The quiet on-premise vendor fires a surprise salvo to compete with Salesforce.com; functionality is another key to the value proposition.
Posted Jun 1, 2006
Maximizer Software has announced a new product and pricing offer aimed squarely at carving off some of Salesforce.com's business. This uncharacteristic move for the Canadian CRM software vendor sets the price of Maximizer Team Pack at a one-time cost of $599, which Maximizer claims is a 40 percent savings over Salesforce Team Edition in the first year alone.
Maximizer's unassuming profile and strategy of organic growth make announcements from the company rare events. To take on an industry leader like Salesforce makes it even more noteworthy. "When selecting a customer management system to support a small, rapidly-growing business, entrepreneurs are looking at four critical criteria; a strong user interface, appropriate functionality, ability to expand as the business grows, and cost," said Peter Callaghan, Maximizer's executive vice president of sales and marketing, in a written release. "Every aspect of Maximizer Team Pack is designed to address these requirements and offers very powerful functionality, unlimited data scalability, and eye-popping savings over Salesforce.com Team Edition which is often portrayed as reasonably-priced." Callaghan added that it also frees entrepreneurs from concerns over system availability and security, which he said have recently plagued Salesforce.
The special pricing of Maximizer Team Pack provides five licenses for $599, compared to $995 per year for five licenses of Salesforce Team Edition (a limited-time Salesforce promotion reduces this to $695). Maximizer estimates that its product will save users $2,300 over a three-year period compared to Salesforce.
The pricing offer is a hook for what Maximizer sees as its superior functionality to Salesforce in several areas. The company cites unlimited storage space, expandable licensing, vertical templates, expense management, and out-of-the-box integration with accounting and other back-office functions as key differentiators. Salesforce.com officials had no comment.
Potential customers should remain focused on value, not price. "Midmarket on-demand CRM is definitely heating up," says Leslie Ament, director of customer intelligence research at Aberdeen Group. "[Vendors are] making a commodity out of on-demand CRM with low pricing; in fact it already is." The real differentiation, Ament says, is going to be which vendors offer robust integration with the back end, where transactional and historical information reveal the full value of an account. "It's not the same issue for small businesses where they know every customer personally, but this functionality is crucial for midmarket companies looking to expand. It's not the size of the tool, it's how you use it."
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