Personally, I love the Salesforce platform but think it’s more difficult to build a website with Salesforce than it should be. Salesforce offers two major tools for customers to build websites in the form of Site.com and Salesforce Sites. These web development tools aren’t available for SMEs, since they are only offered in Enterprise edition or above. The failure to include a website builder out of the box places Salesforce at a disadvantage in the SME market compared to platforms such as Mailchimp and Squarespace. Platforms that continue to expand their built-in CRM features to gain market share.
Impact on SMEs
This lack of a website builder impacts the ability of SMEs to easily implement service and sales cloud features such as web-to-lead and case to web. Since they need to add additional code to their websites to get these Salesforce features to work. Based on my own experience working with small businesses this additional step leads to lower usage of the lead and case features for Essentials Cloud users. Without access to a web builder Salesforce can be a hard sell, since it doesn’t solve a basic problem every small business faces. Every business needs a professional website, yet Salesforce only solves that problem at the Enterprise level out of the box.
My preferred solution would be the inclusion of a Site.com Lite or Salesforce Sites in Salesforce Essentials and Professional Editions. The inclusion of this feature would enable small businesses the power to create professional websites out of the box. If this isn’t possible due to system design, then Salesforce should consider offering an official WordPress plugin. Based on a listing of plugins on WordPress there is no official Salesforce plugin as of 6/15/2020. Other major CRM providers like Zendesk have official plugins for features like live chat.
Salesforce already supports third-party content management systems with CMS Connect for WordPress and Drupal. An official WordPress plugin seems like a logical step to support Salesforce customers who use WordPress. This could also help to encourage Commerce Cloud adoption in place of solutions like WooCommerce.