Salesforce is widely thought to be the industry standard for CRM solutions, and we consider it the best overall choice. The sheer number of features, third-party integrations and add-on options makes this CRM ideal for businesses with diverse and evolving needs. Once implementation is complete, Salesforce offers users a beautifully designed product that's speedy, powerful and easy to use.
Pricing & Terms
Salesforce's cloud CRM comes at four different subscription tiers. Lightning Essentials is suitable for up to five users and costs $25 per user, per month. Lightning Professional can be used for all different team sizes and starts at $75 per user, per month. Lightning Enterprise starts at $150 per user, per month, and finally Lightning Unlimited offers top-tier functionality for $300 per user, per month.
Salesforce is a massive product with lots of optional add-ons and customizations, so the subscription costs listed here should be considered jumping off points. It is possible to spend considerably more on this product depending on how much storage you require and how many add-ons you need. Make sure you are clear on how you will be charged for anything not included in your primary subscription fee.
Users will be hard pressed to find another CRM with as many optional features as Salesforce. In addition to offering all the standard CRM, sales and marketing tools you'd expect, this solution sports beautiful dashboards and high-level reporting and analytics in a customizable package. Here are just a few outstanding Salesforce features:
- Comprehensive ecosystem. Salesforce offers a range of business products that all seamlessly integrate with each other. Businesses can grow with Salesforce and gradually adopt new features as needed. Some Salesforce product categories include the Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Marketing Cloud, Commerce Cloud, Community Cloud, Quip (a collaboration tool), and Salesforce Platform (for high-level development and customization).
- Easy import process. Salesforce makes it easy to get off the ground running by giving users the ability to seamlessly import data from Gmail email, Google calendar, Excel spreadsheets and more.
- Popular integrations. One of the biggest advantages of Salesforce is its widespread use, which translates to lots of easy integrations. Through AppExchange, users can peruse dozens of broadly used apps like Jira, Zapier, Outlook, and loads of data and development tools, and instantly integrate them with their Salesforce CRM.
Like many other comprehensive business ecosystems, Salesforce has branded names for nearly every feature and product, which makes figuring out what is included in each subscription needlessly confusing. Contracts with Salesforce can quickly become complicated, and many users complain about a lack of clarity when it comes to what is included and what will cost extra. Users who defect from Salesforce often cite this type of confusion, as well as the expense of purchasing extra storage, as the reason for leaving. If you're running a small business, with limited in-house tech support, Salesforce will likely be more hassle and expense than you need.
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