A Better CRM: WordPress Themes as a Competitor to 37 Signals

I was just trying out 37 Signals‘ highly-successful Highrise platform, and I must admit that I was underwhelmed.  It seems that it would be pretty easy to pump out a WordPress theme with similar/better functionality. Plus, I could customize it to meet my exact needs and not be bothered with extra features that I will never use.

In a nutshell, Highrise does two things that I need:

  • Track bids/deals
  • Track contacts/people/relationships (i.e. CRM)

Creating the bids/deals portion would be a simple matter of using categories to for “proposed deals” and “accepted deals”.   We could then add post meta data for “Who is this deal with?”, “Name the deal”, “Describe the deal”, “How much?”, “Category”, “Who is responsible for the deal?”, and “Who can see this deal?”  The notes for the deals could be stored in the initial post as well as in follow-up comments to the post on the front end of the site.

Tracking relationships with people could be done in a very similar manner.  We could create a post category for “contacts” and then add meta data for “First Name”, “Last Name”, “Title”, “Company”, “Phone”, “Email”, “IM”, “Skype”, “Website”, “Twitter”, and “Address”.  Then add initial notes in the post content.  Use the WordPress commenting system for follow-up notes.

Sounds pretty simple.  The proof will be in the pudding.  I plan on giving it a go tonight.

Interested in the theme when it’s complete?  Let me know!

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6 Comments

  1. Chris on October 15, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    Yes, I’d be interested in that kind of wordpress theme.

    Although I think one of the key features for having everything in one place in such a tool is ability to easily include e-Mail convos just with a bcc to highrise.



  2. toby on November 21, 2010 at 9:58 pm

    @Chris, The purpose of this theme is to cut Highrise out of the equation. It’s an alternative to Highrise and a fully-customizable CRM built on WordPress.

    I actually built the theme and have been using it successfully for over a month now.



  3. Dave Kulas on April 22, 2011 at 8:59 pm

    I am interested in this theme …. is it available for purchase?



  4. kuif75 on June 21, 2011 at 10:14 am

    hey @Chris

    im very interested, can i see it? a demo version somewhere?
    please help



  5. Jean-Pierre B. on July 26, 2011 at 12:43 am

    Hey this is a great idea and I’d be happy to help you develop it. Keep me posted on your progress.



  6. toby on July 26, 2011 at 2:28 pm

    @Jean-Pierre – Fantastic! I have been planning to release it to the wild “soon” for about a year now. Perhaps you can light a fire under the project. 🙂



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