Tuesday, October 08, 2013

Best Free SugarCRM Alternatives.

Any way you slice it – SugarCRM is one of the best CRM solutions out there. I have only two objections with SugarCRM. Thirty five bucks per user per month to start with is a bit steep. Second, free open source sounds good, unless you have no programming skills. That's when you realize that when paying $150-$250/hr for even minor modifications or integrating SugarCRM with other tools quickly ends up with a huge bill.

The good news is there are many SugarCRM alternatives, including free ones. And I don't mean other forks like vTiger or other free open source initiatives, like FatFreeCRM, which come with the same type of disadvatages as Sugar. Rather, these are alternatives that come close to SugarCRM in terms of features and functions, but are either free (or better priced) or are easier to work with for a non-techie type.

Free – 12 users. $99/mo – unlimited users, 50 GB. Online or self-hosted. Source code available. API avilable for cloud and self-hosted. Features: contact managment, core CRM, invoices, sales funnel, sales pipeline, mobile CRM (fully functional), reports, Send'n'Save email, email connectors (Gmail, Outlook, Exchange, etc), shared calendars, tasks and project management, doc manangement, file sharing, workflow integration (business processes), activity stream, flexible access rights, phone calls from CRM, video conferencing, time tracking, HRIS, recruiting.

Nimble CRM
Free – 1 user, $15/mo each additional user. Online only, no source code available. API for cloud service available (contacts). Features: contact managment, core CRM, social CRM (!), social listening, activity management, no mobile app (-), reports, e-mail integration (ConstantContact, Awebber), Social Media Management (basic), tasks (no project management), calendars, phone calls from CRM, basic activity stream.

Free – 3 users/2500 contacts, $2-10/mo each additional user. Online only, no source code available, API for cloud service available. Features: contact managment, core CRM, basic social CRM, activity management, mobile app, reports, e-mail integrations (Mail Chimp), file sharing, web to contact, calendars, tasks and project management, calendars, phone calls from CRM, basic activity stream, following, tags.

Of course, there are a ton more CRMs out there but these three give a good idea what types of SugarCRM replacements are available. Overall Bitrix24 is probably the best free SugarCRM alternative out there, especially if you have 10+ salespeople, need mobile CRM, require on premise CRM and want to have access to the source code just in case. If you do a lot of social media marketing, social listening and use Twitter/Facebook/LinkedIn as sales tool, NimbleCRM is superior to SugarCRM in many ways. Finally Insightly is a good middle of the road SugarCRM alternative for small sales teams (under 10 people) that don’t do social media marketing and don’t require all the powerful functions that Bitrix24 (or Sugar) offer.