Exposed -
Executive Summary was founded in 1999 by former Oracle executive Marc Benioff who helped pioneer the concept of software-as-a-service (SaaS). SaaS applications are delivered via the Internet to users’ Web browser from a centrally located data center. One of the promises of SaaS is the ability to dramatically cut the costs related to procuring, deploying and maintaining business computing applications. SaaS systems are usually rented rather than purchased on a monthly or annual subscription fee. This nearly eliminates the large upfront capital costs associated with old-fashioned on-premise applications. As a result, SaaS applications require significantly less initial and ongoing investments in hardware, software, implementation consulting and perpetual IT labor.

Free: Complete Report – Exposed SaaS applications come in multiple editions: Group Edition, Professional, Enterprise and Unlimited. During our research with users, we discovered that many claimed that they were unexpectedly up-sold to a more expensive service after the initial sale. This was primarily by the need for greater functionality that was available only in the more expensive versions. This was particularly the case with the Team Edition, which has very limited functionality. The Professional Edition has a decent baseline of features but still lacks fundamental functions. For example, no campaign management, no offline or mobile access, no product catalog and one of the most heard gripes of this edition was the lack of the much hyped web services API ( which is found only in the Enterprise and Unlimited Editions. The Professional Edition is also limited in its ability to be customized – even something as basic as adding user defined fields to a form. Many other features are not available without purchasing the more expensive Enterprise or Unlimited subscriptions, for example, data integrations through web services, basic workflow and territory management.

A number of users that we spoke to claimed that these limitations resulted in them adopting the more expensive versions of’s solutions. At the time of writing Unlimited Edition is priced at approximately $199 (£170) per user per month, Enterprise Edition is $125 (£85) per user per month and Professional Edition is $69 (£45) per user per month. (, 2008).

Free: Complete Report – Exposed

Several comments concerning this theme were repeated and substantiated on industry blogs and social media sites:

”They’ll Nickel & Dime you to Death”

"…One of my biggest complaints with is how they seem focused on ways to nickel and dime their customers …”

InfoWorld Article, Howard Brown – Bait & Switch: “…the 'help' pages all make mention of exporting MY data--they just won't let me do it. This is so obnoxious and offensive to me as a user that I can't wait to get off this platform. The worst part of this is that I can't actually get MY DATA until a sales person writes me back and sets me up to pay for it! What a joke, and what a terrible customer experience.”

It appears that is more focused on delivering a platform for SaaS rather than the business applications themselves. Evidence of this is found in’s AppExchange which provides over 800 applications that can be added to the SFDC platform through the Professional Enterprise or Unlimited Edition. AppExchange is central to’s Wall Street driven growth model and has management and board room focus.

Free: Complete Report – Exposed

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