As a Salesforce Architect and developer, I’ll admit that I’m a little biased towards the platform.
But, when I look around to find any alternatives to Salesforce, I can’t. And so, for a few different reasons, I strongly believe that every SMB (Small and Medium Business) needs a Salesforce implementation.
And let me elaborate why.
What Salesforce.com offers can be categorized into two main areas: Business Products and a PaaS Platform.
From a Business Product perspective, the key offerings are the Sales Cloud, the Service Cloud and the Marketing Cloud. These core Business Products are all focused on acquiring and retaining customers. This is the key aspect of any company’s focus. And for that simple reason, Salesforce becomes relevant to every company…period.
Are there other companies, which have that kind of focus? I’m sure there are. CRM companies, like SugarCRM, and ZOHO which are also exclusively focused on customers. And they provide a very powerful feature set of CRM capabilities.
And from a cost perspective, they would be more attractive.
But while evaluating Salesforce against ZOHO and SugarCRM kind of solutions, keep in mind that as your business grows, Salesforce can scale to meet the complexity and volume that your business will need to handle.
Salesforce can grow from a basic CRM to a large ERP for your organization, powering multiple internal and customer/user facing solutions, built on the App Cloud. The other solutions are unlikely to do that.
Information Technology is the core of a company’s success. Why wouldn’t you invest in a platform, that can power the whole range of your company’s strategic IT needs (Sales Operations, Marketing, Service/Support, Internal and External Collaboration), and build custom tools quickly, without any hassle of maintaining hardware, or even software?
It’s a pretty powerful proposition, isn’t it?
But what’s the risk? The key reason why some Salesforce implementations are not successful is that the right Business Product Manager and the right Salesforce Experts are not on the implementation team. And if you don’t have those two ingredients, then you might end up being very disappointed with the results of your Salesforce implementation.
And so it’s very important to find the right Salesforce implementation partners, who are not only Salesforce experts, but also CRM domain experts, and can either act as, or be great partners to the business Product Managers.
As a technology decision maker, and influencer in your organization, you should constantly be looking to find the right solutions and platforms. Salesforce, I believe is one of those key technologies that no CIO or Technology leader in a company can afford to ignore.
Deploy your solution quickly, scale it both in volume and complexity when you need to, support mobile users, implement data and application security with minimal effort, and buy App Exchange products as you need them, are just some of the features that make Salesforce.com an essential part of any company’s (SMB, startups or Enterprises) technology landscape.
As a technology leader, if you haven’t yet considered Salesforce for your company, you’re missing something really interesting!