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Should I Use a SaaS-Specific CRM?

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Customer relationship management (CRM) software is an essential tool for streamlining your sales process and closing more deals with less hassle and guesswork.

As a SaaS business owner, you understand the importance of good CRM software, and you’re probably already shopping around for a CRM for your business. But the question on your mind might be: “Should I use a SaaS-specific CRM or a general-purpose one?”

In this article, we’ll cover the definitions and advantages of SaaS-specific CRMs and general-purpose ones to help you choose the best software for the job.

What is a SaaS-specific CRM?

A SaaS-specific CRM is created with SaaS businesses in mind. It helps these businesses attract and manage their sales and leads in accordance with the SaaS business model.

These CRMs often have features that are specifically helpful to sales teams working in the SaaS industry. For example, a SaaS-specific CRM may have extra security features installed to prevent cyber attacks, which software companies that deal with user data often face.

Advantages of using a SaaS-specific CRM

Considering a SaaS-specific CRM to add to your tech stack? The benefits of choosing an industry-specific CRM over a general-purpose one include:

  • An interface that reflects the SaaS business model
  • Features tailor-made for SaaS sales
  • Faster setup process

Let’s look at each benefit in more detail.

Interface that is aligned with the SaaS business model

Since industry-specific CRMs were made with their industries in mind, it should come as no surprise that SaaS teams may find SaaS-specific CRMs easier to understand and implement than general-purpose ones.
The interface may make your team feel more comfortable by using industry-specific language or practices. If teams feel at home in the system, there is less likely to be pushback to adopting and implementing the CRM.

Features tailored to SaaS businesses

While a SaaS-specific CRM has a smaller suite of features for users, these features are more likely to be what a SaaS sales team needs. The features would benefit users in the SaaS industry, helping them to solve challenges unique to SaaS sales, such as nurturing free-plan customers into paying for a premium subscription.

It should be noted that a general-purpose CRM likely has all the features a SaaS-specific one does, plus more features to cater to a broad customer base. Thus, it would require a bit more time to customize the features to use for your business. 

However, using a general-purpose CRM shouldn’t feel foreign to a SaaS business as long as it includes the features and tools they need.


Nutshell is flexible enough to fit every sales model.

Choose the model that best fits your business and see how we help teams like yours close more deals.



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Faster setup time

Factoring in the SaaS-friendly interface and tailored suite of features, it makes sense that setup time for a SaaS-specific CRM would be faster than that with a general-purpose CRM.
This is not always the case, though, as some general-purpose CRMs were built with the goal of fast setup and implementation in mind and can rival their industry-specific counterparts in setup efficiency.

What are general-purpose CRMs?

General-purpose CRMs are built for a general audience: businesses of various sizes and industries. They can be customized to work for all types of business models and have a wide range of features that customers would appreciate.

Advantages of general-purpose CRMs

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What could a general-purpose CRM offer your SaaS business that an industry-specific one can’t? When you choose to use a general-purpose CRM over a SaaS-specific one, you can enjoy benefits such as:

  • More integration options
  • Customization and scalability
  • Affordability

Let’s examine each of these advantages of general CRMs.

More integration options

Since general-purpose CRMs must cater to a wide range of industries, they are more likely to offer a wider range of integration options than a SaaS-specific CRM would. An industry-specific CRM may only allow a limited number of integrations.

A general-purpose CRM might be a better choice for companies that already have an established and favored tech stack.

Fill in the missing pieces of your tech stack with Nutshell integrations

Explore our current integrations and upcoming tools that will help you get even more out of Nutshell.

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And get the inside scoop on Nutshell’s security policies here:

Our security practices

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Customize and scale features and add-ons

General-purpose CRMs have a large customer base, which provides more feedback and incentives to make their interfaces as easy to use as possible. This is great news for companies in all industries. 

Not only will a general-purpose CRM have a simple interface, but it will also house a lot of different features, with the ability to customize your experience to fit your business goals and sales processes.

More flexible pricing than industry-specific CRMs

An industry-specific CRM may be cheaper than a general-purpose one, but its pricing is often more rigid. With a general-purpose CRM, you have the flexibility to choose a plan within your budget and add features as you see fit.

Nutshell, for example, offers flexible plans that don’t skimp on features you need. Plus, you get the benefits of thousands of integrations to connect and native add-ons to enhance your sales process with email marketing, landing pages, or scheduling software, among others.

Should I use a SaaS-specific or general-purpose CRM?

So now that you’ve seen the difference between a SAAS-specific and a general-purpose–and the advantages of each–it should be a clearer choice about which one to choose for your business. 

Not sure yet? Well, if you’d prefer a SaaS-tailored interface, a faster setup time, and don’t mind limited integrations and rigid pricing, then a SaaS-specific CRM may be the right option for you.

Otherwise, if you have a preferred tech stack that could benefit from CRM integration capabilities, want a flexible pricing plan, and don’t mind a slightly more involved setup process, a general-purpose CRM is the one you want.

Nutshell is the ideal CRM for your SaaS business

If you’re looking for a robust, all-in-one CRM solution for your SAAS business, why not try Nutshell? 

Our CRM is specifically designed to make adoption and implementation as simple as possible because no matter whether it’s general or industry-specific, the best CRM is one you’ll actually use.

Enjoy customizable sales pipelines, sales automation, and advanced reporting and analytics when you try Nutshell, free for 14 days, no credit card required.

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