Vtiger Review: a budget-friendly CRM for small businesses with advanced features and a unique user interface

Vtiger is a customer relationship management (CRM) solution for small businesses, despite the fact that it possesses an impressively extensive feature set, especially considering the cost. This tool will be appealing to small businesses that are experiencing difficulties with sales and customer support requirements, as well as those that need to set up activities related to digital marketing. For a single user interface, Vtiger packs in a lot of features, including lead scoring, segmentation, a calendar reminder system, email marketing functionality, integration with internal chat, and marketing automation integration. However, the user interface design might not appeal to everyone because it is somewhat unconventional.

The recent trend in this industry is to concentrate on smaller software for small businesses. This is due to the fact that large-platform CRM projects have a variable success rate for a significant number of companies. Because of its low starting price and extensive list of features, Vtiger may be the best option for companies that want to steer clear of the potential pitfalls that come with using larger and more expensive CRM tools.

In response to this trend, some manufacturers, such as Zoho CRM, the winner of our Editors’ Choice award for mainstream CRM, are developing new tools geared toward small businesses by modeling their flagship CRM suite on those requirements. In the case of Zoho, this would refer to the company’s recently released Bigin by Zoho product. Another illustration of this is the once-standalone Base CRM solution, which was later purchased by Zendesk and rebranded as Zendesk Sell. Zendesk Sell is a more integrated solution that can feed into Zendesk’s extensive collection of customer support-driven SMB solutions.

One additional strategy involves centering the development of a brand-new application on the requirements of a small business from the very beginning of the process. This is the strategy that has been adopted by Vtiger, and it can also be seen in other CRM competitors such as Freshsales CRM. This product offers a solution for customer relationship management (CRM) that is focused on small and medium-sized businesses and is both lightweight and straightforward. This includes the provision of integrations, workflow automation, and features related to sales intelligence. Additionally, Freshsales CRM works seamlessly with the other small and medium-sized business (SMB) tools that the company offers, such as its Freshcaller cloud phone system and its Freshdesk help desk offering.

It includes easy access to email, phone, and note-taking features, making it a cheap and feature-rich small business CRM. Additionally, it offers customer support around-the-clock and a great proactive alert system that encourages sales activity. However, the menu and navigation system can be creative but challenging, frequently necessitating the viewing of numerous tabs and pages. For businesses with various sales pipelines, it might not be appropriate.

Pricing for Vtiger

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Vtiger’s Starter tier begins at $10 per user per month, and in this tier you’ll find an impressive set of initial features, such as sales automation, marketing automation, collaboration, inventory management, dashboards, and reports. Vtiger’s Starter tier also costs $10 per user per month. In addition, the Starter plan enables users to make and take phone calls, manage leads, contacts, and accounts; manage deals; check in and check out; and manage check-ins and check-outs. The management of marketing campaigns, the sending of mass emails, and the creation of marketing lists are all examples of marketing automation.

Additionally, Starter offers a robust collection of collaboration features, including personal and group mailboxes, as well as internal online collaboration. Document management is also included. In addition, there are intelligent alerts, workflows, and the ability to schedule appointments. A nice selection of customizable dashboards and report options is a very nice inclusion, and it is one that you do not often find in the lower-rung pricing tiers of competing apps. This is an unusual circumstance. PDF templates, a mobile app, and a selection of app integrations from third-party developers are included to round out these features.

The Professional tier costs $20 per user per month and includes everything that is available in the Starter package in addition to multiple pipelines, profile and engagement scoring, and sales insights analytics. This tier also includes everything that is available in the Starter package. In this tier’s Action Center, you’ll find alerts for team activity, as well as alerts for lifecycle and record events. Automation now includes two-way email sync, which enables you to synchronize email between Vtiger and your existing email client. Invoicing, vendor management, purchase order management, payment tracking, and sales order management are some of the inventory management features that are included in the Professional tier, which offers an even higher level of functionality. The social features included in this tier include integration with Twitter, which includes the capability to collect leads from Twitter.

An Enterprise tier adds advanced sales automation by means of “Vtiger calculus,” which can determine the best time to contact customers, sentiment tracking, as well as quote and approval automation. This tier costs an additional $30 per user per month and is available for purchase. Vtiger Enterprise is able to support a number of different currencies, and its functionality in terms of subscription management at this tier includes recurring subscriptions, automated payments, and payment tracking. We decided to sign up for the Starter plan in order to conduct this review because it appears to be the most appropriate for the needs of small businesses.

It’s good to know that Vtiger can grow alongside your company because businesses have different requirements as they expand, and the feature set of Vtiger may appear to be comprehensive, particularly for smaller businesses. However, given that businesses have different requirements as they expand, it’s also good to know that Vtiger can grow along with your company. When compared to the prices of some of the products that are in direct competition with Freshsales and Onpipeline, which begin at $12 per user per month, the starter plan that costs $10 is the most cost-effective option. And in contrast to other solutions that we have evaluated, using the Vtiger Starter plan does not feel like too much of a compromise because you are not confronted with a large number of features that are visible but grayed out until you can access them through the higher-priced tiers. This is in contrast to other solutions that we have evaluated.

User Interface

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Getting started with Vtiger is as simple as creating an account and adding deals or contacts, a procedure that is similar to what is offered by the vast majority of cloud-based customer relationship management solutions. You can also access an Onboarding function by clicking on a rocket icon located in the menu bar to the top right of the screen. This will take you to the Guided Navigation page. This presents a number of Onboarding fundamentals as well as recommendations on the most effective ways to get started. Small businesses that are just getting started with their CRM activities are the ones that will benefit the most from Vtiger because they will be more accustomed to operating within the confines of a single solution and will therefore be more comfortable using it. It is possible for it to work for small and medium-sized businesses that are transitioning from other solutions; however, due to its rather unusual and nested menu system, users won’t find anything familiar in Vtiger’s system; therefore, you should prepare for a learning curve there.

The appearance and atmosphere of Vtiger struck us as being rather barren and uninteresting. Its visual style brought to mind the interface that Google uses for its Meet and Google G Suite offerings; it was simple, but did not give off an overly friendly vibe. This method of design has a number of benefits, including the fact that it loads content quickly and is simple to understand. If you browse Vtiger using a desktop browser or a mobile browser on a tablet or smartphone, the experience will be identical. This is true regardless of whether or not you find the Vtiger interface to be easy on the eyes. However, the layout is not typical and requires some getting used to, particularly if your mind is accustomed to the orientation and navigation of the majority of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) providers’ offerings.

After you have successfully logged in, you will be taken to the Actions page, which provides a chronological schedule for the day. It outlines the tasks that you need to complete in order to get your new account up and running, such as importing contacts and setting up your first campaign. It also flags inactive opportunities and leads that require attention, as well as any deals that have been in the “new” stage for more than three days. The action-oriented approach taken by Vtiger is comparable to that taken by Onpipeline; however, the latter solution includes daily email alerts in addition to its on-screen alerts.

Vtiger organizes everything as a list of things that need to be done. Next to Actions is a section called @Mentions, which serves as a sort of message center because you can engage other members of the team by @mentioning them by name and the message will show up here. The most recent developments in ongoing leads and contacts that, with any luck, will result in sales are provided to you in the form of updates. Because it displays Opens, Replies, Downloads, and Reshares, the Engagement tab is where the vast majority of marketers will be spending their time.

You have access to a universal search function, a toggle for the History section, and a Quick Create button for adding new deals via the permanent icons that are displayed on the horizontal menu bar. The Customer Relationship Management (CRM) button, which appears as a blue icon on the top left of this menu, is extremely important. When you click on this button, a more comprehensive and potentially confusing submenu of Apps will open. At the very top is a list titled Favorites. This list contains everything that has been flagged as a favorite, including contacts, organizations’ actions, events, tasks, imports, and inbox items. Following that is the core of Vtiger’s control center, which is referred to as Essentials.

Essentials provides Lead and Contact Management, Collaboration, and all of your Administration functions all in one convenient package. Lead Capture and Conversations can be found underneath this section (which has access to the Inbox, Phone Calls, SMS Messages, and Social components). In addition to that, further down the page you’ll find links to Analytics and Reports.

Campaigns, Leads and Contact Management, Marketing Administration, Marketing Planning, Marketing Enablement, and Lead Capture are the names of the six additional sections that are revealed when one clicks on the Marketing subsection. When you select one of these subheadings with your mouse, a new page will load. When you select email campaigns from the menu, a brand new page appears that gives you the option to initiate a fresh email campaign.

CRM as a Hub for Marketing and Sales

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Because of its many capabilities, Vtiger CRM is ideally suited to serve as the nerve center of a sales and marketing network. The transition from managing contacts and calendars to putting together an email marketing campaign is a simple one to make.

Email Campaigns is a feature found in the Marketing App that enables managers to design a comprehensive campaign and send appealing emails to subscriber lists of their choosing. In addition, the results of the email – clicks, opens, unsubscribes, and bounces – are all logged and measured on an engagement scale, which can assist you in determining the areas of interest of your customers and the things to which they respond most strongly. Since the email templates and functionality offered by Vtiger are not as comprehensive as those offered by standalone email marketing solutions, it is likely that digital marketing professionals will not find everything they are looking for on this platform. However, for the audience of small businesses that Vtiger is targeting, we believe that the majority will find it to be adequate.

Proactive Alerts and Practical Advice

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Vtiger is aware that owners of small businesses typically have a lot of responsibilities that they must juggle. It can be difficult to keep track of every contact and opportunity when dealing with such customers, even if they have sales and support staff specifically assigned to them. Vtiger employs similarly proactive alerts and hints to help you stay on top of leads, which is a nicely low-tech way to make sure the pipeline remains active. Similar to Onpipeline, which sends daily emails outlining the current status of live accounts, Vtiger utilizes these alerts and hints to help you stay on top of leads.

When you go to the Actions page, it can be unsettling to see a list of leads that are past their due date. Idle leads and deals that have been in the ‘new’ stage for more than a certain number of days can help salespeople quickly refocus their efforts and pursue the most pressing leads that may be approaching the end of their window of engagement. When managers view the Actions information for their entire team, it provides them with quick guidance that can help them reassign employees or provide assistance with troubled accounts.

Vtiger will also send you emails containing helpful hints if it detects that you are still in the process of learning all of these CRM capabilities. While many customer relationship management (CRM) tools will send you emails that provide an overview of your accounts and activity, Vtiger goes above and beyond by also providing guidance on how to make the most of the service it offers.

An email that we received from a Vtiger customer success consultant centered on the topic of how we could improve the efficiency of the support that we provide for our test business by tracking Service Level Agreements (SLA) and Customer Service Satisfactions (CSAT). Both of these metrics are essential to the success of a CRM system, but when you are first getting acquainted with the service, they might not be at the forefront of your mind. In that email, the consultant made an offer to show us how to set up SLA and CSAT in order to evaluate the quality of the resolutions to the support tickets. The email made sure to mention that the learning process would only take twenty minutes, and it offered us the opportunity to have a screen-share session whenever it was convenient for us to do so.

This strategy of reaching out to customers at specific points in their product usage journey is very helpful. It is also a novel approach to support that takes a push-focused approach, in contrast to things like frequently asked questions and articles from the knowledge base, which take a pull-focused approach.

Aspirations for an All-in-One CRM

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At first glance, Vtiger might remind you of Zen because of how simple and uncluttered it is. When examined in greater detail, the product, on the other hand, reveals an abundance of useful features. Entering OneView and searching for the identity of one of our test employees brought up the required contact information as well as a profile rating, which we presume should be filled in by the employee’s manager over the course of their employment. The rating function could be helpful in determining which salespeople are the most effective or have the highest percentage of deals that they close. Because of this, managers are given the ability to decide how to assign deals in a manner that is more effective.

The Next Actions section reveals which leads and contacts have been inactive, and the Activity section, which is located directly below it, displays the sales deals that have been assigned to individual salespeople as well as any comments or @ mentions from other members of the team. The right-hand column displays additional information on Organizations, Deals, Cases, and Quotes along with their corresponding Key Fields. These Key Fields, when correctly filled out, provide all of the relevant data that is necessary to take action on deals. A vertical bar of icons can be found further to the right. These icons dynamically generate information and quick links for OneView, Details, Tasks, Events, Analytics, Sales Ops, Items Documents, Campaigns, Service Contacts, Projects, Lists and Campaigns, Vendors, and eSign Documents and SMS Messages, respectively.

There is a vast array of functionality that extends far beyond the conventional CRM and sales tools buried deep within Vtiger’s somewhat convoluted menu structure. For instance, there is a comprehensive Projects subsection, which consists of Project Management, Project Enablement, and Project Administration capabilities. We were also very impressed with the Service Desk features, which, although they are relatively simple when compared to the features offered by stand-alone help desk products, should serve a small business that is just getting started very well. Internal tickets, administration functions, service level agreement (SLA) policies, and support analytics are all included.

Even though it took us a few days to get used to Vtiger’s unconventional navigation and nested menu system, there is no denying that this platform has the potential to be an effective system for rapidly gaining access to information regarding deals or contacts. At the very least, after your customers have had enough time to get used to the way it functions. In addition to that, we liked how easy it was to quickly access the call functionality, the email functionality, and the ability to jot down some quick notes. These functions can be accessed quickly and easily at any time from the top right-hand side of the screen. The calling functions include a click-to-call feature, which enables users to make calls from a Contact, Deal, or any other related record with just one click. Call recording, a feature that a large number of CRM users rely on, is one of the system’s flaws. This feature, along with the capacity to transfer calls and participate in conference calls, is still in the “coming soon” stage.

The Bottom Line

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Vtiger is an excellent option for small businesses looking for an all-in-one CRM solution. This is primarily due to the fact that it comes equipped with a wide range of tools, which ought to keep a large number of customers satisfied. New users may find it difficult to get up to speed due to the interface’s distinctiveness, which makes for a steep learning curve.

Techexplains Team

Techexplains Team

We are a team of digital marketing experts with years of experience in website builders. CRM tools, project management software helping businesses of all sizes achieve their marketing goals. We are writing about benefits of using SaaS for businesses, and sharing our top picks for the best tools currently available on the market. Whether you are a small business owner looking to streamline your marketing efforts or a larger enterprise seeking to improve your marketing efficiency, we hope that you will find this useful and informative.