CRM vs. CDP: Which data software is best for your business?

Sell to Win Team
Sell to Win Team
crm vs. cdp software heart in digital binary code Photo by Alexander Sinn on Unsplash

Want to leverage customer data to maximize your sales, but need to know the difference between customer relationship management (CRM) software and customer data platforms (CDPs) before getting started? 

CRM software helps you manage your company’s relationships and interactions with prospects and current customers, while CDP software helps you track and analyze your customers’ behaviors. 

Keep reading to learn more about the key differences between CRM vs. CDP software.

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What is the difference between a CRM and CDP?

So, what is the difference between a CRM and CDP? Find out the answers to the questions “what is a CRM” and “what is a CDP” below:

What is a CRM?

A CRM is a platform that helps you manage your company’s interactions with leads, prospects, and current customers or clients. 

It can track essential data from your audience, like their:

  • Name
  • Phone number
  • Email address
  • Job title
  • Company name
  • Relationship (e.g., customer, former customer, prospect, email subscriber)
  • Position in your sales funnel

By tracking these details, your CRM software helps you learn more about your prospects and their interests. As a result, you can always stay connected with your audience to foster brand loyalty and deliver personalized experiences that encourage them to convert into customers.

What is a CDP?

A CDP is software that creates individualized profiles of your customers and clients to detail their interactions and behaviors. CDPs store and unify customer data in real-time and can track information like: 

  • Purchase history
  • Website behavior, like which pages they visit
  • Marketing channel interactions

With a CDP, you can track your customer’s journey and interactions on their path toward conversion. 

Who should use CRMs and CDPs?

Wondering which companies and teams should use a CRM and CDP? We’ve got all the answers you need below:

Who should use a CRM?

While CRMs can help many different departments, it’s customer-facing roles—like sales and customer service reps—that most often use CRM software.

A CRM platform is most effective for sales teams because it tracks all the data your reps need to successfully close more deals. 

It houses all the contact details of your leads, so your sales team can easily communicate with prospects at each stage of the sales funnel to encourage them to convert into customers. 

A CRM platform is also helpful for enabling your sales team to view previous interactions your leads had with other sales reps. It helps your entire team stay on the same page when delivering messages to prospects and customers.

Who should use a CDP?

Non-customer-facing roles, like marketing and leadership, often use CDPs. That’s because CDPs give you a complete overview of your customers’ behaviors, including how they use your website and which marketing channels they interact with.

This information helps you learn which content on your website is most popular and engaging for your audience, which advertisements drive the most clicks and sales, which lead contact forms receive the most submissions, and more. 

With this data, you can inform and optimize your marketing strategies to drive more sales and revenue for your company in the future.


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What is the purpose of CRMs and CDPs?

Find out the purpose of CRM and CDP software and what you should use each platform for below:

What is the purpose of a CRM? 

The purpose of a CRM is to improve your relationships with leads, prospects, and current customers. 

A CRM platform comes equipped with various features and tools to help you track your leads in your sales funnel so you can deliver the right messages at the right time to encourage them to convert. 

You can also use a CRM platform to create personalized messages, like emails, that resonate with your customers’ interests. For example, you can send an email with product recommendations based on their previous purchases to increase brand loyalty and product sales.

What is the purpose of a CDP?

The purpose of a CDP is to better understand the behaviors of your leads, prospects, and current customers. 

It lets you gain a unified view of your customer’s journey by tracking data across multiple channels and touchpoints. You can use a CDP to view how customers first discovered your business or which content they interacted with before making a purchase. 

Which one is right for your business?

Trying to decide between a CRM or CDP? Using both CRM and CDP software together is the best way to maximize your sales and revenue. 

But if you want to opt for one platform over the other, discover which software is the best fit for your business below:

Is a CRM the best fit for your business?

You should opt for a CRM platform if you want to:

  • Track data from your leads and customers
  • Keep track of your leads’ interactions with members of your sales team
  • Automate sales tasks and processes
  • Store lead and customer contact information in one central location for your entire team to access
  • Better understand and manage your sales pipeline

If you want to give your sales team the tools they need to close more deals for your company, investing in a CRM platform is a must. 

Is a CDP the best fit for your business?

You should opt for CDP software if you want to: 

  • Track your customers’ entire journey, from initial awareness to conversion
  • View how your marketing strategies work together to drive leads and sales
  • Analyze which content and marketing channels your audience interacts with the most
  • Optimize your sales and marketing strategies to drive more sales and revenue

Invest in a CDP to better understand how your audience interacts with your business across multiple channels and which strategies drive them toward conversion. 

Get more customer data to maximize your sales with Nutshell

Looking for your all-in-one customer data and sales-driving solution? Say hello to Nutshell.

Our powerful CRM software helps you automate sales processes, build strong relationships with prospects and customers, and close more deals for your business. 

If you’re ready to track and analyze valuable data about your customers, Nutshell is ready to help. Our friendly team is always available to provide world-class one-on-one support to help you maximize your sales with every feature our CRM offers. 

Contact us to learn more about how our CRM can grow your business, or get started with your free trial to test it out for yourself!

Photo by Alexander Sinn on Unsplash


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