Custom CRM vs. Salesforce: What is the best fit for your business?

The client should be at the core of every company, and providing a fantastic customer journey should be the main priority of any company. This is why many opt for an off-the-shelf CRM solution, such as Salesforce, or pick CRM development. But which choice is the best? This article will help you decide. 

What is a CRM System?  

CRM stands for customer relationship management, and it’s a piece of software that helps automate and facilitate business processes within an organization to deliver timely and excellent services to the client and ensure a smooth customer journey. 

This type of software is SaaS, meaning that instead of installing it on your device, you can access CRM over the internet. What’s more, a provider is responsible for updates and bug fixing, and you don’t have to do anything related to maintenance. To use such a SaaS solution, you need to purchase licensing per month or year.

Primarily, three are three main types of CRM out there that can help automatize such departments as sales, marketing, and customer support. But, there are other industry-specific CRM. For instance, you can go for client relationship management solutions for transportation & logistics, financial services, pharma, media & advertising, etc. 

What is a Custom CRM?

A custom CRM system is a software solution that is built on demand for a distinctive firm following the precise requirements of that company. To build such a customer relationship management platform, businesses turn to software development companies. 

What is Salesforce? 

Salesforce is a provider of one of the most popular CRM’s in the world. Gartner, a leading consulting firm, always recognizes Salesforce as a leader in its Gartner Magic Quadrant. The company provides many out-of-the-box solutions — for sales, marketing, service, commerce, and specific solutions for other industries such as healthcare & life sciences, communications, finance, consumer goods, media, manufacturing, transportation & hospitality, etc. 

Custom CRM vs. Salesforce: Which is Better for You?

What is the best CRM —a custom-made one or a stand-alone platform like Salesforce? The latter is a solution that is suitable for large enterprises. Among companies that use Salesforce are IBM, NBC, Bentley, Mercedes-Benz, Herman Miller, American Water, Travel Republic, PayPal, and many others. Although the vendor does provide the platform for small businesses, they put their priority not on SMB’s but large corporations. 

The pricing of Salesforce products for sales automation starts to from $25 per user per month for essential features only. For instance, if you want to purchase one license and have minimum features, you’ll have to pay 25 dollars. The most popular choice is their enterprise package for $150 per user/month, and the most expensive package that comes with extensive functionality costs $300 per user per month. 

The essential features of Salesforce for sales include account & contact management, lead, and opportunity management, as well as an out-of-the-box email integration with Gmail or Outlook. In addition, you’ll get a mobile application. 

A more advanced package includes all the above and leads registration & rules-based lead scoring, collaborative forecasting, workflow, and approval automation ($75 and $150 per month per user).

If you need to automate marketing and sales departments as well, you’ll have to purchase two more licenses — for marketing and service, respectively. The pricing for each also starts from $25. Thus, the minimum price you’d pay is $75 per month per only one user, which is not that expensive. But, even if you are a small business, you’ll definitely need more licenses.

What is more, you’ll probably need more than just a Salesforce platform. As this customer relationship management software is quite complicated, the customization will cost quite a few bucks. 

However, each business is unique, has its own business processes, and an out-of-the-box CRM platform might not be the best option. So, in this case, two options are available. First, you can customize an existing CRM solution, but, as we discussed previously, it would be very expensive. Second, you can create a brand-new CRM solution from scratch. 

Main Advantages of Custom CRM Development

Here are a few benefits that you’ll get from custom CRM development: 

  • Cost-efficiency

You can easily cut costs by developing your own customer relationship software. You won’t have to buy licenses and pay monthly or yearly. What’s more, you can give access to as many users as you need.

  • Flexibility

Next, you can opt for as many features as you need, unlike many off-the-shelf CRM. Thus, you can combine sales, marketing, and service in one platform and not buy out-of-the-box solutions that come separately.

  • Scalability

You’ll always be able to add some more features to your system if you need them.

  • Integration and Synchronization

Few off-the-shelf CRMs have a lot of included integration and synchronization options. But when it comes to a custom CRM, you can integrate as many 3rd-party applications and systems as you need.

Custom CRM development is perfect for companies of all sizes, be it a small company, medium one, or large enterprise. 

Wrapping Up

To sum up, you have two options related to CRM — you can go for a customer relationship management system that you can use right away or a custom one. If you are a large enterprise, you can definitely view one of the most popular solutions in the world, which is Salesforce. It has platforms of sales, marketing, and service and provides solutions for various industries. 

But if you are a small business, or you need a truly unique CRM, then Salesforce might be a not good fit for you. In this case, you can consider custom software development to create a CRM that would meet all your business objectives and requirements. Besides, it has its benefits: such solutions are cost-effective, scalable, flexible, and can be integrated and synchronized with other third-party systems and apps that you use in your company.