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September 25, 2019 Business Technologies

How to Integrate Sugar Sell with Your Inbox: Email Archiving and Beyond

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By Ali Lipman

As a Customer Success Manager at BrainSell, I talk to a lot of salespeople about CRM – what they love and what they hate about it. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s that salespeople don’t like data entry. Between meetings with clients and writing proposals, recording data in your CRM is a time-consuming responsibility that often falls last on the list of priorities. Since my job is to boost user adoption for our CRM clients, I’m going to let you in on the secret to data entry: email integration.


The easiest and most effective way to integrate your email with Sugar Sell is with a plugin or add-on. Sugar Sell includes great sales enablement tools, including its own out-of-the-box Microsoft Outlook plugin. Sugar Sell also offers several add-on email integrations that fit a variety of use cases. You can’t google a use case, however, so let me help you cut through all the marketplace noise and help you find the Sugar Sell email integration that’s best for you!

Sugar Sell Outlook Plugin

  • What it is: SugarCRM’s out-of-the-box outlook plugin
  • Cost: Free with Sugar Sell, Sugar Enterprise and Sugar Professional
  • What it does: This plugin provides a snapshot of Sugar data from within outlook, archives emails to Sugar out-of-the-box modules, and syncs your calendar between Sugar and Outlook.
  • Our review: This plugin works great to archive emails and sync calendars for businesses using Outlook 2013, Outlook 2016, or Office 365 (Semi-Annual Channel). The downside is that all data is view-only and must be opened in Sugar Sell in order to edit. You cannot archive or view data from custom modules. This plugin provides minimal data creation points with a limited number of fields. It must be downloaded, installed, and administrated by individual users. No offline or mobile functionality.

Implicit FrontEnd

  • What it is: An Outlook Connector for Windows, Mac, IOS, Android, and OWA
  • Cost: $12.00/month (per user)
  • What it does: Implicit FrontEnd grants users full access to their CRM data from within Outlook. Users can browse, view, update, or create new CRM records directly in Outlook while it syncs everything with Sugar. Implicit also provides useful sales productivity tools – like converting customer emails into CRM action items, for instance.
  • Supported Platforms:
    • CRMs: In addition to Sugar, Implicit FrontEnd also works with, SuiteCRM, and SugarCE
    • Email Systems: Office 365, Exchange 2007-2019, Zimbra, Outlook 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019 & Office 365, IOS, Android, and Surface
  • Our review: Implicit FrontEnd is an affordable plugin that makes up for deficiencies in stock outlook connectors for Sugar Sell and, such as support for CRM customizations, rules-based auto-email archiving, email templates, mail merges, team or role-based administration, sales productivity tools, and mobile use. It is the only email connector that brings the CRM right to your inbox, allowing you to view all CRM data. Users can manage almost all CRM maintenance and research right from their inbox, giving you real potential to boost the ROI of your CRM through increased adoption and reduced data entry.


  • What it is: An email connector for Sugar and Gmail
  • Cost: $15.00/month (per user)
  • What it does: Collabspot is a Chrome browser extension that integrates Sugar Sell with Gmail. It shows account activity and allows creation of new leads and related records directly from your Gmail inbox. It also comes with several sales engagement tools such as calendar sync, follow up reminders, email templates, analytics, and social media integration.
  • Supported Platforms: Gmail only
  • Our review: Collabspot is a no-brainer for companies using Gmail. Collabspot was acquired by Sugar, so you can trust that it will continue to align with the Sugar suite. Collabspot is a Chrome browser extension, so there is no offline or mobile functionality available. The calendar sync requires the creation of a Sugar Sell Google calendar, and calendar events must be shared with the Sugar Sell calendar to initiate the sync. Like most other email connectors, Collabspot enables CRM data entry upkeep, so you can create new records and convert leads right from your inbox.


  • What it is: A server-side integration for a dozen of CRM systems – including all versions of Sugar – and five enterprise email platforms.
  • Cost: Starts at $9.95/month (per user)
  • What it does: Riva syncs Sugar Sell contacts, leads, contact notes, calendar events, tasks, opportunities, cases, and projects. Riva also includes functionality that helps drive adoption and increase sales. Some of these features include email-to-opportunity and email-to-case conversion, support for custom fields and custom objects, and auto-created contacts in the TO: and CC: fields of emails that aren’t already listed in Sugar. Riva also provides advanced integration and filtering rules for email attachments.
  • Supported Platforms:
    • CRMs: Salesforce, Dynamics, SAP, Oracle, Netsuite, Sage CRM, SuiteCRM, Goldmine, and SugarCRM
    • Email Systems: Office 365, Microsoft Exchange, Hosted Exchange, OWA, Ipad, Iphone, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, G Suite, Gmail/Google Calendar, GroupWise, IBM Verse, IBM SmartCloud Notes, IBM Notes and Domino.
  • Our review: Riva really shines when it comes to complex integration requirements. It can solve sync challenges for calendars, contacts, emails, custom fields/customer objects, and hybrid messaging environments. Hosting options include global AWS data centers, multi-tenant cloud, on-premise, and dedicated-tenant private cloud. A server-side installation means that there is one installation and administration point, and users do not need to download plugins or mobile apps. Administrators can leverage sync policies that apply to individuals or teams. Your sales and service teams can save time by dragging and dropping into Riva’s SmartConvert folders, which automatically create opportunities, cases, and quotes. Riva’s folder system also gives users a quick view into records assigned to them. Riva is trusted by thousands of companies globally, including 15 of the largest banks in the world. With a near 90% customer satisfaction rating, you’ll be in good hands – and you might boost user adoption, increase sales productivity, or reduce data entry as well.

Comparison Chart

Product Feature Implicit FrontEnd Plugin Sugar Sell Plugin Collabspot Riva
Available for use with multiple CRMs and Email Systems
Sync Outlook data with CRM: Contacts, Calendars, etc.
Sync CRM data: Accounts, Opportunities, Cases, Leads, Quotes etc.
Create and Update CRM Records from Outlook Limited Limited
Full Access to all CRM Data from within Outlook Limited
Full Support for Custom Objects or Modules & Custom Fields Limited
Email Side-Panel
Manual Email Archiving
Rule-Based Automated Email Archiving
Email Conversation Thread Archiving
Email Templates and Mail Merge
Centralized Team/Role based Administration and Configuration
Web Browsers Integration
Integrated Document Archiving from Word, Excel and Acrobat Separate Separate Separate
Sales Productivity Tools
Cross Platform: Windows, Mac, OWA, Mobile, Ect.
Server-side installation and centralized administration
Mixed Mode Access
(Tethered for Real-Time Access and Non-Tethered for Cached Data/Offline Access)
Suitable for complex email integration requirements and customizations Limited


The Bottom Line

Integrating and syncing your email with your CRM is crucial to reducing manual data entry and boosting user adoption – but email connectors are not one-size-fits-all. Use this guide to select a tool that can boost your team’s productivity and redirect their energy away from tedious tasks.

Still have questions, or want to see a demo of a connector? Let’s chat! Contact us and we’ll dive into your CRM needs.

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Author Bio

Ali Lipman

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Ready to rock? So are we!

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  • You get a partner for the long haul — your success is our success!