This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of SharpSpring CRM. All opinions are 100% mine.
I’m a huge fan of CRM (customer relationship management) systems for tracking, growing, and monetizing a customer base. When I ran my own digital marketing agency I spent a ton of time setting up and connecting to client CRM systems in order to track the ROI of my Google Adwords and Facebook lead generation campaigns. I’ve previously done a lot of work with Salesforce, Hubspot, Insightly, and others.
Using CRMs I was able to not only capture customers, but also track what they bought and how much they spent. But one of the biggest barriers to using a CRM for entrepreneurs is the cost – it can get expensive really quickly. For my clients that were spending millions of dollars on marketing the cost was a no brainer, but for a small business entrepreneur or solopreneur the costs are high and often includes set up fees.
It’s always been one of my goals to track Millennial Money new subscribers, customers, and members in one central database, but I haven’t invested in a CRM because of the high cost.
But I’ve recently been talking with some bloggers I know who are making $50,000+ per month through their blogs and all of them except for one are using a CRM to optimize and increase their average revenue per customer. I really do need a system to better capture and convert website traffic into paying course members.
This is why I was really excited to learn that SharpSpring CRM just launched a completely free CRM for small businesses this month and it has a ton of features I’m planning to use for my own online business. I’d heard about SharpSpring before – they’ve been around for 5+ years and have over 7,000 customers on their affordable marketing automation platform, but they’ve never offered Free CRM. And this isn’t just a free trial.
SharpSpring is legitimately free for life. Of course, you’re probably wondering how they make money – which I did too. We’ll you can upgrade to a premium version for more features, but for an online entrepreneur all of the features I need are free, including the ability to add unlimited contacts.
The SharpSpring team have done a great job creating features in a free sales CRM that are typically only available in expensive CRMs like Salesforce. Features like:
Lead scoring (which allows you to monitor the quality of new leads, as well as existing customers),
Lead forms (so I can easily capture leads for my email list and to market my courses).
Easy integration with a majority of online marketing tools to make data sharing easy.
Social media brand monitoring. You can easily track your mentions and conversations you’re interested in.
One of the biggest challenges I’ve seen with CRMs is they often have a steep learning curve and it takes hours and hours to learn. It took me months to learn how to use Salesforce and I even went to one of their conferences until I felt proficient in using it. With SharpSpring I was able to figure it out a lot faster and it’s incredibly intuitive.
Another challenge I’ve seen with many CRMs is integration. You want a CRM that seamlessly integrates with the existing tools that you use. For me personally, I use GMAIL for my business mail, Google Analytics to track my website traffic, as well as both Mailchimp and ConstantContact for email marketing. SharpSpring easily integrates with these, and has the option to easily upgrade to affordable marketing automation if you need more.
If you’re an online business owner, blogger, or want to better track you capture, track, and convert your website leads into paying customers then you should check out SharpSpring’s Free CRM. You don’t need to put in a credit card or anything.
Just sign up and go.