Zoho CRM Review

Zoho CRM
Pleasanton, CA
Deployment Model:
Free Trial:
50 million users

Zoho CRM At A Glance

Good: Ability to communicate with customers in multiple channels, AI functionality for sales predictions and other tasks, scalable pricing.
Bad: Initial learning curve, interface could be more streamlined.
Bottom Line: Cloud-based CRM with robust features to help companies generate sales and provide better customer service.

Product Overview

Zoho CRM is a cloud-based platform that enables sales and marketing teams to better collaborate and improve customer service. Sales reps can easily track their pipelines, while marketers can create targeted campaigns. Zoho CRM has omnichannel capability for communicating with customers via multiple platforms (e.g., email, phone, live chat, social media).

There are numerous benefits of Zoho CRM, including:

  • Automated tools that streamline repetitive tasks
  • Mobile functionality for accessing features away from the office
  • Customization to fit an organization’s unique processes
  • Easy-to-use software with minimal training required
  • Integration to other Zoho solutions and many third-party applications
  • Flexible pricing plans, including a free version for small teams


Here are the key features of Zoho CRM.

Account management/pipeline management – Sales reps can manage the contacts, tasks and deals of each account in a single interface. If there are different deals with different contacts from the same client company, the parent-child relationship feature helps reps streamline those tasks. Reps can track their pipeline with an at-a-glance snapshot of all deals at each stage, send quotes and share closing successes with their colleagues.

Sales enablement – This set of tools allows sales reps to perform better in their jobs. There’s a document library that stores important content like product specs that reps can edit and share with others.

There’s also the SalesInbox that integrates to other email providers such as Outlook or Gmail. Reps can send and receive important emails (either individually or in bulk), analyze email opens and set up templates. Other sales tools include a built-in calendar, a vendor/partner portal and integration to Zoho Meetings for online meetings.

Sales forecasting – Sales managers can use sales features to identify their top performers and give them higher targets to reach. In addition to completed targets, they can measure soon-to-close deals and pipeline shortages to better predict future sales. Managers can customize their forecasts on any criteria, such as territory or hierarchy.

Omnichannel communication – As mentioned, companies can manage multiple channel communication within Zoho CRM. The software integrates to over 50 telephony providers, so users can make calls by simply clicking on a button. Each call is automatically logged, and Zoho CRM sends reminders of upcoming calls and notifications of missed calls.

Users can manage conversations from different social media accounts (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn) in a single interface. Zoho CRM also supports other channels, such as live chat, a self-service portal and web conferencing. The SalesSignal feature provides real-time notifications each time a customer opens an email, mentions the company on social media or engages in similar activities. The user can respond to the customer directly from the SalesSignal panel.

Lead generation – Marketers can design web forms for lead generation with a drag-and-drop editor that can be hosted on various content management systems (e.g., Unbounce, WordPress). Zoho CRM automatically captures those leads, which marketers can then approve before sending to the appropriate sales rep.

Another lead generation method involves scanning business cards via the Card Scanner app, which then uploads them into Zoho CRM. Leads can also be generated from live chat, social media and targeted email campaigns. Any generated leads are converted to deals with a single click.

Other marketing automation tools – In addition to lead generation, marketers can use Zoho CRM to create audience segments with lead scoring and keyword tagging, execute email and survey campaigns and manage events. Zoho CRM integrates to Google Ads, so marketers can analyze their advertising campaigns.

Analytics – Users can analyze data on different metrics, including campaign performance, calls and closed deals. Zoho CRM provides standard and custom reports, charts and key performance indicators (KPIs).

Zia – Zia is an AI-enabled sales assistant similar to Alexa that provides answers to questions. Users can either text or use voice commands. Zia can also make sales predictions by assigning a score based on how close each deal is to a conversion, as well as detect sales anomalies, notify users of incorrect or outdated data and suggest the best dates and times to reach out to a customer.

Workflow automation – Administrators can automate common workflows by setting up a single rule with up to 10 conditions that trigger specific actions (e.g., sending an automated email once a lead downloads an asset), and the Workflow Insights feature measures each workflow’s performance. Finally, the Blueprint feature allows sales managers to design specific sales processes that the reps should follow so that important tasks don’t slip through the cracks.

Canvas – Canvas is a no-code design solution that allows users to personalize their CRM interface to fit their business needs, such changing the color scheme or adjusting the layout to include relevant data and fields. They can choose from built-in templates or create their own with a drag-and-drop editor.

Target Market

Zoho CRM can benefit companies of any size and industry. We’ve listed 10 of its clients below.

  • Amazon India
  • Bernard Health
  • Bose
  • Brita
  • EcoMark Solar
  • Let's Fly Cheaper
  • Netflix
  • RainTree
  • Sales Shift Global
  • SquareMeal


Companies that select any of the paid plans will get a 15-day free trial. After the trial period, they can purchase the plan via credit card. Companies simply sign up and can begin using Zoho CRM within minutes.

Zoho CRM integrates to Zoho’s other apps, such as Zoho Docs for Business, Zoho Projects, Zoho People and Zoho Mail. It also integrates to marketing automation software (e.g., Mailchimp), telephony software, messaging apps, social media, Google Apps, Microsoft Apps, Dropbox, Box, Slack and GitHub.

Customer Service & Support

Zoho CRM has four support plans, which are:

  • Basic – The Basic plan, intended for users on the free version, includes a community forum, email support, a ticket request portal and maximum response within 24 hours.
  • Classic – The Classic plan is free for all paid users and includes all the features of the Basic plan, plus remote assistance, live chat and phone support during normal business hours and a maximum response time of eight hours.
  • Premium – The Premium plan costs 20% of the annual license fee and includes all the features of the Classic plan, plus 24/5 live chat and phone support, product onboarding and a maximum response time of three hours.
  • Enterprise – The Enterprise plan costs 25% of the annual license fee and includes all the features of the other plans, plus 24/7 live chat and phone support, a technical account manager, a quarterly report on feature usage and recommendations, early access to new features and a maximum response time of an hour. It requires a minimum of 25 users.


Zoho CRM’s free version accommodates up to three users and includes lead management, document management and a mobile app.

There are four paid plans (billed annually), which are:

  • Standard – The Standard plan costs $14 per user, per month and includes features in the free version, plus scoring rules, email insights, workflow conversion, tags and groups, web forms, custom fields, custom reports and dashboards, and storage of up to 100,000 records.
  • Professional – The Professional plan costs $23 per user, per month and includes all the features of the Standard plan, plus SalesSignals, process management, inventory management, web-to-case forms, macros, validation rules, automatic field updates, webhooks, Google Ads integration and storage of up to five million records.
  • Enterprise – The Enterprise plan costs $40 per user, per month and includes all the features of the other plans, plus Zia AI, CommandCenter, advanced customization, webform analytics, webform A/B testing, advanced marketing automation (e.g., autoresponders, customer segmentation, marketing attribution), multiuser portals and developer tools (e.g., client scripts, mobile SDK).
  • Ultimate – The Ultimate plan is priced at $52 per user, per month. It includes additional features like advanced BI features, enhanced feature limits, a 30-day free trial and storage of up to 15 million records.

Finally, there’s Zoho CRM Plus, a unified customer experience platform with a help desk, email and social media marketing, surveys and analytics features. It starts at $57 per user, per month.

Each plan is pay-as-you-go, so users can upgrade, downgrade or cancel their plans at any time.


While the interface can be intuitive, there’s an initial learning curve. Also, users have mentioned that the interface could be more streamlined (e.g., removing multiple icons).


Zoho Screenshot 1
Zoho Screenshot 2
Zoho Screenshot 3


Zoho began in 1996 as a network management company called AdventNet. In 2009, it rebranded itself as Zoho Corporation. In addition to Zoho apps, the company has two divisions: IT management and network management.

Over the years, it has added more solutions, such as Zoho CRM (2005), Zoho People (2008), and Zoho Connect (2013). Zoho One, an all-in-one suite of more than 35 integrated applications, was introduced in 2017. The company reached the 50 million mark in number of users and rolled out the Zoho MarketingHub, a marketing automation software, in 2019.

Zoho has offices in Pleasanton (CA) and Austin (TX) and in other countries, such as India, China and Japan.

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