Customer relationships managed

Improve your business contacts with this free CRM database tool.

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is one of the most significant applications of information technology to modern business practice. CRM hasn't replaced critical personal contacts but enabled and enhanced them. NCH Software is leveling the playing field for CRM database systems with its Reflect CRM technology, a multiuser CRM package that happens to be free. It can track customer information, accounts, leads, and more. It can import and export data as CSV files, too, and is compatible with other programs, databases, and files, including PDFs.

Reflect CRM Free is a compact download that installs quickly. The setup wizard prompted us to enter the name of a business and some contact info, but it's easy enough to change that and other settings later on. The program's interface is simple and efficient, with small tabs and large, clearly distinguished icons controlling basic functions such as Save, Print, and Preview. We clicked the Options icon, which let us change the Company Details, Web Access and Accounts, and settings like decimal points. A fully indexed Help file in HTML format did a fine job of explaining each feature and entry, but new users will have little trouble if they just dive right in by clicking the big green New button and following the program through the data fields. We were also able to configure Remote Access, add User Accounts, and set up a Backup, always recommended. Editing entries was easy, too. The only issue we encountered was an abnormal exception that crashed the program when we tried to import Outlook account data in a 64-bit version of Windows 7. A pop-up offered to report the bug for fixing, which we appreciate.

We've tried many of NCH's free tools and always found them to offer a lot of user-friendly features in compact, efficient packages, and Reflect CRM is no exception. Unlike some dumbed-down "pro" software, it's fully featured and free; which is just what your bottom line needs.

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