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What Does Salesforce Do?

Man snaps photo of Salesforce logo: What does Salesforce do
Salesforce’s customer relationship management (CRM) software breaks down the technology silos between departments. Our tools power the “wow” moments that delight customers and create lasting relationships with them.

We answer some basic questions about what Salesforce does, what Salesforce CRM software is used for, and how Salesforce works.

​​Maybe you’ve heard Co-CEO Marc Benioff speak on CNBC or CNN. You may also recognize our cloud logo, friendly characters, or our very tall headquarters in San Francisco. But, because our work in the world is so varied, we often field the question: What does Salesforce actually do?

What does Salesforce do?

Okay, so you’ve got some customer data. But what do you do with it? How can you use that data to tell the story of your customers and what they want? Many companies come to us frustrated because they can’t easily answer these questions. Sales doesn’t share data well with marketing, for example, or marketing doesn’t know when a customer makes a service request.

Budgets are tight, and you need to be as efficient with your data as possible. Salesforce’s customer relationship management (CRM) software breaks down the technology silos between departments. You get a complete view of your customer everywhere they interact with your brand. And your employees can share a single customer view from any device, anywhere in the world.

The result? Customer information from tech support chats, recent purchases, website behavior, and more flow throughout your company in real time. Your sales team knows exactly what to offer. Your service team helps them faster. Their needs are met and their trust in you grows. The ability to automate and unify millions of data points in real time creates a special kind of customer magic.

Salesforce’s Customer 360, now powered by Genie, represents our entire portfolio of powerful apps and services that provide a deeper understanding of customers and a better experience for customers interacting with your company. The difference is clear: our tools help you create customer magic. Use any of the apps or mix and match them to really drill down into your customers’ wants and needs. We’ll explain more about that later.

Deliver success now

Learn how Customer 360 helps you increase efficiency, improve results, and lower costs.

What is Salesforce used for?

Another thing about our CRM platform: It’s software, not hardware, and it lives in the cloud. This means your marketing, sales, commerce, service, and IT teams can be connected on our platform no matter where they’re physically located in the world. And now with Slack, Customer 360 is the world’s #1 CRM that simplifies communication and information sharing between customers, teams, and partners to power digital workflows for the new way to work.

This digital workplace helps businesses, government agencies, schools, and non-profit organizations large and small deliver exceptional experiences. And it’s doing so across industries, including healthcare, retail, consumer goods, manufacturing, financial services, media, communications and technology.

How does Salesforce work?

Customer 360 offers apps that unite every team — marketing, sales, commerce, service, and IT —  around a single, shared view of customer data that gets updated in real time. Employees can access the information they need to do their best work. And they can collaborate and align with colleagues much more easily. This ultimately leads to more connected, personalized experiences for your customers, building stronger relationships. 

How? This holistic view of each customer lets you resolve customer issues faster. Customers don’t have to explain themselves over and over while getting passed to different people. Instead, they get hyper-personalized interactions and top-tier service on any device.

Customer 360 includes apps for marketing, sales, commerce, IT and service to help propel business forward — plus Slack and Genie to connect customers, teams, and partners.

How can you use Salesforce for marketing?

We can help your team tailor marketing messages to the right person at the right time on the right channel. We can also help you improve lead generation, customer acquisition, and upselling and cross-selling opportunities.

Customer 360 can help you collect and manage first-, second-, and third-party data, and reconcile data from known and unknown customers and prospects. Customers don’t have to explain themselves over and over while getting passed to different people. Instead, they get hyper-personalized interactions and top-tier service on any device. We’re also flexible enough to help you integrate data sources outside of our own. It’s an advanced, real-time platform that helps you deliver customer magic.

Artificial intelligence (AI) integration helps your team plan and optimize every customer interaction. You can quickly and easily make data-backed decisions about new customer segments you want to target. 

Salesforce can also help you build connected brand journeys that adjust based on your customer’s interactions, and give them the most helpful personalized experience. Start personalizing your customer journey now.

How do you use Salesforce for sales?

Your sales team can spend less time on data entry and more time connecting with customers. Our tools can also help your sales reps and support team develop and implement a precise, repeatable sales process. 

Better still, by connecting sales with marketing, service, and more, your opportunities increase, and your customer experiences feel more seamless and engaged. Free up more team time with Sales Cloud

Can Salesforce also work for B2C and B2B shopping and commerce?

If you want to build simple, seamless business-to-consumer (B2C) and business-to-business (B2B) commerce experiences that help grow revenue, engage customers, and connect commerce to the rest of the business, Salesforce has tools for that, too.

Easy to implement and adapt, our flexible platform for commerce can scale anywhere. We can help your products and services for both businesses and consumers convert more customers with personalized buying experiences. Dive deeper into customer-facing and back-end innovations with Commerce Cloud.

What about customer service? Are there Salesforce tools for that?

Deliver consistent, personalized customer service across every customer interaction — from the contact center to the field, and from service automation to chatbots powered by AI. We can help you manage numerous touchpoints, including customer service, self-service channels, field service, and digital channels like chat, SMS, WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and more.

We have lots of ways to help you resolve cases faster, provide instant support, and make sure agents have a complete and informed view of your customer at every interaction. Level up your customer service with Service Cloud.

What about IT?

Whether your team is tech-minded or not, our integrated Information Technology (IT) tools can help your entire organization build modern apps to meet employee, partner, and customer needs. We’ll put you on the path to increase productivity by automating processes that help teams across your organization improve scale, transparency, and security as you need it. Make every employee more productive with Salesforce for IT.

See an example of Salesforce at work

We have many customer stories to share, but let’s look at just one example of Customer 360 in action. 

Beauty brand e.l.f. Cosmetics knew it had to make sure every customer touchpoint online was relevant and consistent across its channels. So the company implemented a combination of Marketing Cloud, Commerce Cloud, and Service Cloud to transform and connect those functions of its business. The result was giving shoppers the best, most seamless and intuitive marketing, shopping, and customer service experiences possible.

These three solutions worked together to provide a holistic view of the e.l.f. shopper to company leaders, both before and after purchase. This allowed the company to quickly adapt in real-time to customers’ cosmetic needs, enabling e.l.f. communications to speak to each customer in a personalized way.

These innovations led e.l.f.’s ecommerce site to become first in its sector, with an impressive 55% to 65% retention rate. E.l.f. also increased efficiency because they could reassign employees from customer service case resolution to more forward-looking customer loyalty programs.

You can tailor Customer 360’s capabilities to your specific needs. Maybe that means bringing AI, data, or analytics integrations into your processes. Or it might look like training your team with new skills. Beyond the technology, our global ecosystem of experts, app partners, community Trailblazers, and professional services is always on hand, 24/7.

Why is Salesforce obsessed with customers?

A whopping 88% of customers say the experience a company provides is as important as its products and services, according to Salesforce’s State of the Connected Customer report. This means it’s not only about what you offer customers, but when, where, why, and how you reach them.

Today’s customers want to trust they’re getting what they need from you, when and where they need it. They want experiences to be effortless, and they’re loyal to brands they can count on. Salesforce’s connected customer experiences help you ensure that trust.

The business problems we’re helping to solve

Businesses are now facing numerous financial headwinds. Inflation and workforce instability are affecting future plans. Supply chains are overwhelmed. 

Companies need steady, predictable operations — especially now. Our tools help increase productivity and efficiency, allowing you to do more within tight budgets and continue on a path to growth. Here’s how:

Connect: You have the data. You have the people who can act on that data. Now you just need to connect conversations with actions so your people have the right information.

Automate: Don’t weigh your workforce down with mundane tasks. Our tools can help you automate tasks and free up time for your employees to focus on the things that matter.

Integrate: Customers want seamless, fast and personalized experiences. When you integrate their data across Customer 360, you will unlock new opportunities for better service and more sales.

Reskill: The needs of your workforce are changing. You want the right employees for changing times and your workers want to feel valued. Achieve both goals with tools to reskill workers and keep your workforce at the top of its game.

The global problems we’re helping to solve

As a company, we do much more than innovate CRM technology. We believe that our greatest resource is our values, and that businesses big and small can use their platforms for change to build a better future.

We’re doing what we can to tackle the current climate crisis, trust crisis, and the crisis of inequality. Since we began in 1999, we’ve placed a major emphasis on supporting the global environment. We launched a comprehensive pollution tracking tool, and we’re behind the one trillion trees effort to unleash a global reforestation movement.

Companies can create welcoming environments for all employees by seeking diversity and teaching inclusivity. We have an equality at work module on our Trailhead learning platform with more information. We also have training anyone can access on how to build ethical and inclusive products. It’s part of a movement to build technology with intention.

Additionally, our 1-1-1 philanthropic model means we’ve donated more than $543 million in grants, 6.9 million hours of employee volunteer time, and provided free or discounted products to 55,800 nonprofit and education customers since we started. You can learn more about our philanthropic efforts here.

In summary, Salesforce creates CRM-based tools and solutions for companies of all shapes and sizes. But that’s not all. We also have major sustainability and philanthropic efforts that provide a window into the heart and soul of Salesforce.

Do more, sell more, and spot more demand. See Salesforce Customer 360 in action.
Jody Farrar Senior Director, Product Marketing

Jody Farrar is a Director of Product Marketing at Salesforce. She’s equally obsessed with all things marketing as she is with her two adorable kiddos.

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