CRM Magazine released their annual list of market leaders in the customer relationship management (CRM) space. They have three award categories based on the firm size of CRM system users - large enterprises, mid-market firms and small businesses.
Salesforce won the strength of their product direction and reputation for customer satisfaction. Salesforce also has the most complete set of offerings and is very strong for small businesses large enough to have sales teams and sales manager.
While Zoho didn't win this year, I think they are an excellent choice for smaller small businesses (20 employees or less) and solopreneurs. In addition to being easy to use and having good functionality, it's cheap if you have more than 3 users and FREE if you have 3 or fewer users.
Infusionsoft was named this year's rising star. Infusionsoft earned this award in large part due to them earning a very high customer satisfaction score.
Nimble is also listed as a rising star. They are leaders in integrating social media data into their CRM system. If your business is based on building and maintaining strong personal relationships with customers, a social CRM solution like Nimble is well worth looking at.
We continue to be amazed how few small businesses use CRM systems. They are cheap (even free), easy to use and add enormous value by allowing small businesses to collect and analyze customer and prospect information.
While not all small businesses need them, all small businesses should educate themselves on the space and experiment with using one or two of the products. This doesn't take much time or money and could end up being a business difference maker.
For the 4th year in a row I served as a judge for these awards. For disclosure purposes, we don't currently have commercial relationships nor have we had a commercial relationship over last 2 year with any of the firms we rated.