Small Business CRM: Salesforce.com Solutions to Fit Every Need

You may be a small business, but your challenges loom large. You have hundreds of contacts and interactions to track and manage, new deals to pursue and close, and existing customer relationships to cultivate and maintain.

Because small businesses come in so many varieties, sales automation solutions span the spectrum from contact manager software capabilities all the way to full-featured small business CRM solution. Whether you’re on your own, maintain a modest staff, or add new employees every month, salesforce.com has a small business CRM solution to help you keep the customers you have, win new ones, and drive business growth.

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Contact Manager Software in the Cloud

To start with, salesforce.com gives you a key advantage over conventional contact manager software and small business CRM: Our solutions run entirely in the cloud. With no more than your favorite garden-variety Internet browser and no CRM software, you have full access to your small business CRM anytime and anywhere.

With small business CRM from salesforce.com, you don’t have to buy contact manager software or spend money on special hardware to run it. And you never have to deal with the headache and expense of maintaining and upgrading both. In short, all your small business CRM needs are fulfilled without your having to get into the IT business yourself.

  • Unmatched ease of use. Unlike conventional contact manager software and small business CRM, Salesforce CRM works with the ease of a consumer-style Web site. And starting up is equally fast and simple. You can easily import data from systems like Gmail, ACT!, or Outlook, and get going in practically no time.
  • Customize without code. With salesforce.com, you don’t have to be a programmer to tailor your small business CRM to your company’s needs and your own preferences. A few mouse-clicks and you’re there.
  • Down with upgrades. Because our small business CRM is cloud-based, we handle upgrades at our end, along with every other aspect of IT. Everything happens automatically so you can stay focused on your business. You’re always running on the latest version of our small business CRM, and anything you’ve previously customized is carried forward for you.
  • Ironclad security. Your small business CRM data and interactions are kept safe and secure with multiple levels of the industry’s best and most proven safeguards, including firewalls, encryption, authentication, intrusion detection, and much more. This security infrastructure costs many millions of dollars, but its benefits are all included in your very affordable monthly subscription. No other contact manager software or small business CRM gives you the same high-level protection—and at such modest cost.

Contact Manager Edition: Starting Small

Although it doesn’t provide the full capabilities of small business CRM, a contact management system lets you efficiently track and record relationships and interactions with customers and suppliers: emails, documents, jobs, faxes, calendars, and more. The advantage is controlling and viewing all this critical information in a single centralized format, instead of having different proprietary applications, each with its own data collection system.

Small business CRM—and versions for larger enterprises—are oriented more toward accounts as a whole rather than individual contacts. They generally include opportunity management for tracking sales pipelines and often have added functionality for marketing and customer service.

All this functionality may be more than you require. What if easy-to-use but comprehensive contact manager software capabilities are sufficient for your needs, without the extras of full-fledged small business CRM?

Problem solved: Salesforce.com’s Contact Manager Edition is specially tailored for the very small business. CRM bells and whistles aside, it has everything you need—no more, no less—with a very affordable subscription price to match. And as with all our editions, you get salesforce.com’s legendary ease of use plus the cloud-based simplicity you won’t find with any conventional contact manager software or small business CRM.

  • Contacts and accounts. Contact Manager consolidates all your contacts and accounts, so you can zero in on the right information exactly when you need it.
  • Monitor customer communications. Just as with our small business CRM, Contact Manager can display all your interactions with any given customer, so you have a full history at your fingertips at any time.
  • Integration with email and Google Apps. Another feature set Contact Manager shares with our small business CRM: the ability to work seamlessly with Microsoft Outlook, Yahoo!, Gmail, and all other Google Apps. You can access and use any of these systems right inside Contact Manager. In contrast with conventional contact manager software, Contact Manager offers the convenience of having all interactions and contact records in one place, so you don’t need to manually transfer information back and forth between applications.
  • Gain insights with real-time reports. As with our small business CRM, Contact Manager lets you run standard and customized reports to drill deeper into your data and gain a fuller understanding of your business.
  • Create reminders. Contact Manager’s automated reminders keep you on top of meetings, call-backs, pressing emails, and every other task on your to-do list.
  • Customize with mouse-clicks. Unlike conventional contact managers and small business CRM software, you don’t need to hire a programmer to customize Salesforce CRM. All it takes is a mouse to add fields, change workflows, and create sales processes.

These capabilities are also included in our small business CRM and larger CRM editions. They’re part of the reason why salesforce.com is the choice of more than 63,000 companies worldwide—and counting.

Small Business CRM: Salesforce CRM Group Edition and Professional Edition

Small businesses with more users and greater needs will want to go beyond contact management software functionality. For them, we offer two flavors of small business CRM: Group Edition and Professional Edition. Here are some of the capabilities shared by both:

  • Customize your sales processes. Tailor your sales workflows to fit your company’s procedures for monitoring and benchmarking deal progress from first call through completion.
  • Integrate with Google AdWords. Salesforce.com’s small business CRM works in concert with Google AdWords, making it easy to efficiently execute and track search marketing campaigns, analyze the results, and fine-tune your efforts for even better performance.
  • Capture leads from any source. Here’s an important small business CRM capability that goes beyond contact manager software: Bring leads into Salesforce CRM from any source—trade shows, your Web site, direct mail, and seminars. Forget about manual data entry. With our small business CRM, it’s a thing of the past.
  • Instant insight with real-time dashboards. See your company’s key performance indicators at a glance, in a graphical format that’s easy to understand. You can personalize the dashboards inside our small business CRM by department, role, or individual. This way, everyone sees exactly what they need.
  • Extend your small business CRM through the AppExchange. Check out our one-stop shop for more than 800 cloud-based applications that add capabilities for specific needs and industries and go even beyond CRM. Some are free of charge, and all are preintegrated with salesforce.com’s small business CRM.

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the-greenhouse-logo

One of the U.K.’s leading environmental management companies is using salesforce.com to spearhead growth and help major U.K. companies meet their corporate and social responsibility goals.

Salesforce + The Greenhouse =  
 

The Green Shoots of Social Enterprise

There was a small retirement party at the green house recently. Not to reflect on a member of staff leaving, but to celebrate the departure of the last piece of on-premise technology leaving the building. One of the U.K.’s leading environmental services management companies had matured into an all-cloud company—with salesforce.com as the centerpiece of the green house’s growth.

A comprehensive deployment of seamlessly integrated Salesforce.com technologies—from Service Cloud, to Chatter, to the Force.com platform—was now being used to help clients like Caffè Nero, H&M, and The Carphone Warehouse meet their corporate and social responsibility needs, by increasing their levels of recycling, lowering the amount of energy, and gaining control over their current corporate and social responsibility processes.

Waste, recycling, and low carbon energy solutions

The green house is cultivating some of the most innovative and imaginative environmental services solutions to be seen anywhere. Established by two industry professionals in 2006 to develop sustainable alternatives to waste collections, the green house now manages a comprehensive range of environmental and cleantech services, such as waste and recycling and low carbon energy solutions across some 5,000 properties in the U.K. for big name brands.

Salesforce.com was an early addition to the company’s sales and customer service strategy, as Robert Twiselton, co-founder and managing director explains. “We were using Sugar CRM to manage client relationships, but we wanted a more flexible CRM platform we could bend into all shapes and sizes. When we saw salesforce.com, we were immediately impressed by the breadth of its functionality, how easy it is to customize, and of course all the cloud attributes that come with it: low risk implementation, no need for hardware and software, and a rich portfolio of apps available from the AppExchange."

The green house now runs its entire sales operation on the salesforce.com platform. Everything from sales leads, opportunities, and accounts, to revenue forecasts, workflow, and quotes is available in this shared, unified customer relationship management (CRM) solution—and there’s no sign of any software in sight. Mobile capabilities enable Twiselton and his staff to capture, report on, and review wherever they wish; and with Data.com for Salesforce they have flexible access to all the business data they need to target and close new environmental deals.

It worked with Caffè Nero. Twiselton’s team initially used salesforce.com to introduce a single view of one of the fastest growing independent coffee houses in the U.K., create a compelling sales strategy around the target opportunity, and close the deal. The green house subsequently now uses the cloud computing solution to manage more than 75,000 scheduled waste collections every year from Caffè Nero’s outlets, report back on how the service is performing, and manage other services, such as energy usage and carbon footprint.

Seamless integration with a range of cloud-based AppExchange services enables the green house to extend the quality and effectiveness of the environmental services solutions it provides to clients. For example, the NewVoiceMedia contact centre solution enables the team to monitor and report back to Caffè Nero on the success rate of the waste management service, the number of calls, and trending information. That single view has been a beacon of success for the services provided to Caffè Nero, with the coffee house chain reporting no waste going to landfill since 2010 from its London cafes.

All of this is fuelling the green house’s growth. According to Twiselton, the salesforce.com cloud model will enable the company to grow significantly this year and next, with no necessary increase in headcount. Moreover, he anticipates a complete return on investment on the solution in as little as 12 months.

Waste Transfer Notes go in the bin

Visual app development is also helping to move more and more business processes into the cloud. “One of the great benefits of salesforce.com for a small company like ours is the process automation,” says Twiselton. “Previously, when we transferred waste to a waste contractor, we were manually filling in up to 2,000 Waste Transfer Notes every year. That process is now entirely automated and we only need to complete one form every year.”

Using the Force.com platform, the green house is on a journey to creating an entire system capable of managing clients’ cleantech services. For example, thesolution provides the capability to add an account with a shipping address in Manchester, U.K. and find all the available recycling facilities within a 10 mile radius, as well as the eight companies available to provide collections.

“We started this business in a spare room with spreadsheets, and now we are one of the U.K.’s leading environmental services companies. Salesforce.com is playing a pivotal role in that growth strategy, measurably improving our agility, performance and productivity,” Twiselton concludes.

Visit the Website: www.thegreenhouse.co.uk

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