When it comes to Customer Relationship Management (CRM) technology, the name that hits our mind the most is Salesforce. By implementing Salesforce CRM, all-sized businesses have witnessed noticeable growth. Like a 30% increase in lead conversions, a 27% boost in customer retention rate, a 15% enhancement in online revenue, a 30% improvement in customer satisfaction, and more. With the best guidance and assistance, you can also implement Salesforce CRM in your system and reap the most out of it.
Whichever business size you hold, this Salesforce implementation guide will give you almost every relevant knowledge to ensure seamless and successful Salesforce implementation.
Salesforce is also the #1 market share leader for CRM in North America, Latin America, Western Europe, and Asia-Pacific (including Japan).Salesforce
What is Salesforce Implementation?
When a company launches a core product, CRM (customer relationship management) system, to centralize its key business communication and activities, the process is termed Salesforce implementation. The Salesforce implementation services include Salesforce consulting, configuration, migration, customization, integration, support, and more. Businesses choose to implement Salesforce solutions to strengthen their customer service, sales, and marketing processes.
Well, Salesforce Demands Following a Few Steps to Attain Success.
- First, the company needs to define its vision and set its objectives.
- Next, it should set up the system by defining permission, importing data, and appending customization.
- Through thorough training, the company engages all its employees before going live.
- Ahead, if the organization finds it easy to work with CRM, it may introduce more functionality per the needs.
Before you start with Salesforce CRM implementation, knowing what your company wants for CRM will lead to successful Salesforce implementation.
Why Should You Implement Salesforce?
Worldwide, an increasing number of businesses are choosing CRM implementation. Per the Grand View Research, by 2027, the total spending on CRM is going to reach $114.4 billion.
If you are seeking any help to hold back your falling business, you need to craft a new strategy centering your customers, strengthened by the latest and right technology. Generally, organizations target catching up with business objectives, boosting sales and profitability. But, for that, they need to get reliable and up-to-date details on their business progress, like data from customer service, sales, social media monitoring, and marketing.
Here Arrives a CRM System with Such Requirements.
- A CRM lets businesses get every information at a central hub holding a customizable dashboard to get customers’ history, order status, customer service issues, and more.
- Marketers can benefit from Salesforce CRM implementation. They can manage and optimize marketing campaigns and follow a data-driven approach to lead journeys.
- Besides, they may get particulars about the sales pipeline to make predictions simpler and more accurate. Similarly, with CRM implementation, they can see every lead or opportunity, from inquiries to sales.
- Ahead by embedding CRM in your business, from finance to supply chain and customer services management, businesses can boost their productivity and witness a shift to customer-centric aspects. It ensures that customer requirements are leading the innovation cycles and business processes.
- However, traditionally, CRM systems were used as sales and marketing tools. But, customer support and service is an emerging segment of CRM and essential in managing a robust customer relationship.
- A CRM platform lets users manage inquiries across varied channels while staying on the same track. Additionally, it offers service, sales, and marketing a solo view of the customers to keep the team well-informed about their activities.
Altogether, Salesforce CRM holds the caliber to connect service, sales, and marketing functions with the teams that deliver them better on a single platform with a single customer view. And it’s above and beyond things to provide relevant and well-connected experiences. That’s why Salesforce implementation is essential for a business.
Per the records of the third quarter of 2022, Salesforce caught 7.84 billion in revenue.Salesforce
How to Prepare for Salesforce Implementation?
1. Discuss the Main Objectives and Challenges with Business Stakeholders
To know about your business requirements from Salesforce implementation, you need to engage with the people and teams of your company. Also, you should dig out the internal challenges your teams are facing. Thus, meet with them and highlight the pain points they face daily.
So forth, you will know what resolutions you can expect from the CRM meeting your business requirements.
2. Document Every Internal Process and Daily Task
You should hold knowledge about your teams’ routine tasks and their workflow. Thus, reach all the departments of your company and guide them to document such processes and tasks, which will help you ahead in your venture.
3. Set Project Budget and Timeline
Before starting your Salesforce implementation project, ensure it does not overlap other ongoing and high-priority projects. You should opt for setting your budget and time frame before you begin to reduce the risk of resource storage ahead. Post that, plan important rollout phrases, kickoff meetings, and testing. Additionally, it’s essential to evaluate your vital expectations and requirements to maintain an equilibrium with your budget estimate. To get more precise budget projections, connect with a leading Salesforce consultant holding considerable years of experience.
4. Craft Different Scenarios of the Project Result
Well, various factors affect the project estimation, like company size, required customization, and data volume to import. So, to prohibit any shocking situation ahead and predict prospective risks, you should create the top three sequences of the Salesforce implementation process:
- Defeatist, and
- Probable one.
5. Establish Success Metrics
Set tangible objectives and metrics for your business to evaluate your Salesforce implementation project’s success.
For instance, you want to increase your customer retention rate to 20% or boost lead flow by 30% using CRM. Such particular metrics will assist you in aiming for goal accomplishment and revamping your implementation strategy accordingly.
6. Set Communication Channels and Build a Communication Plan
You should collaborate with your team clearly and consistently to catch up with CRM implementation objectives. So, create effective communication with your implementers, teams, and project stakeholders within your company for successful Salesforce CRM deployment and seamless adoption.
7. Recognize your Project Stakeholders and Individual Roles
If you are a startup, you may have limited resources. Still, for successful Salesforce implementation, you should hire the required people.
Key Project Stakeholders:
- IT specialists
- Channel partners
- Platform users
- Sales, service, and marketing teams
- Senior management
But it’s optional to appoint dedicated experts from a Salesforce implementation company. It’s because one person can manage varied significant roles. While hiring, you should identify the following:
- Your primary stakeholders ensure your company is set for the CRM implementation project.
- Who will monitor the entire process internally and act as a chief representative?
- The technical resource responsible for the systems you would integrate or migrate with Salesforce.
8. Explore Your Source Data
First, you need to check the data you want to import. Ensure your data sets are error-free and accurate to benefit your new business operations and system. Also, remember to establish policies for preventing data and naming convention duplication.
9. Make a Change Management Plan
Before you launch Salesforce implementation, you should prepare the right change management plan that you must follow consistently throughout the CRM project and even after you go live.
10. Understand Salesforce Structure and UI
Before adopting Salesforce, ultimately, you and your team should be well-versed in the structure, look, and feel of the CRM. Ahed, it will let you and your people handle expectations relevant to system abilities in converting your business process into a new one.
Salesforce Implementation Challenges: Why CRM Rollout May Break Down
1. Salesforce Implementation Cost
It’s a fact that before trying something new, we don’t know about it. The same goes with Salesforce implementation; most companies find its cost relatively high. But, let you know that every thought is useless until you connect with a Salesforce implementation partner. It will put forth every aspect relevant to the implementation where you will get to know everything clearly and more precisely.
2. Choosing the Right Salesforce Implementation Partner
Well, most may find it challenging to finalize a Salesforce implementation company. The easiest way to pick the best is to choose the one that has partnered with Salesforce, like a Salesforce registered partner, Salesforce silver partner, Salesforce gold partner, Salesforce platinum partner, and more. What more may one need when you have the easiest way to get it?
3. Integration with Current Apps, Systems, and Other Software
At times, developers find it tough to integrate Salesforce seamlessly. It demands the entire Salesforce implementation be conducted at a centralized hub without switching between screens. To attain this, your Salesforce implementation service provider needs to craft a perfect strategy.
4. Duplicate Records
This can also emerge as a serious challenge. So, you need to keep your data up-to-date in Salesforce. While you import data, you should use unique external IDs to avoid the import of any duplicate records.
15 Steps to Create Salesforce Implementation Project Plan to Release Successful CRM
Let’s check out the steps that you may follow to build your Salesforce implementation project plan.
1. Set Goals and Measurable Metrics for Implementation
First, you need to set a meeting with your staff and ask them to put forth their pain points and requirements they want to meet using Salesforce CRM. Also, know about their business goals and measurable metrics to ensure the completion of Salesforce implementation is successful.
The process to Follow:
- Identify business goals
- Analyze your customer requirements
- Conduct market research to scan competitors and customer activities
2. Connect with a Salesforce Implementation Consulting Partner
After identifying pain points and goals, you must consult a trusted Salesforce implementation consultant or expert implementation partners. They will guide you with a better approach to:
- Business case & system gap analysis
- Resolving customer requirements with current Salesforce AppExchange apps or custom development.
- Salesforce pricing optimization
- Deciding whether to conduct chosen Salesforce Cloud implementation in one go or one by one.
If you are new to Salesforce implementation, partnering with a Salesforce implementation consultant will make you free, saving you time for other essential tasks.
3. Choose your Salesforce Cloud and Analyze its Abilities
- Post Salesforce consulting, you should choose your Salesforce Clouds and understand its caliber.
- Besides, analyze if they suit your business needs, desired budget, and timeframe.
- Also, check their prospective customization capabilities.
4. Define Implementation Risks
Dig out the possible risks of your Salesforce implementation and ways to avoid them. At this stage, you must build a change management plan and re-create the processes if needed.
5. Set a Budget and Timeline for the SFDC Project
Every project holds its unique requirements, budget, and timeline that may get affected by varied factors. Like, as company size, required customization, and data amount to import. Thus, you need to create a business, as well as a Salesforce implementation plan, and confirm the budget and time needed to complete the project.
On average, Salesforce CRM customers have been noticed progressing with 38% faster decision-making, a 35% boost in customer satisfaction, and a 25% growth in revenue.Salesforce
6. Make an Implementation Team
To accomplish your Salesforce implementation project, you need to build your team considering varied business aspects. Your team may include the following:
- IT experts
- Business Administrator
- Sales agents
- Customer service reps
- General users
7. Design a Preliminary Prototype of the CRM Solution
You need to craft your CRM solutions’ basic prototype to check its functionality, UI designs, technical specifications, and more. Next, you should document every detail. Review it with your employees and get feedback on the design documentation and move with the acceptance criteria.
8. Analyze and Clean Your Data and Construct a CRM Data Model
Undoubtedly, inaccurate data may ruin your reputation, affect your outcomes, and even end up with severe issues with the law if you miss complying with local regulations. So, you need to work with the data before you import it to Salesforce. Next, audit data sources to check the quality, quantity, diversity of records, and complexity. Then analyze data to review gaps, duplicates, and errors across every object and conduct data consolidation, cleansing, and deduplication.
9. Migrate Your Data
At this stage, you already have a Salesforce data migration plan that may meet success. For that, organize a workshop for data migration where you will plan your data transfer and field map to a new system in detail. Besides, a device to include new policies that may help maintain data health, data cleaning, and automation in a new CRM platform. Ensure that you take data backup before migration.
10. Integrate Salesforce with Other Systems
You can integrate Salesforce with varied records or 3,000 apps developed particularly for Salesforce users. Well, you might find it tough to identify the right tools. So, you need to evaluate all systems and tools and find the suitable per your business needs. Besides, check if you can seamlessly integrate solutions using API or need custom coding or third-party connectors.
Or, you can connect with a skilled Salesforce consultant to get recommendations on the best apps to beat your challenges.
11. Discover Areas that Need Configurations and Customization
Understand Salesforce functionality with your system and point out the customizations and configurations if needed. Think about how to make the best use of the CRM. Check if items need improvement or if business functions and processes demand modifications. This way, you can boost your CRM performance.
12. Test Your CRM System
Now, create test scripts to conduct final user testing and make sure that everything is going correctly, as expected. Keep your eye on if:
- The entire data migration is done accurately.
- All assigned data fields are fillable and recognized.
- Two-way email sync performs as predicted.
- Mail addresses are linked with the correct contacts, etc.
- Following this approach, you and your team will surely catch up with a successful implementation of your CRM.
13. Build a Go-Live Scenario
Next, you must build and test distinctive scenarios before the outcome of Salesforce implementation is released. However, small projects can be launched soon, at once. But, larger ones, the complex projects, are usually recommended to release the Salesforce implementation in various phases. This way, employees will get time to adapt to a new system and become experts in using this functionality better.
14. Train and Support Your Employees
When it comes to Salesforce implementation projects, training holds an important position. It ensures a higher adoption rate of the program, which guarantees that your team will use the software better and consistently. So, to train the users, you should:
- Organize ongoing training, team sessions, and group training to make sure everyone learns to use the tool accurately.
- Offer online videos or demos with walkthroughs on the correct platform usage after the completion of training.
- Set up knowledge-sharing workshops and sessions to strengthen training for admins who will be leading your CRM deployment and adoption.
- Motivate users to join Salesforce Trailhead, Salesforce’s free educational platform with many free courses.
15. Secure User Adoption and Boost Additional Functionality
When your stakeholders log in to your CRM software, use it confidently, and find it helpful to ease their workflows, it’s termed successful CRM adoption.
But the story doesn’t end here. Your CRM will also change constantly with your business and needs seamless adaptation. So, post the first release of Salesforce; you may change your customization and extend your system. You must stay attentive, take frequent user feedback, adjust functionality as required, and access your CRM system to boost efficiency.
Best Salesforce Implementation Team Structure
Let’s Check out A Typical Salesforce Implementation Team
1. Business Executive Sponsor
A Business Executive Sponsor is a senior executive who provides guidance, oversight, and support for a Salesforce implementation project, ensuring it meets business objectives and delivers expected outcomes.
- Expert in implementation
- Guide the process
- Handle communication
2. IT Executive Sponsor
The IT Executive Sponsor is someone who provides strategic direction and oversight for implementation, ensuring it aligns with the company’s objectives and is completed on time and within budget.
- Mark the priorities across the IT
- Determine the IT budget
- Make technology usage easier with no blockages
3. Client Subject Matter Experts (SMEs)
Client SMEs for Salesforce implementation are experts in specific areas within the client organization such as sales, marketing, IT, and data analysis, providing insights to optimize implementation and achieve business goals.
- Help in flawless process flows
- Assist with user acceptance testing (UAT) and user experience
- Work with your implementation team to ensure a helpful solution is being prepared.
4. Engagement Manager
An Engagement Manager oversees implementation projects, manages timelines, coordinates with teams, communicates with clients, and resolves issues to ensure successful and satisfactory outcomes.
- Let the implementation team know about the proposed solutions and clients’ requirements.
- Manage and diminish critical escalations for the team and customers as they act as an escalation point.
5. Project Manager
A project manager is a professional who oversees the planning, execution, and delivery of projects. They work for consulting firms, system integrators, or Salesforce partners and ensure client satisfaction.
- Communicate with the team and project sponsors.
- Create a Salesforce implementation project plan and manage it.
- Track budget, milestones, and timeline.
- Address risk items
6. Solution Consultant
A solution consultant is a professional who provides expertise and guidance to clients on implementing Salesforce solutions that meet their specific business needs and requirements. They have strong knowledge of Salesforce products, project management, solution design, and technical implementation. Their role is to act as a trusted advisor to clients and guide them through the implementation process.
- Organize solution workshops
- Encourage business process automation discussions.
- Lead best practices for business processes, mobile deployment strategies, and security models.
- Craft solution design and specifications of configuration deliverables.
7. Salesforce Admin
Salesforce Admins maintain, configure, and develop the Salesforce platform. They customize it to meet business needs, manage users and data, and integrate it with the overall strategy.
- Post-launch, maintain users and support system.
8. Change Management Expert
Salesforce Change Management Experts guide organizations through the process of implementing Salesforce solutions, utilizing change management methodologies to mitigate risks, communicate with stakeholders, measure effectiveness, and adopt some new strategies. They are experienced professionals in Salesforce implementation.
- Design the adoption strategy and implement it.
Salesforce Implementation Cost
The average cost of Salesforce implementation starts from $5,000 and goes beyond depending on varied factors, like the experience of your Salesforce implementation partners, your business needs, and more.
Besides, you should consider more aspects while deciding the cost of Salesforce implementation:
- Salesforce consulting
- Salesforce license
- CRM customization
- Data migration
- End-user or admin training
- Salesforce integration with 3rd-party systems
- CRM adoption
- After-launch support
Why Is a Consultant Vital for Successful CRM System Implementation?
If you want to optimize your CRM and locate the deployment risks, you should hire a CRM consultant. Besides, a Salesforce consultant will work collaboratively to onboard CRM software and pace up your employee onboarding.
Let’s dive in to learn how a consultant can help you:
1. Choose the Right CRM
A CRM consulting partner will let you choose the best CRM suiting your business needs as they are well aware that CRM also differs with the type of businesses.
2. Save Your Money
Following the right guidance from a leading CRM consultant will save you from unnecessary expenses that may catch you if you pick software that doesn’t go with your business requirements. Also, it will save you from making critical mistakes that may attract security issues.
Today, the ecosystem of companies supporting the implementation of Salesforce customers is 5x as big as Salesforce and will go beyond in 2026.Salesforce
3. Optimize CRM Platform
Post your CRM goes live, your work doesn’t end there. Your CRM consultant will back you at that point also by assisting you in testing, deploying, and optimizing the new system.
4. Make the Best Use of Your CRM
Most businesses with a lack of knowledge pay for the features they don’t use or use incorrectly. Here, a CRM consultant will permit you to connect your chosen CRM to your current systems, ensuring you reap the benefits of your platform.
5. Train Your Staff
If you want your new system to succeed, your employee should adopt it seamlessly. For that, your CRM consultant will train them to ensure your team quickly onboard your system and meet your business objectives.
How Can We Help You?
If you are looking to let your new system, CRM hit the jackpot; you should look at Emizentech. We hold the competence to fulfill your expectations regarding Salesforce CRM implementation services. Our reliable Salesforce services are entirely compliant with your business-centric needs.
At Emizentech, you will get a complete suite of Salesforce implementation services, like Sales Cloud Implementation, Service Cloud Implementation, Marketing Cloud Implementation, Community Cloud Implementation, and Salesforce Commerce Cloud Implementation.
While wrapping up, we hope you find this article helpful in making a well-informed decision on Salesforce implementation. We have noticed that implementing Salesforce in your business will take your venture a level ahead, so why to wait? Hire a Salesforce implementation company and be set to jump on the bandwagon this year.
Alternatively, you can connect with our team and get guidance on how to make the best out of the Salesforce implementation solutions and expand your business seamlessly.
Frequently Asked Questions FAQ
Per the general recommendations, the Salesforce implementation plan includes the following steps:
1. Build your team
2. Define your vision and set objectives
3. Configure by data import, define permissions, and add customizations
4. Train your employees company-wide before going live
Well, we follow one out of three options as the businesses demand managing Salesforce implementation:
Self-manage – You, the client, manage all the CRM implementation jobs here.
Semi-managed – You divide the project management with your Salesforce CRM implementation partner.
Managed – The Salesforce consultant drives your project.
The cost of a Salesforce implementation starts from $5,000 and goes beyond relying on varied factors, like businesses’ needs and more. Connect with our Salesforce consultants regarding this cost aspect.
Well, on average, businesses take three to four weeks to accomplish Salesforce implementation. Although, this may chiefly be based on the needs and objectives of your organization. A complex setup may require a long time, maybe months, to complete.
However, there are varied challenges that may come your way. Some common ones are:
1. Duplicate records
2. Data mapping,
3. Data migration
4. Auto-ID creation,
5. Bad data promotion,
6. Clear scope definition
7. Data rate limits, etc.
You can follow the below steps to find the best:
1. Conduct thorough research
2. Ask for Salesforce certifications
3. Look for an experienced one
4. Don’t settle with a few
5. Don’t just go with a suitable budget
6. Ensure it holds the required team size
7. Check if the project management strategy is well-analyzed
8. Finalize all work-relevant plans
You can divide your net income by the total investment cost, or
ROI = Net Income / Cost of Investment x 100.
1. You should manage duplicate records.
2. Integrate your records with third-party data.
3. Keep your data updated and complete