Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Three Free SalesForce Alternatives That Are Better Than SalesForce

With 60 dollars per user per month (that’s if you want to have access to app marketplace where all the goodies are) and a two year minimum contract frequently required, SalesForce is out of reach for most small businesses. And it’s really a shame, because SalesForce is a great CRM. But don’t despair, here are three free SalesForce alternatives that are actually better at some things than SalesForce itself. Check out our SalesForce vs Bitrix24 vs Nimble vs Streak review.

1.    Bitrix24.

Bitrix24 is the most popular and powerful free SalesForce alternative and for a good reason. In addition to offering an extensive CRM that’s 100% free for 12 users or less, it’s actually a much better SalesForce Chatter alternative than Chatter itself (social intranet). In fact, Bitrix24 comes packed with free goodies that SalesForce itself doesn’t offer (other than through third party integrations) – like project management, file sharing, mobile CRM, doc management, video chat and videoconferencing and so on. The best thing about Bitrix24 is that it offers you a choice – you can either use it as SaaS literally within a minute of being set up, or you can host it on your server and tweak it as you see fit.

2.    Nimble CRM.

In the customer relationship management world the name Jon Ferrara (Nimble’s founder) carries the same weight as Mark Benioff – both were CRM pioneers. Mr. Ferrara has retired in the nineties to raise his children and recently returned to the market with social CRM. While Nimble isn’t nearly as powerful as Bitrix24 or SalesForce – its ‘social’ aspect does have a leg up on both systems. So if you do a lot of marketing, prospecting and sales through social networks like LinkedIn, FaceBook, Google+ or Twitter, you’ll be blown away by Nimble. And the fact that it’s 100% free for a solo use (single user) doesn’t hurt. After that, you pay $15 per user per month.

3.    Streak CRM

Streak CRM is a newcomer to the already overcrowded marketplace – so hardly anyone knows about it, but the few users who do use it, swear that it does miracles for their GMail use. While Bitrix24 and Nimle decided that they want to eliminate e-mails in internal communications, Streak has embraced it, particularly GMail. Essentially, with Streak CRM you can use your GMail account for sales, hiring, bug tracking, and customer support. Streak is a Y Combinator startup, which means that if you are a techie, you’ll love it, but if you run a ‘normal’ business or don’t use GMail much, you should probably stick with Bitrix24. Oh, and since Streak is still in beta, it’s 100% free (paid plans are coming soon, according to the site).