pros and cons of Salesforce for Outside Sales Reps

A good sales leader knows how important an effective CRM system is for their sales team. Finding the right CRM tool for your outside sales team’s needs and fully taking advantage of its capabilities can significantly help improve your sales process, streamline activities, and increase revenue.

With so many options in sales CRMs available today, it is important to really take a look at both the good and bad of the different tools to help pinpoint a good fit for your team. One popular tool you may be considering is the Salesforce CRM.

In this article, we evaluate the strength of Salesforce for outside sales teams by breaking down the pros and cons of this CRM option.


Pros of Salesforce:


Top Option in Sales CRM Platforms


Salesforce is the most well-known and widely-used sales CRM in the market, trusted by over 150,000 customers worldwide.


salesforce for outside sales top crm
Salesforce.com is the top CRM by market share. Source: Apps Run the World

Easy-Access Central Location for All Customer Data


Like all CRMs, one of Salesforce’s value-adds is serving as your company’s single source of truth on customer and prospect information. It houses contacts, deals, communication history, firmographic data, purchase history, and more. It offers a robust dashboard packed full of all the most important data that sales leaders and executives need and want. Plus, sales data can easily be shared with and accessed by the marketing and customer service teams as well.


Great Analytics & Reporting Functions


Salesforce puts all this data to use and provides great reporting, analyzing, and sales forecasting capabilities. These functions give sales leaders the ability to glean in-depth insights, spot trends and patterns, and monitor and track sales activity and deals.


Extensive Customization Capabilities


The Salesforce CRM platform offers a ton of sophisticated customization capabilities, including customized Salesforce lead mapping. Sales teams can customize the features of the dashboard and reporting to meet the specific needs of their business.


Immense Ecosystem of Integrations Available


The Salesforce AppExchange houses hundreds of apps that can seamlessly integrate with your Salesforce CRM, provided by a huge network of integration partners and service partners. These integrations can seamlessly share data with Salesforce and give your team a sales software stack that truly meets the needs of your team.


Cons of Salesforce for Field Sales Teams:


Does Not Streamline/Automate Sales Activities


On its own, Salesforce CRM is essentially a data repository. All of that data, the robust dashboard, and the insight it offers is often very valuable for sales teams (especially sales leaders and executives). But, the CRM is not built to really help outside sales reps manage their day-to-day or automate activities like routing, logging activity, or prospecting.


Can Become Too Complicated and Complex


Because Salesforce’s platform is so robust and customizable, it often becomes too complex and cumbersome for sales reps to use. A lack of sales rep adoption is a key reason why deployments of CRMs like Salesforce often fail.


Not As Mobile-Friendly as It Needs to Be for Outside Sales


salesforce for outside sales
The Salesforce mobile app is not particularly mobile-friendly.

The Salesforce mobile app can be especially clunky for sales reps out in the field. Logging activity or adding customer notes from out in the field can end up being somewhat difficult. While out in the field, the CRM can end up wasting some of the time that it is supposed to be saving.  


Your Outside Sales Team Needs a Field-Friendly CRM Option


You need a sales CRM for your team and Salesforce is one of the best. But it is important to understand that there is still a large percentage of sales CRM implementation/onboarding projects that fail. This is largely due to the software being used just as a data hub, inspection tool, and a source of  versus a tool to improve the sales process. And when the CRM is for an outside sales team, this adds even another layer to the needs that the tool should be able to meet.

To truly get value out of an investment in Salesforce, it is critical to make sure that your sales reps are logging their activities, notes, and customer updates in a timely and thorough manner. The data coming out of a CRM is only as good as what goes into it. But if they can’t easily do this on the go, it’s not going to happen.

When a CRM creates additional administrative burdens for your outside sales reps, the quality and completeness of your data and insights can be jeopardized. Your reps may be put in a position of having to make a choice between keeping up CRM-related admin work and actually being out in the field selling. Time consuming administrative burdens reduces the opportunity for additional face-to-face time and relationship building.

The best performing outside sales teams are led by executives that, when looking at their sales technology stack, focus on what value each particular tool brings to their outside reps. The simple fact is that if a tool brings value and is easy to use, full adoption quickly follows. With adoption across your entire sales team, you get complete and accurate data, and that data will produce the desired dashboards and insights that is so valuable to the management team.

So, Salesforce is a great CRM in general, but by itself it may not meet the needs of today’s field sales teams. Not if they want to truly optimize their success.

Outside sales reps need a CRM tool that not only manages all of the data but is easy to use in the field, helps to automate activities, makes their day-to-day easier, and helps streamline the sales process. To ensure your team’s success, it will be vital to meet these needs and ensure that all of the necessary data goes into Salesforce cleanly. The best way to do this is to use a mobile app that seamlessly integrates with Salesforce and acts as a sales-friendly front end.


Map My Customers Optimizes the Value of Salesforce for Outside Sales


Map My Customers is the answer that many outside sales teams using Salesforce have been looking for. This is especially true if you are looking for Salesforce route optimization or Salesforce territory mapping.


Map My Customers alternative Salesforce for outside sales
Map My Customers gives Salesforce users ease of use for enhanced mapping and routing, logging activity and more.

This mobile-first app, built specifically for field sales reps, uses a seamless two-way integration to exchange data with your Salesforce CRM in real-time. Thus keeping your CRM data complete, accurate, and up-to-date.

The Lead Finder feature within the platform enables reps to optimize their prospecting efforts like never before. They can search the map for new leads that may be near their current location, along their sales route, or near current customers that they are visiting that day. These new leads will show as pins on the map and can provide detailed business info in just a tap. They can then be easily imported into your account and synced back to your CRM.

Outside sales reps love the platform’s ability to simplify their day-to-day, even out in the field, making 100% adoption of the tool an easy goal to reach. And executives love how adoption of Map My Customers by the sales reps ensures that thorough, accurate, and timely data is being put into Salesforce. Map My Customers can be an extremely effective tool to help increase revenue while being your reps’ everyday go-to for planning, routing, logging activity, and much more!

When adopting a new sales tool, engagement from your sales team is a crucial element for implementation, and continued success post launch. Outside sales reps love the platform’s ability to simplify their day-to-day, even out in the field, making 100% adoption of the tool an easy goal to reach. And executives love how adoption of Map My Customers by the sales reps ensures that thorough, accurate, and timely data is being put into Salesforce. Map My Customers can be an extremely effective tool to help increase revenue while being your reps’ everyday go-to for planning, routing, logging activity, and much more! To learn more about the benefits of Map My Customers and how to drive sales team engagement listen to the Field Sales Leadership Guide Podcast.


Listen to the Field Sales Leadership Guide podcast on Spotify iTunes Apple Podcasts
Listen to the Field Sales Leadership Guide podcast on Spotify or Apple Podcasts

Experience an interactive product demo of Map My Customers today!