How to Choose the Right CRM Software for Your Business

How To Choose CRM Software?

The proper Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system is crucial for any growing business. The best CRM software can help manage customer data, improve sales and marketing processes, and provide actionable insights to build relationships and boost revenue. However, with the multitude of CRM solutions on the market, it can be daunting to determine which one best fits your needs and budget. This article will guide you through the key factors to evaluate when choosing a CRM platform tailored to your business. Here are some tips on choosing the best CRM solution for your business from software expert Michael Bernzweig of Software Oasis.

Our Video on How to Choose CRM Software

The video covers tips for choosing the right CRM software for your business. It first emphasizes clearly defining your business goals and needs, calculating costs, researching multiple options that fit your budget and needs, starting with core features rather than every feature, and choosing a scalable system. The video advises taking time to thoroughly compare CRM platforms based on capabilities, plans, and reviews before committing. It notes the importance of selecting a CRM that helps manage existing relationships while allowing room to grow.

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How to Choose the Right CRM Software

Know Your Business Needs

The first step is to define your business goals and needs clearly. What are you trying to achieve with a CRM system? Do you want to improve sales productivity and customer satisfaction, streamline workflows, enhance reporting capabilities, etc? Outline the must-have features like contact management, analytics, integrations, etc. This will help you narrow your options to CRM software matching your requirements.

As CRM expert Jeroen Corthout, Co-Founder and CEO of Salesflare discussed in a recent Software Spotlight podcast, tight integrations between CRM and other systems like email, calendar, and telephony are essential for sales productivity. He notes that Salesflare builds integrations “next to your inbox,” so CRM data is readily available.

Calculate Costs

Set a budget and calculate the total costs – subscription fees, training, customization, integrations, etc. Also, factor in costs for future growth. This will give you a price range to look for CRM options within.

Compare Multiple Options

Research and compare multiple CRM platforms that fit your budget and needs. Look at capabilities, plans, and reviews. Sign up for demos to test out the software first-hand. Thoroughly go through your must-have features before deciding.

“For example, sales tracking was critical when I opened my second location. I chose a CRM with robust reporting to analyze regional differences.”

Michael Bernzweig

Start Small

It's better to start with core essential features and then scale up as your business grows. Trying to get everything in one system from the start can become cumbersome. Focus on the critical features you need now and integrate other tools later.

User Adoption

The CRM should be easy for your team to use and integrate into workflows. Otherwise, adoption will be low. Involve key team members in the selection process to get their feedback. Prioritize user experience.

As CRM expert Jeroen Corthout noted “I believe in a future where salespeople will just be in conversations and all the other things will happen for them.”


The CRM should be customizable to your sales process, workflows, and reporting needs. If not, it can disrupt operations. Make sure the system is configurable without extensive development.


The CRM should integrate with other business software you use for marketing, billing, accounting, etc. This streamlines data and operations across tools. Avoid CRMs that don't connect to critical platforms.

“Calculate the costs. Set up a budget. You know, subscription fees are typically sold for CRMs on a per seat basis.”

Michael Bernzweig


Make sure the CRM can scale with your business growth. You don't want to have to migrate systems every few years. Look for flexible pricing plans and features to support future needs.


Data security is critical. The CRM should have robust security protections, access controls, encryption, and measures to prevent data breaches. Review third-party audits and compliance.

Training and Support

Look for CRM vendors that provide onboarding, training resources, ongoing support, and educational materials. This will accelerate user adoption and maximize the value of the software.

We believe that you should let your customer needs shape the features, not the features shape your customer strategy. Harvard Business Review has a similar thought. 

Free Trial

Take advantage of free trials to test out the CRM first-hand before committing. Get feedback from your team on usability and features. This ensures you choose the right solution.

Implementation Plan

Have a detailed plan for rolling out the CRM, including data migration, user training, testing, and go-live steps. Appoint an implementation manager to oversee the process.

Choose Your Vendor

Ensure the CRM vendor is reliable, established, and invests in ongoing development. Read reviews and talk to current customers. This partnership is crucial for long-term success.

“Define your needs, calculate your costs, thoroughly compare options and start simple.”

Michael Bernzweig

Our Top 9 Picks for Best CRM Software

Michael Bernzweig talking during a video about choosing CRM software
Michael Bernzweig discusses choosing the right CRM software in a video from his office.


Selecting a CRM system requires clearly defining your business objectives, calculating costs, thoroughly vetting multiple options, and starting with core features. Taking the time upfront to match the software capabilities to your goals, workflows, and future growth will ensure you choose a scalable platform that your team embraces. You can achieve increased efficiency, productivity, and customer satisfaction with the right CRM partner. Investing in an effective CRM solution will pay dividends for years through enhanced customer relationships, data-driven insights, and elevated business performance.

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