A CRM for CRM for Revenue Management

The Symbiotic Growth of Chargebee Alongside Freshsales CRM



At a critical juncture in its growth, Chargebee made the strategic decision to implement Freshsales CRM while simultaneously expanding its sales and marketing teams and restructuring its sales processes. Today, as Chargebee sets its sights on broader market expansion and a more customer-centric business model, Freshsales assumes a pivotal role in facilitating seamless system overhauls and instance updates, all while prioritizing a user-friendly and efficient approach.

Chargebee, a seven-year-old entity, operates as a recurring billing platform tailored for subscription-based SaaS and ecommerce enterprises. The company has garnered significant support from renowned investors, including Tiger Global Management, Insight Venture Partners, and Accel Partners. Having processed over $65 million in invoices for early-stage companies at no cost, Chargebee takes pride in serving a diverse clientele spanning 50+ countries, with more than 7,000 satisfied customers

Tracing Chargebee’s Market Journey

In 2015, Chargebee found itself in the midst of a growth phase, heavily reliant on discounting as the primary driver of customer acquisition, even at the expense of revenues. The Vice President of Sales at Chargebee, reflects, “At that time, the focus was on getting more customers on board.” However, within a year, the team recognized that this strategy undervalued their product in comparison to competitors, causing customers to underestimate its capabilities.

This realization marked a pivotal turning point for Chargebee, leading to significant changes in pricing strategies aimed at serving a broader customer base. Simultaneously, it spurred the development of a more robust and effective sales and marketing team. Brion elaborates, “Initially, sales was an offshoot of support, and we had just three account executives on the team. This became a challenge because we had a fantastic inbound lead generation engine which brought in a lot of leads every day, but we didn’t really have a structure or process in place to segment and approach these leads.” Questions about lead segmentation based on profiles, industry, and geography, deal stages, and lead prioritization became paramount during the revamp.

“The first step we took was to restructure our sales process, set monthly targets for our team, and put process-based objectives in place,” Brion explains. As the sales process took shape, Chargebee began its search for a CRM system that could elevate their sales capabilities.

Enter Freshsales CRM

“We initially had Salesforce CRM but didn’t really use it. The instance was incredibly complicated because it allows for so much customization that you end up doing nothing, When we explored Freshsales CRM, the first thing I remember saying is, okay, the interface is clean and simple.”

Recognizing that sales teams often spend a substantial portion of their day within the CRM, Brion emphasized the importance of a user-friendly and intuitive CRM. “Our sales team has scaled ten times in the last two years, and we plan to go from 30 to 90 people in the next 12 months. So, in order to manage this kind of sale, we needed a solution like Freshsales CRM,” he states.

Brion also advocates for flexibility in a CRM, believing that limited customization can be a virtue. “In fact, for a business with straightforward sales processes, limited customizations will greatly benefit the account executives,” he concludes.

Features They Loved

Chargebee’s adoption of Freshsales CRM brought forth an array of features that have proven instrumental in enhancing their sales and customer engagement processes. These features have not only streamlined operations but also improved the overall efficiency and effectiveness of Chargebee’s sales teams. Among the standout features that have garnered praise within the organization:

  1. 360-Degree View of Customers: Chargebee benefits from a comprehensive perspective on their customers, understanding how prospects initiated contact, whether through chat, campaigns, or other means. The integration with Freshdesk ensures seamless synchronization between the sales and support teams, capturing every interaction with prospects and customers. This contextual insight empowers Chargebee’s sales agents to engage with prospects and customers while having a deep understanding of their needs and interests.
  2. Lead Prioritization: Freshsales CRM provides valuable support in lead prioritization, enabling teams to identify high-priority leads and respond promptly. Arundhati Balachandran, Director of Sales at Chargebee, notes that attending to must-win or strategic leads immediately results in higher conversion rates.
  3. Discussion on Deals: Integration with Freshconnect allows Chargebee’s teams to collaborate with colleagues across departments and functions, facilitating discussions on specific deals. This feature ensures that important deal-related context is not lost, enhancing the overall deal strategy.
  4. Tasks: With teams concurrently managing multiple deals, the task management feature keeps them on top of critical engagements. Tasks help in sending timely follow-ups and providing prospects with the necessary information for informed decision-making.
  5. In-Built Phone: Chargebee’s Sales Development Representative (SDR) teams leverage the in-built phone feature extensively, making up to 40 to 50 calls daily. This feature simplifies the calling process, allowing users to click on the number, select the region, and make calls. Additionally, the recording feature proves valuable for verification without repeated customer interactions.
  6. Sales Campaigns: Chargebee employs a systematic approach to handle the multitude of incoming leads. After sending four personalized emails to each lead, they are incorporated into a sales campaign. This process automation has resulted in increased lead responsiveness and efficiency in managing leads.
  7. Reports & Dashboards: Koushik Chander, Senior Account Executive at Chargebee, acknowledges the value of the reporting and dashboard features. They enable the generation and analysis of various reports, including deals created, expected closures for the quarter, revenue forecasts, and more, providing vital insights for informed decision-making.

“Two years ago, we couldn’t measure our conversion rates. We didn’t know which leads went from sign-up, to demo, to closing. Our account executives didn’t know where our leads are coming from, how each deal is progressing, at which stage the deals are dropping off, where they should focus their efforts better and more. We were able to do all this with Freshsales CRM. And these metrics have helped our MRE, SDR and other teams beat all records in Chargebee history on the number of leads enriched, number of demos booked, pipelines created, deals closed and more.” —

The Road Ahead

In the upcoming years, Chargebee is charting a course toward a more customer-centric approach in its business strategy. While pursuing expansion in key markets such as the United States, Europe, and Australia, the company aims to introduce greater specialization within its teams. The Vice President of Sales at Chargebee, highlights the invaluable insights made possible by Freshsales CRM, enabling detailed measurement and analysis of lead data, including the regions and sectors yielding the most sign-ups and the complete lead journey. Leveraging this data, Chargebee is poised to build specialized sales teams tailored to specific customer profiles, enhancing their ability to cater to individual prospect needs. For instance, if an ecommerce business falls within the revenue range of $10 million to $20 million, Chargebee can deploy a dedicated sales team to establish close customer relationships from day one.

“With Freshsales CRM, we have just the right amount of flexibility, to be able to overhaul the system and change our process on a regular basis. We’re now in a cycle where every six to nine months, we change our entire Freshsales CRM instance. And, we’re able to cycle through those iterations very easily. As a growing company, I think that is critical.” 

In conclusion

Chargebee’s strategic adoption of Freshsales CRM has catalyzed a transformative journey toward customer-centricity and efficiency. With expanded market horizons and specialized teams on the horizon, the company is well-equipped to leverage data-driven insights, enhancing its ability to serve diverse customer needs and accelerate growth.