Earlier this year the Salesforce AppExchange, the home for third party-created Salesforce-native applications, celebrated its 10th birthday. Back in January 2006 the app exchange officially launched and was dubbed the Ebay of Business Software by Businessweek. By 2011 the AppExchange celebrated its one millionth app installed, by 2013 it reached its two millionth app installed and by 2015 the app exchange reached its three millionth app installed! Today the AppExchange is the world’s #1 business app marketplace, with 85% of Fortune 100 companies using at least one AppExchange app. The AppExchange has come a long way since its start in 2006 and has enabled businesses to more easily connect with their customers through its open source platform for business applications. In honor of celebrating 10 years, we wanted to feature 10 of the most popular apps on the AppExchange. Of the top apps on the App Exchange, these are some of the ones I think are most useful for maximizing your effectiveness with Salesforce.
Released in 2011 by Salesforce Labs, Salesforce Adoption Dashboards offers pre built reports and dashboards that provide insight into user login history, frequency, and other key adoption metrics. This apps can provide insight into who in your company actually uses and needs access to CRM. It is also a great starting point for reports to then later customize for your business, it’s easy to install, and best part is that it’s free!
Check the health of your customer data with Data.com Clean Assessment from Salesforce Labs. Released in 2014, this app is very helpful in analyzing your account, contact, and lead records and assessing the quality and completeness of your data. The app is free and can be used with or without a Data.com license. This is a great app to measure the usability of records, the matchability (completeness of key fields), and uniqueness (number of duplicates in your data), and shows you the impact of purchasing Data.com.
Released by MuleSoft in 2012, Data Loader for Salesforce does exactly what the name suggests: it’s a cloud solution to quickly import, export, and delete data in Salesforce. Makes uploading and exporting data quick and easy and I would highly recommend this app if you don’t already use it.
MailChimp is a popular email and marketing service. With MailChimp for Salesforce you can keep your Mailchimp and Salesforce.com data in sync. Manage subscribers, view campaign results, create, schedule, and send MailChimp campaigns all within Salesforce. Many other email marketing software providers have apps as well, so if you don’t use MailChimp, search the App Exchange to take advantage of similar features.
Coming in at #5 on the list is the first non-free app. Conga Composer allows the user to take data from Salesforce to generate customized documents such as reports, invoices, proposals, contracts and more, in many different formats. Creating custom documents and gathering data can be hard and time consuming; Congo Composer provides an easy solution to create sophisticated documents, presentations and reports using your Salesforce data. Congo Composer starts at $18 USD per user per month.
Send, sign, and approve documents from anywhere. DocuSign is a great tool used for contract management. Benefits include faster document turnaround times, increased accuracy, and a more streamlined sales process. Before DocuSign, signing contracts could take days and involves printing and scanning documents—now this process can take minutes! Highly recommended for all clients, especially those who work with contracts in the field or have long delay times between signatures. This app is not free, however, and can range from $10 per month for individuals to $125 per user per month for Business Premium.
Add emails to Salesforce from Gmail, track open emails, sync Salesforce/Google Calendar, use Salesforce email templates in Gmail, and view records alongside emails. One of the best features with Ebsta is being able to reduce the back and forth between Gmail and Salesforce with the ability to edit contacts directly from your inbox. Ebsta is free for the first three installs, then pricing goes to $10/user/month.
Released in 2011 from Salesforce Labs, Salesforce CRM dashboards provides best-practice dashboards and reports. This app provides a great starting point for your sales, marketing, and service teams to build their own dashboards. This is an easy way to impress your client with great looking reports that require minimal effort. Use their pre-built dashboards or customize them to meet your client’s needs. This app is one of the first things I install when starting an implementation.
View real-time Salesforce data without ever leaving Outlook. Record emails, create new contacts, and sync content to Salesforce from Outlook. LinkPoint Connect is the #1 app for Outlook and Exchange integration to Salesforce. Salesforce does provide an email plugin, Salesforce for Outlook, which works fine but can have its limitations. If you are running into problems with Salesforce for Outlook I recommend checking out LinkPoint Connect. Pricing starts at $5 per user per month.
Salesforce Communities Management packages helps you keep track of activity and engagement in your community and internal organization. This app comes with insights reports to help with day-to-day community management, community dashboard and reports about trends and metrics of community activity, and Chatter dashboards and reports on your internal organization’s Chatter usage. Recommended for any Salesforce project that works with Communities.
BONUS: Here are a couple more apps that didn’t make the top 10 list but are apps that we find very useful here at West Monroe Partners.
This is a great app used to manage your projects. Similar to TFS and other Agile project management tools, this allows you to manage and track your sprints, user stories, and changes to your project, all in an easy to use Salesforce App. Easily collaborate and work with your team to successfully complete a project. This app is great for any Agile Salesforce project!
Octopus allows you to get a full view of your Salesforce instance. Download a PDF/Word file with information about apex classes, pages, workflows, triggers, objects, fields and more. This app is great for documenting your Salesforce instance and will save you a lot time. I recommend downloading this app for you next project.
Congrats on 10 years, Salesforce AppExchange! We look forward to seeing what you will accomplish in the upcoming years.
If you have any experience with these apps, or your favorite app isn’t on the list, please comment below and share your experience.