Salesforce.com, Intuit Go After Small Businesses

 
 
By Dennis Callaghan  |  Posted 2002-09-20
 
 
 
Salesforce.com will go down-market with the launch Sunday of its new Team Edition hosted CRM service for small businesses. And it figures to see competition from Intuit Inc., which announced earlier this week that it is expanding its QuickBase hosted software offering into sales applications.

Salesforce.coms new Team Edition is for small companies or workgroups within larger companies with a maximum of five users. After Dec. 31, it will be priced at $1,995 per year, or about $33 per user per month based on five users. The companys previous minimum price was $65 per user per month for its Professional Edition.

From the Sept. 27 release date until the end of the year, Team Edition will be priced at just $995 per year, or less than $17 per user per month based on the maximum five users.

Team Edition includes the most basic Salesforce.com applications such as account and contact management, opportunity tracking, reporting, and customer service. More advanced applications such as forecasting, lead management and marketing campaign management are not included.

Salesforce.com, in San Francisco, recently announced its 5,000th customer, though Chairman and CEO Marc Benioff said the company was missing out on many more opportunities because its price wasnt low enough.

"Weve built a product designed for small businesses and workgroups," said Benioff. "That markets a big market, but price was the No. 1 obstacle to us reaching it."

Salesforce.com used to be free for up to five users, though Benioff said that was only a promotion that ended June of last year after a 13-month run.

"That was a very popular program, but we decided it wasnt the right way to go," he said. "Now were offering a lower-priced product."

Intuit is going after somewhat larger workgroups, typically 10 to 20 users, with its new Sales Manager application in its QuickBase for Corporate Workgroups hosted service. It offers account, contact and opportunity management plus sales pipeline views and customer call logging.

The Waltham, Mass., company also added hosted project management to QuickBase, including document sharing and charting and graphing. QuickBase previously included hosted apps for purchasing and human resources management.

QuickBase for Corporate Workgroups is available now. Pricing for the suite is $249 per month for 15 standard databases (up to 500KB of data each) and three large databases (up to 10MB each) plus up to 250MB of attached files. Customers are allowed up to 10 users per database.

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