Salesforce's IoT Strategy


Salesforce is a large and well-disciplined development company. It’s pretty good at marketing too. It continues to innovate in all product areas, from core platform to applications, and the one criticism I’d make is that it’s information overload at times. Lately Salesforce has made a big deal of adding its AI product, Einstein, to every application area to provide insights and stack rank options. Given that this is Einstein’s first year, it’s not surprising that the foundational layer looks similar across all of Salesforce’s disciplines.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84885.html?rss=1

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Einstein Tries Sales Forecasting


When Salesforce unveiled sales forecasting with its AI tool, Einstein, my immediate reaction was that it should have tried something easier — like solving global warming. A sales forecast that bears some resemblance to reality has been a grail quest for all of us for many years, and Salesforce is not the first software company to throw its hat in the ring. It’s not that the company should have tackled an easier problem, but that the success of a sales forecast is inversely proportional to the amount of human involvement in producing it.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84835.html?rss=1

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The Vision Thing


Salesforce earlier this year introduced its Einstein Vision capability, an idea with a lot of promise but not a great deal of precedent. Who had applications that could see, and how would this be used? For decades, we’ve been content with scanning documents and analyzing them with optical character recognition tools, or we’ve used bar codes and QR codes — but it all came down to recognizing simple symbols. Suddenly there was something much closer to human reading that needed explaining — visual search.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84811.html?rss=1

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Ten Billion


Salesforce announced the partial attainment of one of its long-range goals in its second-quarter earnings announcement last week: It eclipsed its goal of a $10 billion run rate. This will be followed by similar announcements over the next year — first $10 billion year, etc. — and why not? The company should celebrate. Second quarter revenue hit $2.56 billion, a 26 percent increase year over year. Despite all the fanfare, anyone watching the evolution of the company and the market should not be surprised.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84773.html?rss=1

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Trailhead Matrix


Salesforce had a strong showing at its TrailheaDX developer conference, roughly quadrupling last year’s attendance and flooding its developers with new technology. Over the last few years, the company has built out a multidimensional matrix of product offerings that include customer relationship management components like sales force automation and customer service, but it has been careful to introduce back-end technology products that support administrators and developers as well. It makes all the sense in the world.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84660.html?rss=1

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Salesforce Parallelism


For several years now, Salesforce has built distinct product lines that all work off the same platform and can integrate in interesting ways. There are product lines for the enterprise, small and mid-sized businesses, business-to-business firms and business-to-consumer operations — and probably some others that I haven’t considered. For instance, the AppExchange contains a wealth of apps for very specialized types of front-office business, as well as some back-office apps, like accounting.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84605.html?rss=1

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Salesforce Offers Alternative to Old-School Partner Portals


Salesforce has announced the Sales Cloud Lightning PRM app as a replacement for partner portals and electronic data interchanges that lack modern features such as built-in mobile, social analytics and AI capabilities. The PRM app has an interactive Guided Setup Wizard that lets channel managers configure, customize and deploy the app in days. It manages lead distribution, deal registration and marketing development funds, and it automatically assign partners into meaningful tiers for targeted promotions and customized content.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84577.html?rss=1

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Ecosystem Two-Dot-Oh


Salesforce this week announced significant enhancements to its AppExchange Partner Program, including a $100 million Salesforce Platform Fund to encourage developers of AI-driven solutions, as well as changes to its partner business model. Salesforce arguably was the first kid on the block with a partner program of this kind in which buyers could access a large community of apps based on a single standard from a single store. It’s worth remembering, for instance, that the “AppStore” was originally a Salesforce property.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84508.html?rss=1

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Salesforce Rejiggers Enterprise Apps Partner Plan


Salesforce on Tuesday launched the AppExchange Partner Program, or APP, for developers, independent software vendors and startups, as a replacement for its current ISV Partner Program. The APP will cost much less. Its baseline percent-net-revenue model for all new APP partners has been slashed from 25 percent to 15 percent. Current partners will be eligible for the new PNR terms on contract renewal. Partner tiers will be eliminated. The APP provides enablement and support based on the partner’s AppExchange Trailblazer Score, a new point-based system.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84506.html?rss=1

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Salesforce, IBM Kick Off New Artificial Intelligence Era


Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff and IBM CEO Ginni Rometty on Monday announced a global strategic partnership to deliver joint solutions leveraging artificial intelligence. Einstein, the AI that powers Salesforce applications, will be connected seamlessly with IBM’s Watson AI platform. The integration is scheduled for availability in the second half, and pricing will be announced at that time. “This brings together two powerhouses — at least in branding — in the AI space,” observed Rebecca Wettemann, VP of research at Nucleus Research.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84355.html?rss=1

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Salesforce Adds Health Cloud Features


Salesforce this week announced new features and an expanded partner ecosystem for its Health Cloud at the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society conference in Orlando, Florida. The new features are lead-to-patient conversion, risk stratification and advanced segmentation. Salesforce also announced a slew of new partner-developed applications for Health Cloud that can be installed via the Salesforce AppExchange. “Salesforce has continued to build momentum in the healthcare space,” noted Nucleus Research analyst Rebecca Wettemann.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84323.html?rss=1

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Quip Adds Serious Muscle


Salesforce has announced new integrations for Quip, the collaboration startup it acquired last summer for $582 million. Quip, which operates independently, also added new capabilities to its product’s existing feature set, which includes smart notifications, chat built into every document and spreadsheet, and a smart inbox. Quip lets users direct-message group members. Users can insert items such as code, images, cells and spreadsheets into a document. The new integrations Salesforce introduced are Quip Connect and the Quip Lightning Component.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84292.html?rss=1

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Is Salesforce Getting Serious About the Back Office?


Even as Salesforce aggressively seeks to consolidate its position as the leader of cloud-based front-office applications via a series of acquisitions, it is possible that 2017 could be the year the company uses some of the same purchases to make a strategic move. Salesforce soon may become a major player in the back-office financial management and ERP market as well. Speculation that Salesforce might expand its offerings to address the back-office needs of its corporate customers has been plentiful for a long time.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84288.html?rss=1

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Should Salesforce Buy NetSuite?


The recently released spreadsheet hacked from Salesforce board member Colin Powell’s email names multiple companies that Salesforce was at least considering acquiring. In the aftermath of the initial reports, it’s worth noticing that there were at least two enterprise resource planning/back office companies on the list: Workday and NetSuite. Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff for many years has been resolute in saying that the company would not buy a back-office company — but times have changed.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84045.html?rss=1

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Twitter Hopes Fade as Salesforce Deal Slips Away


Salesforce, the last known suitor for Twitter, last week officially bowed out of the running for an acquisition deal, a move that forces the embattled company either to look for a new savior or find some internal answers to its lingering inability to find a winning growth strategy. Salesforce walked away from the deal because it wasn’t the right fit, CEO Marc Benioff said. Salesforce was one of several technology and media firms reportedly vying to scoop up Twitter after it signaled interest in a sale to outside investors.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/84005.html?rss=1

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What to Expect at Dreamforce 16


Something tells me that if Salesforce already leaked news about its new AI product, Einstein, that it might not be the biggest news that will emerge from Dreamforce next week. However, I also think Einstein will be involved in whatever is the big takeaway. Salesforce has become rather large, with $8 billion-plus in revenue. If you consider that all of its revenue comes from the subscription model, it could be argued that it is even larger than software companies that still derive the lion’s share of their revenue from licenses.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/83949.html?rss=1

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Dreaming Up Einstein


Salesforce isn’t waiting for Dreamforce to begin the drumbeat over its artificial intelligence offering which is — or will be — called “Einstein.” There is so much to discuss about this turn of events that it’s hard to begin, so rather than starting at a conventional jumping-off point I’ll start with the name. You couldn’t have lived at any point in the 20th century and not have some idea of who Albert Einstein was. For most of that time he was regarded as special — a savant, one who could see things that no one else could.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/83885.html?rss=1

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Einstein to Make Dreamforce Appearance


Salesforce plans to unveil Einstein, an artificial intelligence product, at next month’s Dreamforce 16. Einstein integration will give Salesforce’s sales, service, marketing, collaboration and e-commerce products predictive suggestion and insights capabilities. It will serve as a new nerve system across the entire business. AI is key to Salesforce’s future, CEO Marc Benioff has emphasized on more than one occasion. Salesforce in recent years has acquired several AI companies, as well as advanced analytics and machine learning firms.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/83840.html?rss=1

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Salesforce Reels BeyondCore Into Its Cloud


Salesforce has inked an agreement to acquire BeyondCore, a data analytics firm that already has integrated its latest release with Salesforce, the companies said Monday. BeyondCore will become part of the Salesforce Analytics Cloud, extending smart data discovery and advanced analytics capabilities across the entire Salesforce Customer Success Platform, according to BeyondCore CEO Arijit Sengupta. The acquisition will boost the Analytics Cloud’s artificial intelligence efforts, according to Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/83814.html?rss=1

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Salesforce Gets a Grip on Quip


Salesforce has agreed to acquire Quip, Quip CEO Bret Taylor and Head of Product Kevin Gibbs announced Monday. Quip lets users manage live documents throughout the collaboration process. The deal is worth about $582 million, according to a Salesforce filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Quip provides a chat feature that’s built into every document and spreadsheet. It lets users direct-message team members and comment directly on any piece of content.

The original article can be found here: http://www.ecommercetimes.com/story/83763.html?rss=1

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