Zoho vs Salesforce - Which is the Best CRM Software?

By Staff Reporter - 2 December 2019

Features

Keeping track of everything your business needs to succeed can be difficult. From managing leads to customer support, there just aren’t enough hours in the day to make sure everything is running smoothly. Fortunately, in 2019, technology is here to help in the form of Customer Relation Management (CRM) software, and Salesforce and Zoho are two of the most reputable providers on the market.

Simply put, CRM software is designed to make running your business easier, and Salesforce and Zoho provide that in spades. These comprehensive platforms house a wide range of features that help manage customer relationships in a myriad of ways, depending on which software provider you decide to take advantage of. So which provider are you going to go with?

Fortunately, both of these CRM software providers offer plenty of upsides, as long as you know what you’re looking for. Take a look at our in-depth comparison below so you understand exactly what these two CRM software providers can offer.

Zoho vs Salesforce - Main Pros and Cons

While Salesforce and Zoho are both respectable CRM software providers, they do offer businesses different features as far as managing your business is concerned.

Salesforce is an incredibly robust, feature-rich platform with a large app catalog and is often considered the standard in any industry. With a huge market share compared to competitors, Salesforce is great for growing businesses, as their scalability is notably impressive.

However, Salesforce can get pretty expensive, particularly for smaller teams looking for a simple option to manage their business. Plus, due to the massive feature-rich nature of the platform, Salesforce can be a bit intimidating for beginners.

Zoho, on the other hand, offers a lot that Salesforce doesn’t. For one, the popular CRM software features marketing tools aimed at attracting new customers to your business, and it offers a very simple onboarding process, so beginners will be able to jump on the software early on. Plus, with a solid free plan that allows for up to three users, Zoho is perfect for small teams that want to try it out before they commit. 

However, Zoho does have a few downfalls as well. Because Zoho CRM is part of the grander Zoho family of apps, the software provides few third party integrations outside of that family. Additionally, the free plan is quite limited, offering few features outside of the basics.

Usability - Salesforce Wins

When you’re consistently dubbed the number one CRM software on the market, it’s safe to say usability is one of your better qualities. Salesforce boasts a massive app library, giving users virtually unlimited functionality when it comes to managing your business. The dashboard is robust, filled with dozens of different features designed to give you the best picture of your customer relationships.

However, all this functionality can admittedly be a bit intimidating, which is why some beginners complain that Salesforce isn’t exactly easy to use. This is where Zoho shines. While the features and third party integrations are a bit more limited, newcomers to CRM software will have no problem navigating the basic layout and simple interface.

It’s tough to call this one, but after the initial learning curve we think Salesforce wins.

Support - Salesforce Wins

While Salesforce may be a bit more of a complicated CRM software to navigate, it does come with some hearty customer support options that will help you get the most out of the platform. From the 24/7 toll-free phone support to the endless virtual library of online training modules, Salesforce provides plenty of opportunities to learn every aspect of its robust software.

Zoho CRM isn’t without support options either though, and they’re pretty comparable to Salesforce. They also feature 24/7 phone service and provide a knowledge center filled with documents that describe how to use the software. Plus, they offer in-person classes- but prices for attendance can reach as high as $799, which makes it far from an affordable option for customer support.

Cost - Zoho Wins

Price is the one thing that Zoho has over Salesforce, if only because it’s a notably less robust software than the popular alternative (and excluding the optional customer support classes). In addition to offering a free plan — which up to three users can take advantage of — Zoho’s most affordable plan ($12/month) comes in at half the price of Salesforce most affordable plan ($25/month).

This pay scale is similar across all plans, with Zoho regularly having more affordable options compared to Salesforce, making it the perfect option for decidedly smaller teams that don’t foresee dramatic growth in the near future.

The Verdict

Given its status as the number one CRM platform on the market, it’s hard to recommend any software other than Salesforce for small businesses and large corporations aike. Despite the somewhat higher price, the incredibly robust feature catalog and app library are just hard to pass up. While it can be a bit more difficult to use than Zoho, the customer support options are plentiful enough that you won’t have to worry for too long about not being able to figure it out.

That’s not to say Zoho doesn’t have value as a solid CRM software. If you’re looking for something that’s a bit less robust but easier to onboard, you can’t go wrong with Zoho. Plus, with a free plan available and a lower overall price point, Zoho is perfect for smaller teams looking to try out the software without committing too much time to it.

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