Decoding CRM and Spreadsheets: The Entrepreneur's Choice

17.08.2023 05:36 PM By Karan Sharma

Trying to figure out the best way to deal with data and customer smiles? Let's talk about the make-believe match between CRM and spreadsheets for your business needs. While CRM has its fancy perks, don't underestimate the basic simplicity and usefulness of spreadsheets.

CRM and Spreadsheet: Which is best for your business
Introduction to CRM and Spreadsheet

​Introduction to CRM and Spreadsheet

Let's talk about CRM and Spreadsheets—two tools that can make a big difference in how your business handles data and customer relationships. 

Spreadsheets: Making Numbers Manageable
In the world of business, spreadsheets are like digital notebooks that work wonders with numbers. Imagine creating a budget for your home or keeping track of a to-do list – that's what spreadsheets are great at. They help businesses organise information neatly, whether it's sales figures, expenses, or inventory. You can use them to add up numbers, compare data, and even create colourful charts to see trends. 

CRM Systems: Supercharging Customer Relationships
On the other hand, we have Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems, which are like supercharged address books. They're not just about keeping phone numbers and emails; they're about taking care of customers like champs. These systems help businesses remember who their customers are, what they like, and when they last talked. It's like having a personal assistant for customer relationships. CRM systems make sure businesses don't forget important follow-ups, provide better customer service, and even help with things like sending out special offers. So, while spreadsheets are the number heroes, CRM systems are the customer champions – making sure businesses build and maintain great relationships.

Putting It All Together
Even though CRM and Spreadsheet systems do different jobs, they're both like secret weapons for businesses. Spreadsheets handle numbers and organisation, while CRM systems take care of customers and relationships. So, whether a business needs to crunch numbers or keep customers happy, these tools have their backs. By using the right tool at the right time, businesses can run smoother, make better decisions, and grow stronger.
CRM vs Spreadsheet

The CRM vs ​Spreadsheet Showdown

Let's talk about how to keep track of your customer relationships in a way that's easy to understand. Imagine we're in a showdown between two tools: a fancy CRM (that's just a high-tech system for managing customer info) and a good old spreadsheet.

Think of it like this: On one side, we've got the CRM, which is like a smart helper that remembers everything about your customers, what they like, and more. On the other side, it's spreadsheets, which are like digital notebooks.

Now, businesses have to choose between using the fancy helper (CRM) or the trusty notebook (spreadsheets) to figure out which one helps them succeed better. It's kind of like deciding between a fast sports car and a reliable bike – each has its own strengths and weaknesses.

Check out this cheat sheet on CRM and Spreadsheet that lays out the cool stuff these two can do




Centralised Data

Yes, and it's awesome!


Automated Workflows



Reporting and Analytics

You betcha!



Oh yeah! Teamwork!



For sure!



Yep, it grows with you!

Not really


Safe and sound!

Be cautious

Now, let's dive into this table of CRM and Spreadsheets

CRM Magic

  • Centralised Data: Imagine your customer information, all present in one spot. That's the magic of a CRM. Names, sales history, notes – it's all there, easy to keep track of.
  • Automated Workflows: Let the CRM do the heavy lifting – sending emails, making quotes, and setting up appointments. You? You get more time to tackle important stuff.
  • Reporting and Analytics: Fancy words for cool tools that help you see how you're doing. Trends, progress – it's like having a business GPS.
  • Collaboration: Teamwork made simple. Share notes, docs, and updates. Everyone's on the same page, all the time.
  • Scalability: Imagine your business growing. A CRM can handle that growth, with no problem. More customers? More data? Bring it on. Spreadsheets, on the other hand, might start feeling cramped. 
  • Security: CRMs are like a fortress. They're designed to keep your data safe from prying eyes. Spreadsheets? Well, they're a bit more like a locked door. You need to be careful who has the key.

Spreadsheet Simplicity

  • Basic Data Storage: Think of a spreadsheet as a storage locker for basic info, like names and other sales stuff. But remember, it's not as cool as a CRM when it comes to fancy tricks.
  • Customisation: Ever tried on different outfits? Spreadsheets can dress up as whatever you need. But, fair warning, it takes time and might trip you up.
  • Collaboration: You can share spreadsheets, but it's like sharing a cake – hard to know who took a slice and when.

So, here’s the deal between CRM and Spreadsheet: CRMs win the feature face-off. They're like the all-in-one package, doing lots of cool stuff and being easy to use. If you're serious about handling your customer relationships like a pro, go for a CRM. But if your wallet's feeling light or you just need a basic way to store info, a spreadsheet might do the job.

Remember, the choice is yours! Think about what you need and what your wallet says, and you'll find the winner in this showdown.

If you want to get the gist in a friendly and simple way, just check out this short video. It's a quick way to grasp the idea without spending too much time. And hey, don't miss out on our other videos and articles for more info!

The Benefits of Using a CRM over Spreadsheets

The ​Benefits of Using a CRM over Spreadsheets

Ever wondered about CRM tools and how businesses use them to keep track of customers? Well, we're about to dive into why using a CRM system is like upgrading from a basic flip phone to a super-smart smartphone when compared to spreadsheets. Let's talk about some of the cool benefits!

  1. Scalability: Imagine your business is like a growing plant. A CRM is like a special pot that grows with your plant, giving it more room as it gets bigger. Spreadsheets, however, are like tiny pots that get cramped as your plant (business) grows taller. It is one of the major reasons for the choice between CRM and Spreadsheet.
  2. Integrations: Think of a CRM as a big professional team-up. It can join forces with your website, email system, and money-tracking software. They all work together to save you time and give you a complete picture of your customers. Spreadsheets, unfortunately, aren't as good at teaming up and might slow you down.
  3. Mobile access: With a CRM, it's like having your customer info in your pocket. No matter where you are, you can pull out your phone and get the details you need. Spreadsheets, on the other hand, are like big maps that only work in your office. This is a big reason for many business owners to decide between using CRM or a spreadsheet.
  4. Customisation: Imagine your favourite sandwich shop lets you build your sandwich with all the toppings you want. A CRM is like that – you can customise it to fit your business perfectly. Spreadsheets are more like pre-made sandwiches; they're not as flexible. Well, if you're looking for customisation options, I'd say going with a CRM is the smarter move between a CRM and spreadsheets.
  5. Cloud-based: Picture your important documents stored in a magic cloud that you can reach from anywhere. That's how a CRM works – easy access, no worries about your computer crashing. Spreadsheets are more like papers on your desk; if your computer goes poof, so do your papers.
  6. Security: A CRM has a shield that protects your customer info from bad guys. It's like having a lock on your diary. Spreadsheets are a bit like leaving your diary open on a table – anyone can peek.
  7. Compliance: Think of a CRM as a rule follower. It knows all the important rules about keeping customer info safe, just like wearing a seatbelt in a car. Spreadsheets can be a bit forgetful about those rules. It boils down to what kind of business you're running when you're trying to choose between a CRM and spreadsheets.
  8. Future-proofing: A CRM is like a tool that changes its shape as your business grows. It's ready for all your business adventures. Spreadsheets, however, are a bit like an old toy that might not be fun anymore as you get bigger.
  9. Peace of mind: Using a CRM is like having a safe vault for your customer information. You know they're locked up tight. It's like having someone on your side, protecting your business and customer data.
  10. Increased ROI: Think of a CRM and spreadsheet combo as leverage for your business that makes your sales and customer service even better. You get more happy customers, and more money, and you become a champion in your business game. Spreadsheets, unfortunately, don't have that magic touch.

In short, a CRM system is like having a super helpful assistant for your business. It makes everything easier and makes your business life a whole lot simpler and more successful. CRM is the way to go!
Conclusion on which is best: CRM or Spreadsheets

The ​Bottom Line

Alright, let's get down. If you're just starting or have a small number of customers, using a spreadsheet to keep track of their info - let's call it a "CRM and spreadsheet" approach - is like using a simple tool that gets the job done. But if you're serious about boosting your sales, working efficiently, and growing your business, it's time to consider upgrading to something more advanced, like a dedicated CRM system.

Think of a CRM system as an assistant for businesses. It helps you keep tabs on all your interactions with customers, manage potential leads, and even take care of some of the sales tasks automatically. Using this tool can lead to more sales, happier customers, and a healthier bottom line for your business – in other words, more money in your pocket.

Now, don't just jump into any system without thinking. It's like choosing the right car for your needs – you wouldn't buy a sports car if you need a family van. There are lots of different CRM and spreadsheet systems out there, each with its strengths and weaknesses. So, take a little time to figure out which one fits your business puzzle.

But hold up! Sometimes, sticking with a spreadsheet makes sense. If your business is small and your customer list isn't too long, a spreadsheet might be like a comfy old t-shirt – just right. But if you're growing or want to get super organised with your sales, then a CRM system is like a high-tech upgrade.

Remember! Choosing the right tool doesn't have to be complicated. It's all about what works best for you and your wallet. If you're cool with just keeping track of simple customer details, using a spreadsheet (like Excel) can be your best bet. But, if you've got big plans and want to make selling stuff smoother, think of a CRM system as your investment.

Imagine it like this: using a CRM is like having a system to help you keep track of your customers and sales in an organised way. And guess what? You can even use both CRM and spreadsheets together to level up your sales. 

And here's a quick cheat sheet for comparing them:
  • Cost: CRM systems can be pricier, but they might make you more money in the long run.
  • Ease of use: Spreadsheets are simple, like chatting with a friend. CRMs have more features, which is like having a fancy gadget – takes some getting used to but can do a lot.
  • Customisation: Spreadsheets are like plain pizza – you can't add fancy toppings. But CRMs are like creating your pizza – you can have it just the way you like.
  • Support: CRMs offer more help, like having a coach on your team. Spreadsheets are like going solo, but you know your way around. Think about this while selecting between CRM and spreadsheet.
  • Try Before Buying: Most CRMs offer free trials to test if they're a good fit for your business needs.
  • Know Your Needs: Figure out what CRM features you need, how many users will use them, and your budget.
  • Read Reviews: Check out what other users say about CRMs you're interested in, especially those relevant to your industry.
  • Ask Other Owners: Talk to fellow business owners using CRM and spreadsheets for firsthand advice and recommendations.

Hope this explanation helps you get a clearer picture!

So, to wrap things up, we're like your go-to experts when it comes to those fancy CRM and spreadsheets – you know, the ones that help businesses manage their customer relationships like pros while also seamlessly organising data in spreadsheets. We're here to make sure you're getting the most out of these powerful tools.

Imagine you're putting together a puzzle of your business, and the pieces are your customers, their info, and how you interact with them. Well, we're like puzzle masters who help you fit those pieces together perfectly and then decide between the CRM and spreadsheets.

We're not just here to talk the talk – we're here to help you walk the walk. You can book free consultation on CRM. If you're using a CRM already, we can take a look under the hood for free to make sure it's running smoothly and giving you all the benefits you deserve.                 

And if you're new to all this CRM stuff, don't worry – we've got your back there too. We'll guide you through picking the right CRM, setting it up, and using it to make your business stronger.

 So, if you want to step up your customer game, make your work easier, and see your business grow, remember we're the friendly experts you can turn to. And if you're already using a CRM, why not let us give it a checkup? Just like you'd take your car to the mechanic, we're here to give your CRM a little tune-up to make sure it's running like a champ.                 
Thanks for taking the time to explore the world of CRM and spreadsheets with us. Remember, whether you're diving into the CRM realm for the first time or looking to fine-tune your current setup, we're here to support you every step of the way. So, here's to smoother operations, happier customers, and a thriving business. Feel free to reach out whenever you're ready to take the next step. Thanks for reading

Karan Sharma

Social Media Expert IT Solutions Solved

Karan Sharma is a skilled content writer, SEO strategist and social media manager. He crafts compelling narratives, optimises content for search engines and designs engaging social media campaigns.