Small businesses face numerous challenges, from acquiring customers to maintaining cash flow. During the Pandemic, most small businesses worldwide adopted digital transformation as part of their organizational strategy to stay competitive.
This includes the incorporation of CRM systems for tracking, analyzing, and retaining customers as most of the customer vendor interactions switched to online mode.
According to a report from Research and Markets, the CRM market is expected to rise at a rate of about 11.3% CAGR to reach $94.4 billion by 2027. Over the year, Salesforce has become a leader in the CRM market.
Given its compliance with industry standards and highly customizable nature, Salesforce CRM is the common choice for all types of businesses, regardless of their size.
Among 150,000 customers of this CRM, you will find global names like Google and Adidas along with many small businesses. This blog discusses what makes Salesforce CRM stand out amongst its competitors for small businesses.
What is Salesforce CRM?
Salesforce CRM is a cloud-based system which enables businesses to manage all forms of interactions and relationships with existing and potential customers. Its features help streamline sales, marketing, customer service and support services. This CRM streamlines processes by improving relationships with existing customers and helping close deals faster.
Salesforce technology works on SaaS (Software as a Service) model. Since it is a cloud-based system, there is no need for installation, and it is possible to work with real time data from any device on the go.
Apart from Salesforce cloud computing model, there is a mobile app too. Sales, marketing and customer service teams can update information about leads and customers on Salesforce Sales Cloud CRM, which can be instantly viewed by all users.
Salesforce continues to add new functionalities, with features like collaboration and reporting already a part of the platform. It offers an array of licenses for varying company goals and sizes.
Why Small Businesses Would Love Salesforce CRM?
Salesforce CRM is a great solution for any small business looking to sustain and grow in the long run. Smaller alternative solutions can work initially but data management becomes an issue during expansion.
Salesforce technology has numerous advantages over its counterparts. Salesforce has simplified its offering to have unlimited configurations that suit emerging goals and enable easy upscaling for small businesses.
Some of the reasons why small businesses opt for Salesforce CRM are:
- Flexible Pricing
Salesforce revamped its lineup consisting of Desk.com and SalesforceIQ to come up with Salesforce Essentials for small businesses. All the sales and service applications that are a part of this Salesforce cloud computing segment are geared towards small businesses, starting at a cost of just INR 1885.10 per user per month when billed annually.
There is a free trial for businesses to be sure about their purchase. As your business grows, you can buy other Editions and additional products based on your requirements.
- AI Powered Salesforce Automation
Having a data science and analytics team in small businesses means extra overhead. Salesforce has integrated its artificial intelligence (AI) Einstein with the Salesforce Sales Cloud CRM platform that runs in the background to enable small businesses to make smarter decisions.
Salesforce technology uses AI provides recommendations and insights to help small businesses in improving their strategies. With Salesforce automation, there is no need for preparing data or managing models. The company will soon be introducing an AI voice assistant too.
- Customization & Integration with Apps on AppExchange
AppExchange is Salesforce app store for extensions and integration with third party business solutions. Small businesses can use integration systems and robust APIs to integrate Salesforce solutions with other applications.
These third-party business apps on AppExchange are available for different categories and help SMBs in streamlining their overall processes. Some examples of available integrations are Pandadoc, HelloSign, Zapier, etc.
Businesses can also become unique application sellers in this marketplace. Salesforce SaaS company offers Lightning, a component-based app development framework to simplify and customize processes for businesses.
App developers who are a part of Salesforce Partner community release new apps every week that include both free and paid versions. With simple drag and drop, developers can create customized apps. They can get funding, training support, and be accredited as Salesforce partners.
- Gamified Training & Support
Given the abundance of functionalities, small businesses might get worried about training their employees to use the Salesforce CRM effectively.
Salesforce Sales Cloud has a simple UI design. It also has a free learning system called Trailhead that includes learning modules and guided trails for different skill levels. Trail Mix for custom learning paths is specifically geared towards small businesses.
The training process is gamified so that learners have fun and queries can be clarified by the Trailblazer community consisting of employees, partners, and other customers. If a business wants to have support at any step, options include Success Center, Help Portal, and more.
- Uninterrupted Teams’ Collaboration
Salesforce has partnered with Slack to provide a secure and scalable environment for communication among remote teams. Slack has features like group video calls, unlimited messaging, priority support, Connect channels, and so on.
There are discounts on Slack integration from time to time for small businesses and startups. For instance, a 30% discount on annual pricing for companies with less than 200 employees was introduced recently.
- Effective Social Media Marketing
Salesforce CRM can help small businesses optimize their campaigns through the analysis of gathered data. Salesforce provides Social Studio for community and brand engagement, among other features. Content collaboration tool Quip, acquired by Salesforce SaaS business, helps in managing workflow efficiently.
You can add social channels in just a few clicks to engage with customers at their preferred social media platform and address their queries. When customers are satisfied with your products or services, they can also leave positive reviews, which will help in further attracting new customers.
- Efficient Customer Support
Small businesses can use Lightning Dialer to connect with customers via phone calls. All the relevant customer information is automatically populated so that any service agent has complete knowledge of customer history to understand the relationship. This includes the last call log so that the customer experience is smooth in the next call.
- Advanced Ecommerce Functionality
Salesforce offers ecommerce features to improve sales with an enhanced experience on different channels for customers. There is a 360-degree view of customer journey to help small businesses offer a personalized experience to customers.
Apart from helping in optimization of ecommerce stores, Salesforce also offers customer review and chatbot options. It provides a unified self-service and call center ecosystem and is great for those businesses which wish to sell their products online.
- Mobile Access to manage Customers on the Go
Salesforce mobile app allows teams to access this CRM on both Android and iOS devices. There is a personalised dashboard containing events, lists, reports, and more.
Further, Notification Builder tool pushes business updates instantly based on their importance for a user. It gives your employees the freedom to work efficiently from any location.
- Robust Data Security
Businesses, irrespective of their industry and size, work with sensitive data. Salesforce is a reliable SaaS platform that relies on AWS public cloud for secure data storage and backup.
It provides built-in enterprise-grade security to protect data in transit and on devices. You can set up granular security policies for your business to be compliant with applicable laws and regulations.
There are numerous reasons why small businesses opt for Salesforce over other leading CRM tools out there. Not only is there a software suite specially designed for SMBs, but Salesforce also offers networking opportunities through the annual user conference Dreamforce.
Also, you can get funding opportunities with Salesforce Ventures/ Salesforce Accelerate, large mentor and expert communities and 1-1-1 philanthropy program for small businesses to donate without affecting their growth.