Salesforce Launches Lightweight Contact Manager For Small Businesses

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One of the advantages of using a CRM is the ability to easily manage and organize contacts to maximize leads. and the many other companies that offer CRMs have well-established contact management systems within their products that can be incredibly useful to businesses both big and small. But what if you want a easy-to-use, but comprehensive contact management system without the bells and whistles of a CRM? now has the answer: a Contact Manager Edition of its CRM that doesn’t include all the more complicated features of Salesforce’s conventional product.

For $9 per user per month, Contact Manager Edition will store and manage all contacts and accounts in the cloud. The product will integrate with any email system, including Microsoft Outlook, Gmail, Yahoo. The system will track all emails, keeping a record of customer interactions and will run pre-configured and customized reports on contacts and accounts. Of course, this tracking system can be customized to track data that is most important to an user’s needs.

Interestingly, the Contact Manager Edition will come automatically with integration with Google Apps, the search giant’s cloud based productivity suite that is steadily gaining enterprise customers and already has a foothold among small businesses. community. All applications within Google Apps, including Gmail, Calendar, Docs, etc, will be integrated with the lightweight CRM. Not only is this an interesting partnership, but the strength of Salesforce’s CRM combined with the steady growth of Google Apps certainly puts pressure on Microsoft.

  • James

    Good stuff but…

    What is their definition of Small Business?

    • joaquinadley

      Another good business integration relationship with Google. Salesforce an on-demand Customer Relationship Management solution vendor. This gaint integration has found a lightweight Contact Manager Edition, which will store and manage all contacts and accounts in the cloud and the product will integrate with all leading email system and easily track them.

      We have to wait and see to what extent Salesforce’s CRM combined with the steady growth of Google Apps puts pressure on Microsoft?

  • Sean

    Salesforce is such a scam. Usability is in the pits and customization and tweaking required is astronomical. It has effectively no advantages over traditional CRMs

    • Jeff Douglas

      Obviously you’ve never had to customize SAP or Oracle applications. You lack of knowledge if obvious.

    • Jeff Douglas

      Obviously you’ve never had to customize SAP or Oracle applications. Your lack of knowledge is obvious.

    • James Sullivan

      Jeff is right. Sean, what app do you think is more usable and configurable?

  • http:/// Leila Henderson

    Ditto – and does it include the email campaign manager? Otherwise the price sounds right :)

  • Chris Hopf

    This is certainly the result of a commitment to customer research and such pointing to the existence of a segment that they can target and convert more effectively.

    Taking a proactive approach to getting to know your custmers provides key insights and opportunities to develop solutions that strengthen existing and create new competitive advantages.

    Salesforce is not messing around, they have every intention to remain the leader in this space. Well done.

    • Nicholas

      I certainly requested such a product as a small business. I’m looking forward to getting a good look at it in a week or two.

  • Brandon Harris

    @Sean, I agree.

    Contact SBS Group in New Jersey if you are looking for a top notch CRM install. MS CRM is the way to go.

  • Alex

    This is a good move by SF. In fact, this is to fend off which has gained much traction.

    • Jack

      Yeah, this is clearly a defensive move against zoho CRM.

      • Bud


  • Jacob Knobel

    Go Marcus!

    • Marcus Nelson

      Thnx man. I’m working at it ;)


  • john

    you know what would be rad ? is if you could set up several accounts withing salesforce w/o having to logout and login… where you manage different customers / prospects for different companies… I do contract sales for a few companies and it would be killer to just use one salesforce account with all of them, yet have the emails, customers or prospects pertain to the particular company I am working with at the time.

    • Kawika Holbrook

      +1 Having client-specific notes and actions for the same contacts would be helpful.

      • Scott B

        Create a custom field as a pick list with all the companies that you contract for, in the lead, account or contact tabs. Then you can track and even report on that with one login, it took you under 5 mins to add this to the application.

    • Catherine Briggette

      Hello Kawika & Scott,
      Touch Ahead Software has created a CRM that has both of your requests. And is ten times faster than Salesforce. It is called EquityTouch

      twitter: @touchahead

    • Catherine Briggette

      Hello John,
      Touch Ahead Software has created a CRM that has both of your requests. And is ten times faster than Salesforce. It is called EquityTouch

      twitter: @touchahead


  • Brent

    Does it integrate well with Mac Mail?

  • B

    Is this live? I can’t find it, can you add a direct link?

  • Vincent

    Hmm, pretty sure it’s a limited offer… that ends on 31st of August 09? At least that’s what it says under pricing:

    • Marcus Nelson

      Hey — the Contact Manager link is live now:

      Happy linking!

      • http://yahooom thomas leda

        I saw your profile on this site and after going through i decided to write you a mail that i know it will benefit you , if you are intrested write me back with this email address which is ,or you call me in this unmber +225 49939889 i will be waiting to hear from you soon .
        Mr.Thomas anthoney.

  • Bud


    I noticed there is no mention in your post about the price increase of the group edition to $35/user/mo from $9/user/mo. Contact manager is a trimmed down version of Group Edition for the old price of Group Edition. Essentially, this entire move was designed to increase prices. Also note the 2 user limit on Contact Manager. So limited, it’s not worth it.

  • Roscoe

    SFDC has mastered repackaging and rebranding the same stuff. Apex, Appforce, Unlimited,, etc… Hard to believe these are the guys who used to make fun of how complex Siebel’s pricing and product portfolio was. Isn’t hosted CRM supposed to be taking over large enterprises? Interesting that SFDC is now feeling the need to fight off the low-end… getting pinched on both sides is what did in Siebel. I thought these guys wrote off ACT! and Goldmine and the like 10 years ago.

    What’s truly amazing is SFDC’s demonstration of the power of marketing. They have kept a ridiculous valuation afloat for several years despite lousy margins and the need for vast amounts of SG&A, all the while winning over many of the expert “analysts” who rode Siebel from $100 down to $5.

    It would be more interesting if these guys would develop a broader on demand suite, rather than their absurd assertion that third-parties will build it all on their platform. If they were to go the suite route, we might see a more credible threat emerge to SAP / ORCL and a distant third MSFT.

  • Sarah Green

    Always thought Salesforce was a great product. Glad to see a lightweight version. I’m sure this will be successful.

  • David Hall

    Actually their platform is brilliant for building third-party applications on: no servers required, rapid go-to-market and access to 63,000 customers.

    In fact it is possible to go from idea to first customer for $0. Where else can you do that?

  • Alex Schliker

    Salesforce is a great product and platform for big business. For the little guys, it’s a nightmare to get going.

    This is a great move and will help reach out to a ton of SMBs who need a more lightweight solution.

    Their AppExchange environment is also a great channel for distribution – for apple-loving, startup-type nerds, it’s like the enterprise “app store.”

  • Ed

    I find Salesforce such bloated software and the UI is very messy. Although they have done so much for making web apps acceptable in the enterprise market. So, yay!

    • alex

      it’s not software so how can it be bloated?

      • Todd

        What do you think a website is, then? It’s software.

  • Eric

    Agree with everyone, their UI is a mess, old, and antiquated.

    And yes this is a price increase in disguise. How could the Group Edition which was $9 go to $35 per user?

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  • Julian Andrew Hornbrook Lukács

    maybe all of my old school training has made me suspicious off totally cloud based setups… i just like knowing there’s a server somewhere in the building i can kick :)

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  • steve

    I’d be interested in a comparison of this new Contact Manager edition and the free Personal edition that I’ve been checking out. I can’t get that address map (as seen in pic) to integrate that way with Personal edition, for example. I can’t add anything from appexchange, even the free stuff.

    This seems to be not only a price increase opportunity for Group edition, but also a way to charge people who have been happy enough with what personal edition offers.

    Is personal edition still an option? What do you get for $9/mo. beyond what’s already free?

  • Ian Richard Hendry

    If leads the CRM space, where is a competent Social CRM offering?

    So far all they have done is:

    1) Show a web capture form on a Facebook page

    2) Add primitive Social Media Monitoring to their dashboard.

    I have no doubt in my mind that the way to go is taking cystomer record data from public sources, solving CRMs biggest issue: keeping data current.

    SFDC is way behind some of the emerging new players in this area.

    Ian Hendry
    CEO, WeCanDo.BIZ

    • James Sullivan

      That’s like saying BMW is way behind Tesla because Tesla is offering a production line of electric cars and BMW doesn’t have one yet. I have a family and need a wagon (like a lot of people) and want to be able to drive a long distance and get it repaired in short order so we can take kids to docs appointments and stuff. For my family, Tesla is a novelty at the moment (like the other small social crm outfits). Social CRM is fun and trendy but it’s also changing so rapidly 99% of business people are not on Twitter. The core CRM technology is why we buy it, because we need to manage workflow, integrate to other systems, etc.

      • Ian Richard Hendry

        James, where did you get the impression Social CRM was Twitter only? Or that Social CRM can’t have workflow?

        There are stackes of public profile information sources out there, beyond even the public versions of Facebook and LinkedIn profiles.

        I don’t blame you for not knowing. As a user I can understand how integrating all of these accurate and rich customer information sources may seem like a pipe dream. ;-)

        Ian Hendry
        CEO, WeCanDo.BIZ

      • James Sullivan

        I only used Twitter as an example and I do have twitter integration within my Account records in You didn’t respond to what I wrote in the least but took the time to drop in the link to your website again. In case you read more than 2 sentences into this response: Which CRM systems do you suggest using? Your website has an empty page (“Coming soon for Business members! Upgrade now.”) under your “Social CRM” tab.

      • Ian Richard Hendry

        James, I read all of what you typed. This time too. Including between the lines.

        Forgive me, were you expecting me to comment on Teslas and BMWs?

        Anyway, hoping to prove my point I’ll answer your question: is a great choice for a CRM system, but it surprises me that they don’t support their “lead” with some leadership in the space of integration to social networks. People (and businesses) are picking up many thousands of contacts through social media and none are effectively logged in CRM systems in the same way that contact would be if it had come in through a web contact form, or e-mail, or inbound call. Opportunities presented through the Social Web are just slipping through our fingers due to the difficulty in logging direct social networking activity and attaching workflow to it.

        And thank you for looking up who I am. In answer to your other point, the Social CRM bolt on to our sales leads network goes live on 10 September.

        I include a signature to show the capacity in which I comment. Is there anything wrong with that?

        Ian Hendry
        CEO, WeCanDo.BIZ

      • Ian Richard Hendry

        James, would you like to disclose now that you work for Cambridge Cloud Partners, Inc., a consulting partner?

        And there was me thinking you were defending it as a delighted customer, rather than someone peddling their wares. Shame on you.

        You don’t own a BMW dealer on the side, do you?


      • James Sullivan

        I ran systems for years after spending almost 10 years running SAP, Oracle, Onyx, SugarCRM, etc. systems. My company is linked using the URL (ie. a disclosure of who I am).

        I can’t tell if you’re being sarcastic / trolling. You’re complaining about while you’re making a social crm add-on (peddling your wares) – unless I’m missing something.

        You agreed with me that is a fine CRM application. Now, they have been developing social integrations as well though they’re not fully public yet:

        Is your social lead trader like Jigsaw? Does it plug into other CRM systems?

      • Ian Richard Hendry

        James, we set up our site because I got frustrated that opportunities exist on social networks but they are too hard to find amongst the noise;; how easy actually is it to focus on the “I need”, “Can you recommend”, “Does anyone know someone who can” type posts? That aspect of our site, called Biz Needs, enables a member to specify what their most urgent business need is; we then match that to other members with solutions. It’s a B2B networking site and Biz Needs works well. There’s no sales lead without a need of course and we help all of that information float to the surface.

        I’ve a background in CRM so I’ve always been keen to ensure that customer interaction online is as structured as that through other channels. We spent some time talking with CRM vendors about this and I found few seemed to take it seriously. We concluded the best way to realise our own thoughtss on how it should work was to do as much of it ourselves as we could.

        I’d rather not have taken that route if I’m honest, but Social CRM basics seem to be something many vendors are still struggling with.

        By the way I’ve seen that SFDC announcement before and I referred to it in my original post, as it seems only to be basic Social Media Monitoring but as you know it better than I, perhaps you can tell me if it creates identities for Twitter users involved in the conversations being monitored, so you can then add workflow to control the response? That is what I’d call a basic feature.


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