Off-The-Shelf CRM Or Custom CRM Solution: Which One to Choose?

Advices Must Know

Accordingly to the industry report IBISWorld, there are 2,285 CRM vendors in the US as of 2022, and at least 50 globally know CRM Software, such as Salesforce (for small businesses), Zoho CRM (budget CRM), Oracle NetSuite CRM (for E-Commerce), Zendesk (for Complete Customer Life Cycle) and much more others.  

It is not surprising that most companies choose off-the-shelf solutions instead of developing their own CRM systems. However, this choice is more complicated than it seems. So, let’s figure it out. 

Off-The-Shelf CRM

Off-the-shelf CRM is advanced, scalable software that supports standard routine functionality. Therefore, such a CRM system is an excellent solution for ordinary business processes with a limited budget.  

If you need to add additional customization and adapt the CRM system to your business process, you must find a reliable contractor. There are three options here: 

  • Market giants. They guarantee proven and stable software that is used by thousands of customers. Market giants care a lot about their reputation and are pretty inflexible. You often need to hire your development and support team specializing in this technology to get the desired results. 
  • Mid-range providers. Mid-range providers. They have recently entered the market and are still growing. Therefore, mid-range providers are sensitive to the comments of their users and are ready to consider your wishes and complete the modules you need.
  • Small and unknown providers. Unknown providers offer development at a low price, so new companies or startups choose such providers. But this is risky because you must redo the resulting option. As a result – you will only spend a lot of money and your time resource. 

Choosing an Off-The-Shelf CRM Solution, you need to know about its features – positive or negative. So, Off-The-Shelf CRM: 

  • is characterized by high quality and stability;
  • has been tested, launched, and used by many companies for a long time. This makes it easier to find a solution to a problem that other users probably may have already solved; 
  • has qualified support that you can contact if any issues arise; 
  • needs customization (you need to adapt your CRM to your business process or add new features, and this requires you to invest additional costs for development. And that’s without taking into account the monthly fee).   

Custom CRM

A custom CRM is an individual solution developed exclusively for a specific business. Here are some points you’d better take into account: 

  • Custom CRM is created for the specific condition of your business. Therefore, its development is expensive and time-consuming; 
  • It has a convenient pipeline. You can order a CRM that will be easy to use for employees and will take into account the specifics of the enterprise; 
  • Custom CRM is more secure in terms of keeping your data safe. CRM data will not be stored in cloud services but on your secure servers; 
  • The only support is your development team, and no one else in the world knows how to use and fix it; 
  • Overheads are usually higher because each feature must be developed from scratch. 

If you choose a Custom CRM Solution, here are some tips to help you order the services of the development team correctly, without surprises in the future: 

  1. Describe your business process in as much detail as possible.
  2. Make sure the vendor’s team has enough qualified people to solve your problem. Must have – PM (Project Manager) and BA (Business Analyst).
  3. Make sure the Business Analyst understands your process and correctly describes the features that need to be developed. Your final result depends on it!
  4. Assign a person responsible for the development of СRM from your side. This can be a Sales Manager or someone who works with CRM every day and knows all its features. Give this person enough time to understand the improvements and give feedback.
  5. Divide the development into iterations – from the most important features to superficial ones.
  6. Regularly monitor progress and how it is reflected in your work with the client base.


What to choose – Off-The-Shelf CRM or Custom CRM – depends on your business process and capabilities. We recommend you learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of each option or request professional advice.  

We at JetSoftPro, as CRM experts, will always help you choose the optimal solution for your business goals. So, write to us for consultation.   

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