Choosing and comparing CRM software? – Pointers from the crowd.

Pointers from the crowd
Recently, I was asked to write a review for Nimble, a social CRM provider, on G2crowd.com. The purpose of the review was that the G2crowd site was compiling a ‘Best CRM Software Comparison’ grid (Grid℠ for CRM), which compares 22 leading Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software products/services in terms of customer satisfaction and scale.

Disclosure:
I have used Nimble and have, also, interviewed their CEO, Jon Ferrera in CRM, social media, social business and the future.

However, I must admit that I’m no longer a subscriber to Nimble. The reason that I let my subscription lapse was, for no other reason than, I felt that I wasn’t using the system enough and, therefore, not fully utilising it’s functionality. This has a lot to do with, I believe, the number of contracts, contacts or potential leads that I deal with at any one time.

That’s not to say that I don’t like it as a system. I really do and I have recommended it to a number of people and firms that I know and work with.

So, I participated in the review process and gave them a great review. You can see my review here and the overall results below:

When I saw the results, a couple of things occurred to me:

Firtsly, I think this grid could be a really useful tool in helping firms decide what CRM options to consider when thinking about buying a new CRM system or upgrading their existing one, particularly because it is based on user reviews and real experience.

Further, some of the ‘big’ players, although they have ‘scale’ (you can read more about how they define satisfaction and scale here), they don’t rank very well on user satisfaction. That made me wonder if low-levels of satisfaction says something about the ‘usability’ of these systems. If that’s true, what impact does have on what users do with these CRM systems, what value they get from them and their level of customer insight and engagement that they generate from their use.

What do you think of the rankings?

 
 
Photo Credit: warrenski via Compfight cc

Comments

  1. Adrian – Thank you so much for being a supportive member of our Nimble community. I appreciate your review on G2Crowd and look forward to reconnecting for an update. Nimble has come a long ways since we last spoke.

    Cheers

    Jon

    Jon Ferrara
    CEO | Nimble – Social Relationships, Made Easy.
    @jon_ferrara | http://www.nimble.com

    • adrianswinscoe says:

      Jon, great to hear from you and I’m happy to support your progress.

      I look forward to connecting again soon for an update.

      All the best,

      Adrian

  2. Hello Adrian,
    It occurs to me that life is situational. And as such which CRM software is the right match for your needs depends on your needs in your current situation. Or do you want the CRM software for what you expect your situation to be in say 3 years?

    What is forgotten is that someone somewhere is making an assessment and he is doing so on the basis of the criteria he sets. His choice of what constitutes best. And then there are some ‘reputable analysts’ (thinking companies here) which can be and are influenced to put you on the right place on the grid based on how much business you are willing to put their way.

    Never ever trust reviews/recommendations by others without understanding the assessment criteria, the process, and the people behind the process/assessment. But then that is hard work. Which is why so many mindlessly follow these so called independent and objective assessments.

    All the best
    maz

    • adrianswinscoe says:

      Hi Maz,
      Thanks for that. I’m not sure that G2 has gotten the criteria absolutely right but what I do like is that the reviews/ratings are driven by users reviews and not some analysts checklist…….a bit like the star rating system on Amazon. Not perfect, for the many reasons you point out, and can also be ‘gamed’. But, adding a view from the user crowd to your own due diligence is something that I think could be very useful.

      Adrian

  3. Maz makes an interesting point, a rating is situational, though I wonder if it is also indicative.

    If one customer doesn’t like my offering is that because of functionality within the product or attitude within my organisation?

    An interesting question.

    At least I thought so

    James

    • adrianswinscoe says:

      James,
      Maz does make a good point and you raise a good question too, James.

      I believe that individual reviews will speak to both issues. But, as the number of reviews increase from a number of different customers, I would suggest that the influence of attitudes will become diluted and we get a better view on functionality at the user level.

      At the same time, I wonder about herd dynamics too…..

      Adrian

  4. Dave Harris says:

    That is quite an insightful article. I believe that personalization and social CRM are the two of the most important trends for 2014. I have been doing some research for cloud apps for CRM and found a few with amazing features. One of those happens to be Banckle.CRM which is quite a useful app. You can check out more about new customer support trends for CRM vendors and this particular app.

  5. Customer relationship management(CRM) software increases the efficiency to handle customer data efficiently.

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