Discover how to use Office 365 SharePoint Online as a CRM!
Here at SP Marketplace we hear from SMBs every day looking for an alternative to Salesforce for their sales team. They tell us as their organization grows they cannot afford the rising costs, especially when they only use a subset of the features. It’s a powerful CRM solution, but should you pay for that power if you don’t use it?
We hear this most with Salesforce. The SMB with a small sales team starts with the base module for 5 users or less at $25 / user / month, then as the organization and requirements grow the per user price creeps up to $125 per user per month. If the organization now has 15 reps, the annual bill tops $20,000! Microsoft Dynamics at $65/user/month, is half that but still over $10,000 per year!
What do you say when you find out that you have outgrown (more than 5 reps) your current CRM package and need to pay an absurd amount more for the next package tier. Then you find out that the new package comes with complicated features that you have never even heard of, let alone use. Many small-medium businesses find themselves in a position to either buy expensive high-end CRM systems or use in-house makeshift systems such as Excel, to manage their contacts and leads.
If you are running Office 365, there is another alternative beyond Dynamics CRM Online. What if you could use SharePoint Online as a CRM? What if you could capture leads from a web form into SharePoint? What if you could track marketing campaigns and projects? What if your sales reps could easily track and manage new opportunities, related documents, appointments and emails? What if they could collaborate and share their winning tips with other team members? What if they could generate an Excel or PDF quote with the touch of a button? All of this can be done in Office 365 SharePoint Online at 1/10 the cost of Salesforce (delivering 80% of the functionality).
CRM on Office 365 SharePoint Online, from basic to full featured CRM for SMBs
With SharePoint Online, you can go from a basic contact manager type site to a full featured CRM. In fact you can grow it as your organization grows. If you are using Excel now, you can actually create a simple CRM by creating a team site with a contacts list, document library, task list and a calendar to track appointments. The great thing is that all these components can sync with Outlook as well. Add multi-line text fields in the contacts list to track comments, and currency fields to track opportunity amounts. Now you have a basic CRM that can be shared and accessed by your sales team where ever they have internet access!
Of course much more can be done in SharePoint Online to provide a full featured CRM solution. SP CRM from SP Marketplace is an example of a robust CRM application template you can put on your Office 365 platform for 1/10th the cost of Salesforce. Also, there are a couple of CRM apps in the app store as well. Best of all unlike a standalone SaaS application like Salesforce, SP CRM is built on the same platform your sales team uses every day to email, have meetings, create documents and collaborate on – Office 365. Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do using Office 365 and SharePoint Online:
Best of all it is all 100% customizable to your requirements without programming! A SharePoint business power user can change it to meet your needs through the web interface.
So let’s take a look at your choices here for the SMB organization. You can purchase an industry leading CRM for large organizations that costs 10x what you can afford, and 3x the features you need or you can use your existing Office 365 SharePoint Online platform which your sales team already uses to deploy just the right size solution for your organization now and in the future.
Don't have in-house SharePoint knowledge? Or don't have the bandwidth to build it yourself? SP marketplace offers out-of-the-box, pre-built SharePoint templates to get you 80% of the way there.
Learn more about the CRM SharePoint template here.