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Can Your Sales Team Be Fully Effective With a Free Online CRM?

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Free CRMs are never really free. Any money you save up front, you’ll lose in productivity and effectiveness. As with all things in life, you get what you pay for.

A free CRM may be the best introduction to understanding CRM, which can be helpful for companies new to CRM that want to learn the ropes. However, free CRMs offer limited features and low user caps, making them essentially useless for growing sales teams.

We examined eight notable free CRM software platforms to determine whether they offer everything you’d need to make your sales team fully effective.

Reviewing 8 free CRM systems

1. Agile CRM

agile crm free version

Agile CRM is known for its marketing automation and team engagement features. It includes integrated email marketing and a landing page builder, plus gamification to boost productivity.

Here’s an overview of the free version’s features.

Notable features: Lead scoring, appointment scheduling, two-way email integration

User limit: 10

Drawbacks: Reporting not included, email and phone support not included, no other integrations available besides email

2. HubSpot CRM

hubspot free version

HubSpot CRM offers a comprehensive platform that seamlessly integrates sales and marketing tools. It’s widely recognized for its effectiveness in managing customer relationships and enhancing workflow efficiency. This CRM is particularly well-suited for businesses and nonprofits, providing robust contact management and extensive automation capabilities.

Here’s an overview of the free version’s features.

Notable features: Automatic data scouring, pipeline customization, up to 1,000,000 contacts/records

User limit: none

Drawbacks: No live customer support, full reporting features require a $200/month add-on charge, phone calls from the CRM are limited to 15 minutes per month. (Yeah, that’s…not enough.)

3. Insightly

insightly free version

Insightly offers strong lead capturing and integration with accounting software like QuickBooks Online and Xero, ideal for businesses looking to improve lead management and reporting.

Here’s an overview of the free version’s features.

Notable features: Lead capturing from email and web forms, custom reports, free integration with Quickbooks Online or Xero

User limit: 2

Drawbacks: No live customer support, no calendar or contact sync, only 10 emails per day, up to 2,500 records, only 200 MB of file storage

4. Spotler CRM

spotler crm free version

Spotler CRM is a straightforward CRM with essential features such as custom reports and API integration, making it suitable for small businesses.

Here’s an overview of the free version’s features.

Notable features: Custom reports, email and online chat support, API integration

User limit: 2

Drawbacks: Contact records limited to 100 company accounts, only 100 MB of file storage available, no phone support

5. Vtiger CRM

vtiger free version

Vtiger’s open-source CRM offers extensive customization and advanced features for managing quotes and invoices, though it requires significant setup and configuration.

Here’s an overview of the free version’s features.

Notable features: Multiple dashboards, advanced tax calculations on quotes and invoices, the ability to view any dated record on your calendar

User limit: none

Drawbacks: The open-source version of Vtiger comes completely unconfigured, and includes very little out of the box; support is limited to online user forums; migration assistance starts at $450 and team onboarding assistance starts at $690

6. Zoho CRM

zoho crm free version

Zoho CRM is a versatile tool with social media integration and advanced filtering options, making it effective for managing customer interactions and documents.

Here’s an overview of the free version’s features.

Notable features: Advanced filters, social media integrations, document attachments

User limit: 10

Drawbacks: No file storage for individual users, no live support, no dashboards

7. Monday CRM

monday crm free version

Monday Sales CRM excels with its user-friendly design and customization capabilities. It simplifies communication with leads and customers and provides insightful sales performance dashboards.

Here’s an overview of the free version’s features.

Notable features: Simplicity and customization, email tools, sales performance monitoring, simple automation

‍User limit: 2

Drawbacks: May require more seats due to package restrictions

8. Freshsales

freshsales crm free version

Freshsales offers excellent lead management, email tracking, and automation capabilities. Its user-friendly interface and customization options make it ideal for optimizing sales processes.

Here’s an overview of the free version’s features.

Notable features: Sales automation, built-in communication tools, pipeline management

‍User limit: 3‍Drawbacks: Limited premium features without upgrade

Looking for an easy-to-use CRM with all the features you need to boost sales?

Nutshell has what you’re looking for.

Explore Nutshell’s Features

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7 CRM benefits you can’t do without

CRMs are designed to increase sales effectiveness. And you won’t see higher sales if you’re stuck with a platform that doesn’t actually work for your business.

Here are some essential CRM features that your sales team will need in order to be effective—and which you might not find in a free CRM system:

Unlimited users

Choosing a CRM with no user limit ensures that everyone in your company who needs access—sales, service, management, and marketing—has it. This way, you can ensure that no one is left out.

Unlimited contacts and data storage

Make sure you select a CRM that can grow along with your organization. CRM data usage can add up quickly. No data limits means you’ll never outgrow your CRM.

Email automation

Email remains one of the most effective channels for marketing and customer communication. With email automation, you can send industry insights, product recommendations, and more directly from your CRM. This integration streamlines your marketing efforts by centralizing customer data and communication.

Sales reporting and analytics

CRM reports help sales managers make informed decisions about sales strategy as well as coach their teams more effectively. Make sure you choose a CRM that allows your sales team to understand the impact of their sales activities, as well as create custom reports so they can quickly find the numbers that matter most to them.

Fully customizable sales process

CRMs with a fully customizable sales process help reps know what needs to happen next on every deal, so they can focus more on closing instead of task management. Not only does this speed up onboarding of new reps, it simplifies sales management by providing greater insight into individual reps’ effectiveness.

Free, live customer support

You shouldn’t need to pay extra to have questions answered by real human beings. Your CRM’s customer support staff should be easily accessible to help. This will increase your team’s adoption of CRM and make everyone more comfortable with its use.

A wide range of integrations

Select a CRM that integrates with the business software you already use, so your sales reps won’t have to leave their CRM every time they need to send an email, view their appointment calendar, or make a phone call. Their productivity will improve when they can do everything in one place.

Why You Need a Better CRM System

Does your current CRM offer all these features? If not, it might be time to consider an upgrade. A CRM that supports unlimited users and contacts, provides powerful email automation, offers insightful sales reporting, features a customizable sales process, and delivers exceptional customer support can significantly boost your sales effectiveness.

Try Nutshell free for 14 days and experience a CRM that delivers all these benefits and more!


Want to kick the tires a bit?

No problem. To see if Nutshell is the right choice for your sales team, start a 14-day free trial today!


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