The 25 Best CRM Apps for Every Business

Matthew Guay - The Zapier Blog

Managing your contacts didn’t used to be so difficult. When you started your business, you had a handful of suppliers and customers, and few enough team members that you could memorize their email addresses.

Things change. That’s good: business is growing and you have more people than ever to keep track of. You need a CRM—a Customer Relationship Management app—to help you keep track of everyone.

There are CRMs of every form and fashion. They live in Gmail or Outlook, on your wrist or in your glasses. They can track the people you know, the deals you’ve won, and the conversations in between. And they can cost you an arm and a leg or be 100 percent free.

It’s time to find a great CRM tool for your team. Whether that means you need a CRM for your small business, startup, nonprofit or large enterprise, or one for your role in sales, business development or public relations, one of the more than 25 apps in this list should suit your needs. Let’s dig in.

100 Technical Things Non-Technical People Can Learn To Make Their Lives Easier

Scott Hanselman:

My lovely wife has an MBA, speaks 5 languages, and is currently in school to get a third (fourth?) degree. Point is, she’s smarter than me (I? See?) and I’m lucky she even speaks to me.

She said to me “there’s all this stuff that techies know that makes normals feel bad. Where does one learn all this?”

I honestly don’t know HOW we learn these things. But, I figured I could help. If you’ve ever answered questions like this from your non-technical-partner or relative, then here’s a list of 100 Technical Things Non-Technical People Can Learn To Make Their Lives Easier.

Who Shared the Electric Car?

The New Yorker

Tesla Motors was created to accelerate the advent of sustainable transport.

“Putting in long hours for a corporation is hard,” Musk said on Thursday during a conference call. “Putting in long hours for a cause is easy.”

BuiltWith’s Web and Internet Technology Usage Trends

This is a neat way to see what else is out where and what different folks are using in terms of Internet software and services (i.e. How many of the top 10k web sites use Amazon Web Services versus other providers?) .

There is a sizable list of categories to look at. Updated regularly and can be looked at in terms of top 10k sites, top 100k sites, top million sites, or entire Internet.

5 Common Server Setups For Your Web Application

DigitalOcean Community

A nice introductory piece for folks trying to wrap their heads around some of the typical architectures used to host modern web applications.

Understanding the moving parts behind the scenes can not only help you determine what you need, but also properly evaluate options such as rolling-your-own versus purchasing ready-made options. For example, some providers provide building blocks for some of these pieces (which can save you time and leverage engineering knowledge from thousands of other installations) – e.g. Amazon’s Elastic Load Balancing (ELB) or Linode’s NodeBalancers, in lieu of rolling your own load balancing layer.

You can also avoid a lot of this if your application can run on a Platform-as-a-Service offering, but that’ll have to wait for a later discussion (and you’ll still benefit from understanding the conceptual underpinnings in any case).

We are abstracting on the shoulders of giants

Scott Hanselman's Blog

My new startup has data centers on three continents, utilizes global load-balancing, traverses networks with ease, has both an iPhone and Windows application, was written in a simple high level language, and enables an amazing scenario to help people get more done, faster.

But the real story – the real mindblower for me – was not the hours and hours of software that my partner and I wrote, it’s the years and years of software that we didn’t write.

Scott Hanselman shares a bit of his excitement and describe the deep and broad software / service stack that his new application is built on.

OpenDNS Eliminates Ads

The OpenDNS Blog
May 29, 2014

David Ulevitch writes:

We’ve always tried to put user experience first, even when that gets in the way of making more money. Browsers have changed, we’ve become a security company, and we’ve shifted our business to rely on paying security customers, so we’re turning off the ads in our free DNS service to make that service even better.

This is good news. I’ve been a fan of OpenDNS use by families, in schools/non-profits, public places such as coffeehouses, and in businesses. These are all places where it is often desirable to have a bit more control over what folks are using the Internet for while on-site. (If you’re not familiar with OpenDNS, they provide a very simple way to filter Internet access, without requiring new hardware or new software, both for content restricting – i.e. adult web sites – or security purposes.)

The 80% Personal Capacity Principle

Justin Jackson (via Medium.com)

When you’re working your ass off, putting your all towards a goal, how can you pace yourself so that you don’t crack? This brief essay from Justin Jackson talks about what what he did …after he cracked once. It is one of those ideas that is simple in hindsight, but easy to overlook when pushing yourself towards a destination, either because you’re enjoying the journey or feeling impatient over not reaching it fast enough. This was a particularly timely post for me.