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Is Zoho CRM working for you?

What you should know about CRM Adoption

Is Your CRM Working for YOU?

Here’s what you should know about CRM adoption, to ensure that you are maximizing this tool. 

[caption id="attachment_5440" align="alignleft" width="400"]Planning A CRM Project It’s not uncommon to spend months planning a CRM implementation project. If you’re already down that road make sure the CRM adoption rate is high, this survey can help![/caption]

It can be difficult, overwhelming, and time consuming for users to learn a new CRM system, and sometimes that’s even after training. Most organizations spend months or longer researching and planning to bring on a new CRM or software. Then they begin to ramp up, perform initial training, and finally send their users out into ‘the wild.’ Your hope is everyone in your organization will be wildly successful with this new tool, and business operations will be better than ever!

With highly proficient teams, this shouldn’t be a concern, but we all know that every team is not highly proficient.  

In the real world where capabilities across teams vary, it is inevitable that different users will use the new systems in different ways – and to varying degrees of success. 

Some members of your team will not take to the new CRM at all!

This is low user adoption.

You might think, “well, that’s their problem if they don’t use the tools provided to make their work easier. We gave them training!” But trust us, we know you’ve probably made a decent investment in time and resources to implement this tool. You deserve to get the most out of it. You likely had the intention of equally balancing the goals of making your staff the best they can be, AND giving yourself and business operators the essential insights based on CRM data. 

But perhaps your CRM  just hasn’t taken hold.

If you suspect this might be the case in your organization, it’s time to take a closer look.

What is User Adoption?

[caption id="attachment_5441" align="alignright" width="400"]CRM Users Adoption What is CRM Adoption? A high level of CRM user adoption means that users are successful in their goals by using a software product. [/caption]

This is really straightforward, so we’ll share it quickly. 

User adoption is the process of ensuring that a system user can be successful in their goals by using a software product. 

In this case, we’re talking about how successful your teams are in being able to attain their objectives using your current CRM. This includes how quickly it becomes a routine tool, and how much users like it and want to keep utilizing it.

Consider your teams across Customer Service, Sales, Marketing, Operations, and Leadership when observing for user adoption.

Then consider if all teams used the tool to its full potential, and fully adopted the CRM.

What does great user adoption look like? With that data at hand, you have the power to create accurate dashboards and better forecasts, and you can empower your businesses’ leaders with the information they need to grow and make their teams successful. Win – Win!

 

Using Your CRM to its Full Potential

Curious if your CRM users on the teams we mentioned above are in a murky area of user adoption? You can make sure you’re getting the most of your CRM investment with this quick CRM User Adoption Checklist – it’s just 20 questions!

Take a look and get the info you need in order to assess whether or not it’s time to take action and realign around your CRM.

Is there potential for your CRM to work better for your organization? Take the CRM Adoption Survey and find out where you stand.

 

Take the CRM Adoption Survey

 

Zoho CRM Integrations

Top 5 Ways You can utilize Zoho CRM Integrations – Even Though the Options are Almost Endless!

Zoho CRM integration abilities are often billed as the top reason why organizations choose the platform as their CRM and business software solution. It’s an undeniably powerful aspect of these tools. From finance and communication to sales, marketing, and office operations, Zoho ecosystem integrations truly can bring it all together. And if you’re using a service or application that isn’t Zoho, no worries, because Zoho was built with this scenario in mind and there are tools available to bring those apps into the fold, as well. Do you have a vision where information is no longer siloed? Where your teams collaborate easily? We think you may have just found the solution!

[caption id="attachment_5132" align="alignright" width="400"]popular zoho integrations Explore popular Zoho CRM integrations to help you spend less time managing software and more time making your business as successful as it can be! [/caption]

 

In this article, we’ll talk about the five major ways that utilizing Zoho CRM integration can enhance your business’ analytical capabilities from the top down, help to streamline your sales and marketing efforts, and give you the data you need to refine and improve your customer experience. Keep reading to see how integrating your Zoho solutions can help you spend less time managing software and more time doing the important things to make your business as successful as it can be.

 

1 Accounting and Finance Integrations

One question we hear A LOT is “Does Zoho CRM Integrate with QuickBooks?” And yes, it does, but it’s not even near the only accounting and finance option for playing nicely with Zoho. We do that work quite often for many clients, but QuickBooks is just one  accounting and finance option available out there!  Whether you’re using QB Desktop, QB Online, Sage programs, or another option, the Zoho capabilities exist to solve for double data entry, and can end the frustration of ongoing disconnect between your CRM and Financial data. 

 

Our client, Lavoro Technologies found the freedom to scale and evolve with their integration, and we think you might, too. Zoho itself has several solutions i f you’re not using any of the applications we just mentioned. Options are based on your business model and needs:

[caption id="attachment_5131" align="alignleft" width="400"]does zoho crm integrate with quickbooks Accounting and Finance Integrations for Zoho remove the task of double entry, streamline your operations, and help you gain accuracy.[/caption]

 

Zoho Books simplifies collaboration between sales and finance teams. It removes the need for duplicate data entry when integrated with Zoho CRM, and allows sales teams to record their estimates, sales orders, and estimates in CRM. It also provides purchase and transaction history details in CRM, and gives you the ability to automate some processes.

Zoho Expense helps salespeople capture expenses as they occur for their Accounts, Contacts, and Potentials. You submit approvals to CRM, where you can use Analytics to keep a pulse on spending. Take advantage of custom approvals, or you can even automate approvals when specific criteria are met. How much time could that save your sales team?

Zoho Subscription “bridges the gap between subscription and customer information” letting sales teams work in Zoho CRM to manage subscriptions because the customer information is seamlessly synchronized between the two apps in Zoho!

 

2 Communication Apps

All businesses run on communication, it’s basically the thing we do all day, every day. And Zoho has no shortage of available tools within their own ecosystem, and no shortage of other applications it connects to. Here are a few popular solutions for communication tools that integrate with Zoho.

 

Collaboration tools are at the top of the list of needs for many teams, ours here at ZBrains, too! Is your organization still working remotely or have dispersed teams? It is essential for your teams to keep in touch and communicate in real time. Zoho provides the essential tools and integrations required to collaborate perfectly. While it can integrate with Slack, Zoho has its own tool like it, called Cliq, and even that integrates with the applications you use most including: Dropbox, Trello, and Zoho Desk, Zoho People, and of course Zoho CRM. For deeper project management needs, we suggest Zoho Projects.

Telephony & SMS

As much as most of us probably wouldn’t like to admit it, we still use and need to make calls. Because this tech is still here and important to many, integrations for telephony solutions like RingCentral are there for good old fashioned calls! Messaging integrations like Twilio integration with Zoho CRM can help you with SMS campaigns.  Perfect for when you want to prime a contact with a text before calling, or to follow up after you reach them.

 

[caption id="attachment_5130" align="alignright" width="400"]Zoho Webinar and Zoho Meet for Sales and Marketing Teams Collaborative communication apps from Zoho like Webinar and Meeting help remote teams connect with colleagues, clients, and leads![/caption]

Live Chat and Meetings for Sales, Marketing & Customer Service

Live Chat allows you to connect with your customers and leads when they want to connect with you. SalesIQ from Zoho is an incredibly powerful integration that shows your CRM data in the application, so your Customer Service or Sales agents are set and ready with account information, or lead visit details. There’s even a mobile app!

Zooms and Webinars are everyday occurrences now, too. And we’re a bit of a broken record here, but Zoom and apps like GoToWebinar (plus others) integrate with Zoho. And Zoho has its own solutions for events and meetings, aptly named Zoho Webinar and Zoho Meeting, which you can use directly from CRM.

3 Marketing and Sales Integrations

Zoho CRM email marketing integration and Zoho social media integration are no-brainers. Zoho addresses your entire lead-to-cash cycle with these tools. 

Marketing Integrations

[caption id="attachment_5129" align="alignleft" width="400"]Zoho social media integrations Zoho features integration that brings your sales and marketing teams closer together, from social media lead metrics to customer surveys![/caption]
  • Zoho Social and Zoho CRM integration starts with generating new leads, then lets you identify the most successful channels, moving those leads to sales for faster closing. The system in Zoho Social has automation features, pushes leads from Facebook Ads directly to Zoho CRM with one click, gives you social listening capabilities, and of course, gives you the tools to track revenue in order to repeat your most successful strategies.
  • Zoho Marketing Automation contains tools to help you generate leads, understand their behaviors, and analyze the data from your lead cycle to enable greater sales. Additionally, as the name implies, you can automate customer journeys for your leads and customers using data from journey actions and CRM data for very specific segmentation that is virtually personalized. This integration takes your marketing activities beyond just email.
  • Zoho Survey closes the loop on customer experience with Zoho Survey and CRM integration. Gather, report, and act on survey responses, and use the insight to create better sales pitches when you know what’s working and what’s not.

Sales Integration for Zoho CRM

CRM is often seen as the pinnacle of sales tools, and you can already see from the sheer volume of things that integrate with Zoho CRM how this is true. They all add up to give sales professionals, and sales leaders the insight and information they need in order to best serve the right clients with the right solutions at the right time. 

 

Doing business with your organization should be as simple and seamless as it can be. Making your system easy to use, with highly integrated data sources, ensures that it is. Imagine giving your sales teams all the tools and information they require to get more sales, more quickly, that allows them to hold on to each hard earned customer for longer with a more profitable result. We’ll share a little more in the next section about the operational tools that also assist Sales.

 

4 Office Operations & E-commerce

[caption id="attachment_5128" align="alignright" width="400"]Zoho form integration Zoho Sign helps manage paperless workflow for digital signatures, allowing you to close deals faster![/caption]

Some of the most time consuming aspects of daily work are the office operations that we don’t often give a second thought to. We just do the work and move on. However, Zoho CRM integrates with such a vast number of tools both from Zoho itself, and others, to make this daily necessity more lightweight. You’ll find that once you integrate these always-used applications with Zoho CRM that the minutes per day that you shave off searching for emails and documents, sending and signing them, and generally managing the day-to-day storage and document shuffle of office life really do add up to a substantial amount of time. Here are a few integrations we like most.

Daily Operations

  • GSuite and Zoho CRM integrate so you can easily sync and access Gmail contacts, your tasks, and your Google calendar events in CRM.
  • Microsoft Office / Office 365 and Zoho Integration brings your presentations, spreadsheets, docs, etc. into one space within Zoho CRM for easier management. For example, you can access the Office suite from CRM for mail merge to automatically create customized documents. 
  • Google Drive, DropBox, and other integrations with Zoho CRM are available solutions for document storage. And you can access these directly from CRM, as well!

Paperless Office

  • And document signing, or paperless workflow for digital signatures, is another set of tasks that takes a lot of time and personal bandwidth to manage. Of course, Zoho has addressed this with its own secure solution, Zoho Sign, but offers integrations for other tools as well. For example, Adobe Sign Zoho CRM integration gives you visibility to document signing status, and both can shorten time to close by keeping the process digital.

E-Commerce

  • Finally, for online sellers, shippers, and e-commerce, Zoho CRM integrates with Shopify, Magento, WooCommerce, and other platforms to help streamline your online transactions from click-to-buy, to invoice, payment collection, and shipping!

 

5 Almost Endless Zoho Integration Options 

So far you’ve read about some of the most universal business needs that are addressed when you use Zoho’s application ecosystem, like Zoho One, or integrate it with some popular solutions you might already have. But wait – there’s more! We weren’t really exaggerating when we said that the integration options are more or less endless. Zoho Creator is the platform to address almost any custom application or integration you can fathom, “from simple call logs to complex ERPs that integrate with your existing processes.”

 

ERP Solutions for Zoho CRM Integration

The good news is that some of these solutions for field services, manufacturers, and similar industries are already available from ZBrains. If you’re seeking solutions for any of the following processes, and would like to integrate with Zoho – drop us a line!

  • Quote Calculator (CPQ): Configure Price Quote tool enables your sales staff to generate Zoho CRM quotes or standalone quotes quickly and easily, using just one simple system.
  • Commission Calculator: Give your sales team back their confidence by calculating their commissions quickly and easily.
  • Payment Processing: Accept payments in Zoho CRM. Certain Zoho apps like Creator, Books, and Invoice have accepted credit card payments for some time.  But, it hasn’t been possible to process those transactions with a Zoho CRM credit card integration–until now.
  • SmartScheduler™: Using parameters you set, the Zoho SmartScheduler™ recommends possible appointment times for you or you staff to streamline your scheduling tasks and ensure that the right resources are assigned to jobs.
  • Executive Dashboards: Building a better Executive Dashboard with ZBrains means you can ensure all the reporting is done accurately, showing you results for all your KPI’s so you can make informed decisions instantly.
  • Inventory Management: Generate accurate insight into your business performance by syncing with inventory, order management and financial data. Centralize your operations with a Zoho ERP solution. 
  • Zoho Job Costing: This add-on for Zoho CRM enables your sales staff to generate quotes, manage proposals, and  track every dollar and hour spent on completing a job quickly and easily, using just one simple system – not the array of programs and personnel you might be used to dealing with.

 

Final Thoughts & Next Steps

Don’t see the solutions you need on this list, or mentioned in this article? Get in touch with us!  We know from experience that Zoho integrations can enable your team. They can help you drive your business with accurate data while saving you countless hours of effort chasing loose ends. Take the first steps today and empower your team and stay connected with your business! 

Zoho Pricing Article

How Much Does Zoho Cost?

The pace of the business world isn’t slowing and you may be looking for new ways to get work done and achieve more in your organization. Part of this is likely all of the activities around becoming more efficient, and one place a lot of organizations start is with their CRM, or Customer Relationship Management software. If you’re reading this article, you’re curious about Zoho and asking, “How much does Zoho cost?”

Keep reading for more about how the cost of Zoho is figured. We’ll talk about what to keep in mind as you are considering Zoho CRM, Zoho Books, Zoho One, or any other application in the Zoho ecosystem.

How much does Zoho CRM cost?

“How much does Zoho CRM cost?” For sure, it’s a loaded question. And when you search for this information, you’ll find a lot of variation in pricing levels. They range from Ultimate and Enterprise options to Professional and Standard. These options have diminishing features – all the way down to the amazing cost of zero dollars for Zoho CRM Free version. Yes, you heard that, Zoho CRM does offer a free version. It’s not a gimmick, it’s not just a trial period, and you don’t have to use a credit card to get access now only to be billed later.

[caption id="attachment_4719" align="alignright" width="450"]Zoho CRM pricing questions answered Zoho CRM does offer a free version. However, be sure to ask the correct questions to find out if it will work for you.[/caption]

However, understand that this free version comes with many limitations. If you’re here, answer a couple quick questions to find out if you’ll need more than the free version of Zoho CRM.

  • Do you have more than three users?
  • Are you interested in features like:
    • sales forecasting,
    • multiple currencies,
    • scoring and assignment rules,
    • custom modules,
    • process automation,
    • or prediction and artificial intelligence tools?

If you answered YES to any of these questions…then it’s time to talk about your business needs and goals and find the best fit version of Zoho CRM for you.

Of course, we’ll be glad to help. Our Business Process Analysis is designed to ensure we capture all the information about your business AND your goals so we can provide accurate, realistic recommendations for your digital transformation.

But maybe you’re curious about Zoho Books, too? Pairing an accounting solution with your customer relationship manager is another step toward integrating your processes. Before we get too far ahead, let’s talk about the cost of Zoho Books.

How much does Zoho Books cost?

This online accounting software has tiered pricing, available add-ons, and even bundles available that can impact the pricing of Zoho Books. Each configuration varies slightly in price, so generally speaking, this solution is positioned well for small-to-mid-size businesses.

[caption id="attachment_4720" align="alignleft" width="450"]Costs for Zoho Books Zoho Books is well positioned for small-to-mid sized businesses, and we often recommend this solution or a Quickbooks integration for even more functionality.[/caption]

The top tier Professional plan maxes out at 5000 transactions allowing for over 500 contacts and 10 users, so this should give you a sense of its capabilities in terms of volume. In comparison, Basic version allows for up to 50 contacts and two users, while the mid or Standard plan offers up to 500 contacts and 3 users.

Books is both an affordable and powerful tool for businesses as we just explained. But more often than not, you’ll need additional functionality beyond accounting and finances in order to integrate various areas of your business. For this reason, a few add-ons (for example, additional users) and bundles are available to meet those needs. Popular bundles for Zoho Books include:

  • Zoho Inventory, an inventory management software that easily integrates with Zoho Books
  • Zoho Subscriptions, which helps you manage your subscription-model business in tandem with Books
  • And Zoho Expense, to assist with and integrate your expense tracking activities with Zoho Books

Would you like to know more about Zoho Books pricing and options available? Our Zoho Certified Consultants would be happy to assist! Get connected here.

Or perhaps you’re interested in moving all of your business processes, including CRM and Books onto Zoho? Let’s talk about the pricing for Zoho One.

How much does Zoho One cost?

To start, are you familiar with Zoho One?

[caption id="attachment_4721" align="alignright" width="450"]cost of zoho one Did you know that one subscription to Zoho One includes access to over 40 applications?[/caption]

“Zoho One is a truly revolutionary suite that can run your entire business – seriously. It has 40+ integrated applications that encompasses everything like CRM, email newsletters, documents, inventory, and more. You simply need a username and password, integrate your applications, and you’re set; one dashboard to rule all.”

Zoho One offers centralized administrative control, and all-in-one licensing model. It has over 40 integrated applications with enterprise-level features and mobile apps included. It’s a lot, but it was designed to be just that – a full spectrum set of unified business tools that’s affordable, accessible, and impactful. Monthly cost per license ranges from $37 per user, per month, when billed annually for the All Users Plan, to $90 per license, per month, when billed annually*. The second option is named the Flexible User Pricing. It’s for instances when not everyone in your organization will need the applications. *Pricing updated June 2021

We often recommend Zoho One option for its flexibility to grow with the needs of businesses. You know as well as anyone that organizations grow, processes change, and business needs evolve over time. This platform gives you the tools needed to get your sales, marketing, customer support, finance, human resources, and operations departments moving in the same direction, successfully.

When you’re ready for the next steps of your Zoho implementation – or if you have more questions about Zoho pricing and whether or not any of the solutions we discussed here are a good fit for you – we hope you’ll let us know.

 

Connect with a Consultant

 

The Joys of Using TaxJar are numerous, a fact which every accountant can get behind.

The Joys of Using TaxJar Part 2

Establishing Nexus and Complying with State, Local, and County Tax Laws

In Part 1 we covered why you should want TaxJar, how the ZBrains CPQ tool integrates with TaxJar, and who TaxJar is for. Join us as we move towards a greater understanding of TaxJar:

When it comes to calculating your taxes and taking advantage of the joys of using TaxJar, tax nexus is vital. Determining nexus is an important element of tax compliance, and how you establish nexus can vary from state to state. Most definitions of nexus include the terms “doing business” or “engaged in business.” This blog details all the specifics regarding the various state laws.

The significant questions to ask yourself are:

  1. Do I have a location, warehouse, or other physical presence in a state?
  2. Do I have an employee, contractor, sales person, installer, or someone else working for me in a state?
  3. Do I have products stored in a state?
  4. Do my sales or number of transactions in a state exceed that state’s economic nexus threshold?
  5. Do I have a drop shipping relationship with a vendor in a state?
  6. Do I have an affiliate program with affiliates in various states?
  7. Do I cross state lines to sell my products at a trade show, craft fair, or other event?

Of note are the most common items that may not be taxable in some states:

-Grocery food

-Clothing

-Certain books (textbooks, religious books, etc.)

-Prescription and nonprescription medicine

-Supplements

-Magazines and subscriptions

-Digital products (books, music, movies, etc.)

Other Noteworthy Tax Nexus Issues

Once nexus is established it is crucial to do these three things:

-Register for a sales tax permit in that state

-Charge sales tax to customers in that state (regardless of how you sold them a product, or from where that product was shipped)

-File sales tax returns in that state

Perhaps the most obvious hurdle is the variability among state laws. For example, if you do not use TaxJar and have nexus in multiple states, you are forced to research the laws for each state on your own. This process can be tedious, especially when considering state, local, and county tax differences. Given all of this, the TaxJar automation of sales tax computation is truly an invaluable resource.

*Sometimes an identical product may be taxable in one state and non-taxable in another. A product may also not be taxable at the state level, but still taxable at the local level. *

Drop Ship, Ship Direct, and Multiple Warehouses with TaxJar

There are a few important scenarios to address when it comes to tax compliance. Drop shipping occurs when you use a vendor to ship an item directly to a customer. For example: you sell phone cases through your website and use a third party printing company to print designs on the cases before they are shipped to the customer.

Three things happen in this process: the customer buys the item from you, you buy the item from the vendor, and the vendor ships it to the customer. If your vendor has nexus in your state they must charge you sales tax on that purchase, unless you issue a resale certificate! The resale certificate indicates that the item you bought is for resale. This is where it can be complicated: you may be required to charge sales tax to your customer, and concurrently your vendor may need to charge sales tax to you.

Conversely, when shipping directly to the customer, you simply have to determine the sales tax in the buyer’s ship-to address.

Last but not least is the multiple warehouses scenario, which dictates that you must charge sales tax to buyers living in every state where your inventory is warehoused. A great example where this law may be overlooked is when sellers put their products Amazon FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon). It is easy to forget that you need to charge sales tax for buyers living in each state that your goods are warehoused through Amazon FBA.

API and Customer Service

One beauty of TaxJar is the SmartCalcs Sales Tax service, which is very easy to utilize using modern restful APIs. Once integrated, it can easily determine if, when, and how much sales tax to collect. Collect the right tax amount every time you sell a product! It also makes sales tax reporting and filing easier for you or your merchants. The SmartCalcs Sales Tax service is clearly one of the best joys of using TaxJar.

The New Kid on the Block: Economic Nexus

As of June 21, 2018, a new law went into effect: Economic Nexus. This nexus law requires that sellers collect sales tax in a state because:

-They make a certain dollar amount of sales in that state (most common threshold is $100,000 per year)

-Have a certain number of sales transactions in that state (most common is 200 per year)

Approximately half of the states with a sales tax have economic nexus laws, and more states have announced they will soon also pass economic nexus laws or regulations.

The Shortcomings of TaxJar

Although this blog explores the joys of using TaxJar, we would be remiss if we did not mention any of the problems. Despite all of the areas in which it excels, there are some caveats. Most notable is that it is not very flexible. The good news is that within Zoho Creator, you can perform your tax reporting without going to TaxJar. From drag and drop reporting and ad hoc reports to all the transactions in Creator, the bottom line is that it is easier to use than TaxJar. Simply use TaxJar to acquire accurate percentages, and then store that data back in Zoho Creator to generate your own reports.

Whether you are trying to determine tax nexus or simplify your tax compliance process, TaxJar can get you there. Explore this handy software for yourself and ensure you calculate your taxes with accuracy.

The Joys of Using TaxJar are felt by multiple departments and numerous employees

The Joys of Using TaxJar

The Joys of Using Tax Jar: Why You Should Want It

Maintaining sales tax compliance is not an aspect of running a company that business owners often get excited about. Fortunately TaxJar handles the mundane parts of the tax compliance process. TaxJar is a phenomenal way for business owners to spend less time on sales tax and more time growing the business they love. It is designed for those on an E-commerce platform, and is especially effective for businesses with nexus in multiple states. Join us as we explore and illuminate all the Joys of Using TaxJar!

Nexus, for those who are unaware, is a presence or connection in a state significant enough for you to be required to comply with sales tax law. It is precisely the differences among the 45 U.S. states (and D.C.) that make complying with sales tax laws such a hassle. The good news? TaxJar is not only easy to use, it is cost-effective, and using it as your tax compliance software affords you top notch customer service. The best way to enjoy all the aforementioned benefits is to integrate TaxJar with Zoho. That’s precisely where we come in. 

How ZBrains CPQ Combines with TaxJar

A great integration couples two parts of your business with ease, providing synergy that makes your job easier. Thus is the case with our Configure Price Quote (CPQ) and TaxJar. Generate sales quotes quickly and easily using our CPQ. The resulting process means you rely on just one system rather than an array of programs and personnel.

Here are the important facts about our CPQ:

-All your SKUs update automatically, no more looking through hundreds of defunct item codes

-All your item descriptions and pictures (if necessary) are up to date

-Your quotes come with a configurator: never search through line items that have nothing to do with the items you sell

Who is TaxJar For?

Although the design of TaxJar caters to eCommerce businesses, the software helps businesses everyday of all types and backgrounds. Versatility is undoubtedly one of the best joys of using TaxJar. It calculates tax for companies in any U.S. location as well as Canada, Australia, and the EU. Rest assured that if you have sales tax issue(s) to rectify, TaxJar can ensure your problems are a thing of the past. 

Use TaxJar to calculate sales tax for each state your business is in or where you have already been collecting taxes. It determines what taxes should be collected, and whether tax has been over or under collected. Discover those details by determining in which U.S. Sates you have nexus, a major topic in the second half of the Joys of Using TaxJar blog.

In addition to our TaxJar Integration for Zoho, we have numerous other Zoho Integrations to make your life easier.

This is part one of a two-part series.  Check here for Part 2 of The Joys of Using TaxJar.

Comparing and Contrasting TaxJar vs Avalara

TaxJar vs Avalara

TaxJar vs Avalara

Determining the best Tax Software for your business is a crucial step in the evolution of any company. A good sales tax compliance software is a cinch to implement, easy to use, and ultimately solves your problems so you can get back to running your business. To compare TaxJar vs Avalara, we evaluated each SaaS (software as a service) on: Ease of Use, Customer Support, Pricing, and Overall Customer Satisfaction. We hope this comparison article helps you make an informed decision about the best tax software for your business.

 

Ease of Use

Since the dawn of software solutions people have put a premium on usability. What good is a software if it takes months or even years to master the nuances? In terms of the customer/user experience, TaxJar is simply easier to use. TaxJar is built for multi-channel sellers, who can easily import data with a few clicks from Shopify and Amazon. By contrast, Avalara users are forced to download CSVs (comma separated values) and re-format them to meet AvaTax requirements. In the end, you don’t have to take our word for it when it comes to the functionality of each SaaS, you can look what customers are saying for yourself!

 

TaxJar vs Avalara Pricing

When evaluating on price we considered the offer of a TaxJar free trial, the contract differences, and the extra fees charged by Avalara. A good first impression goes a long way, which is why TaxJar provides potential customers with a 30-day free trial. According to their website, this trial does not require a credit card. Plus, new customers to TaxJar do not face setup fees, cancellation fees, hidden fees, or forced annual contracts. From our research we found that annual contracts are the standard for Avalara customers: some being multi-year. Meanwhile, TaxJar proudly offers monthly plans because they stand behind their service rather than rely on contracts to keep customers around.

Last but not least are the fees built in to each software. Our research indicates that a typical 20K transaction year with TaxJar will cost $2,150, a pittance compared to the $12,515 price tag for Avalara customers. The combination of an activation fee, annual connector fee, annual license, and monthly billing (among others) from Avalara contributes to this hefty final figure. All of this information illustrates why TaxJar is the more cost-efficient model.

 

Customer Support

Another pillar of great software is strong customer support, and unfortunately for Avalara customers, this is where they fall significantly short. The Avalara adage of ‘Tax compliance done right’ does not accurately reflect their customer support services. Time and time again customers have complained about the abysmal support from Avalara. The general consensus among TaxJar customers is positive for their customer support. Calculating accurate taxes is important and the consequences can be more than a bit frustrating. As a result, TaxJar’s solid reputation of good customer support is so integral to the overall customer experience.

 

Overall Customer Satisfaction

No matter which software you choose, we hope this comparison has been useful. Although both serve the same purposes, our ZBrains Tax Jar integration provides all the benefits of TaxJar without the price tag of Avalara. As an added bonus, if you use Magento to help sell, TaxJar offers free sales tax calculations!

Long-time users of TaxJar and brand new customers alike can benefit from our Zoho Integration for TaxJar. Discover the benefits of this and all of our Zoho integrations!

Questions? Our Zoho Certified Consultants are ready to help.

 

Connect with a Consultant

 

The Benefits of the ZBrains Commission Calculator

Calculate Commissions on Time Every Time with ZBrains Commissions Calculator

Elegantly Crafted to Integrate with Zoho CRM or Your Accounting Suite

Paying employees on time is vital for team morale, financial planning, and evaluating your sales progress on a regular basis. The Zoho Commission Calculator does just that, effectively eliminating all the hard work involved in the commissions calculation process. We designed it to make your life easier and put smiles on the faces of your sales team. In the end, paying your employees accurately and on time will keep them happy and eager to sell more.

Integration is the name of the game, which is why we designed this Commission Calculator in Zoho Creator for integration with your accounting software. Whether you use QuickBooks or Zoho Books, our Commission Calculator pulls invoices from your software to begin the process of calculating commissions. This flexible commission software solution works with every kind of commission table out there: Commission on Gross Profit, Sales Revenue Commission, Revenue Tiers, and Placement Fees. The result? An invaluable product that integrates with Zoho and makes life easier for you and your entire sales team.

Why You Should Want the ZBrains Commission Calculator

The mark of a great ZBrains integration is one that fills a necessary gap or automates a process, cutting down on both labor and man-hours. The ZBrains Commission Calculator fits that definition perfectly. It automates a regular process and places it firmly within the Zoho environment for your benefit. In addition to saving plenty of time and effort, this calculator ensures employees are paid on time, every time. At the end of the day a happy sales team is a more effective sales team.  When your hard-working sales force is consistently recognized for their efforts, their motivation to sell will increase.

What Does This Commission Calculator Do For Me?

Think of every member of your sales team: the budding sales novices, hungry mid-tier sellers, all the way up the ladder to your experienced aces-in-the-hole. Imagine how long it takes to manually calculate sales commission, and develop Excel reports separate from your accounting software or CRM. Numerous problems are likely to arise from this setup, such as commissions delivered late, off a decimal, or simply unaccounted for. In our on-demand world rife with immediate gratification, this laborious process sticks out like a sore thumb.

Fortunately, our Commission Calculator fills that void and makes certain your sales team is paid appropriately and promptly. It offers numerous valuable features:

  • Automatic Commission Calculation
  • Commission Approvals
  • Commission Statements
  • Payroll Integration (optional upgrade)

Create commission tables, assign them to your sales reps, and approve commissions on your schedule. The goal with our commission calculator is to put you securely in the driver’s seat. You can approve commissions bi-weekly, monthly, or on your own custom schedule as you see fit. 

Questions about our commission calculator for Zoho – or any other Zoho consulting question?  We’d love to hear from you.  Drop us a line!

ZBrains Magento Integration for Zoho

Connecting Zoho and Magento: Why it Matters and How it Works

ZBrains Magento Integration for Zoho Makes Order Management Easier

Zoho CRM is known for its ability to connect multiple aspects of running a business and ultimately employ more automations and integrations. The result is more time for you to do what you do best: run your company. However, sometimes there are gaps between the software you use and the Zoho CRM suite of applications. The ZBrains Magento Integration for Zoho is a perfect example of that, chock-full of significant value. At its core, the most noteworthy benefits of this integration are:

  • Syncing customers with account or contacts
  • Syncing products and inventory
  • Syncing orders and shipments

Streamline Inventory, Products, Shipments, and Customers

We crafted this integration to give business owners greater control and ultimately improve how their business operates. Among the most integral improvements: enhanced reporting through the integration can increase sales, improve delivery time responses, and enable the sales team to sell more accurately with up-to-date inventory. The result? No more combing through your product listings on the website with a fine-tooth comb to confirm sufficient inventory! Updates are made automatically, ensuring your entire team is on the same page.

Common Use Cases for the ZBrains Magento Integration for Zoho

Let’s take a look at three of the most common use cases for the Magento integration:

1. Zoho CRM + Magento (Sales+Operations)

Businesses that use both Zoho CRM and Magento are likely to encounter many head-scratching moments when the two programs fail to effectively communicate. Without a direct connection between the two, you are forced to take multiple steps to sync the information you need. Fortunately, our integration fills this gap, combining the two components. Data integration lets you use Magento for fulfillment while tapping into useful Zoho applications such as Zoho Desk and Zoho Projects.

2. Sales + Magento (Sales)

Other companies are organized without Zoho CRM, relying instead a traditional Sales team equipped with Magento. In this scenario, you are forced to couple the data gathered from the Sales team with information stored on Magento before migrating all of that into Zoho CRM. The key takeaway here is that our integration takes care of that extra manual step to allow all three processes to work in harmony.

3. Zoho + Magento + QuickBooks (Finance Department)

A popular arrangement companies use is a three-pronged approach: Zoho, Magento, and QuickBooks. For example, orders are processed in Magento, approved in Zoho, and the financial details are then synced with QuickBooks.

Our integration effectively eliminates the need for manual input of customer information into QuickBooks, saving your finance department valuable time and effort.

4. Executive Team Benefits

The beauty of this integration is that it benefits so many parts of a company, not least of which is the executive team. But Executive team members and CEOs do not have the luxury of combing through all the details of the business process. Our integration provides the logistics and data in real time to better pinpoint where a problem is impeding the workflow. For example, correcting a delay in shipping by using a different supplier, or ensuring a seasonal sale is properly noted on the website and during sales calls.

Whether you are the CEO of a small business or part of a seasoned executive team, our Magento Integration ensures you see the big picture while also granting access to the vital details that make up your business process.

Additional Benefits of the ZBrains Magento Integration

Our Magento Integration for Zoho saves time and avoids headaches all over your company. It streamlines the checkout process, allowing you to perform checkout both through the Magento store and offline. In addition to saving past orders, your sales team can manage customers and orders through Zoho rather than logging into a Magento admin panel. We developed this integration as a bridge among systems; a unified path of information to benefit you and your employees. It eliminates context switching and manual input. Plus, it gives your Sales team a tool to access data in real time and generate more business.

Magento is not without its own flaws, as evidenced by this list, but when used correctly and in conjunction with Zoho, your business can truly succeed.

In the end, whether you are a Magento user curious about the benefits of Zoho or a Zoho fan looking to connect the dots of your company, we at ZBrains can help. Magento and Zoho are both valuable parts of any business owner’s arsenal, and we make sure they work together. Learn about our other integrations, such as QuickBooks, and Google Drive.

Zoho CRM vs. NetSuite

Zoho CRM vs. NetSuite: Part 2 of the Ultimate ERP Showdown

This is part 2 of our comparison of NetSuite vs Zoho CRM.  You can read the first part right here.

Customer Service

A comparison of NetSuite vs Zoho CRM cannot be genuine without examining the customer support characteristics of both. In the end, any good product can be handicapped by sub-par customer service. Even experienced business owners can run into issues and time-sensitive problems that need immediate attention. The reality of NetSuite as a software is that the aforementioned problems of user experience and navigability bleed over into the customer service. When problems arise and NetSuite is markedly absent, it forces users to try and craft their own solutions and workarounds. This is a huge headache, especially compared to the ease of Zoho, with its interwoven network of applications. In the end, having a team of Zoho experts at your service gives you the peace of mind to attend to your business.

When you use Zoho, you have the advantage of Zoho Support and an interface that is easier to manage and maintain. Plus, you can rely on ZBrains with our support retainers to help you through issues with implementation. This setup stands in stark contrast to NetSuite, whose support plans are likely more expensive, necessitating a dedicated NetSuite resource that is pricier.

Winner: Zoho

Zoho is simply better in this category, with NetSuite customers forced to endure more expensive support that isn’t always readily available to meet your needs.

Who’s it For?

Comparing NetSuite vs Zoho CRM, it is evident that they offer some of the same functionality, but the two software programs are ultimately suited for different audiences. The price point of NetSuite makes it much less accessible for smaller companies; conversely, Zoho CRM is much more affordable, providing startups, small companies, and medium sized businesses with a fully baked  CRM / ERP solution that does not break the bank. Given the capacity of NetSuite, booming businesses that excel with Zoho CRM often make the jump to Oracle when they have the financial security.

When evaluating who uses NetSuite vs Zoho CRM, there are some important questions to consider:

  • How much will implementation cost?
  • How much will ongoing maintenance cost?
  • Will you have to hire an on-site expert?

These issues hearken back to customer service, more specifically how the Zoho Consulting and Support we at ZBrains provide is cost-effective. A final note on cost, ZBrains offers flexible pricing for consulting time – we offer hourly consulting  blocks a more desirable option than having to hire someone and pay them to be on-site as a full-time employee. (ZBrains wants to be part of your business solution, we aim to be a partner and not just a pump and dump IT shop).

The bottom line here is, we understand the unique needs of the industry, and our knowledge of manufacturing is translated directly into an ERP solution that can be personalized to your business.

Winner: Tie

There’s no clear favorite here, as both programs offer similar applications. However, the important distinction are the stark differences in support plans and the ERP gap that ZBrains bridges for Zoho users.

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Zoho CRM vs. NetSuite

Zoho CRM vs. NetSuite: The Ultimate ERP Showdown (Part 1)

Zoho CRM vs. NetSuite: The Ultimate ERP Showdown

zoho vs netsuite

Businesses of all sizes and industries operate efficiently with the help of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software. From closing deals to managing budgets to juggling the schedules of multiple field technicians, these magical pieces of software help CEOs everywhere rest easy with invaluable automations. However, how do you decide which CRM is right for you? Choosing a CRM that works best for your business is no easy task; but, we aim to ease your concerns, answer your questions, and illustrate the pros and cons of two different software packages in this comparison article. Read on to discover the details of Zoho CRM vs. NetSuite: how they are similar, how they are different, and they affect the bottom line for your company.

Zoho vs NetSuite CRM Usability

A program’s ease of use significantly influences customer opinion of that software. This is so because a clunky UI can be incredibly frustrating and ultimately destroy buy-in for that software. Unfortunately, many NetSuite users have voiced their displeasure with the UI, commenting on it feeling outdated and depressing. You can read their thoughts on Oracle NetSuite, both good and bad hereOther complaints from NetSuite customers reference the subpar search function,  noting how difficult it is to find things and how the CRM is not intuitive. Last but not least, NetSuite has built a reputation for not integrating well with other systems.

By contrast, Zoho CRM is known for having a user friendly interface and marries all of its applications very well. Plus, if Zoho customers encounter any issues, we at ZBrains are here to help. Our team aims to please, as evidenced by our collection of useful integrations:

Winner: Zoho CRM

Ultimately, the frequency of user complaints about NetSuite gives Zoho the edge here.

zoho vs netsuite

Overall Value of the CRM

When discussing the overall value of Zoho vs NetSuite, it’s important to note that NetSuite carries the Oracle name. This distinction, in turn, makes the software more expensive. Although on the surface the applications within both CRMs appear to be the same, one can purchase Zoho for considerably less.

Also noteworthy in this category are the complaints of NetSuite users, who grumble about the CRM out of the box. Multiple users mentioned the hassle of having to buy more add-ins just to get the essentials of the software to function properly. This folds into an often overlooked cost, the implied cost. We will go into implied cost in more detail in a future article, but in essence, NetSuite support plans post launch are likely very expensive, requiring a NetSuite (Oracle) resource that is pricier in the long term.

Explained further, NetSuite is an ERP solution that has all the big-box player financial tools out of the box, as well as several integrations. On the other hand, Zoho out of the box does not have full ERP functionality, but it can be augmented quickly and cost effectively when combined with our Zoho ERP. The difference is that when you combine Zoho with our Zoho ERP the result is better than NetSuite because our solution incorporates a full end to end business engine into a single Zoho app suite.

Winner: Zoho CRM

Zoho tops NetSuite in this category, in particular because of the required add-ons you need for NetSuite in conjunction with the implied costs of future support.

This is part one of a two-part series.  Click here for more analysis in part two.

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