A Q&A with OnePageCRM founder and CEO Michael Fitzgerald. The Galway, Ireland-based company raised €575,000 in new Seed funding in late March. Investors include Enterprise Ireland and unnamed individual investors.
SUB: Please describe OnePageCRM and your value proposition.
Fitzgerald: OnePageCRM is a super easy online sales CRM for small business. It has pipeline and contact management with a built-in sales method that gives bullet-proof follow-up and almost zero-admin sales.
SUB: Who are your target markets and users?
Fitzgerald: Squarely aimed at SMBs [small-and-medium sized businesses], our users are busy managers juggling multiple functions of running a business, and need to get in and out of the sales function quickly. OnePage works well for all sales team sizes, ranging from a single user to over 40-to-50 sales staff.
SUB: Who do you consider to be your competition?
Fitzgerald: Our main competitor is Salesforce, but there are others like Capsule, Base, Nimble, and Nutshell. It’s a busy space so we needed a strong, unique selling proposition.
SUB: What differentiates OnePageCRM from the competition?
Fitzgerald: Existing CRM systems are overkill for SMB needs, leading to user frustration and discontinued usage. OnePage’s simplicity and inbox-style workflow ensures efficiency in your sales process. It encourages the user to make up-front decisions about that next action required to move a sale forward.
The core concept of OnePageCRM locks your prospects in a continuous loop of sales actions until you get them over the line. Contacts float to the top of your ‘Action Stream’ list and turn red when action is required. On completion of that sales action, you decide what’s next and when. The contact then goes down the list and floats to the top again when the next action is due.
SUB: When was the company founded and what were the first steps you took in establishing it?
Fitzgerald: OnePage was founded in 2010. We used the lean startup model and followed two pieces of advice to the core—Seth Godin’s ‘build in shipping as a feature’ and Reid Hoffman’s “If you’re not half embarrassed by your product when it goes live, you’ve left it too late.” We’ve been mentored by Eric Ries of Lean Startup movement and Sean Ellis of Dropbox.
SUB: What was the inspiration behind the idea for OnePageCRM? Was there an ‘aha’ moment, or was the idea more gradual in developing?
Fitzgerald: The ‘aha’ moment came from looking at the full range of CRMs on the market and testing about four of the market leaders deeply—and realizing that none of them helped you proactively sell. They just helped you manage sales. Manage is not good enough.
SUB: How did you come up with the name? What is the story behind it?
Fitzgerald: For 95 percent of the time a user spends using OnePageCRM, they are on ‘one page’—the main dashboard or homepage. We’ve packed in what’s needed and only what’s needed. OnePage indicates low-admin, no feature bloat, simplicity, great user experience—everything that we stand for.
SUB: What have the most significant obstacles been so far to building the company?
Fitzgerald: We made a decision to bootstrap funding while getting to product-market fit, and then going to investors for scaling. It’s a slower process with the team so small, but I think a better product can emerge and a team bond from believing you can do it before you get traction.
SUB: You just raised €575,000 in new Seed funding. What are your plans for the funds?
Fitzgerald: We are focusing on developing as many integrations as possible to enable OnePage to communicate with other online apps that our users would like to connect. Mobile access is also a must in a today’s fast-paced sales environment.
SUB: Why was this a particularly good time to raise outside funding?
Fitzgerald: When we got to product-market fit we were able to show investors ‘a black box’—where traffic goes in one side and a percentage of subscribers out the other side. So it was a case of scaling the black box rather than asking for money to do an experiment.
SUB: How does the company generate revenue or plan to generate revenue?
Fitzgerald: We have a subscription model with pricing starting from $15 a-month per user.
SUB: What are your goals for OnePageCRM over the next year or so?
Fitzgerald: Continue to grow subscriptions, add integrations and native mobile applications. We also have another strain of the product for a particular use-case. It’s a very interesting product.
OnePageCRM – www.onepagecrm.com