Reviews Software Reviews

Zoho CRM Reviews: A Comprehensive Look at the Pros and Cons


Zoho CRM is making waves in the world of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software, especially for newcomers looking to dip their toes into the CRM world. In this review, we’ll explore the pros, cons, features, pricing plans, and alternatives of Zoho CRM to help you decide if it’s the right fit for your business needs.

What is Zoho CRM?

Zoho CRM is a cloud-based CRM platform designed to simplify customer relationship management for individuals and small businesses. It offers a free plan that provides basic yet valuable features, making it an excellent starting point for those new to CRM software. The interface is intuitive and clean, which aids in the learning curve for users unfamiliar with CRM systems.


Here are some standout features that make Zoho CRM a top choice for small businesses:

1. Free Plan: Zoho CRM offers a free plan that, although limited, provides essential features like contact lists, lead generation, customization, workflow automation, and email marketing.

2. Intuitive Interface: The user-friendly interface of Zoho CRM makes it easy to navigate and learn. Even on the free plan, users can connect other Zoho apps, with paid plans offering access to a wide array of integrations.

3. Mobile Accessibility: Zoho CRM’s mobile app allows quick access to contacts, leads, notes, and deals. Users can also call leads and clients directly from the app, enhancing on-the-go productivity. The app is available for both iOS and Android platforms.

4. AI-Powered Tools: Zoho CRM’s AI tool, Zia, offers more than just predictive analysis. It can take dictation, find necessary data, and identify anomalies based on sales trends. While these tools are available in top-tier plans, they provide valuable insights for contacting clients at the optimal times and capturing information from emails.

5. Refund Policy: Zoho CRM offers a 30-day refund policy for monthly subscribers (45 days for annual subscribers). Additionally, there’s a five-day buffer period after the renewal date for cancellation, ensuring customer satisfaction.


Here are a few areas where Zoho CRM may fall short for some users:

1. Limitations on Free Plan: Users on the free plan are restricted by the number of users allowed (up to three) and lack access to advanced features like AI tools. Customization options are also limited.

2. Feature Limitations: Free plan users miss out on sales forecasting, calendar booking, and advanced customization options. For example, the number of list views is limited to five per module on the free plan, compared to 50 per module on higher-tier plans.

3. Customer Support: While Zoho CRM generally receives positive reviews for its ease of use, some users have reported dissatisfaction with customer support. Setting up CRM integrations with third-party apps can also be challenging for some users.


Sales Automation

One of the standout features of Zoho CRM is its robust sales automation capabilities. Even on the free plan, users can generate leads through forms on websites, social media, and emails, which are automatically added to the CRM. Lead scoring ensures that contacts are directed to the right teams efficiently.

Workflow Rules and Macros

Zoho CRM’s workflow rules operate on “if this, then that” logic, making it easy for users familiar with such systems. For instance, a rule can be set up to send a welcome email and create a follow-up task when a new lead is created.

Additionally, high-tier plans allow the creation of macros, which are sets of tasks triggered simultaneously. This feature streamlines processes like lead nurturing, including sending emails, creating follow-up tasks, and scheduling calls.

Analytics & Reporting

Zoho CRM offers robust analytics and reporting tools, essential for monitoring and analyzing sales performance. All plans include access to pre-built reports, with most plans offering the ability to create custom reports tailored to specific business needs.

Filtering Options

A notable feature of Zoho CRM is its extensive filtering options, allowing users to drill down within modules to find specific data. Whether searching through leads in a particular zip code or filtering by lead status, Zoho CRM provides granular control over data analysis.

Charts and AI-Powered Predictions

Users can create various visualizations such as pie charts, heat maps, and bar graphs to better understand their data. Top-tier plans leverage AI-powered tools to predict sales trends and identify areas for improvement, aiding in decision-making processes.

Omnichannel Communications

Zoho CRM excels as a unified platform for all communication channels with customers, leads, colleagues, and prospects. Users can connect email, phone, social media, website forms, and live chat within the CRM, streamlining communication efforts.

Integration Capabilities

Integrations with email clients and VoIP services allow for seamless communication management. For example, users can view email history with contacts directly within Zoho CRM, enhancing customer interaction tracking.

Collaboration Tools

Zoho CRM offers robust collaboration features, such as Feeds for ongoing team conversations and direct messaging for one-on-one communication. Users can leave text or audio notes on records, create custom tags for organization, and organize teams by groups.

Project Management Integration

Integration with project management software enables teams to work on projects within the CRM environment. This integration provides access to CRM data within project management workflows, facilitating efficient collaboration.

Mobile App

The Zoho CRM mobile app extends the CRM’s functionality to users on the go, especially beneficial for sales representatives. RouteIQ, a route planning feature, helps users plan meetings efficiently, while an offline mode ensures access to data even without a stable internet connection.

Business Card Scanning

A notable feature of the mobile app is its business card scanning capability. Users can scan business cards and have the data instantly imported into the CRM platform, eliminating manual data entry.

Zoho CRM Pricing Plans

Zoho CRM offers a range of pricing plans to cater to various business needs, from the free plan to enterprise-level options.

Free Plan

  • Monthly Cost: Free
  • Users: Up to 3
  • Key Features: Basic lead, account, and deal management, workflow automation, customization options, and standard reports.

Standard Plan

  • Monthly Cost: $14 per user
  • Key Features: Sales forecasting, lead scoring, multiple pipelines, custom reports (up to 100), and marketing automation tools.

Professional Plan

  • Monthly Cost: $23 per user
  • Key Features: Google Ads integration, inventory management, mass email scheduling, customer support features, and more.

Enterprise & Ultimate Plans

  • Monthly Cost: $40 and $52 per user, respectively
  • Key Features: AI-powered features, automated segmentation, split testing, record approval, and advanced analytics.

Zoho vs Hubspot

Zoho CRM vs Competitors

Zoho CRM competes with other leading CRM platforms, each offering unique strengths for different business needs.

Zoho CRM vs HubSpot

Both Zoho CRM and HubSpot offer feature-packed free versions, making them accessible to businesses of all sizes. Zoho CRM is more affordable, making it a better fit for small businesses with limited budgets. HubSpot, on the other hand, provides robust marketing features at a higher cost.

Zoho CRM vs Salesforce

Zoho CRM’s affordability and workflow automation on all plans make it a compelling choice, especially for small businesses. Salesforce, while powerful, is more expensive and offers a free trial instead of a free plan. Salesforce remains a top choice for larger businesses with extensive integrations.

Is Zoho CRM Right for You?

Zoho CRM’s ease of use, affordability, and scalable plans make it an ideal choice for startups and small businesses. Whether you need basic contact management or advanced sales forecasting and marketing automation, Zoho CRM offers a range of features to suit your needs. As your business grows, Zoho CRM’s various plans allow you to upgrade and access more sophisticated tools.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. What is a CRM?
    A CRM is a software platform that gathers customer data to facilitate sharing among staff and teams. It helps businesses create opportunities to increase sales and foster long-term client relationships.
  2. Who is Zoho CRM best for?
    Zoho CRM is suitable for small to large businesses, especially startups and small businesses looking for scalable CRM solutions. Every plan, except the free one, includes automation, customization, and analytics features.
  3. Does Zoho have a desktop app?
    Yes, Zoho offers a desktop app for all its products, allowing access to files, projects, contacts, and data from computers. As a cloud-based platform, Zoho’s desktop app ensures accessibility with an internet connection.
  4. Is Zoho HIPAA-compliant?
    Zoho CRM offers security features for Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) compliance, making it suitable for healthcare CRM needs. Users can apply ePHI encryption for added data security.
  5. Does Zoho have a free version?
    Yes, Zoho CRM offers a free plan with basic features such as contact management, lead generation, and customization. However, more advanced features and integrations are available in paid plans.
  6. Is Zoho better than Salesforce?
    Zoho CRM may be a better choice for small businesses on a budget due to its affordability and feature-rich plans. Salesforce offers extensive integrations and is more suitable for larger businesses with higher budgets.
  7. Does Zoho have marketing automation?
    Yes, Zoho CRM combines sales and marketing automation features. Users can utilize lead nurturing, customer segmentation, and email marketing campaigns within the platform.
Daniel Long

Daniel Long

About Author

Daniel Long, as a writer, delves into the realm of emerging technologies and business solutions, with a particular emphasis on optimizing efficiency and fostering growth. He educational background includes a Bachelor's degree in English from the University of California, Irvine, and he furthered his knowledge by attaining an MBA from Chapman University. This combination of expertise allows him to offer valuable insights into the ever-evolving business landscape.

You may also like


NameCheap Review

When creating a website, securing a cost-effective domain name is essential. Namecheap is the most reasonable choice when it comes
Best ERP Software Solutions

Best ERP Software

An ERP solution can provide unparalleled visibility into the effectiveness of your business operations, from supply chain management to identifying