Updated: Aug 3
CRM's are everywhere. If you are running a small business and looking for a CRM to automate your business, there are a plethora of options and it is simply impossible to try and choose the right one.
Thankfully, there are CRM's built now exclusively for certain niches specifically for a certain customer journey. For a long time, SharpSpring has been one of the very few that offered a CRM exclusively built for agencies and Close is my personal favorite CRM for any type of industry.
HighLevel is a fairly new marketing automation + CRM suite made for marketing agencies. It is value-priced and since it’s new, it offers few native integrations with other marketing and sales platforms.
HighLevel is a new product targeting the same customer base with a different approach.
It's a really interesting direction for a new SaaS product to take.
Although the market is not very huge, there isn't a similar product like this apart from a few SEO, reputation management tools, etc. There are similar products such as Close, Outreach, etc. but they serve a different type of customer and not specifically local marketing agencies.
HighLevel promises to bring a lot of functionality under a single tool that will enable a marketing agency to stop using many other individual tools designed for a specific purpose like email marketing, two-way text messaging, etc. Is it possible? Well, let's find out.
Gohighlevel: Best Alternatives
Looking for HighLevel alternatives? Analyze a range of top Appointment Scheduling software that offer similar benefits at competitive prices. Empower your team by choosing the best HighLevel competitor that meets your unique business requirements. As good as HighLevel is, there are a few other CRM's that do a few things better.
SharpSpring has been setting the standards for an agency CRM for quite a few years now and could be a great alternative for the following reasons.
A more robust and reliable product as it has been in the market since 2014 and thousands of agencies using the platform.
The agency plan comes with 3 licenses included along with a license for your agency. Considering each SharpSpring license for a small business costs $700 when paid monthly, the profit potential for an agency is really huge as you scale up the number of clients.
Built-in email marketing and powerful marketing automation and hence no need for an external SMTP service.
Built-in blogging platform for more effective inbound marketing.
Built-in sales dialer. Although native voicemail drops and text messaging is not available, there is a huge array integration with tools like SimpleTexting, Aircall, Upcall, PhoneBurner, CallHub, and a lot more via zapier and PieSync.
Built-in social media management tool to mage the social media accounts of all the clients and charge for it.
Custom reports and analytics with lots of great widgets to choose from.
Built-in video calling and conferencing.
Based on your agency's use case you could choose either of HighLevel or SharpSpring. I would suggest taking a free trial of HighLevel and a free demo from SharpSpring to choose based on the feature set that would match your agency's requirements.
Close CRM is a multi-channel CRM tool with emails, calls, and text messages included in the platform. It integrates natively with Twilio for a cost-effective and calling and text messaging solution. Close CRM stands out with its powerful voice calling features.
The combination of power dialer and predictive dialer makes it an incredibly powerful tool for outbound calling, particularly for agencies with multiple team members, sales employees, or remote workers.
It is one of the very few CRM's with a predictive dialer solution making it a fantastic choice for medium-sized agencies.
SuiteDash is an agency CRM that specializes in client portal wherein you can manage multiple clients each with their unique client login.
Starting at just $19 and even the highest plan costing only $99 for unlimited client portals and team members, it is a very affordable tool for all types of agencies.
Lead Carrot is another agency-specific lead generation and CRM tool. One of the best parts about Lead Carrot is that apart from the CRM features, you get a built-in database of B2B leads that you can use to outreach and get clients. This saves a lot of money as there is no need to spend on cold leads.
It is also more affordable than HighLevel as the plans start at just $47 per month. You get more than 300 weekly searches for the leads even in the base plan. You can connect with Twilio for two way SMS and with an SMTP for emails to build multi-channel outreach sequences.
Influencer Soft is another all-in-one tool for building websites, funnels, memberships & courses, etc. It also has visual funnel mapping, email marketing, and affiliate management included within the tool, so there is no need to connect an external SMTP.
You can connect an unlimited number of domains and even have up to 25 admin users.
The only features missing would be voice calls and SMS marketing features of HighLevel and if you do not these those 2 features, Influencer Soft is a very good option.
As an introductory special offer, a lifetime deal is available for a short period of time which is an incredibly good deal for the features offered.
Complete CRM (For advanced agencies)
Complete CRM is a full-fledged white-labeled CRM system that includes every feature you could imagine under a completely licensed structure. It is for advanced agencies that would want a CRM hand-coded and built for them.
Some of the features included in Complete CRM are,
Website & landing page builder,
Email marketing with tracking and analytics,
Voice calls & SMS marketing,
Affiliate management system,
Booking management system,
Learning management & membership system,
Customer journey mapping,
Collaborative knowledgebase and wiki,
Social media management,
Form & survey builder,
Campaign split testing,
The list goes on & on.
It literally has almost any feature you would want from a CRM and hence you can offer a complete management service for your clients from marketing, sales to operations.
The earning potential is quite huge.
Although Chirply is not a full-blown CRM tool, it is a complete communication platform with text, email, and voice call marketing. Similar to HighLevel, Chirply integrates with Twilio for voice calls, text messages, and any SMTP provider for email.
Some of the unique features of Chirply include built-in lead generation features scraping leads from Google My Business and Yelp. Additionally, the UI is fantastic and more intuitive than HighLevel.
Additional to ringless voicemails, you can also set up IVR's with Chirply which is a great feature for some users.
So, is it good?
It is a reasonably good tool for agencies that serve local businesses. It is easy to use, has a lot of functions and possibilities for time-saving automation capabilities.
Yes, there is room for improvements to be made as with the UI & stability, with more robust options available for agencies that have around for a much longer time.