by Sydney Stone
Salesforce is the largest and most popular customer relationship management (CRM) tool on the market. Thousands of enterprise companies all over the world use Salesforce to manage their sales and marketing processes.
In an effort to court small businesses who haven’t been able to afford Salesforce in the past, the company recently released Salesforce Essentials – a pared down, less costly version of the full-service solution. Salesforce Essentials will replace Desk.com and SalesforceIQ, which will both be phased out in March of 2020.
The question is, will Essentials become as popular for small businesses as the original Salesforce solution is for enterprise organizations? Only time will tell. For now, here’s everything we know about the new Salesforce Essentials solution and all the benefits it has to offer.
Benefit #1: It’s much less expensive.
Essentials is only $25 per month per user, with ten being the maximum number of users. Regular Salesforce pricing ranges from $75 – $300 per user each month, depending on the level of services and support required.
Benefit #2: It’s easier to learn.
One of the biggest complaints most users have about Salesforce is that it’s difficult to learn. This is why it’s hard for large businesses to get company-wide buy-in. Essentials features an interactive tutorial program and online learning environment called “Trailhead” that makes it easy to set-up and even easier to learn.
Benefit #3: There is no configuration involved.
The fully developed Salesforce solution involves a lengthy configuration and installation process for most enterprise companies, especially if there is customization involved. Salesforce Essentials is an out-of-the-box solution. A small business can expect to be up and running with this version of Salesforce in minutes.
Benefit #4: It’s easily scalable.
You may be a small business right now, but what happens when you start to outgrow your current customer management system? Salesforce Essentials makes it easy to add more advanced modules and capabilities as needed so you don’t have to start all over with a brand-new CRM solution.
Benefit #5: Einstein Artificial Intelligence is included.
With Einstein, Salesforce’s built-in Artificial Intelligence capability, you can save a ton of time previously spent manually entering data. Einstein’s “Activity Capture” automates this process by pulling information from emails, messaging, and calendar entries and then updating the proper record in Salesforce. Plus, Einstein eliminates the chance for human error when updating the correct email address, phone numbers, spelling of customer names, and other pertinent information.
Benefit #6: Essentials gives you access to the AppExchange.
Even the smallest of small businesses can customize their Salesforce Essentials solution by integrating ready-to-go apps from the Small Business Hub on the Salesforce AppExchange. Whether you need accounting, marketing, HR, or any other type of integrated app, you’ll find everything you need to grow your small business on the AppExchange.
Benefit #7: You can utilize the Salesforce mobile app.
The Salesforce mobile app is available on any device and allows you to work from anywhere at any time. You can even customize your alerts to stay up-to-date on new leads and be notified the second a sale is made or a customer needs a response.
Benefit #8: The Sales Cloud will help you or your sales team sell more and do it more efficiently.
Even if your small business sales team consists of only one person, you can still increase productivity and have more time for prospecting with the Salesforce Essential Sales Cloud. Whether you’re using the mobile app, an iPad, or a desktop, you will always be able to see the latest activity with your contacts and accounts.
Benefit #9: The Service Cloud will help you provide better & more personalized customer service.
The Service Cloud allows you to take your customer service game to the next level. It’s great for any small business that needs a help-desk or responds to customers via email or social media. The service cloud provides customer service reps with the most up-to-date information and stores all the information from the support ticket or communication automatically.
In conclusion, Salesforce Essentials could be the “starter” CRM that small businesses have been dreaming about for years. Now they will be able to afford a smaller version of the most trusted CRM solution on the market, and have it grow with them as their business expands.