Zoho CRM can be what you want it to be, and what you need it to be.
October 24, 2021

Zoho CRM can be what you want it to be, and what you need it to be.

Patrick Stephens | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 9 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User
Review Source

Software Version

Professional

Overall Satisfaction with Zoho CRM

I reviewed and tested out Zoho CRM for an educational institution in Atlanta as part of their bid to find a more suitable CRM. It was part of the list because of how customizable it is, tracking capability, and would have been helpful for users who were completely new to CRMs in general. At the outset, the company it was being reviewed for had a CRM which was outdated and acted like no more than Gmail. So Zoho was in the running to replace more than one system at the school, ultimately.
  • Customization! You are not going to find a "fuller" program. They have been a leader in the industry for a long time for a reason, and that is because they listen to their clients and attempt to improve themselves based on feedback - which I believe is responsible for their large scale of features.
  • Price. It's pretty solid for the price. Not the cheapest I've found for educational services, but you have to draw the line - you get what you pay for.
  • Integration. Most places looking for a CRM don't think of it based on "what can I connect this to?" but Zoho CRM has some incredible integrations and the ability to be integrated [into] other programs. Unfortunately, not ones that are in limited partnerships, which you will see later in the review!
  • You need someone to slog through the training. You need either an expert or someone who knows what they are doing because there is a lot, and you can't always depend on textbook-style writing for help.
  • At the time I reviewed, there was no feature that was unable to be off-network - unless I missed this.
  • Communication tracking at every level, including large scale.
  • Increased customer retention.
  • Increased visibility on customers coming in.
  • Allowed tracking for admissions.
  • Better management and communication for admissions.
  • Integration for relevant third-party products (and play well together).
I still think their help articles are written by experts for advanced minds. If you don't understand a subject, you get help from someone who can explain it to you from the ground up. If using a school analogy, you want them to start from preschool. Theirs start around middle school, so you need some wiggle room in terms of understanding. I think this is a flaw in the field of marketing anyway. Too many people use buzzwords and overcomplicate things to sound smart when sometimes you just need to say it in simple, simple terms. But overall, had it not been for the limitations of their year-long contract, I would have 100% gotten Zoho CRM for the school involved.
It will seem too complex, but then you will be able to work with an agent on what you need and what you don't need. So don't just sign up and go it alone - you may not need a good deal of what's in Zoho CRM, so don't let it overwhelm you.
Zoho CRM can be what you want it to be. The others are good but not nearly as customizable as Zoho CRM.

Do you think Zoho CRM delivers good value for the price?

Yes

Are you happy with Zoho CRM's feature set?

Yes

Did Zoho CRM live up to sales and marketing promises?

Yes

Did implementation of Zoho CRM go as expected?

I wasn't involved with the implementation phase

Would you buy Zoho CRM again?

Yes

This really is an incredible platform. It is robust and can be customized to suit your needs. The school I was trialing it for had a terrible system where they went between several programs and were constantly losing track of what was going on. Zoho CRM was able to show them how a proper CRM can be multi-faceted in terms of lead tracking, communication, and ultimately tracking after conversion. At the time I am writing this, the last I used Zoho CRM was a handful of months ago, so some of the cons are likely already outdated - this is how on it their improvement team can be. So then why didn't we choose it? Because the school had already paid for an over $5,000 a year childcare management software that refused to allow integrations to programs they didn't have a partnership with. Be wary of this, people! You could lose a great program because other ones just don't want to play well with others. Zoho would have been able to integrate just fine, but not for the CMS.

Zoho CRM Feature Ratings

Customer data management / contact management
10
Workflow management
9
Territory management
9
Opportunity management
9
Integration with email client (e.g., Outlook or Gmail)
7
Contract management
9
Quote & order management
9
Interaction tracking
9
Channel / partner relationship management
9
Case management
9
Call center management
Not Rated
Help desk management
Not Rated
Lead management
10
Email marketing
10
Task management
10
Billing and invoicing management
9
Reporting
8
Forecasting
9
Pipeline visualization
9
Customizable reports
8
Custom fields
10
Custom objects
10
Scripting environment
Not Rated
API for custom integration
9
Role-based user permissions
9
Single sign-on capability
Not Rated
Social data
9
Social engagement
9
Marketing automation
10
Compensation management
Not Rated
Mobile access
6