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16 Questions you should ask Salesforce, if you are deciding between them and SugarCRM as your CRM solution.

If you are trying to come to an educated decision between Salesforce and SugarCRM as your CRM solution, it's important that you get answers to the questions which they won't tell you unless you ask them directly. For this reason, you will find below a list of 16 questions which you should ask Salesforce before making that final decision.

This is not designed to be scare tactics, or to create FUD - that's Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt - something which Salesforce have tried to create around SugarCRM, but simply to ensure that you get the full information about Salesforce in advance. The old saying says, "Forewarned is forearmed" and these questions will mean you have the information you need to make a fully educated decision.

  • Question 1. - Why are there all these arbitrary limits throughout your editions? Isn’t it true that you publish a 9-page document listing the most commonly referenced Salesforce (dot com) limitations?
  • Question 2. - Why are you so focused on trying to sell me on the benefits of an internal collaboration solution (Chatter) when all I need is a way to better manage my customer relationships? Why do I need to add yet another social tool (Chatter) when all of my employees – and customers – are already on Linkedin, Facebook, Skype, IM, Twitter, etc.?
  • Question 3. - Will I get a discount when I eventually have to upgrade from my current edition to another one?
  • Question 4. - Why do you charge your international customers more than you charge your North American customers?
  • Question 5. - Why do I have to subscribe to your most expensive solution if I want basic CRM features like Workflow, Advanced Security, Content Libraries, Campaign Management or access to the API Framework?
  • Question 6. - Can I get a monthly relational database backup of my data? How often do I get access to a database backup? Is there an extra cost involved?
  • Question 7. - Can I access my data through the reporting and analytic tools of my choice e.g. Crystal Reports?
  • Question 8. - I’ve heard that some customers who request a backup of their data at the end of their contractual term are told that the back up service is temporarily not available. Can you comment?
  • Question 9. - If I terminate my service, how long do you retain my data?
  • Question 10. - I’ve heard of customers who came back to Salesforce and who were told that Salesforce would reactivate their old system with all their old data. Can you comment? If correct, why do you keep a copy of my customer data after I leave your service?
  • Question 11. - Since you own data.com, are you using my customer data to update data.com? Does this mean that my competitors get my customer’s most up to date contact information? Can you comment and how will this work with GDPR?
  • Question 12. - How many API calls can I make from my CRM solution to other applications I have?
  • Question 13. - Why does it cost extra to use your API framework?
  • Question 14. - Do you offer both REST and SOAP APIs? Do you offer these APIs in all of your editions? If not, is there an extra charge and why?
  • Question 15. - Now that I’ve told you I’m also considering SugarCRM, why are you suddenly offering me a bigger discount?
  • Question 16. - Will the discount you are offering me today also be available when I renew my service or when I add new users?

For useful tips and hints for SugarCRM, follow us on Twitter (@enable_services) or connect with me on LinkedIn.