8 Best Lead Management Software for Salespeople 2021

Learn about the best lead management software solutions for top sellers, including the best use-cases for each of the top options.

Lead management software is a tool that analyzes, qualifies, tracks, and helps you nurture leads. The top lead management software are typically CRMs that include automations, integrations, pipeline management, and advanced security to keep information safe. To help you choose the right fit for your lead management process, we reviewed the best software; all are CRMs, as lead management is typically a primary feature.

Here are the eight best lead management software for salespeople:

  • Apptivo (Overall Winner): Best for full-cycle customer management (free starting price)
  • Freshsales: Best software for AI-powered lead management ($29 starting price)
  • HubSpot CRM: Best for inbound lead management (free starting price)
  • Zoho CRM: Best software for multi-channel lead nurturing (free starting price)
  • Pipedrive: Best for managing leads through a visual pipeline ($12.50 starting price)
  • Salesforce Sales Cloud: Best software for advanced features ($25 starting price)
  • Zendesk Sell: Best for lead nurturing templates and scripts ($19 starting price)
  • Keap: Best lead management software for email marketing ($79 starting price)

How We Evaluated the Best Lead Management Software

In our evaluation, we researched each CRM’s core lead management features like multi-channel lead capture, scoring, routing, nurturing prospects to keep them warm, and profiling using public data. We also considered affordability and whether the CRMs are easy enough to adopt. Advanced CRM features and customization were also reviewed for businesses wanting AI assistance and custom reporting and dashboards, and customer service rounded out our research.

Evaluation Criteria

We gave scores on six weighted categories, each containing related criteria. The software that scored the highest amount of points overall was designated the winner.

Pricing:
25%
General Features:
25%
Ease of Use:
20%
Advanced Features:
15%
Customization:
10%
Customer Service:
5%

Note: All per-user prices are with a one-year commitment unless noted.

Apptivo emerged as the best lead management software, scoring the highest overall as well as in the Pricing category. A close runner-up was Freshsales, which won in the General Features, Ease of Use, Customization, and Customer Service categories. See below to learn more about each option’s pricing, features, and scores.

Apptivo: Best for Lead & Customer Management

An affordable, feature-rich CRM with tools that can manage leads from capture to close and beyond.

Price Range: Free to $20+ per user, per month (30-day free trial)

Overall Rating star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Pricing star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full General Features star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Ease of Use star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Advanced Features star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Customization star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Customer Service star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full

Pros:

  • 30-day free trial
  • Highly customizable for any industry
  • Excellent customer service

Cons:

  • No automatic lead routing
  • Limited in third party integrations
  • Users report frequent glitches

Apptivo is a selection of highly customizable business applications that help manage leads from capture to pipeline to post-sale customer service. In addition to the CRM, Apptivo offers features related to email marketing, esignatures and contracts, quotes and invoicing, a contact center and help desk, and more. These capabilities make Apptivo great for businesses looking for a full-cycle solution for lead nurturing and customer service.

Apptivo Pricing

  • Free Plan: Supports 1 user
  • Lite: $8.00 per user, per month
  • Premium: $12 per user, per month
  • Ultimate: $20 per user, per month
  • Enterprise: Call for pricing
  • Free Trial: 30 days

Apptivo Key Features

  • Integrated Applications: Apps work together to create a highly customized CRM.
  • Project Management: Provides a visual representation of milestones, goals, meetings, and delivery dates inside the CRM.
  • Task/Activity Management: Tasks and activities are synced across teammates’ feeds.
  • Workflow Automations: Build customized workflows that can be triggered by events and will move leads to the next state in the pipeline.
  • Customer Support: Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by live chat or 5 days a week by phone.

Apptivo - CRM Lead Management Software

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Freshsales: Best for AI-Powered Lead Management

Uses powerful AI to help businesses automate lead generation and qualification, allowing salespeople to focus on relationships.

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

Overall Rating star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Pricing star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full General Features star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Ease of Use star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Advanced Features star-full star-fullstar-fullstar-full Customization star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Customer Service star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full

Pros:

  • Lowest tier is feature-packed
  • Simple to learn and use
  • Easy migration from other CRMs

Cons:

  • Pricier than most
  • Must upgrade for contact storage
  • Better reports in higher tiers

Freshsales is software with tools for lead tracking, lead scoring, email marketing, and more to help users manage leads through activity and historical data. Its AI assistant, Freddy, provides insights via predictive scoring and sales forecasting, then suggests best next steps so salespeople know how and when to engage with leads. Freshsales is a fit for businesses looking for AI assistance to more strategically manage their leads.

Freshsales Pricing

  • Free Version: Support for unlimited users
  • Growth: $15 per user, per month
  • Pro: $39 per user, per month
  • Enterprise: $69 per user, per month
  • Free Trial: 21 days

Freshsales Key Features

  • AI Assistant: Automates lead generation, qualifies leads, and provides salespeople with deep insights in how to effectively communicate with customers.
  • Automated Workflows: Automatically create tasks to send welcome emails, follow up with leads, and move leads forward.
  • Mobile Management: Syncs with Google maps to automatically get directions or arrange transportation to your customer appointments..
  • Customization: Create landing pages and web forms that convert web traffic into leads, and customize dashboards for the information you need.
  • Customer Support: Available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week by live chat or 5 days a week by phone.

Freshworks CRM - Lead Management Software

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HubSpot CRM: Best for Inbound Lead Management

Offers a feature-packed solution designed to capture and prioritize inbound leads and keep them organized.

Price Range: Free to $1,200 per month (Sales Hub)

Overall Rating star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Pricing star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full General Features star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Ease of Use star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Advanced Features star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Customization star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Customer Service star-fullstar-full star-fullstar-full

Pros:

  • Exceptional training resources
  • Well-designed dashboard
  • Free forever plan

Cons:

  • Must pay for lead nurturing
  • Reporting is limited
  • Customer support is add-on

HubSpot CRM is a cost-optional solution helping companies of all sizes manage their inbound leads. You can create landing pages and web forms to collect the info you need to start sales conversations, and HubSpot CRM will complete lead profiles in the database and route leads automatically. You can also build workflows to send personalized emails to nurture new leads, making HubSpot CRM right for businesses who focus primarily on online lead generation.

HubSpot CRM Pricing

  • Free Plan: Supports unlimited users
  • Sales Hub Starter: Starts at $45 per month for 2 users
  • Sales Hub Professional: Starts at $450 per month for 5 users
  • Sales Hub Enterprise: Starts at $1,200 for per month for 10+ users

HubSpot CRM Key Features

  • Lead Routing: Automatically distribute leads to the appropriate salesperson along with follow-up tasks.
  • Lead Management: See lead details inside contact profiles and view a timeline of activity, plus history, for more informed follow-ups.
  • List Segmentation: Build targeted lists and use email automations to nurture leads and grow your customer database.
  • Lead Scoring: Customize the scoring feature with your own criteria or use HubSpot’s predictive lead scoring software.
  • Lead Profiling: Automatically optimize your customer records with data you request from customers on web forms.

HubSpot CRM - Lead Management Software

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Zoho CRM: Best for Multi-Channel Lead Nurturing

Provides a suite of lead management features like routing and scoring, plus lead nurturing through various channels.

Price Range: Free to $52 per user, per month (15- to 30-day free trial)

Overall Rating star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Pricing star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full General Features star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Ease of Use star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Advanced Features star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Customization star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Customer Service star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full

Pros:

  • Has a free forever plan
  • AI tools automate nurturing
  • Excellent lead & customer insights

Cons:

  • Advanced analytics only in Ultimate tier
  • Automations only in upgraded tiers
  • Customer support often reported slow

Zoho CRM is customer management software with lead scoring, nurturing, and tracking. Salespeople can talk to customers through multiple channels, such as email, phone, website chat, and social media, without switching systems for more personalized outreach — all lead information remains centralized in one platform. Zoho CRM works great for companies needing a solution to manage their diverse communications with high volumes of leads.

Check out our article on the best lead nurturing software for more detail on the top options.

Zoho CRM Pricing

  • Free Forever: Support for 3 users
  • Standard: $14 per user, per month
  • Professional: $23 per user, per month
  • Enterprise: $40 per user, per month
  • Ultimate: $52 per user, per month
  • Free Trial: 15 days; 30 days for Ultimate tier

Zoho CRM Key Features

  • Pipeline Customization: Custom fields pull tailored customer information into pipelines for easy deal management.
  • Lead Management: Segments customer lists and manages follow-ups to ensure all steps to close are taken.
  • Analytics: Turns sales performance data into insights salespeople can use to focus on high-priority deals.
  • Task Management: Create tasks and notes, track conversations, and view history for better sales performance.
  • Custom Views and Filters: Advanced filters and timeline views allow salespeople to focus on vital statistics and information about each customer.

Zoho CRM - Lead Management Software

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Pipedrive: Best for a Visual Pipeline

Features clean drag-and-drop pipeline views so salespeople know exactly where leads are positioned in the sales funnel.

Price Range: $12.50 to $49.90 per user, per month (14-day free trial)

Overall Rating star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Pricing star-fullstar-full star-fullstar-full General Features star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Ease of Use star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Advanced Features star-fullstar-full star-fullstar-full Customization star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Customer Service star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full

Pros:

  • Visual pipeline for lead nuturing
  • Leadbooster add-on available
  • Syncs with calendars

Cons:

  • Bulk email not available
  • Leads and contacts not separated
  • Workflow automations in Advanced Tier

Pipedrive is a CRM that gives a visual representation of the sales process. Import new leads manually or via your website’s chat and forms, then label and filter them to schedule activities like emails or calls with the strongest ones. Leads will then appear in a visual pipeline sorted by activity due date so your salespeople can stay on top of lead management. Pipedrive is best for sales teams needing a clean, visual pipeline to organize their leads and tasks.

Pipedrive Pricing

  • Essential: $12.50 per user, per month
  • Advanced: $24.90 per user, per month
  • Professional: $49.90 per user, per month
  • Free Trial: 14 days

Pipedrive Key Features

  • Sales Pipelines: Create one for each team or rep to make meeting their sales goals a more visual process.
  • Deal Management: Track deals, and see and prioritize ones that are growing cold.
  • Custom Fields: Create fields to collect the lead data you need
  • Calendar Sync: Integrates with Google, iCloud, and Microsoft Office, and also syncs across devices.
  • Lead AI: Analyzes sales actions, suggests improvements, notifies you of account changes, and gives progress reports.

Pipedrive - Lead Management Software

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Salesforce Sales Cloud: Best Advanced Features

Customer and lead management software with AI and other advanced tools that enrich and protect sales and lead data.

Price Range: $25 to $300 per user, per month (14-day free trial)

Overall Rating star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Pricing star-fullstar-full star-fullstar-full General Features star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Ease of Use star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Advanced Features star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Customization star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Customer Service star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full

Pros:

  • Highly customizable
  • Lead tracker keeps records updated
  • Lead scoring is automatic

Cons:

  • Pricier than most
  • Add-ons unlock full potential
  • Cluttered interface with learning curve

Salesforce Sales Cloud is a powerful, customizable CRM. Advanced tools like automated lead scoring and routing, custom sales forecasting reports, “Sales Path” lead tracking, “Einstein” AI assistant, built-in quoting, and a mobile app fully equip your sales team to manage leads. Leading security measures also protect against data loss and breaches, making Sales Cloud ideal for large teams that want the best features available for lead and contact management.

Salesforce Sales Cloud Pricing

  • Essentials: $25 per user, per month
  • Professional: $75 per user, per month
  • Enterprise: $150 per user, per month
  • Unlimited: $300 per user, per month
  • Free Trial: 14 days

Salesforce Sales Cloud Key Features

  • Lead Tracking: See and access updated lead information, where it came from, and relevant insights.
  • Automatic Lead Routing: Ensure the right salesperson gets the lead for quicker introductions.
  • Track Marketing: Manage and track campaigns so you can see how they’re affecting your pipeline.
  • Opportunity Management: Manage deals with activity trackers, dynamic updates, and quick email templates.
  • Customized Reports: Build sales forecasting reports with drag-and-drop fields and filters for real-time views.

Salesforce Sales Cloud - Lead Management Software

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Zendesk Sell: Best for Templates & Scripts

A simple-to-use sales tool best for managing deals and leads coming in through call centers.

Price Range: $19 to $99 per user, per month (14-day free trial)

Overall Rating star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Pricing star-fullstar-full star-fullstar-full General Features star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Ease of Use star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full Advanced Features star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Customization star-fullstar-full star-fullstar-full Customer Service star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full

Pros:

  • Reps can access deal updates
  • Nicely designed mobile app
  • Simple, organized UI

Cons:

  • Needs Zendesk Service for full capability
  • Limited live customer support
  • Uploading customer records cumbersome

Zendesk Sell is a customer-service-focused CRM with lead management and collaboration tools. Users can create and store unlimited templates for email campaigns and personalize them with recipients’ name, company, and more, and salespeople can access notes and call scripts in the CRM to better support each lead via phone and email. This makes Zendesk Sell ideal for those looking to streamline lead management via forms, templates, and scripts.

Zendesk Sell Pricing

  • Sell Team: $19 per user, per month
  • Sell Professional: $49 per user, per month
  • Sell Enterprise: $99 per user, per month
  • Free Trial: 14-days

Zendesk Sell Key Features

  • Lead Nurturing Templates: Send automated emails, leverage custom forms, and reference custom sales scripts.
  • Integrations: Access a library of 1,000+ prebuilt third-party business app integrations.
  • Automatic Lead Distribution: Create rules for lead distribution based on lead source, lead profiling, or round-robin rules to match leads with the appropriate salesperson.
  • Lead Tracking: Segment customers, monitor activity, analyze data for patterns, and collaborate with your team.

Zendesk Sell - Lead Management Software

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Keap: Best for Email Marketing to Leads

Customer management software with excellent email marketing tools for engaging and nurturing leads.

Price Range: $79 to $199 per month for one user, then $30 per additional user, per month; $499 one-time set-up fee (14-day free trial)

Overall Rating star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Pricing star-fullstar-full star-fullstar-full General Features star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Ease of Use star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Advanced Features star-full star-fullstar-fullstar-full Customization star-fullstar-fullstar-full star-full Customer Service star-fullstar-fullstar-fullstar-full

Pros:

  • Highly rated customer service
  • Easy set-up email campaigns
  • Simple, uncluttered UI

Cons:

  • Must purchase set-up coaching
  • Must manually save work
  • No lead AI assistant

Keap is a CRM and marketing platform that allows salespeople to capture and engage with leads via web and email tools. Collect email addresses through attractive web forms, then segment lists according to leads’ behavior and data, build automated emails using templates, and launch effortless campaigns from inside the CRM. These email features plus A/B testing, reporting, and analytics mean Keap is ideal for those who rely on email to convert leads.

Keap Pricing

  • Lite: $79 supports one user and 500 contacts, per month, + $30 each additional user
  • Pro: $159 supports one user and 500 contacts, per month, + $30 each additional user
  • Max: $199 supports one user and 500 contacts, per month, + $30 each additional user
  • More Contacts: See website for pricing
  • Purchase of Set-up and Expert Coaching (required): $499
  • Free Trial: 14 days

Keap Key Features

  • Email Marketing: Trigger automated, personalized nurture campaigns with visually appealing, easy-to-use templates.
  • Sales and Marketing Automation: Automate repetitive tasks and convert with automated follow-ups.
  • Pipeline Management: Drag-and-drop pipelines show you the status of leads and deals and sync with the CRM.
  • Track Marketing: Manage and track campaigns so you can see how they’re affecting your pipeline.
  • Customized Analytics: Analytics dashboard reveals insights, data, and traffic, like where and when conversions happen in the sales process.

Keap - Lead Management Software

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Bottom Line: Best Lead Management Software

Without a structured lead management strategy in place, incoming leads run the risk of not getting qualified or nurtured properly, which wastes valuable time for you and them. Worse, your potential customers could receive outdated or duplicate messaging, turning them off your product or service. But with the help of the CRMs on this list, you can take control of your lead management and convert them into paying customers. 

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