Social media platforms are increasingly used as places for small businesses to converse with their customers. It was with those conversations in mind that officials at SaaS giant Salesforce announced a bevy of social media-minded tools for its main small business suite.
Since its launch in November 2017, the company has positioned Salesforce Essentials as its “all-in-one CRM solution,” as it has apps that allow small businesses to integrate the other services they use with the system. With today’s announcement, that single dashboard can now manage a business’s Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube accounts and facilitate real-time conversations with customers on them.
“We all expect real-time instantaneous communication today – whether it’s with our family, friends or favorite brands,” said Marie Rosecrans, senior vice president of SMB marketing for Salesforce Essentials. “Now Salesforce Essentials is giving small businesses the tools needed to manage customer communications across all those channels in one centralized spot.”
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Outside of the social media aspect, Salesforce Essentials now gives business owners the ability to install a chat widget to their website. Whenever a potential customer uses the webchat feature, the message is routed to an employee who can maintain the conversation from the dashboard. Once on the screen, any past notes and interactions between the business and that customer can be easily viewed. Meli said access to that sort of information reduces the need to keep asking the same questions whenever a regular customer reaches out.
Along with the new social media integrations, Salesforce announced that the Essentials product now includes a native phone support system baked into the dashboard. Using Lightning Dialer, employees can make and receive calls that are automatically logged in the system. The service provides a phone number with a local area code for use with the Salesforce Essentials product. During the call, the customer’s profile pops up to display pertinent, contextual information.
Each of these new features comes with access to a “library of simple walkthroughs within the product to easily get set up … in minutes,” officials said. Along with guided overviews, users can seek help from a team of Essentials Coaches during their 14-day free trial and for the first 90 days after subscribing to the system. The coaches provide support in a one-on-one chat.
Over the last 18 months, Salesforce Essentials has seen six major releases and gained new partnerships. Despite those additions, there’s no price increase; it will continue to be available to small business owners for $25 per month. The service also has a 14-day free trial.