What is Cloud CRM Software?
For businesses considering software options, the cloud can be puzzling. What businesses should understand, first and foremost, is that when something is billed as cloud-based, it simply means that it is accessed and used via the web.
This means it can be accessed by multiple users from any device that has an Internet connection.
If you're wondering if a cloud-based CRM might be the right option for your business, it's important to realize the benefits of this type of software.
The primary benefit is that it is web-based, which means it doesn't have to be installed on your network or any of your computers. It also updates automatically. The result is that you'll eliminate the need for on-site IT staff to support installed software on your devices.
Benefits of a Cloud Solution
- Quick setup - Unlike on-premise software, which requires manual installation, cloud CRM solutions are available immediately. Users merely log in and start working. Some preferences may need to be set up but otherwise, cloud solutions are plug-and-play.
- More agile and accessible - With today's increasingly mobile workforce, it's important that employees have flexibility in the way they work. Cloud solutions allow them to take their contacts and management features with them, whether they're working from home, at the office or on the road.
- Easy to upgrade - Unlike on-premise software, which requires a purchase and installation process to upgrade, cloud software can be upgraded by simply choosing a different pricing plan.
- Lower costs - Cloud software can often be deployed at a much lower per-user cost than on-premise software. No hardware is required to host the software and very little in-house technical support is needed to maintain it.
- State-of-the-art security - Cloud software providers have the resources available to hire top security experts, who put state-of-the-art security measures in place. Most businesses can't afford this level of expertise for their own on-premise solutions.
Top Cloud CRM Software Providers
There are many cloud CRM options on the market today, giving businesses the opportunity to find one that meets their own needs and budget.
The innovator in cloud-based CRM, Salesforce introduced businesses to the many benefits of cloud-hosted software.
With numerous built-in solutions as well as countless add-ons and integrations, Salesforce is the largest and most powerful cloud-based CRM option on the market.
Salesforce is also among the most affordable CRM solutions, especially for smaller businesses. Plans start at £16.10 per user per month.
Sage's CRM solution powers businesses across the globe, which use it either as a standalone product or as an integration with Sage ERP.
The monthly plan costs £25 per user per month and includes customer support management, workflow management, campaign management, and a CRM builder.
Infusionsoft provides contact management, marketing automation, and sales tools to help businesses convert leads into customers.
Infusionsoft's plans start at £128.15 per month for up to three users, which includes up to 2,500 contacts and 12,500 emails per month.
Really Simple Systems
This CRM is designed for businesses that don't have the time or technical expertise to deal with a complicated system.
Really Simple Systems promises that users can be trained in mere minutes. A free version for up to two users and 100 accounts is available.
Those two users remain free even if businesses choose a paid version, with plans starting at £9.65 per user per month for each additional user.
Cloud solutions aren't only for small and mid-sized businesses. Large organizations can benefit from their features, as well.
Due to the scalability of cloud software, an Internet-based CRM can be useful to a small business as it continues to grow. Larger businesses enjoy the flexibility of a cloud solution, since it allows multiple users to login from any location, using any device.
Since on-site technical support won't be needed to support cloud-based software, businesses can save money on server administrators, help desk workers, and server storage.