Salesforce is a bundle of business tools. It started in 1999 as a CRM tool. They pioneered delivery via the cloud and in particular via a web browser.
Read what CRM means here.
At that time enterprise applications were normally housed on the enterprise’s own servers and network. That left Salesforce not just explaining their product but also convincing clients about cloud delivery. Nowadays almost all enterprise software is delivered via the cloud and centrally stored.
Since then Salesforce has significantly expanded its product offerings. With numerous acquisitions and internal inventions. They now have eight key product lines, which they often call ‘Clouds’.
It’s original CRM has been entirely reinvented and is now known as Sales Cloud. This product line covers every part of the sales cycle from lead management, through CRM and all the way to quoting and order management.
Service Cloud is their solution for contact centres and customer service teams. It works hand in hand with other Salesforce tools to manage contact centre agents, case management and all the client interaction (for example, calls, emails, texts, chat and video chat).
The platform also now includes a full suite of products for marketing, called Marketing Cloud. A core part of this is a marketing automation tool Salesforce acquired called Pardot. This is combined with email marketing, mobile and social marketing tools to provide personalised marketing experiences across the web, email, mobile and social media touch points with customers.
They’ve also recognised that more customers, contractors and employees want to interact electronically with organisations. By that, we’re more specifically meaning purchasing and service. As a result, they’ve developed a Community Cloud product line which enables portals for these type of direct electronic interactions.
Wave Analytics Cloud is another core component of the Salesforce family. It’s focused on analytics and tries to help organisations make sense of the huge amounts of data being collected.
The company acquired a business called DemandWare in June this year. This has become its own division which was relaunched last week as Commerce Cloud. They provide highly sophisticated e-commerce solutions for large enterprises. This is clearly a massive growth area and connects very logically into the whole family.
Last year the company announced its entrance into the IOT (Internet of Things) arena. Experts in the field predict that billions of these devices will be deployed in the coming years with a tsunami of data being collected. IOT Cloud is the Salesforce tool to handle selling, servicing, marketing and monitor IOT devices in the field. It’s powered by Salesforce Thunder, a massively scalable, real-time event processing engine.
Lastly, Salesforce manages all of these tools on its Platform cloud. The two key components are Force.com and Data.com. Third party developers can develop their own applications on this platform. These new apps could be totally stand-alone software or tools that link into the Salesforce eco-system