Industry-Specific CRM: Find the Best Option for Your Niche

Discover the ways industry-specific CRM software can make your business more competitive in your field in our comprehensive guide.

Customer relationship management (CRM) software is a tool used in various industries that organizes client data and automates tasks. Most companies can find success with a general CRM, but an industry-specific CRM includes a suite of niche features that can be more effective in helping your business remain competitive in your field. To help you find the right option for your niche, we’ve compiled a list of industry-specific CRMs with their benefits and key features.

Here is the alphabetical list of industry-specific CRMs we cover:

  • Accounting CRM: Minimizes lost time and reduces human error by automating core accounting processes. Read more below
  • Automotive CRM: Gives dealerships the resources to access buying trends and provide timely customer service. Read more below.
  • B2B CRM:  Helps B2B companies automate tasks, develop email campaigns, and contact key corporate decision makers. Read more below.
  • Call Center CRM: Offers call center agents tools to manage tasks, route calls, and monitor quality of customer service. Read more below.
  • Ecommerce CRM: Allows online retailers to develop targeted campaigns and personalized experiences for shoppers. Read more below.
  • Financial Advisor CRM: Assists CFPs with marketing their services and securing sensitive client financial data. Read more below.
  • Freelance CRM: Serves as a utility player for solo contractors who need assistance with finding new business and managing ongoing projects. Read more below.
  • Healthcare CRM: Streamlines administrative duties and makes sure electronic health data is HIPAA-compliant. Read more below.
  • Insurance CRM: Aids insurance agents with capturing leads, retaining clients, and preventing policy lapses. Read more below.
  • Law Firm CRM: Enables lawyers to automatically intake clients, send digital contracts, and keep data compliant with legal standards. Read more below.
  • Nonprofit CRM: Offers tools to boost fundraising and outreach initiatives, including volunteer management. Read more below.
  • Real Estate CRM: Helps residential and commercial agents source new listings and manage referrals. Read more below.
  • Retail CRM: Supports online and brick-and-mortar stores by offering tools to manage payment collections and inventory restocks. Read more below.
  • Startup CRM: Allows early-stage businesses to automate repetitive tasks so they can focus on growing their company. Read more below.

Accounting CRM

An accounting CRM is designed for accountants and bookkeepers who want to organize financial data and simplify tasks that are often drawn out and laden with paperwork. CRM software for accounting can provide real-time analysis of a business’s financial health and includes multiple modules such as accounts payable, payroll, and billing. It’s an ideal solution for making accounting processes more efficient and compliant with tax codes.

Key Accounting CRM Features

  • Workflow Automation: Minimize paperwork, reduce human error, and automate repetitive tasks that otherwise eat into billable hours. 
  • Billing and Invoicing: Generate and send invoices right within the CRM, then automatically add payment information to a client’s profile.
  • General Ledger: Have a complete view of a client or company’s accounts payable/receivable, revenue, and other key financials.
  • Reporting and Analytics: Create visual reports and dashboards that clearly outline essential financial data.
  • Data Security and Encryption: Keep sensitive data safe with a CRM that adheres to security standards.

Discover more information about the benefits of a CRM for accountants and bookkeepers by checking out our guide to the best QuickBooks CRM software.

Automotive CRM

Automotive CRM software allows car dealerships to connect with potential buyers and prioritize leads who are ready to buy a vehicle. It gives auto dealerships the tools they need to manage interactions with current and potential customers, access up-to-date purchase insights, and track buyer activity — resulting in a higher level of customer service, a more refined sales process, and an overall boost in revenue.

Key Automotive CRM Features

  • License and VIN Scanning: Easily save customer info by scanning their license and car’s VIN number.
  • DMS Integration: Gain access to major DMS providers for up-to-date purchasing insights.
  • Enterprise Management: Dealership chains can manage and leverage inventory at individual locations.
  • Communication Management: Reach out to prospective buyers via email or SMS, and view a history of each interaction.
  • Accountability Tracking: Ensure dealership staff are providing customers with top tier service through call tracking.

Discover all the ways a CRM benefits automotive dealerships by heading over to our list of the best automotive CRM software.

B2B CRM

A B2B CRM is geared toward companies that sell their products and services directly to other businesses. It includes ways for B2B organizations to organize sales data, automate marketing tasks, and manage emails and B2B leads. B2B sales and marketing professionals can use B2B CRM software to better understand their customers, develop effective marketing messages, and reach key decision makers at the optimal time.

Key B2B CRM Features

  • Task Management: Automate task assignments and hold leads from progressing through the funnel until key tasks are completed.
  • Lead Automation: Use automated rules to track and qualify leads, then route them to the right sales rep.
  • Email Marketing: Build personalized emails to send to the right decision makers at the right time.
  • Automated Data Entry: Use lead capture tools to collect contact information through web forms, emails, social media, and business cards.
  • Custom Reporting and Analytics: Build custom reports and dashboards to understand exactly what your B2B company needs.

Explore the ways a CRM can give a B2B company an advantage over its competitors by checking out our guide to the best B2B CRM software.

Call Center CRM

A call center CRM combines inbound and outbound calling features with sales management tools for enhanced customer support. It ideally integrates seamlessly with a call center’s phone provider and helps call center reps track activity, manage tickets, and create marketing automations. CRM software for call centers will help call center agents organize tasks, enhance customer relationships, and even uncover sales opportunities.

Key Call Center CRM Features

  • Telephony: Make outbound calls to contacts or leads right within the CRM. 
  • Call Routing: Redirect callers to the right call center representative or sales agent.
  • Activity Tracking: Record customer interactions to monitor quality assurance and avoid repeat scenarios.
  • Task Management: Helps call center agents organize support tickets and previous customer interactions. 
  • Marketing Automation: Save time on lead nurturing by automating social media campaigns and sending automated texts or emails.

Learn more about the benefits of a CRM for call centers by checking out our guide to the best call center CRM software.

Ecommerce CRM

Ecommerce CRM is software that helps online retailers monitor customer behavior, organize buyer data, and manage digital marketing activities. It provides ways for retailers to generate and convert web traffic through marketing automation, social media, and email drips. Most importantly, ecommerce CRM software offers insight into buyer trends so retailers can better understand their motivations to buy — and ultimately increase sales.

Key Ecommerce CRM Features

  • Marketing Tools: Reach existing and prospective customers through email drips and social media campaigns.
  • Activity Tracking: View customers as they browse a retail site in real time to understand their buying habits.
  • Multiple Language Support: Global retailers will be able to reach a wider audience by offering support for multiple languages.
  • Social Media Integration: Create additional buying hubs via Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.
  • Cart Recovery: Learn why customers abandon their carts to develop methods that will motivate them to return and complete their purchase.

If you need even more reasons to adopt a CRM for your online retail store, read our guide to the best ecommerce CRM software.

Financial Advisor CRM

A financial advisor CRM is software geared toward certified financial planners (CFPs) who want to generate leads, optimize workflow, and secure client data. It’s a convergence of spreadsheets, calendars, and word processing that also adds features like task automation, activity tracking, and lead capture. A CRM for financial advisors can help CFPs market their services, keep accounts in compliance, and strengthen client relationships.

Key Financial Advisor CRM Features

  • Security and Compliance: Keep client data in compliance with such standards as the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).
  • Workflow Automation: Streamline mundane tasks like data entry, appointment scheduling, and follow-up emails.
  • Campaign Management: Develop email, call, and social media campaigns to promote financial services — then use analytics to track how they’re performing.
  • Householding: Keep client data organized through grouping contacts by address, relationship, referrals, and associations.
  • Milestone Tracking: Receive alerts for clients’ personal and business milestones to provide them with relevant financial products.

Gain an even better understanding of how CFPs can increase their business with a CRM by reading our list of the best CRM software for financial advisors.

Freelancer CRM

Freelancer CRM software is designed for independent contractors who want to keep better track of clients and effectively manage projects. Since it’s made with single users or very small teams in mind, a CRM for freelancers is often simple to use and comes with ample customer support for easy implementation. A freelancer CRM acts as a utility player for solo freelancers by automating tasks like invoicing and billing, lead nurturing, and client management.

Key Freelancer CRM Features

  • Marketing Automation: Advertise goods and services via automated social media and email campaigns.
  • Invoicing and Billing: Generate custom or premade invoices, and simplify the billing process by setting up proration and billing cycles.
  • Task Management: Stay on top of what needs to be done by applying notifications to deals, contacts, and cases.
  • Deal Management: Have a complete picture of each deal on display to manage projects better.
  • Integrations: Sync the CRM with Google Workspace, Microsoft Office, and other productivity software for a more integrated workflow.

Freelancers who want to know how a CRM can give them a hand in managing their business can take a look at our guide to the best CRMs for freelancers.

Healthcare CRM

Healthcare CRM software is made to help hospitals, medical practices, and care facilities streamline their billing and scheduling processes, improve patient outreach, and organize sensitive medical data in compliance with HIPAA. Using a healthcare CRM will give private practices and larger health networks an advantage when it comes to staying connected with patients, acquiring new clients, and streamlining essential administrative tasks.

Key Healthcare CRM Features

  • HIPAA Compliance: Ensure electronic health records (EHR) are encrypted and secure to avoid possible breaches, which could result in fines and criminal charges.
  • Patient Outreach: Notify current patients of upcoming appointments or respond to prospect queries via automated emails, SMS messages, or phone calls.
  • Online Scheduling: Allow patients to schedule appointments online through a self-service calendar that shows real-time availability. 
  • Billing and Payments: Send invoices and collect payments through secure digital portals.
  • Physician Management: Monitor physician activity to avoid prolonged gaps in patient care and engagement.

Find out more about healthcare CRMs in our guide to the best HIPAA-compliant healthcare CRM software.

Insurance CRM

Insurance CRM software is made for insurance agents who want to improve customer retention, capture new leads, and closely track policy updates. It also helps automate mundane tasks like updating client data, sending follow-up and reminder emails, and scheduling appointments. An insurance CRM is necessary for insurance agents who want a simpler way to grow their client list, maintain close customer relationships, and keep an organized record of policies.

Key Insurance CRM Features

  • Policy Lifecycles: Track every step of client onboarding, from quoting and underwriting to billing.
  • Lead Management: Capture leads with an array of digital marketing tools; automatically route leads to the right agent based on pre-set parameters.
  • Automated Reminders: Set triggers for sending automated messages to customers upon hitting personal milestones or an impending policy lapse.
  • Commission Management: Manage sub-agents, audit deals, and stay on top of lapsing policies.
  • Marketing Tools: Promote insurance services with social media integration plus email and SMS drips

See how else insurance agents and firms can use a CRM to their advantage by heading over to our article on the best insurance CRM software.

Law Firm CRM

A CRM for law firms adds law-specific features that enable law firms to track critical information, perform client intake, and manage workflow. While a standard CRM can nurture leads and clients, a law firm CRM does this while also maintaining legal compliance requirements. A CRM for law firms helps lawyers focus on billable work by automating workflows and streamlining client intake so they can establish new relationships and meet key deadlines.

Key Law Firm CRM Features

  • Documents and Esignatures: Email documents and retainer agreements to clients for quick esignatures, then save those documents in a central, secure location.
  • Client Intake: Build custom online client intake forms; information can then be automatically added to the CRM for subsequent onboarding and follow-ups.
  • Marketing Tools: Advertise legal services via social media campaigns and/or drip email campaigns.
  • Time Tracker: Record time and expenses to easily invoice for billable hours.
  • Proactive Triggers: Create rules that will automatically send an invoice once an agreement has been signed.

For more information on how a law firm CRM can streamline a lawyer’s workflow and client intake process, head over to our guide of the best CRM software for law firms.

Nonprofit CRM

Nonprofit CRM software is used to help nonprofit organizations engage with current and prospective donors, manage volunteers and contributions, and create effective marketing campaigns. Nonprofits of all sizes can benefit from an industry-specific CRM that aids in developing feasible fundraising goals, boosting awareness of their cause, and improving relationships with volunteers, donors, and contributors.

Key Nonprofit CRM Features

  • Donation Management: Set up online donation channels to easily track both monetary and in-kind contributions.
  • Marketing Automation: Develop outreach efforts via email, SMS, social media, or direct mail — all of which can be automated.
  • Fundraising Management: Generate reports and real-time updates on fundraising events, individual donations, foundation grants, and corporate sponsorships. 
  • User Portals: Create forms for supporters to enter their information right into the CRM when they sign up to volunteer or make a donation.  
  • Donor Profiles: Maintain a history of every donor’s contributions to and interactions with a nonprofit.

Learn more about why a CRM makes sense for nonprofits by taking a look at our guide to the best nonprofit CRM software.

Real Estate CRM

A real estate CRM is designed to help real estate agents manage current and potential leads, source new property listings, and set up alerts so they can match clients to the best listings. It’s useful for both commercial and residential real estate agents who want to organize lead and property data, streamline transactions, and create a centralized hub of property listing sources — leaving agents with more time to focus on closing deals and building client relationships.

Key Real Estate CRM Features

  • MLS Integration: Import property listings direct from Zillow, Trulia, and other aggregates.
  • Client Matching: Create real-time alerts for new properties that match clients’ preferences.
  • Referral Tracking: See which clients or organizations are helping to usher in new business; also helps gauge customer loyalty and longevity.
  • Drip Campaigns: Build email and SMS lists, then automate sends to the appropriate leads or clients at the right time.  
  • Commission Tracking: Calculate and manage how much revenue agents are bringing in per sale, and schedule those payouts.

For more information on how a CRM can benefit real estate agents, check out our guide to the best real estate CRM software.

Retail CRM

A retail CRM is software that supports customer-facing B2C sales, whether in-store or online. It includes features such as a point-of-sale (POS) system and inventory management to analyze customers’ shopping patterns and purchase history. Retail CRM software can play an instrumental role in helping online and brick-and-mortar stores reduce costs, satisfy customers, and generate more sales in a shorter amount of time.

Key Retail CRM Features

  • Cash Management: Reduce register errors and prevent revenue loss by tracking every cash movement and analyzing totals by payment type. 
  • Customer Management: Develop loyalty programs to enhance customer relationships and create user profiles to help generate personal product recommendations. 
  • Inventory Management: Track inventory in real time to monitor stock levels, transfer product across locations, and reorder items that fall below a certain number of stock.
  • Targeted Campaigns: Create mailing lists for targeted campaigns to notify the right customers of special sales.
  • Reporting and Analytics: Create reports and dashboards to track order history, hourly sales, product mix, and much more.

Explore more ways a CRM can help brick-and-mortar and online retail stores by checking out our guide to the best retail CRM software.

Startup CRM

A startup CRM is software that helps early-stage companies attract and manage leads so they can grow their customer base and generate revenue. CRM software for startups is affordable and scalable since startups are usually on a tighter budget and immersed in a competitive, ever-changing environment. Startup CRM software is an essential time-saving measure for startup employees who can focus less on menial tasks in order to grow their business.

Key Startup CRM Features

  • Workflow Automation: Automate repetitive tasks like email follow-ups, appointment scheduling, and contact data entry.
  • Lead Management: Route leads to the appropriate agent; score and prioritize leads based on behavior and historical data.
  • Lead Generation: Capture leads directly from a website or live chat widget to the CRM.
  • Omnichannel Communication: Engage with leads and clients through social media, messaging, email, phone, and SMS.
  • Project Management: Track every deal from start to finish, and monitor every client interaction along the way.

If you’re a startup founder looking for a CRM solution that addresses your unique needs, head over to our guide to the best CRMs for startups.

Bottom Line: Industry-Specific CRMs

General CRM software can equip your business with the right tools to organize data, optimize workflow, and improve customer relationships. However, an industry-specific CRM includes niche features combined with key general CRM functions to amplify your organization’s chance for success. Ultimately, the right CRM for you depends on what your business needs to remain competitive within your industry.

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