Nutshell is super user-friendly and intuitive

I would highly recommend Nutshell

Easy to use and... wait for it ... 100% buy in!

Nutshell is both simple and powerful

A Cloud-Based CRM

with Sky High Prices

Salesforce may be a powerhouse name when it comes when it comes to packing a punch in the CRM market, but the biggest Salesforce drawback is that it’s punch is aimed right at your business’ bank account.

You can read through all of the most common Salesforce issues and complaints  and the true cost of the CRM below. If you’d like more bit sized info, you can review all the information in bullet points here.

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Comprehensive Salesforce Review

After reading through our comprehensive Salesforce guide, you’ll understand exactly why Salesforce is not the solution for your business.

Salesforce offers powerful CRM capabilities and support for businesses of all sizes.

However, many Salesforce challenges need strategic planning, careful management, and the time and resources to leverage Salesforce’s resources and best practices. Some of these challenges are:

  • pricing complexity
  • user experience issues
  • customization complexity
  • integration challenges
  • update management
  • data security concerns
  • and ensuring effective customer support for large enterprises

How does Salesforce’s pricing model impact small businesses?

The impact of Salesforce’s pricing model on businesses can be analyzed through various pricing plans and features offered by Salesforce, which does seem to be beneficial to businesses of different sizes and needs at first glance. However, here’s a summary of relevant details:

  • Starter Suite Pricing: At $25 USD per user per month, billed monthly or annually, this plan offers basic CRM functionalities including marketing, sales, service, and commerce features suitable for small businesses. It supports dynamic email marketing, out-of-the-box sales processes, and seamless customer service.
  • Professional Suite Pricing: Priced at $80 USD per user per month (billed annually), this plan targets businesses needing more customization and automation. It includes sales quoting, forecasting, and enhanced real-time chat features.
  • Enterprise and Unlimited Plans: For businesses with more complex needs, Salesforce offers their Enterprise plan at $165 USD per user per month and the Unlimited plan at $330 USD per user per month, providing advanced customization, automation, and AI capabilities.
  • Einstein 1 Sales: For $500 USD per user per month, this top-tier plan includes Salesforce’s best sales features powered by AI, aiming at large enterprises rather than small businesses.
  • Additional Costs: Beyond the base subscription fees, Salesforce offers add-ons and integrations at additional costs. For example, AI features can be added to Enterprise and higher plans, and various success plans offer different levels of support and resources.

Business Support: Salesforce emphasizes support for small businesses through success plans and a range of products designed to scale with business growth. However, the necessity of annual contracts and the complexity of customization may present challenges for small businesses in terms of affordability and usability.

In conclusion, Salesforce provides a versatile range of pricing plans and features that can cater to the diverse needs of  businesses. However, the cost-effectiveness and suitability of these plans depend on the specific requirements, size, and growth phase of the business. Small businesses must carefully evaluate the features, support, and total cost of ownership when considering Salesforce as their CRM solution.

Sources

Want to see an example of what 10 Users really looks like for a year of Salesforce? See below.

What you’ll spend in the first year

Annual license cost
for a 10-person team

Implementation costs Source: BacancyTechnology.com

Full-time admin salary Source: Talent.com

Live phone and chat support Source: Salesforce.com

Fully functional mobile app Source: G2.com

Data storage

One-click dialing and call recording

Total

$19,800

($165/user/month)

$75,000

$96,687

$5,940

(30% of software license)

$3,000

($25/user/month of software license)

$125/month

for every 500MB after the first 10GB

$3,000

($30/month/user and  an additional $15/month for every 1,000 minutes logged)

$203,427

The even better news is, most Nutshell customers can get buy with minimal onboarding and help because it’s such an easy CRM to use.

If you stayed with Salesforce for 3 years, you’d be spending $595,281.

If you stayed with Nutshell for 3 years, you’d be spending $24,120.

What could your business do with an extra $571,161 over 3 years?

What are common user experience issues with Salesforce?

Common user experience issues with Salesforce and their solutions include:

  1. User Adoption: Resistance due to system complexity or lack of training. Solutions involve comprehensive training programs, ongoing support, user-friendly documentation, and video tutorials.
  2. Data Quality and Management: Challenges with duplicate records, incomplete data, and inconsistent entry practices. Solutions include establishing data governance policies, implementing validation rules, data cleansing processes, and leveraging automation tools for deduplication.
  3. Integration Complexity: Difficulties integrating Salesforce with other systems due to different data formats and synchronization issues. Solutions include using pre-built integration solutions from Salesforce AppExchange, Salesforce’s APIs and connectors, and collaboration with IT or Salesforce partners.
  4. Reporting and Analytics: Generating meaningful reports and insights is challenging. Solutions include investing time in learning Salesforce’s reporting capabilities, defining key metrics, and leveraging Salesforce’s Einstein Analytics or third-party platforms for advanced analytics.
  5. Workflow Automation: Designing and implementing effective workflows can be challenging. Solutions include mapping out processes, utilizing Salesforce’s built-in automation features, and seeking guidance from Salesforce administrators or consultants.
  6. Scalability and Customization: Adapting Salesforce to changing business needs and new processes. Solutions include collaborating with Salesforce administrators or consultants to design a scalable architecture and leveraging Salesforce’s customization capabilities.
  7. Duplicate Records: Causes inaccurate data and user frustration. Solutions include Salesforce’s deduplication feature to merge records automatically or manually.
  8. Data Loss: Can occur due to user error, system glitches, or power outages. Solutions include Salesforce’s backup feature and using third-party backup solutions for additional protection.
  9. Security Issues: Salesforce being cloud-based poses inherent security risks. Solutions include utilizing Salesforce’s built-in security features like two-factor authentication, data encryption, and considering third-party security solutions.
  10. Slow Performance: Caused by large data sets or complex processes. Solutions include optimizing the data model, using Salesforce’s caching features, or third-party tools for automation.
  11. Integration Issues: Occur when integrating Salesforce with other systems. Solutions include using a good integration solution specifically designed for Salesforce and conducting thorough research to choose one that meets specific needs.
  12. Customization Issues: Can lead to conflicts or unexpected results. Working with a Salesforce partner for correct implementation is advised.
  13. Upgrade Issues: Challenges during upgrades if not properly tested. Solutions include testing new versions in a non-production environment and backing up data before upgrading.

Addressing these common Salesforce user experience issues involves a combination of strategic planning, leveraging the platform’s capabilities, and seeking expert guidance when necessary.

Sources

 

How does Salesforce’s customization complexity affect user adoption?

Salesforce customization complexity can significantly impact user adoption in various ways.

Understanding and navigating these complexities are crucial for organizations to ensure their Salesforce implementations are effectively adopted by their users. Here are the key points related to the topic:

  • Customization Versus Configuration: Salesforce offers extensive customization options to tailor the platform to specific business needs. However, the distinction between customization (coding required) and configuration (no code, just setup changes) is crucial. Excessive customization might lead to complexities that hinder user adoption, whereas configuration can often achieve the desired outcome with simpler means.
  • User Experience: A user-friendly interface is paramount for successful Salesforce adoption. Customization should aim to enhance the platform’s usability, making it intuitive for users. Complex customizations that complicate the user interface can deter users from fully embracing the system.
  • Customization Services: Salesforce customization services allow businesses to adapt the platform according to their workflow and requirements. This includes creating custom objects, fields, and designing bespoke processes. While beneficial, it’s important for these customizations to remain user-centric and not overwhelm your users with unnecessary complexity.
  • Scalability and Flexibility: Customization can provide scalability and flexibility, allowing Salesforce to grow with the business. However, it’s common that these customizations lock organizations into rigid processes that are difficult to change or update, and this can affect long-term adoption.
  • App Development and Integration: Salesforce’s declarative customization options facilitate faster app development and integration with other systems. While this accelerates deployment, organizations must ensure that custom applications and integrations are straightforward and enhance, rather than complicate, the user experience.
  • Training and Documentation: Effective end-user training and comprehensive documentation are critical for navigating customization complexities. Users need to understand how to use customized features to their advantage, and clear documentation can aid in troubleshooting and knowledge transfer.

 

  • Best Practices for Customization: Organizations should follow best practices for Salesforce customization, including prioritizing user needs, setting up a dedicated customization team, focusing on essential features, avoiding excessive customization, using sandbox environments for testing, and providing thorough end-user training.

In summary, while Salesforce customization offers powerful tools to tailor the platform to specific business needs, it’s essential to manage these customizations carefully to avoid negatively impacting user adoption. Focusing on user experience, adhering to best practices, and providing adequate training and documentation can help organizations navigate the complexities of customization and ensure successful Salesforce adoption.

Sources

What are the challenges in integrating Salesforce with other business systems?

The integration of Salesforce with other business systems presents several challenges, as highlighted by various sources. These challenges can significantly impact the efficiency, accuracy, and security of data management within organizations. Here’s a summary of the key challenges encountered:

  1. Data Mapping and Transformation: Ensuring accurate data mapping between different systems is a major hurdle due to varying data structures and formats. This process requires careful consideration and the use of data transformation tools to ensure compatibility (Source: Salesforce Integration Approaches, Zane Victor).
  2. Handling Duplicate Records: Duplicate data poses a significant challenge, potentially leading to data inaccuracy and redundancy. Systems must be capable of identifying and limiting duplicate data entry during integration (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  3. Creating Auto-ID: Salesforce’s automatic ID generation for imported entities can complicate the integration process when external systems already assign IDs to records. This necessitates configuration adjustments and custom validations to prevent ID overwrites (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  4. Data Migration: Variations in data storage across different Salesforce editions and the risk of transferring duplicate records from external applications make data migration a complex challenge. Leveraging features like Duplicate Management and utilizing external IDs are recommended strategies to mitigate these issues (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  5. Defining the Scope of Integration: Clearly defining integration objectives and understanding the technical capabilities of Salesforce and the external system are crucial for successful integration. This includes deciding on the type of services to expose or consume (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  6. Promotion of Bad Data: Integrating systems can sometimes lead to the propagation of inaccurate, outdated, or irrelevant data from external systems into Salesforce, necessitating thorough data cleanup and validation processes before integration (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  7. Misinterpretation of Real-Time Integration: There’s a common misconception that data import/export equates to real-time integration. However, batch processes used in these operations mean that systems may not be immediately synchronized, leading to data inconsistencies (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  8. Understanding Data Rate Limits: Salesforce’s multi-tenant environment imposes strict API limits, which can result in runtime errors if exceeded. Awareness and adherence to these limits are essential to prevent integration failures (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  9. Identifying the Right Out-of-the-box Salesforce Features: Before embarking on custom integration projects, it’s important to assess whether Salesforce’s built-in features or connectors can meet the integration requirements, potentially saving time and development effort (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  10. Selecting the Right Applications for Integration: Choosing the appropriate third-party applications for integration with Salesforce is critical. The selection should align with business needs and objectives to ensure the integration adds value and enhances operational efficiency (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  11. Accurate Data Validation: Ensuring data accuracy and validation when transferring data between systems is paramount. This involves aligning data fields and validation rules to maintain data quality and consistency (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  12. Planning and Managing Costs: Effective cost management and planning are essential for Salesforce integration projects. This involves setting clear budgets, understanding the financial implications of integration choices, and ensuring that the project delivers value within the allocated budget (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).
  13. Choosing the Right Integration Partner: Partnering with a skilled and experienced Salesforce integration partner is crucial for overcoming integration challenges. The right partner will have the expertise to navigate complex integration scenarios and ensure a successful outcome (Source: Common Salesforce Integration Challenges, Cynoteck).

Addressing these challenges requires a strategic approach, including thorough planning, clear definition of integration objectives, and leveraging the right tools and expertise. Successful integration not only enhances Salesforce’s functionality but also improves overall business efficiency and data management practices.

Sources

How do Salesforce updates affect existing customizations and integrations?

Salesforce updates significantly impact existing customizations and integrations. These updates can be related the introduction of new features, enhancements, bug fixes, and security patches.

These updates, released three times a year as part of the Spring, Summer, and Winter cycles, are designed to improve the Salesforce platform’s overall functionality, performance, and security. Regularly installing these updates allows users to leverage the latest tools, increasing stability and security while enhancing functionality by streamlining processes and improving user experience.

However, the mandatory nature of Salesforce’s major releases and the optional nature of Release Updates pose challenges for maintaining customizations and integrations.

Release Updates, which address performance, security, logic, and usability issues, can be selectively deployed, allowing administrators to test their impact before full implementation. This testing phase is crucial as updates can affect customizations by requiring modifications to custom code, workflows, and automation processes to maintain compatibility and functionality.

Administrators play a key role in managing the update process, which involves several steps:

  • Evaluating the impact of updates on existing functionalities and customizations.
  • Reviewing release notes and documentation to understand the changes.
  • Testing updates in a sandbox environment for compatibility.
  • Planning and scheduling update deployment.
  • Communicating updates to stakeholders to minimize disruptions.

Best practices for managing Salesforce updates include staying informed through release notes, testing updates in sandbox environments, communicating changes to end-users, creating rollback plans, and documenting customizations.

Additionally, Salesforce offers various resources such as official documentation, online communities, and forums to assist users in navigating updates. Salesforce’s customer support is also available to address any queries or concerns related to updates, providing assistance through various channels including phone support, email, and live chat.

To remain informed about the latest Salesforce updates, users are encouraged to subscribe to Salesforce Update Notifications, which offer timely information on new features, enhancements, and bug fixes. Subscribing ensures users can plan for changes, optimize adoption, and enhance productivity by staying ahead of updates.

Overall, Salesforce updates are essential for maintaining a competitive edge and optimizing sales processes. However, they require careful management and costly time and resources to ensure existing customizations and integrations continue to function as intended.

Sources

What data security concerns exist with Salesforce’s cloud storage?

Salesforce’s cloud storage and data security mechanisms are designed to offer robust protection against a variety of cybersecurity threats. However, several concerns and challenges have been identified:

  • AI-Powered Threats: The emergence of AI-powered phishing attacks and tools like FraudGPT has enabled cybercriminals to execute advanced attacks, lowering the barrier to entry for cybercrime and increasing the sophistication of phishing campaigns.
  • Security Gaps and Misconfigurations: Minor configuration errors can lead to significant breaches. An investigative report revealed that misconfigured Salesforce settings inadvertently granted guest access to sensitive data, highlighting the importance of thorough testing and configuration management.
  • Phishing Beyond Email: Traditional email defenses have been bypassed by phishing hackers seeking new entry points through public-facing apps, with Salesforce becoming a potential target for such attacks.
  • Rapid Ransomware Attacks: The pace of ransomware attacks has increased dramatically, with attacks unfolding in days rather than months, emphasizing the need for swift detection and response mechanisms.
  • Visibility Issues: Many companies using Salesforce report a lack of visibility into security incidents, underlining the necessity for enhanced monitoring and visibility tools to detect unseen threats.
  • Insider Threats and BYOD Risks: Insider threats, both malicious and inadvertent, pose significant risks, especially with the adoption of bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policies, which can introduce additional vulnerabilities.
  • Lack of Skilled Cybersecurity Professionals: The shortage of skilled cybersecurity professionals exacerbates the challenges in managing on-site data security, making cloud-based solutions like Salesforce more appealing due to their comprehensive security measures.

Salesforce has implemented several best practices to mitigate these concerns, including multi-layered security models, encryption of data during transfer, multi-factor authentication (MFA), user activity monitoring, data storage redundancy, and event monitoring systems. Despite past incidents of data breaches and security outages, Salesforce has continually improved its security posture by integrating advanced monitoring systems and emphasizing transparency and communication in its response to security incidents.

In conclusion, while Salesforce’s cloud storage offers a high level of data security, businesses must remain vigilant and proactive in managing their cloud security posture, including staying informed about potential threats, ensuring proper configuration, and adopting multifaceted security measures to protect their data effectively.

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How does Salesforce’s customer support meet the needs of large enterprises?

Of course you don’t want to have to use support for any product or software you purchase. However, in all likelihood, you will not know everything about the product and will either have to work with the company’s support team (or higher a $100,000+/year Salesforce Admin) to get the most of your CRM. That means you want to make sure that whichever CRM you choose has exceptional customer support (that you don’t have to pay through the nose for).

  • Customer Support and Service: Salesforce provides a multifaceted support system to meet the needs of large enterprises. This includes a Help Center for self-service resources, a Salesforce community for peer-to-peer assistance, technical documentation for IT-related issues, and account-specific support for premium plan subscribers. While Salesforce encourages self-service and community support as first steps, account login is required for more personalized assistance. The premium plans offer 24/7 priority support, ensuring that higher-paying customers receive more immediate and direct help.
  • Customization and Integration: Salesforce’s platform is known for its high degree of customization and integration capabilities. This allows large enterprises to tailor the CRM to their specific needs and seamlessly integrate it with other business systems. The Salesforce AppExchange and a comprehensive API family further enhance this flexibility, enabling the creation of custom features and the integration with a wide range of SaaS products.
  • Salesforce for Different Scales and Industries: Salesforce caters to businesses of all sizes, including large enterprises, with its scalable solutions. The CRM offers industry-specific packages for sectors such as healthcare, education, and financial services, providing tailored functionalities that meet the unique needs of these industries.
  • AI and Automation: Salesforce’s Einstein AI offers advanced features like lead scoring, sales forecasting, and automated activity tracking. This AI-powered assistant helps sales teams prioritize their efforts and provides actionable insights, making it a valuable tool for large enterprises looking to optimize their sales processes.
  • Analytics and Reporting: The platform enables the creation of custom analytics dashboards and reports without requiring coding knowledge. This feature is crucial for large enterprises that need to track the performance of various teams and business metrics comprehensively.
  • Mobile Accessibility: Salesforce’s mobile app allows for on-the-go access to CRM data, facilitating remote work and ensuring that sales teams can stay connected and productive regardless of their location.
  • Marketing Automation: Salesforce Marketing Cloud offers tools for audience discovery, email marketing, and marketing automation, aiding large enterprises in expanding their reach and engaging with their target audiences more effectively.

In summary, Salesforce’s customer support system, combined with its comprehensive suite of customizable features, industry-specific solutions, advanced AI and analytics capabilities, and mobile accessibility, positions it as a robust CRM solution capable of meeting the complex needs of large enterprises.

Sources

TL;DR Summary

Salesforce’s Pricing Model

  • Starter Suite Pricing: $25 USD/user/month for basic CRM functionalities.
  • Professional Suite Pricing: $80 USD/user/month for more customization and automation.
  • Enterprise and Unlimited Plans: Ranging from $165 to $330 USD/user/month for advanced features.
  • Additional Costs: Add-ons and integrations incur extra charges.

Salesforce offers a range of plans but complexity and additional costs may be a challenge for your business.

Common User Experience Issues with Salesforce

  • Challenges: User adoption, data quality, integration complexity, reporting, automation, scalability, and security.
  • Solutions: Comprehensive training, data governance, pre-built integrations, learning reporting capabilities, and leveraging Salesforce’s security features.

It takes strategic planning and leveraging platform capabilities can mitigate user experience issues. Not to mention a lot of time and money.

Salesforce Customization Complexity and User Adoption

  • Impact: Customization can enhance functionality but excessive customization may hinder user adoption.
  • Strategies: Prioritize user needs, focus on essential features, and provide thorough training.

If you don’t manage customizations carefully, it will be hard to avoid negatively impacting user adoption at your company.

Challenges in Integrating Salesforce with Other Business Systems

  • Key Challenges: Data mapping, duplicate records, data migration, and defining integration scope.
  • Solutions: Careful planning, clear objectives, leveraging the right tools, and partnering with experienced integrators.

Strategic approach is essential for successful integration and enhancing business efficiency. (again, time and money)

Salesforce Updates Impact on Customizations and Integrations

  • Updates: Released three times a year, affecting customizations and integrations.
  • Management: Testing in sandbox environments, staying informed through release notes, and communication with stakeholders.

Regular updates require careful management to maintain customizations and integrations. In short, you could be locked into a rigid system if the updates don’t work with your old flow.

Data Security Concerns with Salesforce’s Cloud Storage

  • Concerns: AI-powered threats, security gaps, phishing beyond email, rapid ransomware attacks, and insider threats.
  • Best Practices: Multi-layered security models, encryption, MFA, user activity monitoring, and data storage redundancy.

Vigilance and proactive management of cloud security posture are essential despite Salesforce’s robust security measures.

Salesforce’s Customer Support for Large Enterprises

  • Support System: Multifaceted including Help Center, Salesforce community, and premium plan support.
  • Features: Customization, AI and automation, analytics and reporting, mobile accessibility, and marketing automation at a much higher cost than your base price.

Salesforce’s comprehensive support and feature set can meet the complex needs of large enterprises effectively if you’re willing to shell out beaucoup bucks on the license and all of the add-ons.

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