California, USA

  • Lack of structure and control
  • Segment integration
  • Smartforms
  • Gmail integration

Month-over-month growth rate


Reduction in cost


Reduction sales cycle


Shortlist—manage external workforce

Officially launched in 2016, Shortlist is a SaaS startup headquartered in San Francisco, California. Shortlist helps companies find and manage their complete external workforce (freelancers, contractors and vendors) by providing a single platform to source, on-board, manage, review/rate and pay them.

Co-founder and COO Joey Frasier tells us how Freshsales enabled his sales team to automate practices, save time, and reduce costs in their 6-month journey.

Challenges with Streak CRM: Lack of structure and control

Before Shortlist grew to a team of 10+ employees, it was co-founders Joey Frasier and Martin Conrad who managed the SaaS startup on all fronts.

They were initially using Streak CRM. It being a browser extension that integrates right into Gmail appeared simple and effortless to begin with:

“Streak was a lightweight and flexible CRM. It was great for Martin and I to use during the beta phase of our product. It was something quick to step into with our existing Gmail.”

Joey Frasier

Co-founder and COO


But as Shortlist’s customer base started to grow, the dual team expanded to handle new business and enrich customer relationships.

During this phase, Joey learnt that Streak fell short of managing Shortlist’s expectations, and a more robust CRM software was necessary to handle business growth:

“Unfortunately, the lack of structure made it really difficult—almost impossible— to continue using Streak. Managing data with limited control and visibility was a challenge.”

Choosing Freshsales over Salesforce

With two new sales reps to power inbound and outbound leads, Joey was on the lookout for a sales CRM that met their business needs:

“We wanted a CRM that’s structured and gives us control—at the same time be simple and lightweight for our small team.”

When it came to finalizing a sales CRM, Joey made a business choice between Freshsales and Salesforce.

While the ultimate choice was Freshsales, it’s stand against Salesforce in Shortlist’s case is particularly noteworthy here.


Because Joey dismissed free Salesforce licenses while citing it as “despite being a leading CRM”:

“Although I’ve used Salesforce before and could’ve had it for free, I didn’t want to hire a full-time CRM admin to implement it. It wouldn’t have been the right choice for my team.”

Shortlist is able to manage business data efficiently in Freshsales, and successfully establish an organized sales process without any difficulty:

“Freshsales interface is elegant and easy to use. The sales team was extremely helpful and painless—compared to my experience at Salesforce which took three weeks just to negotiate. Our team got up and running with Freshsales unbelievably quickly.”

Upselling with Freshsales-Segment integration

Joey and his reps are able to follow customer activity—see what page they visit, and track their actions— on the Shortlist platform through Segment integration. The data collected in Segment is automatically pushed to Freshsales.

An example of how we at Freshsales use Segment integration to view user activity

Joey says:

“Segment integration has enabled our sales reps to easily identify upsell candidates in Freshsales. We’re able to capture customer interaction with our product, and make it actionable. This proactively drives new sales.”

How?— Shortlist’s SaaS product is available in two models—Transactional (manual payment to vendors), and Professional (automated payments).

Now, when a Transactional user makes a manual payment, sales reps are able to view this activity in Freshsales under the lead/contact page.This integration allows them to identify upsell opportunities through customer activity.

By associating such identified customers with tags through custom fields, they’re able to conduct targeted upsell campaigns, thereby effectively using the integration.

Generating leads with Smartforms

Previously, it was a manual ordeal to record leads, but with Smartforms the team has reaped major benefits. Freshsales has provided Shortlist a comprehensive solution to manage website leads:

“Using Freshsales Smartforms, we’re able to generate over a thousand website leads a month without any manual intervention, which is a huge benefit.”

Sustaining business growth with Freshsales

Joey and his team at Shortlist are broad users of Freshsales. Since switching from Streak to Freshsales, they’ve incorporated more structure to their sales process and acquired more control.

For a startup like Shortlist that’s still gaining traction, Joey says they’re able to sustain a month-over-month growth of 30%, and been able to reduce costs by 50%.

Smartforms not only creates new leads and captures form details inside Freshsales, but it also tracks their website actions. Based on engagement level, leads are assigned lead scores.

Using lead scoring to contact hot new leads faster, Shortlist sales reps have reduced sales cycle length by 20%.

Use-case of how Smartforms helps connect better with new leads

“Being a startup, we wanted to use the best tool and not an old cumbersome one. Freshsales automated multiple business interactions through integrations, and helped organize our sales process. A next-gen CRM like Freshsales was the one for our team.”