Salesforce, Business News Daily's winner of Best Overall CRM 2018, offers businesses of all sizes superb customer relationship management software with all the bells and whistles. One of the major advantages to choosing a large SaaS solution like Salesforce, rather than a smaller boutique solution, is the sheer variety of apps that can be integrated with the CRM. Salesforce's AppExchange store offers users thousands of apps that allow for greater customization and functionality.
Here are a few key things you can do with Salesforce apps, along with some of the best apps, paid and free, for business users who want to extend productivity beyond the scope of a typical CRM solution.
1. Mapping, Routing and Territory Management
For service-oriented companies or businesses with multiple regions and territories to manage, using a Salesforce compatible app to optimize mapping and routing is an ideal way to instantly boost CRM functionality.
Most quality mapping, routing and territory management apps come at an extra cost to users, typically between $20 and $30 per user, per month, and the features vary based on the price. Some established apps include Geopointe, a comprehensive geolocation app with built-in live tracking, check-in capabilities and data gathering; G2 Maps, which offers geo-analytics for everything from leads and customers to assets and defined objects; and Vision-e, a lightweight app for creating data-driven maps that make it easier for users to visualize Salesforce data.
2. Configure Price Quotes and Customize Documents
Salesforce AppExchange offers several SMB-friendly solutions for creating custom price quotes as well as other custom documents like proposals, reports, account plans and more. One of the most affordable apps ($20 per user, per month), Conga Composer, also happens to be one of the most functional in this category. With Conga, users can automatically generate documents directly from Salesforce (and merge data into templates). Best of all, Word, PowerPoint, Excel, HTML, email and PDFS are all supported.
Apptus CPQ is another popular Salesforce integration for custom quotes, and while it does require an inquiry to get a price quote, the features it delivers are impressive. This app is a multi-channel sales tool that can handle different pricing and product configurations at the same time. It not only helps with templates and formatting, Apptus CPQ helps companies price and quote deals accurately by drawing from past deals, so it gets more efficient over time.
3. Streamline Admin Tasks
Most new Salesforce clients focus on end-user functionality, but there are lots of apps available in the Salesforce AppExchange store that make admin tasks easier. DupeCatcher is a free app that makes it easy for users to eliminate duplicate leads, contacts and accounts. This tool is ideal for users who are in the process of merging multiple contact lists or cleaning old data. Another great tool for the implementation and merging process is Mass Edit + Mass Update + Mass Delete, which is also free, and makes it easier to make changes to Salesforce data without touching every element individually.
Dataloader.io, the most popular data loader for Salesforce, is also an essential free app for small business admins. This add-on makes secure importing, exporting and deleting fast, and there aren't any data limits, so it works for businesses of all sizes.
4. Get Feedback Through Customer Surveys and Forms
If you want to create and disseminate surveys and forms, and then load the resulting information into Salesforce for reporting purposes, there are lots of customer feedback apps to make that task easier. The aptly named GetFeedback is a pricy app ($50 per user, per month) but it makes building mobile-friendly surveys super simple and only one user needs access to get full functionality. You can do things like embed surveys into emails and even export resulting reports in Excel/CSV. There are several apps that offer these types of features, like Gainsight and Clicktools, but they are much more expensive (and better suited to enterprises).
Formstack, which offers no-code web form and survey building, is another worthwhile app for SMB to consider. At $59 per user, per month this isn't a cheap solution, but thanks to the web form functionality it offers excellent utility. Formstack can be used for onboarding tasks (like job applications, waivers, NDAs, and disclaimers) as well as event registration, ecommerce order forms and of course general feedback.
5. Texting and Chatbots
Users can implement texting and chatbots through Salesforce to provide a higher level of customer service to existing clients, publicize sales and deals, and market to new potential clientele. Managing text-based marketing campaigns and communicating with customers via SMS chatbots can be accomplished with an AppExchange add-on like 360 SMS App, which is free, or LiveMessage, which also supports Facebook Messenger, but requires a price request for rates.
360 SMS App allows users to do things like plan scheduled messages, create custom SMS templates, perform call auto forwarding and create SMS workflow rules. LiveMessage has all the features of 360 SMS App and more, like picture messaging, a business-class texting platform, sync and log text chat which automatically saves in Salesforce and data capture for analytics.