This year Salesforce.com, at their annual Dreamforce conference, had a dedicated keynote just for small and medium businesses. We are reminded in the video at the bottom of this page that Salesforce didn’t become successful initially by landing large enterprise customers. Quite the contrary, their success started by establishing a beachhead with small and medium businesses using the SFA (Sales Force Automation) components of their platform – what we now refer to as the "Sales Cloud."
The Cloud is democratic
Something that is easy to forget is that when a small or medium business purchases Salesforce.com, they are getting the exact same technology platform as the Enterprise customer. The message here, as delivered by Hilarie Koplow-McAdams, President of Commercial & Small Business, is that "the cloud is democratic." Said differently, Salesforce is customer agnostic. Using a shrink-wrapped software analogy in a cloud context might be a bit odd, but hopefully it will drive this point home – when a small business of 15 employees buys Microsoft Office, it’s the same Excel and Word that’s being used by Fortune 500 companies.
Box above your weight
As stated by one customer in the video below, "Salesforce allows us to compete with the giants of our industry." Having worked with dozens of small companies just this past year we couldn’t agree more. As we like to say, Salesforce let’s you box above your weight because the platform gives you the power to compete on a much higher level than you would imagine based on physical size. The competitive advantage is the combination of the Salesforce.com platform and how well it’s tailored to support your business needs.
Salesforce in their presentation gave some interesting statistics of what customers realized after migrating into Salesforce.com:
- 25% Increase in win rates
- 34% Increase in sales productivity
- 57% Better information
- 30% Revenue improvement
Why Salesforce levels the playing field and makes sense for small and medium business:
- Rapid deployment
- No hardware or software to buy or maintain
- Automatic upgrades (~3 times a year)
- Unlimited scalability (yes, Salesforce runs just as fast with 4K records or 4MM)
- Built in collaboration with Chatter
- Built in analytics (you don’t need to buy a separate BI / reporting package)
- Anytime, anywhere mobile access
- It’s trusted – with industry leading security and data redundancy
For small and medium businesses, success with Salesforce can be realized by leveraging best practices and ensuring that it is configured to supports your business processes. When done right, the platform can drive efficiencies, provide insightful information, and spawn fanatical user adoption.
If you are a small or medium business and are considering moving to Salesforce.com, we would love to be your guide to success, so please contact us.
The closing segment of this keynote series features Buddy (aka "the Cake Boss") and their transition from "paper to platform." It’s is great story on how they capitalized on their explosive popularity (5MM Facebook followers!) and used the power of Salesforce.com to scale their business quickly.