Microsoft has ventured into CRM (Customer Relationship Management), a field which generally was Salesforce.com’s play field. Microsoft has gone after CRM with reduced prices, a better development model, easier configuration and customization and a native outlook interface which makes training easier. Its major card is its low pricing and Salesforce’s customer base. It is offering services within the price bracket of 46 dollars to 59 dollars per user as compared to the 65 dollars starting price of Salesforce. Google in comparison to Salesforce is providing storage space between 5Gb and 20 GB, whereas Salesforce offers 1 GB space for all of its packages.
Salesforce in a statement tried to play down Microsoft’s new venture. However Microsoft’s offer comes with a 2 year licensing rider. Microsoft’s CRM’s advantages are a wide range of deployment options–SaaS, on premise hosted or hybrid compared to Salesforce offering only SaaS deployment; more user space low total cost to organization , more vertical solutions due to extended network of pre existing solution partners, easy configuration and customization through web services and solution capabilities. Salesforce has limited or no vertical functionality, twice the price, limited per user storage space.
Microsoft is also providing integration to a pre existing suite of back office ERP systems like Dynamics AX, GP, and NAV unlike Salesforce’s inability to provide a service at par with this. Its advantages over other CRM solution providers are that it allows you to work from Microsoft Office and Outlook, keeps your data secure, and provides a one stop solution for all your customer data information.