Salesforce Easy Launches with $25 Starting Price to Draw in Small Businesses
Salesforce, two days before its quarterly earnings report, today announced a new product initiative targeted at small-to-medium-sized businesses. Salesforce Easy is a new, simplified introduction to the Salesforce ecosystem. “Salesforce Easy is designed to help more and more companies help drive their businesses forward, tapping into Salesforce’s technology expertise and best practices accumulated over the course of more than two decades,” said Kris Billmaier, SVG and GM of Salesforce Easy in an email interview. “The first price point is $25 so we envision SMBs to purchase to get spun up fast on Salesforce. But larger companies can try it as well, understand what functionalities they want or need and then rapidly scale with the tools they need along in our full portfolio,” added Mr. Billmaier. The product is available for new signups today at https://www.salesforce.com/products/easy/.
Focus on Integration and Value
I asked Mr. Billmaier about what made Salesforce Easy different from just using the product as usual. “There is new functionality including 1) sign-on with Slack, Google, Microsoft 365 identities 2) Guidance panel in product with new flows like data import 3) Preset sales stages on the opportunity record based on best practices,” replied Mr. Billmaier in email correspondence. I tried the new onboarding system. Salesforce Easy was by far the smoothest Salesforce new customer experience I have tested. I even used my Slack identity. I haven’t checked out any of the company’s other claims about Salesforce Easy yet.
I also asked the company why make this introduction now. After all, there is fear of a recession due to supplier inflation and raising interest rates. And Salesforce seems to be riding high on the enterprise. “Salesforce Easy is a new simplified experience for companies of all sizes. Right now, companies are being asked to do more with less. Our intent is to help companies grow efficiently in these challenging times,” said Mr. Billmaier in our email exchange.
Salesforce Easy Goes for Small Business, Again
Small business marketing is one of those endeavors that leaves the proverbial “dead bodies on the side of the road.” In the last twenty years, Salesforce has made several stabs at the small business market with products like Starter and Professional editions. However, none of those efforts have yet established Salesforce as a small business software leader.
Microsoft and Intuit, on the other hand, have made gains in small business with SaaS competitors Office 365 and QuickBooks. So why does Salesforce even need to look at the small business market? The answer is simple. As a category leader, Salesforce can’t be satisfied with just servicing its currently-defined market if they want to keep up growth expectations.
To continue with growth, Salesforce needs new markets with new products, or it needs to acquire a market leader. There is not an obvious small business SaaS leader besides Intuit. And with a $127 billion market capitalization, that would make for a too large of an acquisition for $177 billion Salesforce. So, for Salesforce to compete with Microsoft and Intuit, it has no choice but to mount its own software development effort to address small business.
It won’t, ahem, be easy for Salesforce Easy to succeed. Salesforce Easy may break some of the traditional Salesforce channel models and will require the company to beef up its technical customer service and direct account services. For Salesforce Easy to succeed, Salesforce customer service will have to look a little more like Intuit or Microsoft.