

Zoho CRM currently services around 250,000 businesses in 180 countries. It has features to help businesses with every step of the customer lifecycle and manage internal employees, including remote workers. 

Zoho CRM is just one of many software types offered by Zoho and can be integrated into its other products. For example, they have products for accounting, website management and development, sprint planning for agile teams, temporary and long-term staffing, IT, business intelligence, and more. 

What types of companies use Zoho CRM?

Like other software companies, Zoho CRM can be customized depending on the size of your business. Bigin is Zoho’s option for small companies, while Zoho CRM is the option for larger companies.

The specific industries Zoho CRM serves include life sciences, financial services, real estate, retail, insurance, business services, and non-profit organizations. 

How much does Zoho CRM cost?

You can try Zoho CRM for free with a flexible free trial. After that, Zoho CRM offers upfront pricing starting at $14 per user per month and going up to $52 per user per month. The most expensive option is Zoho CRM Plus, which is $57 per user per month and includes a few additional features.

Small businesses can spend less by using Bigin at a rate of $7 per user per month or the Zoho Free plan, which offers a limited number of features for up to three users.

What are Zoho CRM’s features?

Zoho CRM has many features that are designed to help you manage every aspect of your customer relationships. Some key features include:

  • SalesForce automation
  • Omnichannel options (email, live chat, web conferencing, etc.)
  • Analytics
  • Sales enablement
  • Predictive sales
  • Marketing automation
  • Remote work collaboration 
  • Integration with other Zoho apps plus over 1,000 additional apps and extensions

How do I access Zoho CRM?

Zoho is cloud-based software that you can access from your desktop or mobile app. You can also use Zoho to create mobile apps that integrate with Zoho CRM for a fully customized, branded experience that helps you and your customers stay connected. 

How is Zoho CRM hosted? 

Zoho is hosted on cloud servers that can be accessed using a web application or mobile application. 

Understanding Odoo

Odoo is open-source ERP software that includes CRM. You can integrate Odoo CRM with Odoo ERP to keep all your business processes and operations in one location.

There are two options for Odoo. Odoo Community is a free version of the software that has limited features but does still include CRM. Odoo Enterprise has paid modules and access to thousands of applications that you can mix and match to create the ideal software for your company.

What types of companies use Odoo?

In general, Odoo is used by larger companies that need a variety of integrations. However, smaller companies and even solopreneurs can benefit from Odoo Community. 

The wide variety of modules and apps available means that virtually any industry can use Odoo.

How much does Odoo cost?

Odoo Community is free forever with on-premise hosting. Odoo Enterprise is more flexible and has more features; however, you only pay for the modules and components you need. These are priced individually. 

What are Odoo’s features?

There are 30 core modules, plus thousands of others, that can be added to your system. The most popular features include: 

  • CRM
  • Project management
  • Sales management
  • Email marketing
  • Productivity tools
  • Integration with other applications and systems

How do I access Odoo?

You can access Odoo Community on your desktop. Odoo Enterprise is also available on your browser or mobile device. 

How is Odoo hosted?

Odoo Community only has an on-premise hosting option. Odoo Enterprise can be hosted on-premise or in the cloud. You can also use the Odoo.sh cloud platform for additional customization features and access to third-party options. 

Bottom Line

Both Zoho CRM and Odoo offer CRM that integrates with other software systems to create a fully managed software solution for your business. As open-source software, Odoo is continually updated with new features that you can access instantly, making it an ideal choice for companies that want to stay flexible and ahead of their competitors. 

If you’re undecided about the best CRM solution for your company, we can help! Confianz is an official Odoo partner, which means we’re qualified to help you with every step of the design and implementation process if you decide to go with Odoo. 

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