Choosing the right CRM software for your business can be a difficult task with many software providers to choose from. To help out we have compared two of the leading software names, SAP and Salesforce to help you see what the differences are between the products that they offer.
SAP and Salesforce are two very well-known brands with SAP not necessarily being known for their CRM software but other business software applications. That being said SAP does state that there are some additional benefits to existing customers of the ERP software of adopting their CRM software.
Both companies have taken the approach of segmenting their CRM software offerings into functionality or services so that you can buy the elements that you require, integrating more than one element if required or creating a complete CRM package.
Each of these software providers offers a range of plans that includes a variety of features and comparing all these features can be difficult and time-consuming, so we have selected some of the key features to compare. Please note that not all of these features may be available on all plans, and you should check the plan you choose carefully to see the features are included.
|Insights and analytics
|Third party integrations
|Choice of support plans
|2 day response unless purchase additional support plans
SAP and Salesforce both offer functionality or service led software that includes marketing, sales, service, commerce solutions and some unique products that differentiate them from their competitors. Below are the categories of plans that are available from the two providers.
SAP offers a marketing solution called SAP Emarsys Customer Engagement that is designed to help you to manage omnichannel engagement at a personal level in real-time, increase customer loyalty and simplify segmentation with AI. It also allows you to accelerate the time spent into value delivered, streamline your marketing analytics and optimise marketing technologies.
Salesforce offers a marketing solution called Marketing Cloud that is designed to help businesses in managing their marketing activities and assist them in gaining insights into their sales and customers and planning future activities. The software has been built to manage most marketing activities which include email marketing, B2B demand generation, digital marketing, digital advertising and producing marketing analytics.
SAP offers a sales solution called SAP Sales Cloud which aims to empower sales teams in delivering sales and guiding them through the sales journey. SAP Sales Cloud offers the opportunity to accelerate the time it takes to get products to market, helps you to get to know your customers, allows you to engage with your customers from anywhere, lets you refine your sales processes and automate them, and deploy intelligent tactics to retain customers.
Salesforce has developed a Sales Cloud that combines Salesforce and Slack together in a single place so that staff can work more closely together and collaborate on closing sales and stimulating repeat sales. The software creates a single platform for all apps, data, alerts and conversations to take place whilst bringing together contract management, opportunity management, sales forecasting, process automation, mobile CRM and revenue intelligence.
SAP offers a service solution called SAP Service Cloud which has been designed to allow you to deliver your service from anywhere and everywhere to drive loyalty and growth. It supports your staff in your contact centres and the field by helping them to solve customer inquiries quickly with machine learning, it also empowers service teams with customer insights, and connects them with the rest of the business to increase their visibility.
Salesforce’s customer service tool is called Service cloud and it is designed to streamline processes through automation and intelligent workflows. Through making these improvements to call centres it hoped that they can operate more smartly making use of cross channel support and productivity tools. The software features include a knowledge base, telephony integration, web services, case management, service contract management and access to 24/7 support.
SAP offers CRM software called SAP Customer Experience which is an integrated suite of cloud-based software solutions that combines customer data, CRM marketing, sales CRM, service and commerce. Their CRM suite aims to enable businesses to build better customer experiences and customer relationships whilst growing the business’ bottom line.
Salesforce’s CRM solution is a complete package of their other plans combining sales, marketing, service, commerce, IT and analytics plans. This package is called Customer 360 and it combines all the individual benefits of each of the plans and provides combined benefits too as it becomes a package that supports the wider business and aligns more staff with the same powerful tool and information.
SAP offers a commerce solution called SAP Commerce Cloud that is designed to help businesses to seize opportunities and drive growth in e-commerce market opportunities. Their software can help boost profits through data-driven intelligence, provides an agile platform that is scalable and delivers performance for any industry. They also offer software suitable for small to midsize businesses called SAP Upscale Commerce.
Salesforce offers a Commerce Cloud plan that has been created to assist businesses in unifying their sales channels and connecting their online and offline sales in a single customer system. The software enables businesses to connect their customer shopping experiences, run personalised campaigns, boost sales conversions, and aids collaboration.
SAP offers a choice of customer data software which includes SAP Customer Data Platform, SAP Customer Identity and Access Management for either B2B or B2C and SAP Enterprise Consent and Preference Management. These customer data software solutions are designed to help organisations to better manage customer data in a secure and compliant manner to meet the rules around the handling of customer data and privacy. They can also be used to help focus marketing spending and increase sales conversion and customer retention.
Small Business software
Salesforce also packages up its sales, service and marketing plans for small businesses by offering a tailored solution that targets this segment of businesses. These plans are designed as basic plans with limited users but are the same software as Sales Cloud, Service Cloud and Marketing Cloud above but offered in the lowest plan format.
The pricing of the software and the features included with the plan can play an important factor in the choice of software most businesses choose.
Salesforce is transparent with their pricing and offers either tiered plans with increasing features or specialist plans like their range of marketing plans. SAP however doesn’t publish the prices of their software plans and you have to request a quote to find out the prices.
Salesforce offers a range of tailored plans for small businesses that are provided at a low rate with basic features and a lower number of users to make the plans affordable for smaller businesses.
Salesforce’s approach to price is different depending on the plans. Several plans are tiered with features and functionality increasing with the price, however, some of the marketing plans are more unique and are priced accordingly on a fixed rate per month.
Small Business plans
- Sales Cloud is from £20 per month per user for up to 10 users.
- Service Cloud is from £20 per month per user for up to 10 users.
- Marketing Cloud prices are not available, you have to request a quote.
Sales Cloud and Service Cloud plans
- Essential plan is from £20 per month per user for up to 10 users.
- Professional plan is £60 per user per month.
- Enterprise plan is £120 per user per month
- Unlimited plan is £240 per user per month.
Marketing Cloud plans
- Pardot B2B Marketing Automation is from £1,000 per month for up to 10,000 contacts
- Email, Mobile and Web Marketing is from £320 per month
- Social Studio is from £800 per month
- Datarama is from £2,400 per month
- Google Marketing Platform is from £10,000 per month
Commerce Cloud plans
- Pricing is not available for these plans, you have to request a quote.
Checking out the customer review sites to see what existing or past customers are saying about the software and the provider is a useful way of learning more about the product before you buy it. It can be particularly useful to learn about their customer support.
SAP only features on one of the leading customer review sites at the time of compiling this comparison which was Trustpilot. There was only one review available for SAP on Trustpilot which received an average rating from a user in Germany who was having some issues using the software.
Salesforce only appeared on two of the leading customer review sites at the time of writing this comparison, and these reviews were on Trustpilot and Reviews.co.uk. Reviews.co.uk only had two reviews which were both positive about the service and products. Trustpilot had 251 reviews with an overall review rating of bad with 79% of reviewers rating them as bad. Comments from reviewers were mostly negative and the key themes were that the software is difficult to implement, develop or resolve issues without either paying for external consultant’s support or paying Salesforce for additional support.
Try before you buy
Salesforce offers one of the longer industry trial periods of 30-days on their software which allows customers the opportunity to get to know the software and how they could use it without having to commit to purchasing it. Salesforce provides the free trial with no obligation, and you don’t need to provide a payment or credit card details.
SAP’s key advantages are:
- Offers a range of software tailored to different functions
- Choice of a combined or individual module of software
- Caters for large enterprises through to smaller businesses
- Existing users of their ERP packages may get further advantages from using the software
Salesforce’s key advantages are:
- Offers function specific software that is tailored to their needs
- Provides options for a module or a combined plan
- Offers a 30-day free trial
- They cater for a range of budgets and needs
SAP’s key disadvantages are:
- No pricing information is available
- An insignificant number of customer reviews is available
Salesforce’s key disadvantages are:
- Customers rated them poorly in reviews
- Concerns raised by customers were about the software being hard to deploy and fix without employing consultants or paying high support fees