How To Choose A Salesforce App From The AppExchange
Conventional wisdom suggests the more choices we seem to have the more difficult the decision-making process becomes. That seems to be increasingly true when it comes to the Salesforce AppExchange, with its huge number of apps, each one designed to enhance or add to the native functionality of the Salesforce platform. With over 5000 apps now available from a vast, and ever-increasing array of Independent Software Vendors, it’s therefore not surprising that for Salesforce users around the world, both new and old, selecting the right app for a specific use case can be a daunting prospect. So here’s a short piece designed help you decide how to choose the right Salesforce app, with some suggestions on the key questions your team should be asking.
How Many Businesses Are Using The App?
Doing some early investigative research can pay huge dividends later when it comes to Salesforce. Take a look at the application or developer page within the AppExchange and look for information like when the app was first launched, who their primary clients are or how many reviews are visible. Try and get an overall feel for the scale of the app and what stage of growth the company is in. The applications which have been serving customers for an established period of time are more likely to have a refined product, which has less bugs and better support options.
Does The Application Fit Your Business Needs?
A question of paramount importance and one which is often best answered as a team. Before evaluating Salesforce app developers, you need to accurately define what you are looking for and how applications will need to work alongside your existing business processes. The vast majority of developers display clear contact information on their AppExchange pages and in most cases their Sales departments are more than happy to have a detailed conversation around how their app fits into your specific circumstances. We always recommend clearly detailing your existing business problem and then picking up the phone to a few of the standout developers and putting them to the test. There are likely to be a multitude of different features but does the app solve your business needs?
What Product Support Is Available?
Application support is a crucial part of the ongoing service and not just relevant during onboarding. Take a look at the support options they offer and figure out whether there is phone support, email based support, helpdesk credits or even face to face training. All potential partners will offer varying levels of support but the crucial aspect when picking the perfect Salesforce app is that the company in question understands the value of support. If product support is embedded into their culture, their typical response times are impressive, and the support staff are incredibly knowledgeable about their app, then you are probably close to selecting the right Salesforce app for your business.
What Training Materials Come With The Product?
An area which is often overlooked is training and specifically what documentation comes with the software to enable new users to get up to speed with the product. Typically speaking the vast majority of creative capital goes into creating the applications you see on the AppExchange, whereas training manuals are often an afterthought. On the AppExchange see what documents are available to download, is there a training guide or technical specification? Is there a company knowledge base containing useful articles and FAQs? If so, how well maintained is the information present? All of these are incredible useful, particularly if the application’s functionality is complex or if users are unfamiliar with some of the Salesforce terminology.
Overall, How Positive Are The Reviews?
Studying the available reviews and comparing review scores is one of the most popular methods people use for choosing which Salesforce partner to go with. It’s clearly an incredibly useful source of information but you should be going one step further here. Rather than just focusing on the overall rating score, actively scroll down the available reviews selecting and scrutinising the most negative reviews because these will tell you more useful information. Has the company responded to any of the reviews and do any of the problems look like fundamental issues with how the product is designed? We all know that tech companies can fix bugs but if the same fundamental issues keep reoccurring over a lengthy period of time then maybe the product was never good to begin with. Also reach out and speak to businesses who use the application but are not part of the vendors reference list. If you can find the correct Salesforce Administrator or team member on LinkedIn you will be surprised how much information they are willing to share if you ask them politely.
Put Us To The Test
At Ortoo, we also develop 5* rated Salesforce applications, packed full of amazing features and accompanied by outstanding product support. Our flagship products, Email-to-anything and Q-assign, are available on a free 30-day trial, and our support team are ready willing and able to help your configure and optimise each product, in your chosen Salesforce environment, to address your specific use case. Why not put us through our paces and ask our team the above 5 questions to get a feel for what it’s like working with Ortoo. Contact us here