A personal CRM - can't find a good solution

Don’t laugh, but I use Apple Contacts. You can add extra fields and change labels, you can add links, and it exports in a standard format that if I need to I can open as an ugly text file.


I’ve been having a play over the last week - it’s remarkably powerful and easy to use… and obviously integrated. You can even add a #tag to the notes and search for everything with that #tag.

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That’s quite interesting - I never even thought of it as a real app. But your points are noted especially re: tags and custom fields. I will look at that.

For what it’s worth, I’ve been using the dataview plugin with Obsidian. This allows meta data to be stored in a YAML header and you can then query the data, thus giving you database/CRM like abilities. I’ve been quite impressed in what is achievable. Entering and finding data is rather simple as they are all plain text files. You can create multiple queries in one doc or create a new document for each one. Plus the bonus is that is syncs across devices through Obsidian. This is becoming rather an attractive solution as you can also use wikilinks in the same documents. I need to play with it some more, but so far, this might tempt me away from my databases. Especially as the data is all encrypted through Obsidian’s sync feature.

If you are a Gmail user one of the templates for the new Google Tables (beta) includes a basic CRM.

This sounds interesting, and I’m using Obsidian too. Is it possible to share a screenshot (blurred out if necessary) to illustrate?

I’m always wary with Google products - you never know when they will decide to wipe it from the face of the earth!

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No problem. Remember Sun Microsystems? They used to say “We are the dot in dot-com”. Before I commit to a new program I learn how to back it up, and how to export my data.

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I’m afraid I’m still only playing with possibilities at the moment. However, at a simple level (I am a novice!), say your YAML header has the following:


You could create a new document and put the following query at the top (the query can go anywhere and will run once you go into read mode):

table last-name, first-name, mobile, address
from "PEOPLE"
where contains(country, "Germany") and contains(last-name, "Sm")

(please note that I cannot find a way to escape 3 backticks in this forum editor. There should be 3 backticks under where in the above query to close the query.

The above query would show a table displaying columns for last-name, first-name, mobile and address, only showing files from folder “PEOPLE” (and subfolders) where country contains Germany and the last-name contains “Sm”.

You could build much more complex queries. You can view lists or tasks. There’s a fair amount of work in creating and populating the YAML headers, but once done you can slice and dice any way you choose.

What is especially appealing is that if you use Obsidian sync, all this data is encrypted between all your devices! Really good for CRM data. I am creating files with the format “lastname-firstname.md” rather than placing first-name and last-name in the YAML as you can query the filename via file.name. I’m adding an alias of “firstname lastname” so I don’t need to have the name backwards in my files. I’ve also found that if I have subfolders in the from folder they are all included in the query. You can easily create multiple queries through cut and paste and change what you need to. You can also query tags and dates. Quite a powerful little plugin.