Understanding the concept behind salesforce.com
To understand salesforce.com, it helps to understand why the company was founded and how it evolved into what it is today. Salesforce.com was co-founded by Marc Benioff and his original goal was to provide customer relationship management CRM software which was delivered entirely over the internet (cloud computing) so that customers would no longer need to purchase servers, infrastructure or install software. All they would need is an internet connection and a web browser.
Back in 1999 when Salesforce was founded this was the pretty radical departure from the traditional client-server model, especially for business software. Today this delivery model is known as Software as a Service (SaaS) and is a part of cloud computing for which Salesforce is widely recognized as an industry leader.
So, Salesforce started as a CRM company and evolved into much more over time. So what exactly is CRM? CRM is a model used to manage an organization’s interactions, things like emails, phone calls, meetings and even social media, with customers and prospects. The focus of these interactions often includes but is not limited to, sales, marketing, and support. When a sales rep closes a deal or a support agent receives a call, these are the types of activities that you will expect to be recorded within the CRM software.
The goals of CRM implementation vary depending on the organization, but there are a few themes:
- Increase sales
- Increase communication particularly between different departments
- Decrease operating costs
- Streamlining business processes
are some of the common goals.
CRM is a major component of the Salesforce platform and is delivered primarily through two project suites:
- Sales Cloud: The Sales Cloud gives organizations the sales and marketing tools to streamline the process of capturing, quantifying and ultimately selling to new and recurring customers. It also has tools to run marketing campaigns and measure return on marketing investment.
- Service Cloud: The Service Cloud on the other hand streamlines processing support requests, validating and enforcing support contracts in providing customer self-service resources such as an online knowledge base.
This is a very simple description since both the suites can do a whole lot more than that. The great thing about Salesforce is that since all this is on the same platform your sales and service teams are always accessing the same information and can easily collaborate.