We had an order system where our customers could submit their project requests and details, but the service was down far too often. This meant that orders were inaccessible by us and occasionally never actually loaded into the database. It was also pretty cumbersome and we needed a new system, something that wasn't going to cost us a ton of money.
We started looking into what systems were available, but they did in fact cost more than we wanted to pay and offered more than we needed.
I looked at solutions like Google Sheets and Google Forms, but they weren't robust or complex enough to really do what we needed. I started looking at different CRM options and found one that had a lot of functionality without a lot of cost. It is also very scalable.
The new solution was a blank slate. I ended up working from scratch instead of one of the templates offered. It is something that can evolve and be customized to our needs as they change or as new needs arise. The old system, and some of the ones we researched, required us to fit into a box. The new system allows for the box to grow to our needs and integrates with other services, like Zapier, to save us time.
I have expanded my toolbox to include the query language of the new CRM which enabled me to build what we needed and I am expanding what we can do with it and utilizing other connectable services to simplify our work.