The ultimate list of the best B2B CRMs to choose from [in 2021]

byAlexander Killeen, Karan Sharma, Guido Croce

First off, this is a blog about B2B CRMs that you are going to want to bookmark and revisit every so often – it will be updated almost every week. Whether you are looking to buy a new B2B CRM subscription, want to switch to another B2B CRM, or just want to stay in the loop about what is new in the world of B2B CRMs, then this post is the place to be.

Below you will find our (growing) list and deep-dive analysis of the best B2B CRMs to choose from, whatever the size of your company or department you’re in – we’ve got you.

Since this will be written for a wide range of people, if you are already quite knowledgeable about the different use cases of a B2B CRM, feel free to skip to the list of B2B CRMs below. For the rest of us, before we run through our selection of the best CRMs to choose from, let’s quickly cover the basics of what a CRM is, why you need one, and what benefits it will bring for you and your company.


What is a B2B CRM?

A B2B CRM (which stands for Business to Business Customer Relationship Management) is a software platform used to manage your customer (and potential customer) relationships. From your cold leads to your long-serving customers, it enables you to see and manage all information from sales, marketing and customer service in one platform.

B2B deals tend to be quite large and can involve multiple decision-makers. Sales cycles can also range from weeks to months where there can be a lot of communication across multiple channels. A B2B CRM has features and capabilities to fit your company’s needs and manage all your customer relationships in one place.


Why do you need a B2B CRM?

As we adapt to this new way of working, we are more reliant than ever to use software for everything we do. B2B CRM software can help not just to manage your data and track communications but also integrate with every aspect of your business. As the number of leads and outreach channels increases, a B2B CRM can help give full visibility into the stage of each deal, sales reps or team’s performance, and any actions to take.


Benefits of a B2B CRM

A B2B CRM will help with the business goal every company has – to make more sales. Many deals can be lost just due to the lack of follow up. Having a B2B CRM will help track sales activities, prompt when to take them, and keep all interactions with each prospect in one place to ensure deals are not forgotten about. Another way it helps boost sales is to increase sales team’s productivity. Much time can be spent on repetitive tasks, but, using automation and integrations with other tools, sales teams can find themselves spending more time focusing more on accounts and engaging more prospects.

B2B CRM software these days are typically cloud-based meaning that you can access it from anywhere and not have to worry about any software maintenance or setting up a server. Another benefit of the cloud is that the software can be continually updated to keep up with technological changes and provide a better user experience. Also, most companies typically use a subscription model so you don’t have to make one huge up-front payment but rather subscribe to a monthly cost, this can also give flexibility to switch to a different B2B CRM as the needs of your business change over time.

Since shopping for B2B CRMs can be a daunting task, the list below will cover the primary uses as well as other features that support remote collaboration and connectivity. We hope this list helps you decide which B2B CRM is best suited for your business.


Which are the top B2B CRMs of 2020 and beyond?

Finally, we are here. The breakdown of each B2B CRM will fall into 3 areas of business: sales, marketing and service. To keep things relevant for you, we won’t cover the standard features of each B2B CRM nor every little detail, but we will talk about what we think are the most important features we think you should know about in each area. Please bear in mind that the focus is on the B2B CRM only and some of the features discussed may only be available on their highest pricing plan.


Salesforce CRM

A little bit about who they are 

Salesforce was founded in 1999 helping businesses to accelerate sales, automate tasks and make smarter decisions to grow business faster. Salesforce has 150,000 customers and is known as the world’s #1 B2B CRM.

Deep-Dive Analysis

Lead and deal management

With Salesforce CRM you can get a complete view of your customers, activity history, customer communications, and internal account discussions in one place. You can also set up automatic lead scoring and routing to ensure leads are assigned to the right people, as well as track and receive updates on information about your leads such as customer activities and what stage your deal is in.

Prospect communication

You can create email templates, create targeted email lists, and send mass emails while automatically tracking which leads or contacts received emails. You are also able to manage and track marketing campaigns across all channels and see where a marketing campaign lead came from.

Team collaboration

Salesforce provides a Chatter feed on every account and contact record to collaborate with people companywide to share insights, documents, and more.

Reporting and analytics 

You can see a complete view of your entire pipeline and business by creating real-time configurable reports and dashboards to track team performance and build customised sales forecasting reports using drag and drop fields, filters, groupings, and charts.

Mobile

With the Salesforce Mobile App, you can access all account and contact data as well as collaborate with your team, close deals, service customers, and deliver personalised marketing. The app can also be used offline and any new records created will sync once you’re back online. For reporting, the customer analytics software within the app can help you check on key business metrics from email and opportunity management to tasks and collaboration.

Other integrations and add-ons

Salesforce offers a suite of products and solutions to support all areas of business.


Hubspot CRM

A little bit about who they are

HubSpot was founded in 2005 after the founders noticed a shift in the way people shop and buy. They have over 86,000 customers in over 120 countries. HubSpot believes businesses can grow without having to be ruthless but with a conscience and that they can do it with inbound.

Deep-Dive Analysis

Lead and deal management

HubSpot’s CRM is called Sales Hub where multiple sales pipelines can be created to view, add deals, assign tasks, and track progress on a visual dashboard. Records for every company in your database can be stored to view company details and communications.

Prospect communication

Create and send templated emails that can be personalised with data from your CRM. You can track and be notified when a lead opens an email as well as track and record calls which will be automatically logged in your CRM. Furthermore, prospects can be called from inside your HubSpot account which can be recorded and auto-logged on the contact record.

Team collaboration

A shared inbox can be set up for all incoming email and live chats that your whole team can work from. You can also automatically route incoming chats and emails to the right user on your team.

Reporting and analytics

All your data can be viewed in one place to get full visibility. Multiple reporting dashboards can be set up to analyse sales activity, productivity, and individual performance. You can also get insights into what a contact is doing on your website, pages viewed, form submissions, sales activity, and more.

Mobile

Contacts, deals, and tasks can all be managed from any place and device.

Other integrations and add-ons

HubSpot offers 3 other products called Marketing Hub, Service Hub and CMS Hub. They also have a HubSpot App Marketplace that has over 500 integrations.


Pipedrive CRM

A little bit about who they are

Pipedrive was founded in 2010 to help users visualise their sales processes and get more done. It is used by 90,000 companies in 170 countries. It was created around activity-based selling and visual pipelines. They’ve won awards such as ‘Best employer in private sector 2016-2019’ and ranked in the top 20% of ‘FT 1000 Europe’s Fastest Growing Companies’.

Deep-Dive Analysis

Lead and deal management

Data can be imported from a spreadsheet or migrated from another CRM. Unlimited sales pipelines can be created and customised to see each deal in kanban view including pipeline stages, ownership, communications and history.

Deals, their values, win probability and expected close date can be added to track through your pipeline stages where rotting deals will be coloured to show when deals are going cold.

Activities can also be created, synced with Google Calendar, and when completed Pipedrive will remind you to schedule your next one, where these follow-ups can also be automated. Other tasks can be automated such as creating a deal when a new contact is added, transfer ownership to another rep when a deal reaches a new stage, or create activities each time a deal is moved along your pipeline.

Prospect communication

Emails can be automatically linked to deals and contacts using two-way email sync to send and receive emails from your work or Pipedrive inbox. Ready-made templates or custom templates can be used including the use of merge fields to personalise messages.

You can also create workflow automation in Pipedrive to automatically send a personalised email whenever a deal is created or reaches a certain stage. Live notifications can be sent to you when emails sent from Pipedrive are opened or when links are clicked. Calls can also be made directly from Pipedrive which can then be recorded and logged.

Team collaboration

Conveniently send batches of emails to groups of people, like lead segments. Use customizable templates and merge fields to personalize messages, then set which users from your company can see them.

Reporting and analytics

Dashboards can be created to view reports in one place. Reports and insights such as opportunities won by salespeople, sales cycle duration, and forecast reports can all be generated.

Mobile

You can view overdue activities, make changes to deals, complete and add new activities, and send calls to your phone with automatic call logging. 

Other integrations and add-ons

The apps marketplace has over 150 integrations to bring new solutions for calling, email marketing, lead generation and more.


ZenDesk CRM

A little bit about who they are

Zendesk Sell is the CRM that is part of the ZenDesk product line. They offer other products that fit into Sell and serve more than 150,000 customers in 160 countries and territories in over 30 languages.

Deep-Dive Analysis

Lead and deal management

The option to have multiple sales pipelines is available as well as being able to customise the stages and data fields. You can also define scoring formulas to score leads and deal to prioritise and know which to focus on.

Data can be added using their lead generation and engagement tool, Reach. Data can also be imported and captured from new leads who enquire through your website form where you are able to build targeted lead lists using industry, company size, role and more. 

You can view lists of individual records for leads, contacts, and deals that can be customised by applying filters of your choice. This can then be saved as smart lists to access your filtered view of your data. 

Prospect communication

With Sell, you can connect your email account to manage emails and track how many times your emails are opened or links you share are clicked on. You can also receive real-time push notifications and alerts as soon as emails you send are opened. Email templates can be created where merge tags such as “name” and “company” can be added to personalise your message.

Sell has click to dial functionality to place calls or generate call lists for automated dialling. You can record your inbound and outbound calls from Sell on desktop and mobile app which will automatically log calls.

Team collaboration

You are able to assign people in your organisation as “collaborators” on deals to keep all relevant parties in the loop and use @Mentions to call attention to co-workers.

Reporting and analytics

Within customisable dashboards, you can get access to email reports and analytics that examine key metrics like email count and outcomes, and track key call metrics including call count, duration and outcomes. There are also reports on sales forecasting, individual and team goals to track revenue or deal volume attainment, and activity volume across teams and individual reps.

Mobile

Receive critical email insights and alerts on your tablet or smartphone. The Sell mobile sales app makes it easy to access and measure email communication from wherever you are.

Other integrations and add-ons

ZenDesk offers a lead generation and engagement tool called Reach (within The Sales Suite product that offers both Sell and Reach) that helps you build targeted prospect lists, identify the right professionals within each account, and prospect across multiple channels creating customised email sequences using personalised templates to automatically follow up leads. Other products include Zendesk for support and the Zendesk Marketplace.


Insightly CRM

A little bit about who they are

Insightly provides customer relationship management software for businesses of all sizes across a range of industries. It was founded in 2009 and has more than 1.5 million users and over 25,000 companies worldwide. Insightly is the world’s most popular CRM software for Google and Office 365 users.

Deep-Dive Analysis

Lead and deal management

You can manage and track all the details of every deal with stages, pipelines, and custom fields in kanban view including an activity timeline of marketing campaign source, emails, phone calls, meetings, and tasks. As well as having multiple sales pipelines, you can customise them for each sales process and assign activity templates to each stage. Workflow automation can be set up to send email alerts, create or update records, or generate tasks for others when opportunities are won. Also, any incoming leads can be automatically routed to the right reps based on your criteria.

Prospect communication

Within Insightly you can send custom, templated, and tracked emails to targeted lists of leads or customers. The ability to send scheduled emails is also available where you will be notified when emails are opened.

Team collaboration

By assigning sales teams you can view which sales team members worked on which deal. With relationship linking you are able to link customers, emails, and other records to existing contacts in your database and build relationships with your customers by understanding their interactions with teammates, bosses, other teams within the business.

Reporting and analytics

Insightly offers built-in business intelligence dashboards with over 40 different chart types and drag-and-drop configurable layouts. You can also build and share customised BI dashboards to share with co-workers. Reports can be scheduled to run and emailed to the right people automatically.

Mobile

The Insightly app is available on Android and iOS to update projects or update others on the status of their tasks. Opportunities can also be created or have their status changed. Mobile voice notes can also be recorded into Insightly from the microphone on your phone.

Other integrations and add-ons

With Insightly Voice you can use the integrated phone dialer to place and receive phone calls with click to call, and log and record every call automatically. You can then track phone call frequency and length with call analysis and reporting. Insightly also offers a Marketing product and integrates with a wide range of tools.


Zoho CRM

A little bit about who they are

Zoho CRM is trusted by over 150,000 businesses in 180 countries to convert more leads, engage with customers, and grow their revenue. The CRM brings sales, marketing, and customer support activities together in one platform.

Deep-Dive Analysis

Lead and deal management

Deals within Zoho CRM are easy to see as everything you need such as the deal stage and the important figures are visible in a single screen. You are also able to create multiple sales pipelines to suit your products/services or sales processes. 

With Zoho CRM, you can create webforms for website visitors to leave their information. Those who do will be captured and added directly to the CRM as a lead. The capability to analyse the performance of webforms is also available.

Zia, an AI assistant, understands commands and queries issued over text and voice. Zia can be used for tasks such as asking for certain charts, figures and answers to read out or display. It also predicts win probability for deals by assigning a dynamic score, enrich CRM data from email signatures, and automate repetitive tasks.

Prospect communication

You can combine your email client to Zoho CRM so that you are alerted when prospects reply to your emails. All emails are automatically synced with the CRM so they’ll be attached to the contact’s record. You can also schedule and mass send personalised emails while also creating auto-responders and templates.

Team collaboration

To improve team collaboration, Zoho CRM has a forum called Feeds where you can have one-on-one or group interactions to keep sales managers informed of their progress on-the-go or update the team on the status of a contact.

Reporting and analytics

Whether from leads, deals, activities or email, Zoho CRM offers advanced analytics and customisable reports to view within dashboards. 

For emails, you will be able to see when they were delivered, opened, and read. While also analysing the response timeframe to help determine their likelihood of closing. When using email templates, you can see how well each template performed based on their open rates. Furthermore, individual email reports for each salesperson can be created based on the amount sent, leads brought in, deals closed and time it took. 

Mobile

Within the app, you can get customer data, deal information, and contact history to make and log calls as well as add notes. You may also add and modify customer information while offline and automatically sync across devices once connected to a network. When creating a record, changing the deal status, calling a customer, or adding notes, the use of AI can help get it done.

Other integrations and add-ons

Zoho has a vast array of apps and integrations to support many areas of business.


Freshsales CRM

A little bit about who they are 

Freshsales CRM started in 2016 and is under the company Freshworks who have over 40,000 customers. Freshsales is a CRM that is fit for companies across a wide range of industries. Freshsales supports over 150 currencies and you can choose from 34 languages to translate your CRM to view data in your preferred choice.

Deep-Dive Analysis

Lead and deal management

You can import your data whether from a spreadsheet or another CRM. Also, when a visitor fills your web form, they’re automatically added as a new lead in Freshsales. 

From a single page, you get complete visibility of your sales pipeline and see how many deals are in each stage, sort, and filter by their expected close date. You are also able to assign a deal age to each pipeline to view rotten deals, create multiple pipelines, and assign goals to users and teams based on pipeline, territory and product.

As well as personalising your CRM by creating custom fields, sales activities, and user roles, there is also built-in AI-based lead scoring that ranks your sales leads to help sales reps prioritise leads.

Prospect Communication

Freshsales allow you to integrate your email for 2-way email sync to send and create outbound campaigns by personalising email templates with placeholders.

In-built in the CRM is Freshcaller which allows you to make, record, and auto log incoming and outgoing calls to related records calls amongst other uses.

Team collaboration

To help salespeople be more productive, Freshsales offers real-time notifications when new records are assigned to someone and for any upcoming appointments they may have. Some helpful collaboration features include scheduling appointments, collaborating with the team on tasks, making quick notes on records, and managing and sharing files with each other. 

Reporting and analytics

In Freshsales you can generate customised or templated reports to view team performance and sales activities such as to analyse sales numbers, reps, and campaigns.

Mobile

With the Freshsales app, everything you need to know about your leads, contacts, accounts and deals is available. You are able to send emails, make calls, receive real-time notifications, and move records across stages as well as schedule follow-up activities and update details.

Other integrations and add-ons

Freshworks have a wide range of products that integrate with Freshsales to make it even better to use such as a customer support software, customer messaging software and customer success software to name a few.


Less Annoying CRM

A little bit about who they are 

Less Annoying CRM (LACRM) offers a solution that is specifically tailored for small businesses. Founded in 2009 with a simple mission: help small businesses succeed. Although many of the other CRMs offer a multitude of features and functionalities, LACRM (with over 22,000 users) focuses only on giving their customers what they really need, and nothing they don’t.

Deep-Dive Analysis

Lead and deal management

LACRM allows you to store all contact information in one place. You can customise how you see all of the notes, files, email conversations, tasks, events, and pipeline information related to a contact.

You can also have events and tasks on one calendar instead of going back and forth between different apps. The calendar and tasks are built directly into the CRM so that everything is in one place. You can set up sharing with other users at your company so that everyone can stay on the same page and sync with Google Calendar for easy access from your phone.

Prospect communication

LACRM does not offer in-built marketing functionalities but does integrate with Mailchimp. You can segment your contacts in LACRM into groups and also in MailChimp called Audiences. Once you have a MailChimp account set up, you can link your LACRM groups with MailChimp’s Audiences to run and track multiple campaigns.  

Team collaboration

To help teams to focus on the right contacts, you can control whether users only have access to their own data, or to everyone’s data. Since data can be segmented into groups, users of LACRM can also be segmented into teams. This way, groups of contacts can be visible only to teams that are assigned to them.

Reporting and analytics

You can run lead reports to show you a real-time list of all your leads in your pipeline. This includes contact info, notes from the last communication, status and priority of the lead. There is also an Activity report that is a list of recent activities in your CRM. Each can be filtered in various ways to see specific kinds of activities or specific users.

Mobile

With an internet connection, LACRM can be accessed directly from your web browser to be accessed by almost any phone, tablet or computer.


Pipeliner CRM

A little bit about who they are

Pipelinersales was founded in 2007 with a mission to remind salespeople of their higher purpose to be: “wealth creator and peace producer”. Their sales enablement tool allows quick and easy integration with other systems while also eliminating the need of a full-time administrator as it only takes 5 hours of training to be able to administer and configure the backend.

Deep-Dive Analysis

Lead and deal management

Pipeliner CRM has a Navigator Dashboard that enables users to navigate to what’s important. The Navigator Dashboard has: an Activity Stream that consists of opportunities, activities and tasks, a Target Overview graph to track sales goals, Notifications for any tasks and opportunities, Suggestions of possible actions to take, and a Business Overview of where the user’s sales opportunities currently stand.

Managing leads in the pipeline is flexible which can be tailored and customised. Leads can be entered manually or imported via .CSV files or web forms. Leads can also be assigned to sales reps where each lead can be scored and ranked based on the likeliness of closing.

Prospect communication

There is full email integration with MS Outlook and Gmail. Communication from email and social media will appear in a customisable Feed to display information regarding an account, contact or opportunity. New emails will arrive in the Feed and emails can be seen, responded to and stored from within the CRM.

Team collaboration

Within the Notification Center, messages can also be sent to other users and you will be notified about new data added to associated leads, opportunities, contacts, accounts or activities. Documents can be saved and stored in the CRM so users can collaborate within Pipeliner.

Reporting and analytics

Reports are customisable and available to all users to be able to monitor performance in real-time. Sales forecast reports and other preformatted sales reports give up-to-the-minute sales performance, in-depth comparisons, evaluations, and statistics.

Mobile

The Pipeliner CRM Mobile app gives you everything you need to access accounts and contacts on-the-go. You can input data offline and it will auto-sync once connected to the internet again. You can also collaborate with your team and manage your pipeline, tasks and analyse KPIs.

Other integrations and add-ons

Pipeliner CRM connects with many of Google’s products as well as Microsoft’s apps and tools. There is also a Pipeliner CRM Apps Marketplace which allows you to integrate with a range of different apps you may already be using.


Copper CRM

A little bit about who they are

Copper helps its customers keep all their data in one place. It is “the CRM that puts relationships first” and identifies itself as a CRM for G Suite as it integrates with every Google app. Copper was founded in 2013 and serves over 10,000 companies.

Deep-Dive Analysis

Lead and deal management

You can tag, filter and sort your leads and customers by any criteria as well as view your emails, calls, files, and notes for every contact in one place. Copper can automatically pull in the contact details from contacts you’ve been emailing. There is also a live activity feed that tracks and displays all the activities you need on your contacts and accounts.

Leads are managed using the customisable drag-and-drop pipelines to track and manage sales opportunities. Recommendations in Copper will suggest next steps based on upcoming meetings, tasks, and overdue email responses. Copper will also send live notifications when leads or contacts need your attention.

Prospect communication

Email templates can be created in Copper and also a calendar link for a contact to choose a time based on your availability. Emails in Gmail will be automatically captured and synced to companies in Copper which can be monitored to see when someone opens your email.

Team collaboration

As well as a feed of all interactions and activities, you can @mention teammates to bring the attention of another colleague. Copper also has Projects which are Kanban-style boards integrated with G Suite and tie back to your pipeline. You can continue working in Copper after the sale to handover and collaborate with colleagues across your business.

Reporting and analytics

Within reporting dashboards, you can get real-time insights into sales performance such as your best lead sources and top performers. Copper also has leaderboards for your team to compete on different performance metrics.

Mobile

Copper’s mobile CRM enables you to manage and track your deal pipeline on the app. The app has several features such as being able to log activities, @mention colleagues, send and reply to emails, and receive real-time alerts to name a few.

Other integrations and add-ons

Copper integrates with a number of popular tools and with G Suite.


Conclusion

Choosing a CRM has to be thought out carefully because it can be an expensive investment for you. We advise picking one that meets your business needs now and in the future. Some B2B CRMs offer many additional features and capabilities which may either be unnecessary for you or exactly what you need. Hopefully, the list above will help you make the decision with more clarity.


New readers

For those that are unfamiliar with hubsell, we provide an end-to-end B2B prospecting solution with on-demand generated B2B data and multi-channel personalised outreach automation software to generate sales qualified leads.

Book a discovery call today for a new provider of highly accurate and relevant B2B data.



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