Advice for New Entrepreneurs: #1 Don’t Rush

Posted by Posted on by

“What is one piece of advice you’d give to a new entrepreneur?”

We asked our Facebook fans. And here are some cool responses we got, sorted by order of popularity / number of likes:

#1 Don’t Rush

Elnur D. Penahaliyev says:

Not to rush; to collect enough money before he starts to implement his business plan. And to collect the whole team of people who will work for this business, himself / herself should only work on how to increase efficiency and develop business, not to take part in daily work. This is important guys. 
Don’t start with insufficient money! Collect at least money so that your business can survive 4 months without any sales.

#2 Sell

One word of advice that says a lot. From Michael J. Hajduk.

#3 Have your product ready

Devin Kent Bryce says: Have a product or service ready to be sold before you start trying to sell it.

#4 Don’t be afraid

Mik Walker says: Don’t be afraid of being the one that steps out on your own. New ideas are just that!

Moshe Soffer says: Do not be afraid to make mistakes. Think different. And do at least 3 tasks a day.

Thanks to our fans for reaching out with these key pieces of Business advice.

And to our blog readers, we’d love it if you can share your personal favorite piece of advice in the comments below!

Less CRMing and More Selling with Zoho CRM: New UI plus Exciting Features

Posted by Posted on by
A few months ago we started rolling out a preview of our new, totally-rebuilt Zoho CRM UI. We took a close, hard look at how users were interacting with our app, and how we could make it easier for them to achieve their daily goals. Our goal was to make users spend less time  inside the Zoho CRM app, so they can spend more time selling.
So we re-designed many workflows and screens inside our app. A small example: we realized that everybody wants to add notes to their contacts/prospects. So, we made it very simple for them to add more notes. We streamlined how we show contact information. We made it easier for a sales rep to check availability for scheduling a follow-up call with a prospect right from the contact screen. We made several other changes – big and smallThe feedback we got from users has been overwhelmingly positive, and we’re pretty thrilled about that.

But that’s not all we have been working on. We have also been busy building a lot of new things we know you will love. We kept this as a surprise for all of our users – and here it is.

Stay on top of what’s happening on your sales pipeline with Pulse
Just like you can follow people on Twitter, now you can follow a particular lead, deal, contact or account in Zoho CRM. Sure, you can always run a report, but Pulse takes sales tracking to the next level by allowing you to follow what’s really important for you. But that’s pretty much where the Twitter analogy ends, because we’ve taken it a couple steps further. How? First, you can create rules that will automatically “Follow” a deal for you when some conditions are met. But my favorite part is this: you can also follow what’s NOT happening in your business.

Let me explain. When you follow a deal, it’s because you’re interested in seeing what happens with it. But what happens if a week goes by and you haven’t heard anything? How will you remember? Pulse takes care of that for you. In the Pulse tab inside Zoho CRM, you can view what is happening and what is NOT happening, and you can also set different time intervals for keeping track of your deals.

Build Custom Apps based on your CRM Data

With this latest Zoho CRM update, you can now build custom apps that access data inside your CRM system easier than ever before. For example, if you want to build a Travel Expense app, you can have one field ask what account or deal this travel was related to – and display a list of deals right from Zoho CRM. Of course, you have always been able to build this with an our API, but this update makes it easier for you to build apps with Zoho Creator – so there’s no coding required, just drag-and-drop. In addition, you are able to add these custom apps as tabs inside Zoho CRM.

Connect with your Customers on Social Media

Zoho CRM now allows you to link a CRM contact with their LinkedIn profile. So you can not only very easily get their position, company, city and more – but now you will also be able to keep up to date with their business and professional activity. You can even see their picture directly in your Zoho CRM contact. You can even send a note to your contact through LinkedIn right from Zoho CRM.
Webhooks make Zoho CRM even easier to integrate

We’ve had a pretty good and liberal API program for a while. But say for example, you want to update your inventory system every time you close a deal. How can you alert the external system that something just changed inside Zoho CRM? That’s what webhooks are for. Without getting too technical, every time some condition is met, Zoho CRM will send a quick message to your external system (your inventory system in this example) to give it a “heads up”. After that, more complex processing might take place through the API.

This is a major release and a major milestone for us, and hopefully you will find it exciting and useful!


Tailoring your Zoho Discussions-powered Online Community – Part I

Posted by Posted on by

Building an online community for your service or product is one of the most effective ways to promote customer confidence, loyalty and repeat business. It is of course fundamental that when you create a community, you align your brand’s value and identity with your online community. Zoho Discussions offers several ways in which you can customize your community, so that it matches what you want to do with it. Keeping a consistent look-and-feel and visual experience from your customers as they go from your website to your customer support forums is one of the most-requested things customers ask for.

Zoho Discussions offers extensive rebranding options, which enables you to create a rich user experience and fully align your online community with the other elements of your web presence. So we explore that here.
We’ll go into more advanced settings in Part II and Part III of this post.

Visual Experience

You can customize anything and everything in the online community that you create with Zoho Discussions. Basic changes to logo, colors, header and footer are available through an easy-to-use control panel. Advanced
customizations including your own custom CSS are also available. And for the ultimate custom experience, we also offer Zoho Discussions as a “white label” product.

Topic Types

Different communities have different kinds of postings – questions, ideas, problems, etc. With Zoho Discussions, you can easily create a Q&A forum, or an Idea board or a customer support community, etc. by customizing the topic type of your portal according to what you need.

Custom Widgets

Widgets are a great way to provide more useful and context sensitive information for your community to look at. Zoho Discussions offers a number of ready-made widgets, which enable you to share important announcements, promote top contributors, drive traffic to the most popular topics and more.

Alternatively, you have the ability to create custom widgets – HTML & Link Widgets – with which you can embed any HTML object to promote / advertise your product and share your product links, so that your users
can make the most use of it.

Customizing the UI is just one of the ways in which you can tailor your online community and make it a part of your brand’s online experience. In the next post about Zoho Discussions, we’ll discuss integrating it with
your own sign-on system and providing a smooth experience for your users.

You can read more about customizing Zoho Discussions here . And as always, feel free to send your comments in our online forums (powered by Zoho Discussions, of course!) or by e-mailing us

Happy Discussing!