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Nimble continued on its quest to offer small to medium businesses enterprise-grade CRMs with the release of its latest plug in PHOTO: Michael Coghlan

Nimble dug a little deeper into the customer relationship management (CRM) space with the release of its Smart Contacts App with support for Microsoft Edge.

Edge is the web browser developed by Microsoft and included in Windows 10, Windows 10 Mobile and Xbox One. Edge replaces Internet Explorer as the default web browser on all kinds of devices.

The new plug-in is free for the standard edition and brings all the social marketing and business offerings of the Nimble contact management app directly into the Edge browser.

Designed For Sales People

Normally, the release of a plug-in would pass as something of interest, but not necessarily noteworthy.

However, this plug-in deserves a little bit more attention because it could conceivably replace big enterprise CRMs like Salesforce for sales people, for example, and also in light of the rapid growth Santa Monica, Calif.-based Nimble, a relative newcomer in the established CRM space, has made in short time.

Indeed, Nimble CEO and founder Jon Ferrara is pitching the Nimble Contact Management app as a disruptor in a space that is dominated by big enterprise-wide CRMs.

These big, enterprise CRMs, Ferrara told CMSWire, are more appropriate for C-Suite executives and department heads, than sales people who spend the days in email inboxes and customer-facing social networks.

“What is missing from most CRMs is relationship management — even though they are called CRM. CRM for these big apps really stands for Customer Reporting because they are really designed as reporting tools,” Ferrara said.

“Contact management, however, should be at the core of CRM but it is not. The big apps and platforms like Salesforce were designed for management and not for workers.”

Nimble Contact Management

The idea behind the Nimble app is a simple one. According to Ferrara, it brings workers’ contacts list with them wherever they go.

Nimble synchronizes individual emails, calendars and contacts as well as social networks into a shared team relationship manager enriched with rich social and business profiles everywhere they work.

Nimble Contact Plugin for Microsoft Edge

The result is workers using Office 365 and Outlook will be able to manage their contacts directly in the browser.

This release is only the latest stage of Ferrara’s ambitions to take on the CRM market and technologies that he describes as “broken.”

“My argument is that contact management is broken in G Suite and Office and the others because email, contact management and calendar are three separate tasks. In most cases to acess these tools you have to jump in and out of different apps which is not great for working,” he said.

“You need to be able to access these tools where ever you work, including inside your browser.”

Nimble’s Future

Ferrara founded Nimble in 2009 to give small-to-medium businesses the advantages of customer relationship management (CRM) that large enterprises enjoy, without the expense.

It’s not his first foray into CRM. He previously co-founded GoldMine, one of the earliest CRM software companies, in 1989.

Nimble comes in two versions today: a free Nimble Smart Contacts Add-in and Nimble Business edition at $25 per user per month. The Nimble Smart Contacts Add-in is available to all Microsoft Edge, Office 365, Outlook desktop Windows/Mac and Outlook iOS users.

The business edition offers access team social sales and marketing functionalities and will be available for Outlook Mobile Android users within the next few months.

While it is too soon to talk about the Dynamics and Nimble tie-in, Ferrara sees Nimble as the gateway app to Dynamics as organizations move to the cloud and start looking for CRM or enterprise resource planning. Dynamics will not be the end of the story either:

“I want to arrive at a point where organizations that buy Office will buy Nimble too. Every team needs a contact management, and they need simply social sales. I want Nimble to become the relationship system of record for the entire company not just the sales team.”