Freshsales CRM Review: Pros & Cons, Features, Pricing for 2023

Freshsales is a powerful customer relationship management platform. Read our review to learn about its features, pricing, and pros and cons.

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Freshsales is renowned for its AI-powered sales tools and high-level customization at costs much lower than comparable CRMs. It also features a robust built-in telephony service plus tight integration with major chat clients like WhatsApp. On the other hand, if you’re seeking in-depth reporting, broader app integrations, and superb user support, then you may want to consider an alternative. Our in-depth Freshsales review will help you decide if it’s the right sales tool for you.

Freshsales at a Glance

Freshsales is a sales-focused CRM that features AI-powered automation and insights at a lower cost than most similar CRM software. It also boasts a flexible, customizable interface, although app integrations are quite limited.

Price Range: Free to $69 per user, per month (21-day free trial)

Overall Rating star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Cost star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Core Features star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Ease of Use star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Customization star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Advanced Features star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Customer Support star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full

Pros:

  • Free tier supports unlimited users
  • Clean, simple & user-friendly UI
  • Freddy AI is available in all paid tiers
  • Built-in phone, email & messaging

Cons:

  • Only one sales pipeline in Growth
  • Fewer integrations than competitors
  • Reporting could be more flexible
  • Users report inconsistent support

Beyond star ratings and the general pros and cons, it’s also important to know about the specific scenarios where Freshsales shines — and instances where it may fall short. Continue reading to learn about Freshsales’ use cases, pricing, key features, customer support, and what people think of the platform and its CRM alternatives. Otherwise, jump down to see how we scored Freshsales across the six main categories.

When to Use Freshsales

Tens of thousands of companies around the world count on Freshsales. It's best known for its powerful Freddy AI sales assistant, but Freshsales also stands out for being highly customizable and among the more affordable CRMs on the market today — qualities that make it an ideal choice for startups and burgeoning businesses with modest budgets. Meanwhile, call centers and multinationals will benefit from built-in telephony and multilanguage support, respectively.

Below is a more detailed explanation of Freshsales’ best primary use cases:

  • You Want Access to an AI-Powered Assistant: From chat-based lead nurturing to revenue forecasting, Freshsales’ Freddy AI can automate a significant portion of the sales process — leaving reps with more time to build relationships and close deals.
  • You’re a Startup Needing an Inexpensive, Scalable CRM: Freshsales is an excellent choice for startups seeking a reasonably-priced CRM that’ll scale with their business. It strikes the right balance of affordability with a rich set of lead-focused sales tools.
  • You’re Looking for a Highly-Customizable Platform: For niche businesses seeking a cost-effective alternative to an industry-specific CRM, Freshsales provides plenty of flexibility in customizing fields, modules, roles, and much more.
  • You’re a Multinational Company: Businesses with reps and clients in other countries will be able to tailor Freshsales for global transactions in multiple languages and currencies. Its mobile CRM also supports over 10 languages.
  • You’re a Call Center Manager Seeking a CRM: Freshsales’ built-in telephony makes it a great option for call centers that want to analyze phone conversations, queue calls, and efficiently route customers to the appropriate representatives.
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If this CRM is ticking the right boxes for your needs, head over to Freshsales to compare individual plans. Opt for its free platform, available for up to three users, if you need basic contact and deal management and built-in communication tools. Sign up for a 21-day free trial to access and test drive the full functionality of its paid tiers.

When Not to Use Freshsales

Freshsales does a lot of things right, but there are several instances where it’s lacking. Its free CRM has neither a report builder nor basic Freddy AI functionality — which doesn’t make it a suitable long-term solution for cost-conscious businesses. Also, as flexible as the Freshsales platform is, its premium custom report builder may be too rigid for data-driven companies. It doesn’t integrate with nearly as many apps as other top CRMs, either.

Keep reading to find out when you may need to consider an alternative to Freshsales:

  • You Must Use a Free CRM Indefinitely: Freshsales’ free CRM lacks a reporting module — a glaring omission. It’s not a viable long-term solution for businesses that have to rely on a no-cost CRM until they’re able to afford a premium plan.
  • Your Team Relies on a Vast Suite of Third-Party Sales Tools: Compared to other industry-leading CRMs, Freshsales does not have as many native app integrations. This will hinder teams that want to integrate a bulk of their sales tools with the CRM.
  • You Require Complex CRM Reporting: Freshsales offers a custom CRM report builder with every paid plan, but there are other platforms that lend more flexibility and depth in this area.
  • You Need a CRM With Marketing Features: On its own, Freshsales is strictly a sales-focused CRM with minimal native marketing functionality. Moreover, it doesn’t integrate with any major social media networks (except Facebook).
  • You’re Seeking Attentive Support: Freshsales provides 24-hour support five days a week with both its free and paid plans. However, some user reviews claim the quality of support is inconsistent, a detriment for companies without an in-house tech department.
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If you decide Freshsales isn’t the best fit for your business based on the points above, look for an alternative. Our list of the best CRM software spans a variety of price points, functionalities, and use cases, so you’re bound to find something that’ll suit your needs. You can also skip down to learn more about the best alternatives to Freshsales, specifically.

Freshsales Pricing

Freshsales offers a free-for-life CRM platform for up to three users focused on contact and account management. Its entry-level Growth plan offers customization, basic reports and dashboards, and messaging features. Larger teams looking for full AI-powered elements (like deal and forecasting insights), time-based workflows, and chat APIs will have to upgrade to one of Freshsales’ highest paid tiers. The table below breaks down Freshsales’ pricing structure:

FreeGrowthProEnterprise
Annual Plan Monthly Rate$0 for up to 3 users$15 per user, per month$39 per user, per month$69 per user, per month
Monthly Plan Monthly RateN/A$18 per user, per month$47 per user, per month$83 per user, per month
Free TrialN/A21 days21 days21 days
Key FeaturesContact and account management, built-in phone, lifecycle stagesActivity dashboard, workflow automation, AI contact scoringMultiple pipelines, time-based workflows, AI insightsAuto profile enhancement,  account manager, AI forecasting
Workflow RulesN/AUp to 20 rulesUp to 50 rulesUp to 100 rules
Multiple PipelinesN/AN/AUp to 10 pipelinesUp to 10 pipelines

Meanwhile, Freshsales offers a small selection of add-ons that’ll increase existing feature limits or add new functionality altogether, which are only available to purchase with a paid subscription. These vary in price from $5 to $25 per month, as well as an additional 1,000 Freshbot sessions for $100. Below is a brief rundown of Freshsales add-on options:

Popular Freshsales Add-Ons

Configure, Price, Quote (CPQ)

Additional Workflows

Phone Credits

Generate branded quotes, invoices, contracts, and onboarding documents — all of which can be synced with deals in the pipeline. Maintain an updated list of your product catalogs and associate them with specific deals, or set up pricing in multiple currencies or with tax deductions for accurate quoting. All paid Freshsales plans include one CPQ user license for free, and companies can purchase additional CPQ for other users for $19 per user, per month.

Freshsales CPQ

Freshsales CPQ

Extra workflow sequences are available; you can purchase 10 workflows for $5 to help you automate manual and repetitive tasks such as updating records, sending emails, and more. You can also buy additional 1,000 Freshbot session packs to engage with your customers across multiple channels for $100, with chatbots available for all Freshsales plans. Interactions between an end-user and a chatbot within 24 hours are counted as one session.

Freshsales workflow automation

Freshsales workflow automation

Purchase additional phone credits, which are available in either $5, $10, or $25 increments. This add-on is like a prepaid cash balance you can use to add or buy phone numbers and make or receive calls in the CRM. The phone credits add-on also unlocks features such as voicemail transcripts, which is a telephone service that converts voicemail speech to text via Freshcaller.

Freshales cloud telephony

Freshales cloud telephony

For businesses seeking an all-in-one solution for sales, marketing, and customer service, there’s the Freshsales Suite. Starting at $15 per user, per month, this software bundle includes 1,000 marketing contacts, a drag-and-drop journey builder, and WhatsApp Business integration. There’s also a free version of Freshsales Suite, which comes with 100 marketing contacts.

Companies that prefer to create their own bespoke sales, marketing, support, and admin platform can subscribe to and integrate with other products from the Freshworks ecosystem. For example, there’s Freshteam for HR-related matters and the help desk–centric Freshdesk.

Freshsales Features

Freshsales is a sales-forward CRM imbued with artificial intelligence to help generate and nurture leads, accelerate the sales process, and guide teams toward actionable decisions. Below is a closer look at Freshsales’ most notable core CRM features:

Freddy AI

Freshsales - Freddy AI

Freddy AI is the crown jewel of Freshsales’ feature set. It’s present in all paid Freshsales plans, with each tier increasing the number of AI-powered tools. Freddy AI uses CRM data to forecast revenue, recommend sales activity, and interact with prospects. It can also score leads, remove duplicate contact data, and schedule follow-ups at the most appropriate times.

Contact Management

Freshsales - Contact Management

Freshsales offers a 360-degree contact overview, which includes an activity timeline that details every touchpoint between a company and a client or prospect. More advanced contact management features utilize Freddy AI for things like contact scoring, duplicate data deletion, and automatic profile enrichment using information from social media handles.

Freshsales’ AI-powered approach to contact management has landed it a spot among the best contact management software.

Lead Management

Freshsales - Lead Management

Freshsales uses the power of AI to manage leads. Admins can configure a Freddy AI chatbot to qualify leads by gauging interest and answering questions. Managers can set up automatic assignment rules to ensure leads are always sent to the appropriate agents; reps can know which steps to take with leads next courtesy of predictive scoring and forecasting.

Freshsales tops our list of the best lead management software for salespeople thanks to its AI-powered tools, minimal learning curve, and high level of customization.

Pipeline Management

Freshsales - Pipeline Management

Standard with every paid Freshsales plan is a customizable visual pipeline that can be organized as a kanban, funnel, or timeline. Pro and Enterprise subscribers can create up to 10 pipelines; Growth plan holders only have access to one. Freddy AI can guide teams through complex processes by enriching records, forecasting revenue, and identifying dead deals.

See how Freshsales stacks up against other top CRMs in our ranking of the best sales pipeline software, which features selections spanning a variety of price points and use cases.

Reporting & Dashboards

Freshsales - Reporting & Dashboards

All paid Freshsales plans include premade and custom report builders. Basic templates show sales goals, pipeline activity, and other KPIs. Default reports can be altered with more granular metrics plus a selection of charts, graphs, and images. Users can create dashboards with up to six reports apiece or modify the two included dashboards: sales activity and lead generation.

Find out which CRM metrics are worth tracking, then refer to our guides to CRM reporting and CRM dashboards to learn how to build actionable ways to access and share key data.

Workflow Automation

Freshsales - Workflow Automation

Freshsales has a point-and-click interface to generate automated workflows. Tasks can be created for data entry, sending emails, setting appointment reminders, and other sales-centric actions. The Growth plan comes with 20 workflows, while the Enterprise plan includes 100. Up to 100 extra workflows can be added to any Freshsales paid plan for a monthly fee.

Explore the ways sales automation can help your business thrive — whether with Freshsales or another CRM — in our guide to CRM automation.

Built-In Phone

Freshsales - Built-In Phone

All Freshsales’ plans have a built-in cloud telephony service. Companies can purchase local and toll-free numbers from over 90 countries and make calls within the CRM. Basic telephony functions entail caller ID, call masking, and standard reports. Advanced features include porting phone numbers from external carriers, call recording opt-outs, and team conference calls.

Chat & Messaging

Freshsales - Chat & Messaging

Each plan includes access to live chat functionality to interact with leads on a company’s website. Premium chat features use Freddy AI to deliver authentic conversations and automatically route leads based on predefined rules such as agent availability and workload. Reps can identify inactivity and resolve issues, and they can also link with SMS, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and Apple Business Chat.

Read our independent review of the best live chat software options and see how Freshsales performed compared to other CRM platforms.

App Integrations

Freshsales - App Integrations

While Freshsales may not boast a large volume of integrations, the apps it does offer are among the most widely-used sales tools — for instance, Facebook, Mailchimp, Google Workspace, Office 365, and even HubSpot CRM. Users can activate Zapier as a third-party connector for non-native apps or create custom shareable apps.

CRM integration is one of the easiest and most effective ways to enhance a CRM; check out our guide to learn which integrations to add and the ways to install them.

Mobile CRM

Freshsales - Mobile CRM

Freshsales offers a free iOS and Android app. It allows users to search for existing records and create new data offline — a major benefit for field reps who struggle with finding stable Wi-Fi. Freshsales Mobile also takes advantage of the parent platform’s rich telephony functionality with call logging plus a virtual number so reps can discreetly make calls from their personal phone.

We believe Freshsales is one of the best mobile CRMs for salespeople on the go; see how it fares against other sales apps.

Freshsales’ free platform is a decent jump-off point for solopreneurs and small businesses that need basic contact and pipeline management. However, upgrading to any of its paid tiers will open access to more robust functionality — largely thanks to Freddy AI.

Freshsales Ease of Use

Ease of use is among the primary reasons why sales teams choose Freshsales. Setup and implementation are hardly an ordeal — although mileage may vary in this area depending on how much a company intends to personalize the platform. However, Freshsales makes the process of customization, inbox syncing, and data migration fairly simple thanks to self-paced step-by-step walkthroughs that users can follow if they need some additional guidance.

Since it can be rather meaty in terms of features, Freshsales has the potential to overwhelm sales reps who aren’t used to CRMs. However, the Freshsales UI is quite easy to follow; everything is clearly labeled and indicated by corresponding icons. Combined with guided walkthroughs and the option to speak with a Freshsales expert for a full product overview (for free), Freshsales keenly balances efficacy with accessibility.

Freshsales pipeline

Freshsales Customer Service

All Freshsales customers — whether they pay for a subscription or use its free platform — have access to all-hours support via email, phone, and live chat Monday through Friday. But there’s a caveat: the most common complaint we’ve seen from everyday users of the platform is about the inconsistency of Freshsales support. Several reviews claim that there’s no guarantee that the person on the other line will provide timely and/or efficient service.

For individuals who are confident enough to tackle technical issues on their own, there’s a modest self-service knowledge base featuring how-to articles on navigating and setting up Freshsales’ key features (e.g., chat, phone, lead management). Freshworks Academy provides free courses and expert certifications to those who want to better acquaint themselves with Freshsales or other Freshworks products.

Freshsales knowledge base

What People Think of Freshsales

Browsing software review sites shows that Freshsales has a positive reputation overall among the businesses that rely on it every day. Below, we break down Freshsales’ ratings among the top three software review aggregates:

Capterra LogoTrustRadius logo inlineG2 logo
4.5 / 5 stars8.3 / 10 stars4.5 / 5 stars
590+ total reviews100+ total reviews1,000+ total reviews

Freshsales has glowing reviews from a combined 1,600+ reviews across Capterra, TrustRadius, and G2. However, it helps to go beyond the stars and examine the exact reasons why users score Freshsales so well — and alternatively, why some people are more critical in their assessment of this otherwise well-regarded CRM. Below are the common themes that shape Freshsales’ positive and negative feedback.

What People Like About Freshsales

According to its biggest fans, accessibility is a key component of Freshsales’ success — from relatively seamless implementation to a minimal learning curve. Several mid-sized business owners also note that Freshsales gives them the advanced features they want at a much lower cost than Salesforce or HubSpot. Customization is another highlight, as users appreciate how flexible the platform is for tailoring to their specific sales needs.

What People Wish Freshsales Did Better

Customer support appears to be Freshsales’ weakest link. Several reviewers cite slow response times, billing mistakes, and an inability for staff to diagnose and remedy software issues as some of the problems they’ve faced with Freshsales support. Criticisms directed toward the CRM itself note the lack of native integrations compared to other CRMs and frequent bugs — the latter often further exacerbated by the aforementioned lack of quality tech support.

Alternatives to Freshsales

Freshsales provides tremendous value to thousands of companies across the globe, but that doesn’t automatically make it the ideal sales solution for every organization. Whether your business needs a feature-packed free CRM, a mix of marketing and sales functions, or advanced reporting and analytics, there are more suitable options out there. Here are five CRMs we believe are the best alternatives to Freshsales.

Zoho CRM

HubSpot CRM

Salesforce

Pipedrive

Insightly

Zoho CRM is leading marketing software that shares a few key similarities with Freshsales. Both platforms are relatively inexpensive (Zoho CRM ranges between $14 and $52 per user, per month) and include a lot of customizable elements. However, whereas Freshsales stands out for its built-in telephony, Zoho CRM is renowned for its tight social media integrations, making it an excellent choice for teams using Facebook and other social channels for lead nurturing.

Read our Zoho CRM review for a complete breakdown of Zoho CRM to know if this CRM software is the right one for your business.

Freshsales Alternative - Zoho CRM

Most free-for-life CRMs are barebones and untenable for the long-term — but not HubSpot CRM. Like Freshsales, HubSpot’s free CRM offers robust contact management features; however, HubSpot CRM also includes basic reporting, 500+ app integrations, and marketing tools for a more multifaceted CRM. Premium upgrades tend to be on the pricier side (plans start at $45 per month for two users), but they add automation, forecasting, and custom reporting.

Learn more about the ins-and-outs of this industry-leading CRM in our comprehensive HubSpot CRM review.

Freshsales Alternative - HubSpot CRM

Salesforce Sales Cloud is a customizable CRM offering advanced features and collaboration tools for marketing, sales, commerce, service, and data-driven teams to work smarter and more productively. It’s priced between Freshsales’ Growth and Pro plans at $25 per user, per month, and also features a sales assistant like Freddy AI, known as Einstein GPT. However, Salesforce boasts more flexible reporting and task automation than either Freshsales’ Growth or Pro plans.

Check out our article directly comparing Freshsales vs Salesforce, or read our in-depth Salesforce review to discover the ways Salesforce Sales Cloud can benefit growing sales teams.

freshsales crm salesforce

 

Pipedrive is a sales-forward CRM with a straightforward interface and affordable paid tiers. Freshsales ticks those boxes as well, but Pipedrive has a simpler visual UI that’ll help CRM newbies feel at ease. Plus, most Pipedrive plans cost slightly less than Freshsales, with prices starting as low as $14.90 per user, per month. Also standard with every Pipedrive plan is 24/7 live chat support, along with access to an active community forum and vast knowledge base.

We cover more about this CRM's pricing, features, and use cases in our Pipedrive review.

Freshsales Alternative - Pipedrive

Insightly is another sales-centric CRM but with a focus on project management, allowing busy sales reps to convert won opportunities into projects straight from the pipeline. It may have a steeper learning curve than Freshsales due to the depth of its features, automation, and reporting, but Insightly is also accessible enough for CRM newbies. Paid subscriptions start at $29 per user, per month; a barebones free edition also exists with support for two users.

Read our in-depth Insightly review and discover if this project management CRM could be beneficial for your business or organization.

freshsales crm insightly

Are neither of these Freshsales alternatives ticking the right boxes for you? See our full list of the best Freshsales alternatives for a broader range of options based on price and use cases.

How We Evaluated Freshsales

To assess Freshsales, we determined the six main categories for companies or organizations needing a sales-centric CRM with affordable plans and a user-friendly interface. Within each category, we identified weighted subcriteria and assigned an overall score out of five to see how Freshsales performed across the six key categories.

Evaluation Criteria

We primarily looked into Freshsales' pricing and key features since these factors are important for sales teams and businesses looking for robust yet economical CRM software. We then checked the platform’s ease of use, followed by customization capabilities and advanced features. Lastly, we scored its customer support solutions to round out our evaluation.

Cost:
25%
Core Features:
25%
Ease of Use:
20%
Customization:
10%
Advanced Features:
10%
Customer Support:
10%

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What Is Freshsales & What Are Its Key Features?

Freshsales is leading CRM software known for its affordable tiers, user-friendly interface, and robust sales offerings. Its key CRM features include free contact management tools (phone dialer, SMS, and live chat), lead scoring, email integration, customizable deal stages, and strong workflow automations powered by Freddy AI. Businesses also provide glowing reviews for its simple and straightforward UI that helps them manage their sales processes efficiently.

Is Freshsales Suitable for Small Businesses, or Is It Better Suited for Larger Enterprises?

Freshsales is a flexible CRM suitable for both small and medium businesses and enterprises. Its free-for-life platform offers basic contact management features, built-in messaging tools, and a sales dashboard. Additionally, its affordable paid tiers provide advanced sales tools, AI-powered automations, and robust sales forecasting tools. Larger businesses can upgrade to higher plans for stronger customization options or purchase add-ons like CPQ, bot sessions, and more.

Are There Any Limitations to Using Freshsales that Users Should Be Aware Of?

While Freshsales provides comprehensive sales features and automations, there are a few limitations to this popular CRM. It lacks built-in marketing features, and its free platform doesn’t offer a visual pipeline. Users must also upgrade to higher tiers for multiple pipelines and additional workflow rules. Lastly, teams that rely on third-party apps to extend their software’s functionality might find Freshsales’ integration capabilities lacking compared with other CRMs.

Bottom Line: Freshsales Review

Freshsales is an excellent way for growing businesses to harness the power of artificial intelligence as a means to streamline the sales process, nurture leads, and keep team members on the same page without totally bleeding their CRM budget dry. Read our reviews such as this one, heed feedback from regular Freshsales users, try its free version (or trial) before making a final decision, or see our list of the best CRM software to learn more about other options.

This article was written by Alison Barretta and updated by Kezia Jungco.

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