Source: Adobe Stock

Tapdesk: A New and Noteworthy CRM Alternative

Michael Dortch


I’ve been introduced to a new company and a new solution focused on customer relationship management (CRM). I think Ayulla’s Tapdesk will make effective CRM more accessible and effective for more smaller and mid-size businesses (SMBs) than today’s market leaders.

CRM for SMBs: Lots of Offerings, Few Solutions

Every type and size of business relies upon some form of customer relationship management to do business. For many, this involves using software, whether or not that software was designed for CRM. Today, CRM software solutions run the gamut from spreadsheets and email (yes, really!) to comprehensive, complex, expensive offerings such as those from market leader

SelectHub provides software selection and deployment assistance, largely to SMBs. In a post entitled “The CRM Software Market Guide for 2020,” SelectHub offers highlights from a survey of 254 decision makers at companies exploring CRM solutions. That survey offers some surprising insights.
• The 254 respondents use approximately 500 solutions and tools to perform CRM functions — and 300 of these are spreadsheets, email systems, point-of-sale (POS) systems, and other tools not designed for CRM.
• “Of the remaining 200 CRM solutions used, over two-thirds had only a single mention, indicating that many companies have attempted to take advantage of the overwhelming choice but have struggled to find their ideal product.”

There are more than 200 commercial CRM software offerings currently available. So it may seem the last thing the market needs is yet another such offering. Fortunately, Tapdesk, from startup Ayulla, is so much more.

What Every CRM Effort Needs: Customers

Two things set Tapdesk apart. One is its design, which is intended to be immediately easy to use and to put to work effectively. “Intuitive” is a frequently used descriptor of business software, but Tapdesk lives up to the description. Users don’t have to dig through multiple menus to search for functionality they need and want. Tapdesk’s interfaces are clean, easy to navigate, and good-looking, especially compared with other CRM solutions. The Tapdesk team describes the software as “CRM designed by sales and marketing people, for sales and marketing people.”

Screen shots of Tapdesk software running on a smartphone, a tablet, and a laptop.
Source: web site

The other key differentiator is how the Tapdesk design and its powerful features are accomplished. They are powered by clever, “behind-the-screens” use of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), powerful data analytics, and other modern computational technologies.

Tapdesk puts these to work almost immediately to help users find and prioritize leads, a critical step in developing customer relationships worth managing. Search queries trigger AI-powered screening and filtering of thousands of leads. ML then highlights those of highest priority to your business, based on your specific criteria. You get a list of custom-selected, current, relevant leads within seconds. Tapdesk also remembers details of past searches, to avoid unhelpful duplication.

Tapdesk also makes it easy to add leads to your engagement and sales management workflows, which the software groups into “pipelines.” Tapdesk pipelines provide a consolidated, easy-to-navigate view of all your accounts, leads, deals, and activities. You can easily focus on specific accounts, deals, clients, and leads, and modify views to meet your specific requirements and preferences.

You can initiate and track calls, meetings, tasks, deadlines, and other activities related to each account, contact, and deal. Integrated contact management features make it easy to keep in touch with your clients, and keep track of all of those “touches.” You can even include some personal details about each client, to ease differentiation and improve engagement.

Tapdesk also integrates with several popular third-party business applications, to deliver additional value. An App Center makes it easy to explore and install those applications and extend the value of each Tapdesk workspace.

Basically, Tapdesk is designed to enable a consistent, integrated approach to each and every step in the client-facing processes your business depends upon, from lead generation and analysis through engagement, sale, and relationship management. And by combining simplicity with comprehensive features and the power of AI, Tapdesk helps you where it makes sense, stays out of your way otherwise, but is always ready with the information you need, when you need it. No technological expertise or certifications required. And with pricing starting at $29.95 per month, including that AI-powered lead searching, its benefits are available even to sole practitioners.

Tapdesk: A Great Solution With a Great Origin Story

In biology, it was once widely believed that ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny — the development of the embryonic life form echoes the developmental stages of the adult. While this theory is largely discounted in biology today, it is an apt description of the links between Tapdesk and its creators, the founders of Ayulla.

Ogbonnaya C. (“Og”) Ngwu and Sesoo Kator Ijir are Nigerian-born, American-educated young men with software development and business experience. Tapdesk represents both their knowledge and their intense focus on delivering benefits to users. The two young men have built a virtual team of developers, and are forging relationships with experts in business and other areas. As the Ayulla LinkedIn profile puts it, “We strive to foster an inclusive and diverse environment that attracts, nurtures and inspires the best talents.”

Matt Guthrie is a serial entrepreneur, former technology research sales executive, and principal of his eponymously named consultancy. His clients have included Facebook, Getty Images, and Twitter. Matt, Og, and Sesso found each other via a “founders” thread on Reddit, the popular news aggregation and discussion site. Matt soon became a pro bono advisor to the company.

Beyond growing the Tapdesk community, Ayulla’s founders are also actively seeking suggestions for new Tapdesk feature suggestions. Sales and marketing people suggested many of the software’s current features, and company founders want to expand those contributions. This reflects both the openness of the underlying technology platform and of the founders. They realize CRM is not a one-size-fits-all endeavor, and neither they nor anyone else knows everything a superior CRM solution needs.

Tapdesk: From CRM to Complete Relationship Ministration

Tapdesk is a modern, cloud-based, AI-powered solution for some of the most basic and essential tasks facing every business that depends on clients. I have said for years that the traditional expansion of the acronym “CRM” is a trap. Businesses that win turn transaction-focused customers into relationship-focused clients. Tapdesk enables businesses to go beyond traditional CRM, and to achieve what I think of as “complete relationship ministration.” Oxford Languages online defines “ministration” as “the provision of assistance or care.” I think this focus is essential to turning customers into clients.

The ability to manage and incrementally improve every client relationship across its entire lifecycle can translate directly into more sales, more loyalty, and more positive perception for any company. Tapdesk makes tools that can enable superior customer care and client ministration for almost any company. To learn more, or to request a demo or free trial, visit



Michael Dortch

Translator of Bits & Bytes into Dollars & Sense. Ex-Trustero, Ex-Huawei USA, Ex-Ivanti, Ex-ServiceNow,… / @DortchOnIT