Salesforce is a cloud computing Software as a Service (SaaS) company. Their flagship product, also called Salesforce, is a highly customizable Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software suite.
It is considered the number one product for customer success and helps businesses track customer activity, lead generation, post-sales and many other services.
What is Salesforce and How Does it Work?
Salesforce CRM is a cloud-based software that helps organizations effectively streamline their sales, marketing and customer service operations.
Its various solutions allow businesses to use cloud technology to better connect with customers, partners and potential customers.
The software helps break down technology silos between departments; so that all employees, whether in marketing, sales, commerce, service, or IT, share a single customer view.
This holistic and complete view of each customer expedites customer service, eliminates redundancies in communications, and allows personalized interactions in order to grow relationships with the customers.
Benefits of Salesforce span across multiple areas:
- Marketing: Tailored marketing messages to the right person at the right time on the right channel, improved lead generation, customer acquisition, and upselling opportunities.
- Sales: Less time is spent on data entry and more time on connecting with customers by developing and implementing a precise, repeatable sales process.
- Commerce: Simple, seamless commerce experiences that help grow revenue and engage customers.
- Service: Consistent, personalized support across every customer interaction – from the contact center to the field, and from service automation to chatbots powered by artificial intelligence (AI).
- IT: Increased productivity by automating key processes and improved scale, transparency, and security with IT solutions.
The Evolution and Growth of Salesforce
Salesforce is an industry in its own right. It is projected that by 2024, Salesforce will generate $1.2 trillion in business revenue, provide 4.2 million jobs, while the ecosystem revenues are predicted to grow almost 6 times larger than Salesforce itself.
It all started in 1999 when Marc Benioff, a former Oracle executive founded Salesforce. The company grew rapidly and in June 2004, it had its initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange under the stock symbol CRM and raised US$110 million.
In its 20+ years, Salesforce has acquired numerous small and large companies. Most recently in August 2019, Salesforce purchased ClickSoftware for $1.35 billion.
It also announced the acquisition of MuleSoft for $6.5 billion in March 2018, and a $15.7 billion acquisition of Tableau Software Inc., a data analytics group, in June 2019.
Alongside the acquisition of MuleSoft, Salesforce has recently integrated MuleSoft’s “Anypoint” platform (which is an app-connecting dashboard) into their cloud products, and also launched its new ‘Integration Cloud, a toolbox aimed at integrating and streamlining business processes.
Salesforce Use Cases
According to the Salesforce website, companies that use the software see average increases across the board, including an average 27% increase in sales revenues, 32% increase in lead conversion, 34% increase in customer satisfaction and a 56% faster deployment.
Over 150,000 companies, from small businesses to Fortune 500 companies, use Salesforce products. Some prominent companies include:
Wells Fargo: Wells Fargo uses its CRM platform to keep all its services, including banking, mortgages, investing, and credit cards, in sync. This results in greater focus on high-value work, increased end-user productivity, and more personalized attention to critical projects, as automation takes care of the simple but tedious processes.
Activision: Activision is the brand behind some of the most popular video games out there. Activision uses Marketing Cloud to monitor social media leads for their products and then uses the Service Cloud platform to follow up on those leads.
By using Marketing Cloud, Activision monitors social media conversations that are relevant to their products. Service Cloud then helps Activision follow up on those conversations. And, given that social media customer service is less expensive than conventional methods,
Activision found that it was able to decrease its annual customer service operating expenses by 25%.
American Express: American Express started with Sales Cloud as a tool for the sales team in 2010. Chatter and the Salesforce1 mobile app now enable thousands of servicing, marketing and product staff to communicate and collaborate in real-time to solve customers’ problems.
With the Salesforce Customer Success Platform, American Express has connected thousands of employees across locations, time zones and organizations.
Key Salesforce Products in 2021
Salesforce covers all the areas of customer relationships, ranging from marketing to service. It includes:
Sales Cloud offers a consolidated view of the whole sales process, with deep insights of the entire customer journey. Through Sales Cloud, clients can efficiently configure, price, and quote every customer deal. It also helps monitor team performance and sales updates from any device, anywhere.
Common features include:
- Account and Contact Management
- Opportunity Management
- Lead Management
- Visual Workflows
- Files Sync and Share
Zen Cloud offers customized Sales Cloud solutions to help build deeper customer relationships through better understanding of data, finding context and smart predictions. Our consultants ensure that the solution provided is scalable and suitable for any type or size of the business.
Service Cloud is a one-stop solution for effective and personalized customer support and management. Powered by Artificial Intelligence, it curates the right information to support agents, monitor customer behaviors and predict their actions.
It takes customer support to the next level by effectively tracking customer orders, history, cases and much more in one, unified place.
Key features of Service Cloud:
- Case Management
- Social Customer Service
- Asset and Order Management
- Custom Reports and Dashboards
- Process Automation
At Zen Cloud, certified developers and analysts work in tandem with our clients to develop and implement seamless Salesforce Cloud solutions.
Salesforce Marketing Cloud is a comprehensive platform for all your marketing needs. It helps elevate marketing effectiveness, generate high quality sales-ready leads, and accelerate return on investment. With Marketing Cloud, map out your customer journey, predict changes and use real-time events to trigger customers.
With Marketing Cloud
- Send automated emails based on predefined triggers
- Harness social platforms to gain market intelligence
- Create insight-driven digital advertising
- Send targeted mobile messages and analyze customer data on the go.
- Use geo-fenced messages to tailor promotions
The experienced and certified resources at Zen Cloud help our clients leverage Marketing Cloud to provide comprehensive digital marketing automation and analytics services.
Community Cloud is an online social platform that enables companies to connect customers, partners, and employees with each other and the data and records they need to get work done. This next-generation portal combines the real-time collaboration of Chatter with the ability to share any file, data, or record anywhere and on any mobile device.
Community Cloud allows you to streamline key business processes and extend them across offices and departments, and outward to customers and partners. It enables the ecosystem to deal with customers more effectively, close deals faster, and get work done in real time.
Salesforce Commerce Cloud is a multi-tenant, cloud-based commerce platform that empowers brands to create intelligent, unified buying experiences across all channels — mobile, social, web, and store.
Leveraging the power of the cloud, Commerce Cloud crafts innovative customer experiences that drive conversions and inspires brand loyalty. With next-generation artificial intelligence infused into the very fabric of the platform, it enables 1-to-1 personalization without the need for data scientists.
Salesforce Lightning is the new look of Salesforce (also called ‘Salesforce Classic’) with a modern design and interface. It enables higher productivity, smarter work practices, intuitive UX and faster app building. Lightning comes with new cloud-based features that optimize and streamline data, and provide tools to maximize sales and service operations.
Key features include:
- Interactive Tabs
- Activity Timeline
- Homepage Components
- Salesforce Assistant
Salesforce has maintained that Lightning is the future and sooner or later all organizations will need to switch. However, we understand that migration can be tedious and overwhelming, especially for mid or large-size organizations.
At Zen Cloud, we analyze our client’s requirements, organization structure, workflows, processes and even culture, and then propose strategies on when to migrate, which processes to migrate, and how to carry out the migration. Our Salesforce team ensures seamless migration at your own pace.
In a Nutshell
Cloud computing has led to a new surge of innovation when it comes to streamlining business operations. Salesforce leads the crowd with its specialized cloud services, each tailored according to the specific needs of clients when handling business operations.
At Zen Cloud, our certified and experienced Salesforce resources help clients choose which Salesforce solution is the best for them. Get in touch with us to learn more about the Salesforce platform and how it can help your business.3