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CRM For Enterprise And Small Business: Key Difference And Best Solutions

Maryna Cherednychenko - January 5, 2021 - 0 comments

The CRM market is an actively developing area. It is overwhelmed with various systems, so if you search for a proper CRM solution, you may get lost in offers’ diversity. They all promise to automate your business and renew relations with clients. But if you dig a little deeper, you may find out that some features are missing, and some you don’t need at all. This post aims to help you choose the right CRM system. To narrow your search, I recommend differentiating CRM software for enterprise or small business. Further, we will review each option’s features so that you choose the best one for your business.

What is CRM?

Let’s start with clarifying the nature of CRM. If you look for one, you know it is software that automates business relations with customers. Which way does it do it? The system has many tools to track customers’ activity, analyze their behavior, and generate predictive analytics. For example, it can tell you the number of purchases, most preferable products, and the average sum spent. It can also show how the client gets to your store: via planned search, promo link in a messenger or email, or contextual ad on a third-party site.

Besides, CRM acts as an aggregated communication channel. It allows agents to provide written and verbal support from a single place. You can connect the needed messengers, run bulk messaging, and track results. The screenshot below shows how it works in the real estate CRM we developed recently.


Messaging analytics in real estate CRM

Messaging analytics in real estate CRM

What Is an Enterprise CRM?

Enterprise CRM is suitable for large companies with an extensive staff of economists, programmers, marketers, sales managers, account managers, etc. It has all imaginable tools to fully automate company processes and land all departments on one page. As a rule, CRM for enterprise is a complex system with many units and subunits. It has broad opportunities for customization and requires strong technical skills to be set up.


Despite some difficulty in adapting such a large-scale software, it brings many perks in the long run. If you develop a custom CRM or find a ready-made one that suits you, you can boost KPI several times. Your employees will get rid of routine yet time-consuming tasks and focus on more creative activities for the sake of the company’s success.

What Is Small Business CRM?

The best CRM for small businesses is cheap, easy to use, and installation-free. Small firms lack the time and resources to deal with a long and complicated setup. Often, they do not have an IT department or at least a single in-house developer. Such companies need to master the system and start working quickly.

CRM for small business is a broad concept. It fits not only startups but also mid-sized companies. The CRM should be accessible anywhere without being tied to a stationary office computer because an office may not exist. The system’s simplicity means fewer features, which is OK for sub-scale firms. Usually, they get enough from the basic functionality to automate their everyday tasks.

How CRMs For Enterprise And Small Business Differ

Here is a summary of key differences between the enterprise-level CRM and the CRM for small businesses.


Enterprise CRM CRM For Small Businesses
High Cost Low
Complex Implementation Simple
Developed Infrastructure Limited
Full Automation Partial
Advanced Customization Poor
Easy Scalability Hardly available
Versatile Features Specialized
Web and mobile Access Web and mobile

Best CRMs for Enterprise

Now, let’s list the most popular CRM systems for enterprises.


Salesforce is a leader in the CRM market. It is not just an automation tool but a comprehensive system with smart elements that give you deep insights from your clients based on previous contacts. Namely, Salesforce Einstein is an AI-powered platform able to analyze the current state of business and provide expert advice for further development. The Salesforce bot allows you to shift some duties to the virtual assistant so that your managers can take care of more complex tasks.

Opting for Salesforce, you can digitize all sides of business activities, including lead management, marketing campaign, sales strategy, and partner relations. You can customize software and connect different modules such as Sales Cloud, Sales Performance, Sales Collaboration as per your company needs.  What’s great, you can run the CRM on a mobile device.


Salesforce CRM

Salesforce CRM (Source:

Oracle CRM On Demand

Oracle is a veteran CRM system and a stable player that partners with many corporations around the world. Even though many believe its interface is outdated and the whole look-and-feel needs an update, Oracle gives a full set of tools for advanced automation. Oracle is very user-friendly and requires minimum effort for integration. So, if you’ve never CRM before, Oracle may be a good start.

The system takes care of security. It is equipped with robust mechanisms for data protection and guarantees no info leak. If you plan to reach your customers through social media, Oracle is a smart choice because it is considered one of the best social CRMs. However, the bad news is that it is not adapted to mobile platforms. Thus, you can use it only on a desktop.


Oracle CRM

Oracle CRM (Source:

HubSpot CRM

HubSpot Sales Hub for enterprises claims to be robust and easy. No brain out setup and no tricky features. The integration is as plain as one-two-three, yet, it delivers all the needed components for automating your business. The CRM synchs with more than 500 apps and modules, so you don’t have to revise your current infrastructure. The list covers both the commonly used apps, such as Gmail or Slack, and narrow-focused services, like Office 365 or Shopify.

With CRM, you can create highly detailed reports, analyze sales funnels, and predict user behavior. Your team can collaborate in a handy dashboard where the data is updated in a real-time mode. The prices are lower than those of Salesforce, yet they are pretty high and are suitable for companies that are ready not to skimp on quality.


HubSpot CRM

HubSpot CRM (Source:

Zoho CRM

Zoho CRM is another popular system with 150+ clients in 180 countries worldwide. It is ideal for automating sales and tracking the customer journey from start to finish. You can see and control all steps in Zoho’s CommandCenter. To build brand reputation, you can send bulk mailings and brand-related messages, as well as analyze user activity and track the results.

Similar to Salesforce, Zoho has an Ai-powered element – smart bot Zia. Zia knows how to assign a sales rep to a specific client based on their preferences and past interactions. Thus, the client receives the best level of service and becomes more loyal to the company.


Zia bot in Zoho CRM

Zoho CRM (Source:


Sugar CRM was the pioneer in the CRM industry, and to this day, it is one of the most in-demand enterprise solutions. It is well structured and easy to navigate, so users can quickly find particular features and figure out how they work. Sugar CRM supplies sales and marketing automation, revenue analytics, AI and ML instruments, customer support.

However, the system lacks some reporting features and email marketing instruments. Also, creating reports takes longer than we might ideally like to. As for the rest, Sugar is a cool CRM system fully equipped for automating customer relations and with many ways for customization. Besides, it runs on iOS and Android, allowing teams to work where they like.


Sugar CRM

Sugar CRM (Source:

Best CRMs for Small Business

In this section, we will review the most popular CRM systems used by small and mid-sized companies.


Pipedrive CRM, as you might have guessed, mainly concentrates on managing sales funnels. It allows you to organize custom pipelines and add visuals for cozy management and control. The LeadBooster add-on helps distribute the workload between live agents and chatbots. Your managers can pick up a conversation started by a bot from a PC or smartphone, so none of your leads will be ignored.

Even though Pipedrive CRM mainly serves small businesses, it can still be a choice of big firms that do not want to spend much on such software. Notable pitfalls are lack of internal mailing system and notifications, but you solve that by integrating with Slack or Pipedrive’s Zapier.


Pipedrive CRM

Pipedrive CRM (Source:


Nimble presents itself as an easy and smart CRM. It is geared towards building a social brand presence and integrates with many social networks allowing you to post on many channels and track content’s effectiveness from one place. Over and above, the CRM can import data from lots of resources and create a single well-structured client database.

You can run Nibble on the web or install a mobile app for a tablet or phone. Some claim their Android app is not as good as the iOS one, though. All in all, it a good CRM with all features needed for a typical sales company of a medium scale.


Nimble CRM

Nimble CRM (Source:


Insightly it is a compact CRM that helps you accompany the user on their journey from prospect to a regular customer. Your staff can interact with clients by sending emails, notifications, posting news, gathering feedback through embedded forms in your store, etc. Intuitive tools allow fast reporting and sharing of analytical data across the team members. Visual dashboards immediately show gaps in marketing campaigns and help you to make adjustments in time.

Insightly integrates with G Suite and Office 365. It is a mobile version, which lets your agents work anywhere. For the first two users, it comes for free.


Insightly CRM (Source:

Insightly CRM (Source:

Less Annoying CRM

Less Annoying CRM is a perfect match for small companies. It is not overwhelmed with unnecessary options and gives essential tools for managing starting or modest-sized businesses. It is very straightforward with its customers. The CRM has a transparent pricing plan, does not oblige you to enter credit card details, and charges only $15 per user a month.

Less Annoying CRM concentrates on growing your leads through analyzing pipelines. It also helps you stay on top of things by providing effective time management through a built-in calendar and meeting-planning forms.


Less Annoying CRM

Less Annoying CRM (Source:


Act! appeared long ago and has a lot of stable customers who have been using it for many years. Act! helps you build trust with customers. When your manager has an unexpected call, they in seconds reach the information about the client. For example, they know which products they buy, what reasons they contact support for, and what things are on their wish list. Except for business-related data, your agents can see personal info, like date of birth or kid’s names, and use it in conversation.

One bad thing about Act! is poor customer support. Once you purchase it, you better rely on yourself to deal with all the features because many users claim they have to wait up to 45 minutes for an answer on the phone.

Act! CRM

Act! CRM (Source:

Are You Thinking of Integrating a CRM?

CRM is a must-have tool for successful sales. It gathers all your customers in one place, informs you about their preferences and past interactions, and enables you to quickly respond to any changes and make adjustments to marketing campaigns.

Today, many companies provide ready-made CRM systems. For enterprises, they offer large-scale software with a vast number of functions; for small businesses – more compact tools with narrowly focused functionality.

I hope this guide has helped you find your favorites. If you still haven’t found what you were looking for, we recommend that you think about developing a custom CRM.

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