July 16, 2013
Salesforce.com provides two email syncing and logging tools for free: Outlook for Salesforce and Gmail for Salesforce. Curiously, these software plug-ins violate their basic promise of “No Software”. As the leading cloud technology company in the world, I would have thought that Salesforce.com would have developed a solution to connect the their cloud with the email cloud.
Cloud solutions work with every email platform and device.
Instead of offering a cloud email integration solution, Salesforce.com continues to offer software as the only means of getting emails into their cloud. That means they work with the Apple, Linux and Unix platforms, not just Gmail and Outlook. Even within the Outlook product line, only a cloud solution can work with all Outlook versions at once: 2003, 2007, 2010, 2013 and Outlook for Mac. Virtually every major hosted email systems like GoDaddy , Yahoo!, 1&1, Rackspace, Bluehost, web.com and AOL use the Open Standard IMAP to send and receive emails.
Cloud solutions are always on and fully automated.
Another drawback of software plug-ins is that they only works when you are logged in and working within your email client. Outlook or Gmail. This means that if you are on vacation, sick, traveling, in a meeting or working on something else, your emails will not be synced and logged to Salesforce.com. The same goes for your colleagues; the email log that they create in Salesforce.com is only as accurate and up-to-date as the last time they logged in Outlook and clicked the ‘Add to Salesforce’ button. Manual plug-ins do not create real-time email logs in Salesforce.com and therefore don’t use Salesforce.com to its full advantage. A fully automated cloud solution will do all the work of syncing and logging emails to Salesforce.com for you.
Cloud solutions are 100% complete and accurate.
A major advantage of a cloud-based Salesforce email integration solution is that it can create a 100% complete and accurate record of all email communications between your sales team and their customers inside Salesforce.com. Having an email ‘system of record’ inside Salesforce.com means that it is easier to evaluate the probability of your sales forecast, easier to read the ‘email body language’ of your customers, easier to monitor email activity by sales rep and easier to create exception reports that highlight cold leads or opportunities that have had no email communication in the past week.