By Jennifer LeClaire / CIO Today. Updated July 01, 2015.
CRM giant Salesforce just rolled out the latest edition of its customer support app for small to midsize businesses. Desk.com Business Plus aims to help companies scale to meet ever-changing customer demands.
Here’s the pitch: Company growth is not just a matter of attracting new customers -- it's also about retaining existing ones. Of course, that’s not a new idea but Salesforce does have a new stat: Companies that prioritize the customer experience generate 60 percent higher profits than their competitors.
Many SMBs face challenges scaling support systems when they use traditional CRM (customer relationship management) solutions because those solutions don’t offer much flexibility, according to the company. Salesforce is proposing Desk.com as the answer for SMBs that want to deliver personalized customer service that spurs topline growth.
“At Desk.com, we believe that every interaction is an opportunity to deliver awesome service to customers," said Leyla Seka, general manager and senior vice president of Desk.com, Salesforce. The company works to help SMBs deliver this from three angles: customization, control and insights that make agents more productive.
Four New Innovations
There are four new innovations in Business Plus: Customer Health Monitor; Canvas; Customer Controls; and Embed. Here’s a quick look at each:
Customer Health Monitor works to makes one-to-one customer retention scalable by sending warnings to agents about potential dissatisfaction. The tech also recommends solutions to prevent customer attrition. If a customer contacts support more than once a month, for example, the agent is alerted.
Canvas allows companies to embed third-party apps directly into the Desk.com console, creating customized user interfaces. The idea is to help agents be more productive by completing regular actions, like status checks and refunds, instantly within Desk.com.
Custom Controls lets service managers set limits on the actions a service agent can take on each case. For example, a retailer that doesn't want to provide full control to all support agents can provide a different tier of access to the seasonal support team. Finally, Embed is a mobile SDK that lets companies insert mobile support into any app, so customers can access service from anywhere.
Strong CRM Results
"Having a scalable customer service tool is a key factor in our company's growth," said Benjamin Christie, founder and president of Gourmet Ads. "With customers and support staff across the globe, Desk.com helps us help our customer find what they need, when they need it. And, if additional support is required, we can seamlessly manage cases from report to resolution. Since switching to Desk.com, we've seen an 80 percent reduction in case volume. Desk.com enables us to realize our vision of being a one-stop shop for our customer; it's a game changer for us."
We caught up with Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT, to get his thoughts on the latest Desk.com features from Salesforce. He told us the new Business Plus additions look like solid updates to Salesforce's SMB-focused Desk.com solutions.
“In essence, Desk.com is designed to enable and systematize CRM for small businesses that may be inexperienced or entirely unfamiliar with those processes. These new additions, particularly the Canvas, Custom Controls and Embed features, should help Desk.com clients take their customers' relationships to the next level in terms of supporting new/custom apps and mobile technologies,” King said. “All in all, Desk.com Business Plus looks like a valuable extension of Salesforce's SMB strategy that should be attractive to both existing and prospective Desk.com customers.”
Business Plus is generally available now for $125 per user per month.