What is CRM?
Before we delve into the why and how you should integrate your website with Salesforce.com, it is important to understand the problem it solves, some basic terminology and the industry landscape.
Responding to customer feedback and criticism in an organized, productive way is nearly impossible without a dedicated team or automated program. The hassle far outweighs the benefits of sifting through all those surveys, emails, letters, recorded call-center calls and point-of-transaction dialogue exchanges. This is why many companies forge on without tending to the woes and gripes of the little guy—their most important stakeholder.
Until automated CRM programs came out.
The first Customer relationship management (CRM) hoped to capture detailed customer interaction information to be used to provide better, more personalized customer service. Traditional CRMs allowed you and your select team to manage contacts and customer activities, thus increasing overall business and customer control. Later on, marketing and sales teams saw CRM tools as sometimes necessary to rapidly deploy and accurately maintain marketing and sales campaigns.
Most systems were sold as proprietary enterprise software, often for hundreds, sometimes thousands of dollars. These out-of-box CRM solutions came with their set of issues. Often times, they were scrapped because of issues like unwieldiness, high learning curve, and inability to integrate the CRM with websites or other backend frameworks. Oracle and SAP dominate market share with their clients-side enterprise solutions that are targeted towards the mid-sized and large companies. But that leaves little options for the smaller guys, again.
Until Salesforce.com revitalized the industry with a scalable, yet robust CRM solution.
Most vendors were offering one-size-fits-all solutions which rarely met the needs of a dynamic business environment. The #1 mistake most CRM shoppers made back then was to pay huge amounts for an out-of-box solution that unrealistically promised to solve all their problems.
Ironically, Salesforce.com started as a pet project of Larry Ellison and Oracle. They saw a golden opportunity to adapt their database server solutions to skyrocketing demand for CRMs.
Salesforce’s central philosophy evolved around creating a CRM solution that would play an integral role in developing a more comprehensive customer-centric approach, but did not expect it to be the catch-all solution others promised. Instead, they focused on issues of stability, performance, and convenience—benefits not really addressed by their predecessors.
What they came up with is a CRM solution that comes as a web-hosted service (meaning there is no software for you to install!) letting their clients concentrate on their business without worrying about complex, space-consuming, and costly installations.
They called it “Software-as-A-Service.”
It was an instant hit, and now the dotcom startup is a multi-million dollar company nearly a decade later, is listed on the NYSE, and the leader in CRM solutions.
If you want to see for yourself their extensive portfolio of trusted clients like Cisco and Time Warner Cable check out http://www.salesforce.com/customers/.
Following are number of key benefits Salesforce provides over traditional CRMs:
1. Salesforce.com’s innovative and highly emulated SaaS (software-as-a-service) model scales to match your company’s needs and budget
2. No huge upfront costs and a guaranteed one month deployment period
3. Remote access allows you to manage business from anywhere, anytime
4. Ease of customization and upgrades minimize effort needed to maintain the CRM
5. More efficient call-center operations leading to higher customer satisfaction
6. Make better-informed marketing decisions, lowering acquisition and retention costs
7. Allows you to generate more qualified leads, convert those leads into sales—all tracked from a birds-eye view
Almost Daily, new benefits are being uncovered, blogged and vigorously
discussed about on the Web and Media. Just check out http://blogs.salesforce.com/.
What are the Drawbacks?
Getting your employees to learn and maintain the CRM is the number one complaint of most CRM buyers. Salesforce.com provides you with a dedicated project manager whose ongoing support and, if necessary, on-demand employee training can take the headache out of using it.
Some obvious security concerns arise out of this model. Since the data is saved on offsite servers, many users worry that the data will be hacked or misused. However, Salesforce is one of the few big firms that now have stringent privacy and security measures in place to prevent data theft or breaches.
Finally, another challenge you might face is integrating Salesforce into your website. Salesforce does not help with this because they know that it is not core to their business. Companies usually are given the tools, a manual, and a good luck before being sent on their way. It’s just business.
But that’s not to say that the tools aren’t spectacular, or the instructions not useful or concise, but many companies want to customize the tools and do further complex integrations into their frameworks, like their website for example. Companies have to either do it on their own or consult with individuals who charge exorbitant fees.
It is time consuming-process that requires experience, dedication, and patience. Trust me, after shopping for and implementing a CRM, many companies aren’t too happy when they find out that they have to wait months for site integration.
Until Baytech came into the picture.
Integrating Salesforce.com with Your Website
Baytech’s dedicated project managers have years of experience setting up and seamlessly integrating hosted and off-of-shelf CRM solutions into websites. We recommend to all our valued clients Salesforce first for all those previous reasons summarized here: convenience, cost-effectiveness, and revenue generation. In fact, some of Baytech’s best work has been directly related to integrating Salesforce into client’s websites.
But before we go any further, Baytech has some of its own guarantees we’d like to share with you.
We offer a full range of web site design services, internet marketing and promotion. We provide each of our clients the same quality of service and attention, turn around projects when promised, and do it all for a very reasonable cost.
But that’s not entirely all we can offer.
Baytech’s consultants specialize in quickly capturing, storing, and analyzing your customer data to come up with a focused customer service and marketing strategy. This is an interesting new service Baytech is very confident in providing full time now. Because after years of hard work and expertise in this particular application of CRMs into websites, Baytech has taken the time to talk to clients about particular issues, and has helped recommend successful strategies to take the Salesforce integration into the website one step further.
Baytech wants to talk to you about your interest in Salesforce integration into your website or any of our other web design services. Please call 1-866-913-9327 to talk to a consultant personally, and hopefully we can begin a partnership right away.