CRM apps can be expensive—not to mention complicated and frustrating to set up—especially when you’re a small business or entrepreneur whose time and resources are in high demand.
In this roundup, you’ll find 25 CRM (customer relationship management) apps that are free: many of them are 100% free to use, and a number of others let you and a couple colleagues use them for free while you grow your team.
Free Online CRM Apps
If you’re just getting started with a CRM, you likely don’t want to spend hours configuring a new app. You’d rather just jump in and start managing your contacts. But, some of the most powerful free CRM apps—including SugarCRM Community Edition—run on your own server, which makes them far more complex to set up.
This section, on the other hand, covers online apps that just take an email address and password to start using. They’re your best bet for a simple, easy to use CRM—and they’re all entirely free.
When you’re searching for a free app in a market crowded by expensive options, the last thing you’d expect is a full-featured, high-quality app without a price tag. And yet, that’s exactly what makes HubSpot CRM exciting. It’s a full-featured CRM from the people behind marketing automation suite HubSpot that will let your whole team track your contacts, companies, leads and deals for free.
HubSpot CRM will automatically keep tabs of your contact interactions, even tracking your emails and letting you make and monitor phone calls to clients for an extra cost. It’ll even let you see your contact information inside of Gmail with HubSpot’s Sidekick Chrome extension, so you’ll have the knowledge you need about your customers whenever you’re talking to them.
There will still be premium, paid features coming in the future, and of course there’s integration with the paid HubSpot marketing suite. But still, the main HubSpot CRM is intended to be a free tool to help you manage your contacts and get the most out of your marketing efforts.
For more screenshots and info, see our HubSpot CRM review .
You might not actually have to start using a new app to get a CRM: If you already use Gmail, you probably have a treasure trove of addresses and more saved to Google Contacts, which has a number of basic CRM features that make it far more powerful than other address books.
When you add new contacts to your Gmail address book, you likely just enter their name, email, and maybe their mailing address. Google Contacts can track much more, though: there are options to enter company names, nicknames, and anything else you want with custom fields. You can then add notes to each contact to track your interactions with them, and see any info they’ve added to their Google+ profiles. Plus, via the “View recent conversations…” link in the “More” menu—or in the sidebar when you’re reading an email—you can see everything you’ve talked with that contact about.
Google Contacts is even a collaborative CRM. You can organize contacts into as many lists as you’d like—even adding contacts to multiple lists, if needed—and then share that list with anyone else on your team. And with some quick Zapier integration, you can add the rest of the CRM power you want, including sending drip emails, automatically adding new contacts, and more.
For more screenshots and info, see our Google Contacts review .
It’s, well, exactly what it looks like: Spreadsheet CRM is a free CRM that’s actually just a clever Google Sheets spreadsheet template. You could make something similar on your own with a number of different tools (we’ll dive into that later) but this template is notable for its integration with ToutApp, plus it includes a number of clever, time-saving formulas. Just fill out the form to get access to the beta Spreadsheet CRM template in Google Docs, then add the file to your account and share it with all of your team members; that’s it.
You can then add in your own contact and company names, and the spreadsheet will try to create the respective email address and domain names from that info—or, of course, you can just add in the correct addresses yourself. There are also columns to track anything else you can think of: the last time you contacted them, address, notes, revenue, number of employees, and more. From that, the spreadsheet will automatically show you who you should follow up with today, graph your sales stages and progress, and highlight other important info. It does far more on its own than you’d expect.
As mentioned previously, Spreadsheet CRM is designed to work in tandem with ToutApp, a tool that’ll track and add analytics to your emails in Gmail and Outlook starting from $30/month. If you have a ToutApp account, just put your account details into the spreadsheet and a script will automatically pull in your most recent emails with their subjects, status and more. It’s a nice extra, but you can do the same thing manually if you’re on a budget.
Ever wondered who’s visiting your website, buying your products, or using your apps? Intercom‘s free Observe Plan is a CRM that lets you automatically learn more about the people who are most important to your business—the ones who are already interacting with it. Just add Intercom’s code to your site or app, or integrate it with the apps you’re using, and it will monitor your customer interactions and turn them into rich profiles.
You can use Intercom to find whom you should contact at any time by drilling down through filters. They make it easy to identify potential customers who are most likely to buy, users who are drifting away, and more. It’ll even show you more info about those users, such as the companies they work for, so you leverage those relationships to make upsells to other employees at the same company.
Then, of course, there are paid plans which will let you message your customers in the app, send drip emails, answer support tickets, and more. That gives you a great upgrade path, while letting you get started with Intercom’s CRM for free, no matter how many customers or team members you have.
For more screenshots, pricing and info, see our Intercom review .
Free Self-Hosted CRM Apps
Free CRMs are great, but perhaps your business needs a bit more power. Maybe you want a more advanced CRM, one you can tweak to suit your unique workflow. Or maybe you’d just rather keep your company’s data on private servers, so you can manage everything internally and not have to worry about your app going offline.
If you want something custom and private, a self-hosted CRM is the one for you. These CRM apps run on your servers, either on their own or as an add-on to another app like WordPress. And since they store data in a database you control, they give you far more flexibility in both customizing them and integrating them with your other apps.
SugarCRM Community Edition
One of the biggest names in CRM apps, SugarCRM is an enterprise-ready CRM with pricing plans that start at $35/month for each user on your team. But, much like Linux and WordPress, SugarCRM is built on a open-source code, so you can run SugarCRM Community Edition—the base that SugarCRM is made from—on your own server for free.
You’ll get most of the features that make SugarCRM a mainstay in the world of CRM apps, including tools to gather leads via forms, track contact info, and turn those contacts into leads. It even offers email marketing features, so you can automatically send emails to your contacts based on a schedule you set. And if that’s not enough, you can also use SugarCRM to plan your projects and track bugs in your apps.
Since SugarCRM is closely tied to a database, you can automate or tweak anything you want, or add on any features you want from the hundreds of extras available on the SugarForge site. You’ll make SugarCRM into the CRM that’s perfect for your team, the same way you tweak WordPress to make the sites you want.
For more screenshots and info, see our SugarCRM Community Edition review .
Perhaps you need more than just a CRM—maybe your team needs apps to manage all aspects of your business, from your contacts and projects to your inventory, eCommerce, internal blogs and much more. In that case, Odoo might be the app for you. Based on what used to be called openERP, Odoo is an open-source platform with apps for just about anything your company might need.
On the CRM side, Odoo helps you manage your contacts, complete with social network info, and can then convert them into leads and take them along the sales process in a Kanban board. There are charts and reports that track your team’s performance, plus marketing automation options so your customers will get targeted emails on time.
Then, with the other apps that’ll help you manage everything from eCommerce to invoices, you’ll easily be able to guide your customers towards a sale and close the sale all in the same app. Everything’s connected: the same contacts are used throughout the Odoo, from the CRM to the sales tools, so you’ll know exactly what’s going on at every step of the process. It’s your one-stop shop for everything to manage your company, all with code that you can tweak to your heart’s content.
For more screenshots and info, see our Odoo and OpenERP review .
Fat Free CRM
If you’re a Ruby on Rails developer and have always wanted your own self-hosted CRM to play with, Fat Free CRM is another great option to consider. It’s a full-featured CRM that’ll let you keep track of your contacts, leads, opportunities, and more in an interface that’s reminiscent of Campfire and other older apps from 37signals.
If you’re regularly running marketing campaigns, Fat Free CRM has a special section to track your campaign goals and notes, then tie them to tasks, leads, and opportunities. It won’t automate your marketing, but it will help keep your projects in order. Fat Free CRM also makes it easy to see who’s doing what, with a team view that shows each of your team members and their responsibilities.
There’s also feature that’s similar to 37signals apps: a Quick Find box that searches through everything in your CRM while you’re typing so you can quickly jump to what you need. It’s a lot to take in, so be sure to check out Fat Free CRM’s online demo before trying it out on your own server—then hack away!
To integrate with other apps, use Zapier’s MySQL integration to connect to your Fat Free CRM database.
When you’re comparing CRMs, eventually the features blend together: there aren’t many stand-out differentiators on the market. But Zurmo, another open-source CRM, decided to change that by bringing a fresh new approach to contact management: gamification.
There’s something addictive about getting likes on your Instagram photos and achievements in video games, so Zurmo brings that same idea to the CRM. You’ll gain awards for everything from the number of leads you’ve added to the number of times you’ve logged in at night, and then companies can reward employees with real gifts based on their performance. It also has the other great features you’d expect from a CRM: marketing automation workflows, reports, an internal social network and more.
Zurmo offers a live demo, too, so you can get a feel for how it works before taking the time to install it yourself. It’s also powerful enough that you can use its code as a platform to build any internal apps you need. Then, if you happen to like Zurmo, but don’t want to go to the trouble of running it yourself, it offers a hosted version starting at $35/month per user—or you can move between the editions any time you want.
To integrate with other apps, use Zapier’s MySQL integration to connect to your Zurmo database.
WordPress is one of the most popular tools for creating websites, and for good reason: it’s self-hosted, relatively easy to install, and boasts thousands of plugins and themes that can let WordPress do almost anything. It can even be a CRM. One of the most popular plugins for turning WordPress into a CRM is WordPress Leads.
On its own, WordPress Leads will let you see where your visitors are coming from. Once those users create accounts, it’ll show you their contact info, the pages they’ve visited, and comments they’ve left. You can add your own contact info to manage all of your contacts right alongside your site posts and perhaps your WordPress-powered store. Then, you can use WordPress Leads to make forms that’ll help you gather contact info, and get notifications whenever any of your leads converts into a member or customer.
If you want more features, there’s the full Inbound Now suite of plugins, of which WordPress Leads is just one part. That’ll give you a number of extensions starting at $9.99 each to send emails, improve your SEO, integrate with social networks and more.
For more screenshots and info on WordPress Leads, see our Inbound Now review .
If you’d prefer a more traditional CRM that also lives inside of WordPress, WP-CRM is another great option. It’ll give your contacts a home in WordPress— right alongside your posts and pages—and bring along extra filtering options that make finding the right person a breeze. You can track which products or services each contact is interested in, and you can add custom attributes to your contact profiles, too.
Then, you can use WP-CRM’s forms tool to create forms where your site visitors can send you questions about your products. It’ll generate shortcodes so you can embed the forms in your posts, and will show your contacts’ messages in their profiles as well as in a dedicated messages section. And if you’re wondering how your CRM work is performing, there are built-in reports and charts, just as you’d expect in larger CRMs.
If that’s not enough, you can purchase a group messaging add-on and other premium features from Usability Dynamics, the company behind WP-CRM. They also make a number of other WordPress plugins, including a real estate tracker and invoicing tool, which works with WP-CRM right inside WordPress.
Build Your Own CRM
“Over half of CRM buyers currently use manual methods, such as paper and spreadsheets.”- Jay Ivey, Software Advice
You actually might not need a dedicated CRM. Instead, you could get CRM-like features from the apps you’re already using. One of the most popular ways to manage your contacts is in a spreadsheet, and with some proper organization and Zapier integrations, you can make a spreadsheet a powerful tool for tracking contacts. Alternatively, you can use a notebook app or plain text files to track everything about your contacts, much as you would with a CRM.
Here’s how to build your own CRM by using Zapier with the apps you love.
Spreadsheet (or Database)
Anytime you need to track a bunch of data, you probably open up a spreadsheet first (or if you’re a developer, you might turn to a database instead). After all, a spreadsheet provides a simple template for organizing and manipulating data. With online spreadsheets like Google Docs, you can even share your work with your team.
For contact info, a spreadsheet can actually be a great choice. As seen above with Spreadsheet CRM, just a bit of organization (and perhaps some charts and smart formulas) can make it easy to keep up with your contacts. You can add columns for anything you want, giving you a way to keep track of which company people work for, when you last contacted them, and more, using your own spreadsheet or by tweaking that template.
And, with Zapier, you can have new contacts added to the spreadsheet automatically from any of the other apps you’re already using. You can pull contacts in to your spreadsheet from a form app, or automatically add your customers and site subscribers. You can’t update existing contacts automatically for now, but you can at least make the process of entering contacts far quicker—and yes, the same tricks work with a database if you’re using one instead of a spreadsheet.
Then, you can put your CRM data to work right from your spreadsheet. You can sort your spreadsheet to find the people you need to contact—or the best contacts at a particular company—and can generate reports with charts and more using standard spreadsheet tools. For everything else, you can use other apps you already rely on, with Zapier to tie them together.
For example, you can use WebMerge to make customized documents for any new contact in your spreadsheet, or use Google Calendar or Asana to schedule followup appointments with each contact. Your spreadsheet on its own won’t have task management, marketing automation, or any of the other fancy CRM features, but add a few extra apps and you can accomplish anything a run-of-the-mill CRM could.
If you don’t want to do everything as soon as you add a new contact, you can use the Zapier delay trigger to schedule your new contact info to be used late. You could even use your info to build an entire drip email list just by using Zapier.
Best of all, the other apps can be triggered either when you add a new contact, or when you’ve updated a row in your spreadsheet. You can even add a filter to watch for a certain word in one spreadsheet column. That way, you could only have an email sent when you add a new “tag” to a contact’s row in your spreadsheet column, or only add a contact to your email list when you’ve contacted them several times.
It’ll take a bit of work to make your spreadsheet or database work like a CRM, but if you think through the features you need and carefully pick out apps and integrations that can fill the holes for you, you’ll get something that works quite well for your team. It’ll take more manual updating than other options, but you’ll be able to automate more than you might have expected with Zapier.
A spreadsheet keeps all of your contacts in one place, at least, so for all its disadvantages it still seems like it’d make sense as an address book at first glance. But there’s another common tool that works equally well as a CRM: your notes app (or, plain text files in a Dropbox, Google Drive, or Box folder).
It might sound crazy, but it really can work. Here’s the idea:
- Make a new notebook in Evernote or a new folder in your sync app for CRM.
- Make one note for each contact in Evernote or plain text file in your sync service.
- Name your notes in a way that makes it easy to look up your contacts—perhaps use their email address as the name of the file or note. Just make sure each contact’s file has a unique title, even if you have multiple contacts with the same name.
- Add some of your existing contacts using that scheme, and enter any data about them that you’d like to keep track of in the file or note.
Pretty quickly, you’ll have a note or file per contact, much as in the screenshot above. In Evernote, you can add tags to organize the contacts, and in either Evernote or with plain text files you can quickly search through your contacts and find out anything you want to know.
Now it’s time to automate adding contacts. You’ll want to make new Zaps that’ll append text to your notes or files whenever anything happens—those Zaps will make new files or notes for new contacts, or if the contact’s already in your list, it’ll just add the new info about them at the bottom of the note. Just make sure the Zap’s using your naming scheme to look up contacts correctly.
Make similar Zaps for every app you use to gather contacts or gain more info about them, and pretty soon you’ll have detailed notes about everyone who’s important to your company. It won’t be the neatest system, but with search and integrations with your forms and sales you should be able to keep your contact’s info, purchase history, and more listed in one place. Plus, you can share your folder with your team, add notes to files anytime you want, and rearrange the info at any time.
There’s currently no way to put the new data in your notes to work in Zapier, but you can have Zapier automatically do things whenever a new contact is added: just have it watch your notebook for a new note, or your folder for a new file. If you’re using the contact’s email address as your file name (or perhaps a tag on your note), you can easily send them emails automatically. Or, no matter which naming scheme you’re using, you can schedule tasks and appointments for your team based on those note contacts.
It’s perhaps more complicated than making a spreadsheet CRM, but if you want to automatically gather detailed info about your contacts, plain text files or notes just might be the best option.
Get Limited CRM Use for Free
There’s no such thing as a free lunch, economists say, which is why most of the free CRM apps offer some sort of upsell. But then, if you’re eying another CRM, chances are you can still get started with it for free. Many CRM apps let you test the waters with a basic set of features for anywhere from one to a dozen users. That might be enough forever, but it’s a nice way to ease into paying once your team has grown.
And who knows: the CRM might improve your sales performance so much, you’ll be able to afford a CRM much easier.
Bitrix24: 12 users for free
Most paid CRMs with free, basic plans only let you bring a couple users along, but not Bitrix24. This software suite—with everything from an internal social network with video chat to project management and document collaboration apps—lets you get started with full features for 12 users for free. For small businesses, that’s likely enough to let your whole team start using it for free.
On the CRM side, you’ll find a full-featured CRM that lets you manage your contacts, automatically email them, call them right from your dashboard, and even send out invoices when you’ve closed a deal. Then, you can use Bitrix24’s project management and social network features to work with your team on closing those deals and staying in touch with your customers. It’s an app that’ll let you run your whole company from one place.
Podio: 5 users for free
Another incredible tool for keeping everything under one roof is Podio. It includes apps for everything from HR management to CRM, and ties them all together with an internal social network that makes it easy to see who’s working on what. And you can do all of that with up to 5 team members for free.
The pre-built apps in Podio are nice, but its customization options set it apart. If you want to tweak the CRM to work the way you want, or make a detailed form to get the most important lead information from your contacts, it’s easy to put that together in Podio. Your new “apps” will have the same great integration with the rest of Podio’s apps, so everything can work together automatically.
For more screenshots, pricing, and info, see our Podio review .
Streak: 5 users for free
Google Contacts is a surprisingly good basic CRM, and if you’re already using Gmail for all of your work email, it’s hard to argue with a CRM that lives in the same app. That’s why Streak is a great option for a bit more CRM power, since it also lives inside Gmail. It’s not just another app that shows some info inside Gmail—it’s actually a full CRM inside of Gmail, which never requires you to open a separate app.
Streak tracks your email conversations automatically, and lets you collaborate on them with your colleagues. You can organize them into lead and follow-up lists, add notes and extra contact info, and assign email threads to anyone on your team. Steak will also give you a few extra handy email features, including an option to schedule emails to be sent later.
For more screenshots, pricing, and info, see our Streak review .
Zoho CRM: 3 users for free
One of the best alternatives to the Google Apps suite of apps, Zoho makes web apps for almost everything your business needs. It’s got an online office suite, accounting tools, email, and much more—including a CRM. Zoho CRM includes the lead and deals management tools you’d expect in a professional CRM, and is closely integrated with the rest of Zoho’s apps, along with Google Apps and Outlook.
You can use Zoho CRM with up to 3 team members and track up to 5000 contacts for free, using all of Zoho CRM’s features. That means you can gather leads via forms, using workflows that’ll organize them and add the tasks you need to manage them easily. There are even tools to manage your inventory, integrate with your call center, and more. Zoho CRM uses that data to forecast your sales and let you know who you should follow up with, so you can spend more time with your contacts and less time managing your CRM.
For more screenshots, pricing, and info, see our Zoho CRM review .
Insightly: 3 users for free
Need a way to manage your contacts and projects? Insightly just might be the CRM you’re looking for. You’ll have everything you need to know about your contacts alongside important tasks. That way, you can get more done with actionable contact info and conversation records inside of your projects.
The free plan will only let you store up to 2,500 contacts, and won’t let you sync with Google Contacts or Quickbooks—but it will still let you keep track of your contacts and projects together. And if you’re searching for a new way to make your marketing more productive, that might be just what you need.
For more screenshots, pricing, and info, see our Insightly review .
Agile CRM: 10 users for free
You want a flexible CRM, and Agile CRM, by definition, sounds like it fits the bill. It’s a CRM that’ll track everything about your contacts, and then let you automatically market to them. Using its automation flowchart, you can design a marketing strategy that’ll send drip emails, in-app notifications, and more based on what your contact is doing on your site and how long they’ve subscribed.
It also offers help on the social side of your marketing campaign, with a built-in social suite to help you monitor your networks, schedule updates, and see what your contacts are up to online. You’ll only get to track 1,000 contacts with another teammate for free, but you’ll have a lot of tools at your disposal to turn those thousand into dedicated customers.
For more screenshots, pricing, and info, see our Agile CRM review .
Highrise: 2 users for free
Destined to die an early death—or so it seemed when its parent company decided to focus on Basecamp instead—Highrise got new management and a brand new lease on life. That renewed focus netted longtime users better search, improved imports and exports, Gmail integration, a mobile web app. Even better news: It’s still the same contact-focused, easy-to-use CRM that’s a great place to start if you find CRM apps confusing. Highrise offers a detailed page for each of your contacts, with the tasks, notes, emails and more related to them, making it nice upgrade from a standard address book.
It’s a basic CRM, but one you can see growing up as you use it. You’ll only get to manage up to 250 contacts for free, but if you want a simple way to get started with CRM, it’s a great app to try.
For a deeper look at pricing and features, see our Highrise review .
Capsule: 2 users for free
Not everyone you know is a potential customer—some are vendors, journalists, family members, and so on. That’s why Capsule is designed to let you organize your contacts into the lists they belong in. You can keep up with all of your contacts, while customizing the info you gather on each of them. Then, you can market to each of them in the best way possible: sharing story tips to journalists, sending deals to prospective customers, and so on.
You can also store any additional info—from conversation notes and emails to detailed tags that help you further refine who’s who—to each contact, and can use Capsule’s sales pipeline to track your “sales” to each type of contact. You’ll only get to manage 250 contacts for free, but you’ll know everything possible about them.
For a deeper look at pricing and features, see our Capsule review .
Clevertim: 2 users for free
One of the best thing about a paper address book is that you havet everyone’s info at a glance; flip through the pages, and you’ll see names, addresses, and phone numbers without having to do anything else. Clevertim brings that simplicity to the internet, with a contacts list that shows addresses and phone numbers without making you click through to a contact’s page. You’ll only get to manage up to 250 contacts, but with Clevertim’s simplicity you’ll stay in touch with each of them easier than ever.
While its app takes a few seconds to load, once you’re using Clevertim everything loads instantly. Of course, you can’t always be near the app, so Clevertim also has an email dropbox feature: email anything to the app, and it’ll file it appropriately, letting you make new cases, tasks, or contacts just by sending an email.
For a deeper look at pricing and features, see our Clevertim review .
Interakt: 1 user/500 contacts for free
Want to know more about your contacts and easily talk to them when they need help? Interakt is a marketing automation CRM thattracks people on your site, letting you market to them based on what they’re interested in. Then, when they need help or that extra nudge to make a purchase, you can chat with them or answer their support emails right inside your site or app.
To get started, just install it on your site or integrate it with your eCommerce platform, and Interakt will do the rest of the work for you. It’ll track up to 500 of your prospective customers for free, so you can use a personal touch and turn each of them into buyers.
For a deeper look at pricing and features, see our Interakt review .
Jumplead: 1 user/200 contacts for free
CRM apps are supposed to help you work more efficiently, but they can also just do the work for you. That’s what Jumplead is designed for: It watches your customers, noting where they’re from, what they’re saying on social networks, and which pages they’ve viewed on your site. Then, it’ll tell you who the most promising contacts are, or automatically send out emails that will nudge them towards buying your products.
If you’re trying to get more contacts, Jumplead’s landing page tool will be a nice extra. You can visually plan out pages and forms, publish them with your domain, and quickly fill up your 200-contact limit with people who are most likely to become customers.
For more screenshots, pricing, and info, see our Jumplead review .
ClinchPad: Unlimited Users/100 leads for free
Want a simple CRM that puts your leads front-and-center and lets your whole team join in? ClinchPad offers just that. With its free plan, you can bring your entire team along and manage up to 100 leads with all of ClinchPad’s features.
It’ll show your leads and their progress on a kanban board when you first login, and will let you customize what you track about each contact with tags, custom fields, and more. Then, it can automatically add new tasks to your leads as you move them along your sales states, and can send your contacts to your email newsletter app so you can continue your marketing to them automatically. It’s a simple way to manage your leads together.
For more screenshots, pricing, and info, see our ClinchPad review .