Salesforce vs. Insightly for Manufacturing Firms

Choosing the right CRM for your manufacturing firm

Tight margins, rising labor costs, and slow supply chains. These are just a few of the many reasons why running a manufacturing firm is challenging. With a ton of employees working independently in their roles, it’s highly important for a manufacturing firm to have a robust software application that is the single source of truth for the business. That application is typically a customer relationship management system (CRM).

How do I choose a CRM for manufacturing?

Now that you know you need a CRM for your manufacturing firm, the question is, which one to choose? Salesforce and Insightly are both popular CRM platforms that cater to a wide range of industries, including manufacturing. These platforms offer tools and features designed to streamline processes, enhance customer relationships, and improve overall efficiency. In the context of manufacturing firms, let’s compare Salesforce and Insightly across various key aspects. Keep in mind that Salesforce is considered a legacy CRM whereas Insightly is a modern CRM, so many of these comparisons will be evident through that lens. 

  1. CRM Scalability:
  • Salesforce: Known for its scalability, Salesforce is highly suitable for large, global enterprises. It provides a highly customizable platform that can grow with the evolving needs of manufacturing firms. 
  • Insightly: Insightly is designed for growing businesses, which means that it can be a powerful, affordable tool for small and mid-sized businesses but still has the features and power for large-scale manufacturing operations. Insightly’s scalability extends to its price point in that Insightly can accommodate all types of budgets.
  1. Customization:
  • Salesforce: One of Salesforce’s strengths lies in its extensive customization options. Manufacturing firms can tailor the platform to their specific requirements, creating unique workflows and modules. While these customizations will require an outside consultant, such as an integrator or developer, which can be costly and take a while, they will be effective when launched.
  • Insightly: Insightly offers extensive customization features that are as robust as Salesforce in terms of flexibility. However, since Insightly is a modern CRM, customizations can be made by regular team members without the need for highly technical resources. This could be a consideration for manufacturing firms with complex and unique processes but without a budget to hire and retain help from pricey outside firms.
  1. Integration Capabilities:
  • Salesforce: Salesforce boasts a vast ecosystem and supports seamless integration with various third-party applications. This is helpful for manufacturing firms looking to connect their CRM with other tools such as ERP systems or marketing automation platforms.
  • Insightly: Insightly’s integration capabilities are facilitated by AppConnect, a middleware product that is part of the Insightly platform. AppConnect offers the ability to create low-code/no-code integrations, and there are more than 1000 pre-built connections that are ready to use. Businesses with a diverse tech stack are sure to find the app connections they need. 
  1. User-Friendly Interface:
  • Salesforce: The user interface of Salesforce has evolved over the years, offering a more intuitive and user-friendly experience. However, the sheer depth of features may still present a learning curve for some users. Since it is a legacy CRM, users of modern SaaS platforms may find the interface and page load speeds to be cumbersome. 
  • Insightly: Insightly is often praised for its user-friendly interface, making it easier for teams to adopt quickly. This can be advantageous for manufacturing firms where efficient onboarding is essential.
  1. Pricing:
  • Salesforce: Salesforce is known for being a premium CRM solution, and its pricing reflects that. While it offers comprehensive features, the cost may be a significant factor for manufacturing firms with budget constraints.
  • Insightly: Insightly generally offers more affordable pricing plans (and even a free plan to get started), making it an attractive option for growing manufacturing businesses. With the essential features needed for a manufacturing CRM, Insightly is priced well. 
  1. Analytics and Reporting:
  • Salesforce: Salesforce provides robust analytics and reporting tools, allowing manufacturing firms to gain valuable insights into their sales, customer interactions, and overall business performance. These tools are complex and costly, but they can serve enterprises well with the business intelligence they provide.
  • Insightly: Insightly also offers analytics and reporting features, and they are highly customizable. For manufacturing firms heavily reliant on data-driven decision-making, the depth of analytics tools is crucial. Insightly provides what is needed for small firms out of the box and for larger firms with some customization.

See how one manufacturing firm uses Insightly in this short video: Insightly Customer Testimonial – SIGMA Equipment

Insightly vs. Salesforce for manufacturing businesses

Both Salesforce and Insightly have their strengths and weaknesses when it comes to serving manufacturing firms. Salesforce, with its scalability, extensive customization, and integration capabilities, may be better suited for large enterprises with complex processes and larger budgets. On the other hand, Insightly’s affordability and user-friendly interface make it an attractive choice for all types of manufacturing businesses with CRM needs. Ultimately, the decision should be based on the specific requirements, size, and budget constraints of the manufacturing firm in question.