CRM vs CMS What’s the Difference?

Businesses rely heavily on their CRM and CMS software to manage sales and marketing. Though they sound similar and are often confused for each other, each software program performs very different purposes. Let’s break down the differences between them.


Your CRM and CMS work together to connect your business with customers. The customer relationship management (CRM) software helps manage and organize leads and their interactions with your website or sales team. In contrast, a content management system (CMS) is used to create and manage the content on a website.

How does a CRM work?

A CRM is used to manage lead and customer relationships throughout the sales process. They help your sales teams organize and manage information about your homebuyers, sales pipeline and opportunities, and reporting functions. CRMs provide a central database for your sales and marketing teams to access and power your sales.

Some key features of a CRM include:

Contact management: store relevant information about your homebuyers like email, phone number, interested communities/homes, and purchasing timeline so your sales team can understand each lead and progress through the sales funnel. You can categorize leads by status, rating, and more.

Interaction tracking: keep track of your buyer history including notes on each contact, appointments, preferences, and more. Your sales team will be able to provide quality customer service by having this information in their hands.

Email management: many CRMs include email marketing to manage customer communication. Create, schedule, deploy, and track results.

Workflow automation: an advantage of CRMs is the automation process. You can create workflow systems that automatically assign leads to the right salesperson, trigger sales processes based on where the lead came from, and remind sales associates to follow up.

Reporting and analysis: reporting tools allow you to see what’s working and make data-based decisions to improve your processes. Reports are helpful for identifying sales opportunities to explore, areas to improve, set performance goals, and see how sales associates are performing,

How does a CMS work?

CMS software is used to manage the content on your website.  A CMS enables you to create, organize, publish, and maintain your website without needing to rely on the web developer.

Some key features of a CMS include:

Content management tools: a CMS’ backend is where the magic happens. This is where all the information and digital assets like photos, videos, PDFs, etc., are stored and organized.

Publishing tools: depending on your CMS, you may have access to front-end publishing tools that control how the visible part of your website looks (basically what the customers see). This often includes built-in blogging tools, themes, and templates you can use to customize the look and enhance functionality.

SEO tools: optimize your website content and improve your position in search results with built-in SEO tools. Some CMS include tools to create XML sitemaps, add redirects, and optimize your pages’ metadata.

The ultimate duo: CRM and CMS

Managing home sales can be a roller coaster. That’s why smart builders leverage the power of both a CRM and CMS to work together to support their sales process. Since homebuyers interact with your website, it makes sense for your CRM to work with your CMS. A good integration will funnel all of your website activity into your CRM for reporting and analysis.

Our websites work with any CRM. We bake in our propriety CMS, smartEDIT 5.0™, to manage website content. smartEDIT 5.0™ is custom-tailored for home builders’ specific and unique needs. Our CMS gives builders the flexibility they need to manage and update their website, plus the ability to create new interactive buying experiences like online design catalogs, online appointment scheduling, and more.

If you’re ready to take control of your website, request a demo today to see how smartEDIT can power your online shopping experience.