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So you are looking for a new CRM for your company, and have been eyeing Salesforce. You know that it is heavily touted as the world’s #1 CRM, but when it comes to knowing which Salesforce Edition and which clouds to buy it can be pretty overwhelming.

This article is going to focus on the question of “which edition?” for Sales Cloud. After all, this is Salesforce and it only makes sense to start with the bread and butter of the CRM. The other Salesforce Clouds, such as Marketing and Service. are a topic for another day. A quick note, all editions available now are for Lightning only. For those familiar with Salesforce Classic, it is being phased out with the complete migration taking place fall of 2019.

So without further ado, let’s jump into the breakdown:

Salesforce Essentials

The Essentials edition is best for small companies that need basic CRM software with standard features.

As the most basic version of Salesforce available, this version of Salesforce gives you what you would expect, the basic functionalities and features to run a small business, and not much else.  

You can store, manage, search, and analyze data but won’t have access to the extreme flexibility that it provides.

For small businesses, this can be an added benefit. By keeping the package small and light, it needs little attention or maintenance, since most small companies don’t have a dedicated IT or CRM admin anyway. To let you know just how small we are talking about, Essentials limits the number of users to 5.

What you get:

  • Account, contact, opportunity and lead management
  • Basic automation
  • Cloud/mobile functionality
  • Trailhead – Salesforce’s interactive training

Salesforce Professional

Professional is ideal for mid-sized companies with finite product or service offerings and a single sales unit. Most growing businesses will look to Professional as their answer, especially as it is the least expensive option that allows for unlimited users.

Professional builds upon the features of Essentials, give you more robust functionality, customization and integration options, while still remaining easy to use. To get the most out fo this edition though you will need to have someone with Salesforce admin experience available to spend time with the system.

What you get:

Everything in Essentials, plus:

  • Increased automation, including validation rules, sales paths, lead routing and tracking and account insights.
  • Lead management with various lists and campaigns
  • Dedicated access to the Salesforce mobile app for iPhone and Android.
  • Customizable tabs within the record pages.


Salesforce Enterprise

Enterprise, as you would also expect, is for medium to large businesses with larger sales and marketing teams. These businesses likely need custom functions, access to an API, automation, the ability to send emails, and various 3rd party integrations.      

Salesforce Enterprise meets the need of complex businesses with large scale deployments. It has full flexibility and customization and has options for sales, marketers, and executives alike.

What you get:

All the features of Professional Edition plus:

  • Automated lead workflows
  • Action Plans with tasks, categories/hierarchies
  • Email Marketing – Send marketing emails from Salesforce.
  • API connections with Salesforce
  • Custom Dashboards
  • Privacy settings for individual users

If you are going for Enterprise, you will likely require an experienced Salesforce Admin to keep the system running smoothly. While this admin work can be outsourced to an outside consultant, it is often a good idea to have someone on staff for the quick fixes and everyday tweaks.

Salesforce Unlimited

This is for the big-time players. If you don’t know if you qualify, then you probably don’t. Unlimited edition is best for large companies with thousands of users. With Unlimited, you get 24/7 toll-free support, access to the premium knowledge database, developer support that facilitates custom code development and multiple Developer Pro Sandboxes for development and testing of new functionalities.

Companies with Unlimited generally require a large number of custom applications, multiple sandboxes, or have unique business needs.

What you get:

No limits on functionality or customization, and everything in Enterprise, plus:

  • Instant access to Salesforce Support
  • Unlimited custom tabs
  • Larger storage limits
  • Unlimited custom applications
  • Multiple Sandboxes for development testing

So there you have it. In the end, the best option for you and your business depends on your needs, both short term and long term.  Finally, for a quick pricing guide, and a detailed breakdown of each and every feature in each edition, take a look here.


-Ryan and the CloudMyBiz Team


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