The reporting and dashboards functionalities are the most valuable features for us.
Also, the CRM's built-in information indexation with standard and custom fields provides complete control in manipulating data. This functionality remains key to driving informed decision making.
Improvements to My Organization
It's driven comprehensive decision making by associating marketing spend with the lead source to revenue generation from completed sales efforts over an extended sales cycle.
Also, the information indexation is fantastic and this facilitates a comprehensive understanding when you need to correlate marketing spend with sales efforts to ascertain ROI. This helped to reallocate marketing spend to more effective lead-generating activities that contributed to higher ROI. Information indexation of the tool facilitates associating ROI by lead source which won opportunities for sales.
Room for Improvement
- Reporting can become slow to pull once you reach a certain limit of contact records due to the complexity and volume of the data available.
- It's a comprehensive tool that is not intuitive to use in order to effectively leverage the benefits of its customization capability.
- The tool can appear complex and there are key understandings needed to leverage this CRM properly. Not creating an opportunity upon lead conversion for example, prevents correlating data between lead source and opportunities won at a later date - so important!
Use of Solution
I've used it for over 5 years.
No, it's straightforward to get an account. From there, it's knowing how to customize it properly to optimize process and facilitate quality data input. It's also been straightforward to deploy for my clients.
There are only stability issues if the report pool involves data from 10,000+ records. The pull can be very slow. Other than that, the tool is both robust and stable.
Scalability issues only arise around reporting from my experience as the data pulls can become slow.
Customer Service and Technical Support
Never called customer service. Technical Support
I've had insufficient engagement with technical support to comment.
We didn't switch, but different CRMs apply to different business sizes and integration requirements. 17 Hats is quite comprehensive for entrepreneurs, for example, but you might consider this more of a simplified ERP solution.
I have not come across the circumstance where I migrated to Salesforce from something else. Either it was chosen from the beginning or not chosen when the complexity of data control was not needed.
Setup is complex, but worth the time to get things the way you want it. Complexity is commensurate with what you want to get out of the tool.
You sign-up online with immediate access to the tool. I feel the setup can appear complex to those not familiar with the tool initially and creation of customizations is not intuitive at the admin level. There is a learning curve with detailed control.
Pricing, Setup Cost and Licensing
Professional is what I choose unless the enterprise functionality is immediately relevant to the business operations. Standard license is usually sufficient. In my professional opinion, the pricing is small compared to the value Salesforce brings.
Other Solutions Considered
We evaluated InfusionSoft, Sugar, Karma 2.0, Netsuite ERP, and Zoho.
CRM deployment is part of a bigger strategy to centralize your data. By mapping out all the area data enters and exits first with requirements for each point, you can assess if Salesforce is the right fit properly.
Disclosure: I am a real user, and this review is based on my own experience and opinions.
Jan 12 2016