SAP vs. Salesforce: Which is the Better CRM?

SAP and Salesforce are two of the top customer relationship management (CRM) solutions on the market today. Their dynamic platforms provide capabilities and features that enable organizations to gain actionable insights from their data and improve their customer relationship processes. 

But out of these two CRM software systems, which option is right for you? Keep your organization’s unique needs in mind as you compare SAP and Salesforce on features, pricing, and use cases. 

What is SAP?

SAP offers a suite of customer-facing solutions called the CX suite, which includes their whole package of CRM features and capabilities. The solution helps users connect their customer service operations with each of their workforce departments through the help of data insights and AI-driven intelligence.

SAP offers a wide range of enterprise software solutions including enterprise resource planning (ERP), supply chain management (SCM), and human capital management (HCM). Adopting the CRM product in tandem with others can be a useful approach to centralizing business data. However, this comparison will focus on the SAP CX suite product exclusively, as it contains their entire CRM package of customer service features and capabilities. 

What is Salesforce? 

Salesforce enables organizations to improve customer relationships and business processes with its advanced software products. Customer 360 is Salesforce’s integrated CRM platform that contains a full range of their Salesforce technology portfolio solutions. It unites service, sales, marketing, IT, commerce, and analytics features together in one platform so users can benefit from CRM capabilities within each area of their business processes.

SAP vs. Salesforce: Case Management

SAP

SAP helps businesses resolve customer service requests and process HR and internal cases with its multichannel ticketing and case management capabilities. 

When customer service requests come in, users can create service tickets that are automatically sent directly to the appropriate agents through intelligent ticket routing. Agents can then view tickets that require attention through a special interface that enables them to access relevant customer data and information. In addition, the system ensures no cases slip through the cracks, as users can set and track all service-level agreements. 

Screenshot of SAP CX suite.
Image: SAP

Salesforce

Salesforce’s Service Cloud also provides case management features. This solution is a part of their CRM platform, which helps users manage their customer support cases and visualize their full context. The system automatically routes cases to the right agent or team based on aspects like availability and skill sets. 

Another way the software leverages automation is through its service process automation feature, which can guide agents through the process of addressing customer needs, to resolve cases step-by-step while ensuring user compliance. Prebuilt data source integrations let users see important customer information. 

Finally, alerts that inform users when actions are necessary and customer activity updates can notify agents and support them in responding to customer cases appropriately.

SAP vs. Salesforce: Analytics Features

SAP

The SAP CX suite includes features that support data integration and analysis. By utilizing customer delivery, inventory, and return data to their fullest potential, organizations can gain actionable insights to boost their sales and improve customer engagement and retention. 

End-to-end enterprise integration enables users to discover powerful information from both their in-house and external data sources. Users can integrate their SAP CX solution with the SAP Analytics Cloud to compile and analyze their data across their departments and solutions. 

The Analytics Cloud enterprise edition lets analysts develop predictive models from data, enabling them to gauge their customer needs better. This can also help them predict future trends and patterns based on their historical business data, customer engagements, and customer behavior. 

SAP’s technology forms dynamic reports and visualizations from this data analysis, so teams can get more out of their data use.

Salesforce

Similarly, Salesforce’s CRM Analytics tool, formerly known as Tableau CRM, provides users with AI-driven insights based on customer data to support each area of their organizational processes. 

Teams can understand customer needs by analyzing service demand data trends and adjusting their processes to provide better solutions for their clients. Salesforce’s integration with Slack further supports teams in their data analysis collaboration efforts and provides users with Slack notifications about important data metrics and updates.

The Tableau integration provides teams with an analytics platform that supports intelligent statistical modeling and queries. This software utilizes data to track critical customer service metrics with alerts and targets and uncover valuable customer insights. 

Screenshot of Salesforce analytics dashboard.
Image: Salesforce

Read more: Best CRM Features and Why They Are Important

SAP vs. Salesforce: Sales and Marketing

SAP

Comprehensive CRM functionality often combines sales and marketing efforts in one platform. SAP’s CX suite is no exception. With the integrated Sales Cloud, users can gain unified visibility into their customer interactions to identify which customer experiences generate revenue for their company. 

In addition, sales and customer data analytics can provide helpful information to help organizations streamline their sales processes and automate manual, repetitive tasks. The SAP Sales Cloud has guided selling functionality and provides sellers with intelligent value-driven recommendations for making customer-centric sales and addressing customer needs.

Salesforce

On the other hand, Salesforce’s Sales Cloud lets users access and manage their sales data on the platform or through its mobile CRM app. The product provides features for tracking sales opportunities, understanding revenue growth, predicting sales forecasts, improving customer experiences, and automating sales activities through data analysis and insights. 

The Marketing Cloud also uses customer data to automate and improve business processes. In addition, the digital marketing software helps users reach real-time insights and actionable analytics so that they can understand their customers and optimize their marketing efforts.

SAP vs Salesforce: Integrations

SAP

The SAP CX suite provides integrated functions for Marketing, Sales, Commerce, Customer Service, and Customer Data. The whole CRM package creates a centralized platform for data spanning all of these nodes.

SAP additionally provides options through 2,500 integrations prebuilt existing third-party tools and data sources. The SAP integration suite connects and automates each business process. SAP users can also benefit from real-time data analytics by utilizing API-based integration with external data sources. 

Salesforce

Salesforce also helps support customer relationship processes through their integrations with external programs. 

In addition to the Slack and Tableau integrations, Salesforce offers a wide range of integrations that provide users with features for sales, marketing, and other customer relationship management processes within Customer 360. For example, the AppExchange marketplace lets users choose from their connected third-party applications and quickly install them. Teams can also connect to other programs through the MuleSoft integration and API platform for more integration capabilities. 

Additionally, Salesforce offers a portfolio of add-on products called Customer 360 Truth. This provides features for connecting customer data within Salesforce and non-Salesforce systems, so teams can gain insights from the analysis of all of their data sources.

Related: How CRM and ERP Integration Can Benefit Your Business

SAP vs Salesforce: Pricing

SAP

Since the SAP CX suite is a solution that combines each of their cloud functions, it may be a pricier option than simply purchasing the individual module(s) that would work best for your needs. Each of the Marketing, Sales, Commerce, Customer Service, and Customer Data options includes narrow CRM capabilities. 

Unfortunately, pricing information for SAP products is not available online as the pricing can vary immensely depending on each consumer’s needs as a business. However, those interested in their CRM products can contact SAP to receive a personalized quote through their website.

Salesforce

Salesforce pricing is also dependent on the user’s specific needs and which edition(s) would best address them. Each edition includes popular features of the Salesforce 360 solution. For example, the Sales Cloud CRM software edition starts at $25 per user, per month when billed annually. Plans with more features and capabilities are available for higher prices. 

Additionally, buyers can enhance their Salesforce software capabilities by selecting optional add-ons. These add-ons can range in functionality and can be combined with editions to support the user’s specific needs. Salesforce’s customization opportunities may be an ideal solution for organizations with complex use cases.

SAP vs. Salesforce: Who is the ideal user?

Both SAP and Salesforce provide customizable CRM software package options for their buyers, and both offer solutions with several overlapping features for developing and optimizing client-oriented processes. So for each of these solutions, what organizations would most benefit from their services?

SAP’s CRM solutions can benefit organizations that are looking for a system capable of smoothly integrating with third-party applications. The SAP CRM tools exist as a part of a CX suite and facilitate simple connections with SAP and non-SAP systems. 

With 2,500 prebuilt connections to choose from, users can access a wide range of data sources. This can also be extremely helpful for users to generate reports, and their analytics features can help them gain a deeper understanding of their data analysis.

However, organizations that prefer a CRM solution with a wide range of customization options may want to choose Salesforce’s CRM software. This can be helpful for marketing efforts, especially as the system offers a variety of capabilities for developing unique campaigns that target specific user needs.

Additionally, Salesforce’s impressive case management features would undoubtedly support businesses that are looking to improve their customer satisfaction processes.

If you’re still not sure whether Salesforce or SAP is right for your organization, consider exploring alternative options on our list of Top CRM Software Solutions.

Madeline Clarke
Madeline Clarke
Madeline is a freelance writer specializing in copywriting and content creation. After studying Art and earning her BFA in Creative Writing at Salisbury University she applied her knowledge of writing and design to develop creative and influential copy. She has since formed her business, Clarke Content, LLC, through which she produces entertaining, informational content and represents companies with professionalism and taste. You can reach Madeline via email at [email protected]

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