For the uninitiated, Trello is the web based project management application which makes it amazingly simple for you to keep track of your projects. ClinchPad wants to do something similar to the sales process, helping you track and follow up on business leads in a simple and easy to use way.
It neatly organizes your business leads in one place. Once a lead comes in, you can create an entry and put it under any of the five different stages. The stages are– Lead, Contact, Offer, In negotiation and closing. As you make progress on the deal, you can drag and drop the lead from one stage to the other. For instance, if you have made contact, you could put it under the contact stage or if you are negotiating the deal, you could move it to the “In Negotiation” stage. You can set default “to dos” for each stage to make the process more efficient. Once a deal reaches its logical conclusion, you can mark it as won or lost after which it archives the deal for future reference (you can also edit/add your own stage).
You can attach files related to a deal to the entry, add notes, contact details, create TODOs. You can also set deal value in multiple currencies. It also works well for distributed sales teams. Team members can be added to a project and all leads are shared with the team by default. Creating ‘teams/groups’ where leads created in one group are not visible to other groups is on the roadmap, said Cheenu Madan, who is building Clinchpad.
According to Cheenu Madan, who is bootstrapping the product, Clinchpad is for:
Freelancers, web consultants, dev shops, real estate agents, construction contractors, architecture houses and thousands of other small businesses who do not nor will ever have a Rolex-wearing sales team maxing out the features on an conventional CRM such as Salesforce.
Clinchpad, which will come out of beta in March, is free for now and it has over 150 users, says Madan who has been investing his personal savings into the venture with some backing from his family. Madan was a web developer for Bloomberg and is hoping to bootstrap all the way to profitability like Visual Website Optimizer.
Some of the things he has on top of his list for Clinchpad are e-mail integration, reports, import and export of contacts and organisations, multiple pipelines, access controls, syncing with Google calendar and contacts.We tried the product and while we totally liked the sleek implementation, here are a few suggestions to the team:
1. Make the ToDo activity more prominent. That is, less number of clicks. Calendar integration is a bonus!
2. Have an ability to track deals based on a certain context/categories (i.e. say ‘remnant inventory’, ‘big ticket sales’).
3. Email integration : Daily emails with TODOs and status on deals is what can increase the utility quotient of the product.
Clinchpad has competition from other players such as Do.com (the deal feature) and other task management products. For Do.com, the product (acquired by Salesforce.com) lets you manage your tasks and a virtual team easily, Deal management is an added feature which integrates well with the team/collaboration.
If you are already on one of these platforms, you might think twice before making a switch because everybody else (i.e. the team) is already on it.
Having said that, there definitely is a huge demand for such niche offering and if you are struggling with your Salesforce tasks, do give Clinchpad a spin and share your feedback.