Every growing business eventually outgrows the systems it uses to stay on top of their customer relationships. Even if you’re going from a handful of notes or another software, scaling up the management of your relationships is a sure sign of progress.
Commercial real estate brokers often turn to customer relationship management software (CRMs) to support their commercial real estate marketing and sales effort.
But there are a lot of CRMs available, with a number of different features. Deeper still, there are also many designed to meet the specific needs of the commercial real estate industry.
To help you match the features to your challenges, and evaluate different CRMs for your needs, we have compiled the 8 best commercial real estate CRMs currently available. Review key features, pricing, and all the other key considerations required to make an informed choice for your business.
Customer relationship management software is designed to help you manage and oversee the interactions you have with prospects, clients, and tenants seamlessly. Rather than a messy datebook or poorly formatted spreadsheet, a good CRM is a resource that streamlines and improves the process of engaging with key people in your business.
Specifically, for commercial real estate companies, there are several benefits to having a good CRM in place, including:
A good CRM will save you time, keep your data clean and organized, and ensure you follow up with prospects when needed. It is that enhanced accountability and communication that will have the biggest impact on your business.
What matters most when choosing a CRM for your business? It depends highly on your business and the specific needs you have in managing your relationships.
These might include:
Anytime you onboard new software there will be challenges and CRM is no different.
Whether you are currently using a locally installed CRM or are tracking everything in spreadsheets, there will be a learning curve for your team as you move so much of your business into a centralized system.
Importing all of that data can take days or even weeks to complete, and then you’ll need to train everyone on your staff to use the system and then follow-up frequently to ensure they are using it properly.
Compliance is key for a new CRM – without it, the system starts to fall apart quickly.
Fortunately, the five platforms we’re going to look at in this article are successful because of the support they offer new customers – in the form of onboarding, training, and ongoing support. Take full advantage of these resources to get the most from your new software.
To help in selecting a CRM that fits your needs, we’ve collected and reviewed the five best commercial real estate CRMs for 2020 below.
Salesforce is widely recognized as the number-one CRM option available today, and that customer-relationship expertise helps make it the most effective commercial real estate CRM on the market.
Salesforce commercial real estate CRM is a flexible, adaptable, intuitive, and completely cloud-based tool. Built on the award-winning Salesforce CRM platform, agents and firms can collect, analyze, and retrieve nearly limitless amounts of data in real time and at the touch of a button. Additionally, Salesforce CRM solutions are designed mobile-first, which means that users can enjoy full access to the entire catalogue of CRM capabilities, regardless of what kind of device they may be using.
Salesforce offers a number of features built around how commercial real estate brokers operate on a daily basis. These include:
Salesforce offers a few pricing plans from $25-$300/user/monthly depending on the features used.
HubSpot’s CRM platform has all the tools and integrations you need for marketing, sales, content management, and customer service.
The CRM product tracks and manages interactions between a company and its customers and prospects. It enables companies to forecast revenue, measure sales team productivity, and report on revenue sources.
With detailed reports on sales activity, productivity, and individual performance, users can track their team’s performance toward and have all the data to coach the team to success.
HubSpot provides tools for social media marketing, content management, web analytics, landing pages, customer support, and search engine optimization.
HubSpot’s free tools offer many “lite” versions of select tools featured in their paid products. There are limits to the free HubSpot account, which differ by feature and if you use HubSpot’s free CRM tools with Marketing Hub, the contacts you add to your free CRM tools end up in both places, which could affect your Marketing Hub subscription’s contact tier pricing.
The Sales Hub tiers pricing structure:
Apto offers a web-based solution for managing customer relationships, properties, listings, deals, and back-office.
It is this approach that has helped them grow so quickly in recent years with a “built by broker, for broker” approach.
One of the things that makes Apto unique is that it is built on the Salesforce.com platform. A Salesforce embedded license is included in your membership, but you’re getting a system fully customized and optimized for commercial real estate brokers. As a result, it is possible to manage the full lifecycle of a deal from start to finish in the same interface.
Apto offers a number of features built around how commercial real estate brokers operate on a daily basis. These include:
Apto offers a relatively straightforward pricing structure.
For a flat $89/month per user (billed annually), users gain access to all of the functionality in the CRM and Deal Management modules of Apto.
Back Office access is an additional $29/month per user (billed annually). This includes API access and Salesforce.com embedded license with either membership.
Another highly customized all-in-one commercial real estate optimized CRM, ClientLook (now part of Lightbox) manages all three major components of a brokerage in one space – contacts, properties, and deals with heavy integration of the three.
Additionally, ClientLook offers extensive API integration with Google, MailChimp, RPR Commercial for REALTORS®, and TheAnalyst® PRO.
While flexibility is important, ClientLook also provides a bit of additional support for your legacy systems and communications tools.
With three major components, ClientLook is designed to combine all of the facets of your business in one toolset. Features include:
ClientLook offers a similar pricing model to Apto with seats billed annually per user.
When paid annual, the price is $58/month/user.
They also offer a month-to-month plan for $69/month/user.
This includes their extensive support options as well with Virtual Assistance services, in-app chat, and a video library for training your team.
REThink (now part of Buildout) offers another Salesforce.com powered CRM option for commercial real estate companies, with full CRE database and prospect management support, deal pipeline features and reporting and analytics customized for the commercial real estate companies they work with.
Key features of REThink include the following with a handful of additional features available at the Enterprise level for larger companies.
REThink offers a monthly plan (when billed annually) for the Team and Office options for a minimum of four users.
Additionally, there is a single one-time flat fee charged for REThink Onboarding. Onboarding is assessed on a per-customer basis depending on your needs in the CRM and is mandatory for all users.
There is also a multi-office and enterprise plan designed for larger firms – pricing for these plans is provided on a request-only basis.
AscendixRE is a commercial real estate CRM option built on the framework of both Salesforce and Dynamics 365. AscendixRE includes Salesforce/Dynamics 365 license. Besides, brokers already using one of the two leading CRMs on the market, can quickly integrate with their current systems.
AscendixRE CRM tool can be customized to the needs of your brokers. Ascendix performs all customizations using their own team.
There are three different plans for AscendixRE CRM tool, with the top tier offering advanced supped of Salesforce features. The core features include:
Because of the variable nature of the AscendixRE plans, the best solution will depend on the size of your company and the way in which you want to interact with your data.
The Salesforce integrated solution, for example, offers no seat minimums and a lower entry price point per user. Also, it has special editions for Capital Markets, Land Brokers, Property Managers. The Microsoft Dynamics system works only with 5 or more users.
AscendixRE offers three pricing options, with several add-ons available.
The base price for AscendixRE Foundations is $49/user/month. For AscendixRE Enterprise, the cost is $79/user/month. Concierge service, Ascendix Search, Commission Tracking, stacking plans are included.
AscendixRE Unlimited is $99/user/month and includes property listing portals, automatic lead capture, Deal and Collaboration tools. Every plan includes Salesforce license without user minimum.
The AscendixRE for Dynamics 365 option is a bit more at $95/user/month with a 5 user minimum to get started.
Apptivo is a CRM solution that brings together more than 50 applications on a single platform to help small and medium-sized businesses run their operations successfully. The integration of all applications offers a wide range of solutions for any business. Its unique features, combined with 24-hour customer service, offer users an incredible experience.
Apptivo integrates with tools including Google Workspace, Slack, QuickBooks, PayPal, Office 365, RingCentral, and Dropbox. This allows you to manage everything in one place without having to hop from app to app.
Apptivo offers 4 different subscription options:
Freshworks CRM is a cloud – based customer relationship management (CRM) solution that helps companies of all sizes manage their leads with the use of AI. Freshworks combines sales automation, marketing automation, chat and telephone in the same platform. This platform enables you to attract leads, engage with them as well as close deals and nurture your customer relationships.
There are several pricing options available depending on your needs:
Zoho CRM is currently used by 250,000 different companies in 180 countries. This platform helps businesses convert more leads, engage with their customers with the final objective of growing their revenue.
By integrating with live chat software, email, and social media, you can set up real-time notifications to be in the know any time a lead or customer interacts with your business. The real-time reports and insights ensure you can have up-to-date data at your fingertips no matter your location.
Other features include the ability to automate workflows, manage contacts, and manage deals from stage to stage. You can also build a sales process for your real estate agents so that prospective buyers get a consistent experience regardless of the team member they work with.
Zoho offers several different pricing options:
There are many different options when it comes to contact, property, and deal management for your commercial real estate company. The ability to more efficiently manage the different types of commercial real estate leases, contacts, automate important components of the follow-up process and cycle and score leads to maximize opportunity are all incredibly important.
Depending on the size of your company, the number of deals you manage on a routine basis, properties you need to enter, and the people who will be accessing the system, each of these platforms has something unique to offer.
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As the commercial real estate industry continues to grow and evolve, the use of software...