Why Data Integration Tools for Salesforce Is a Good Idea

Salesforce now dominates the global customer relationship management (CRM) market with a 19.5% market share as of 2018. However, despite its popularity, it’s not the only data source organizations use to make marketing and sales decisions. There are several data integration tools for Salesforce that work better than its native app integration.

Salesforce allows clients to integrate its CRM with other platforms. They can also pull data from those platforms back to CRM, giving them a complete view of their customers. This post examines why data integration tools for Salesforce are a great idea, and why native Salesforce integrations aren’t enough.

Data Integration Tools: Salesforce

Most businesses today use Salesforce as their preferred CRM to improve customer relationships. They like cloud-based software because it improves their connection with customers.

Salesforce also offers a single, shared view of customers. Thus, different departments, such as marketing, sales, customer support, and e-commerce, have access to the same data for a 360-degree view of the customer.

Additionally, businesses are now connecting Salesforce with other data integration tools. The integration leads to higher productivity, increased sales operations, and innovation.

What Is Data Integration?

Data integration combines disparate data sources into a usable dataset. It provides users with similar data access and delivery. It also meets the different information needs of apps and business processes. It includes steps like ETL mapping, cleansing, and transformation.

The storage for this unified view of data is a central repository called a data warehouse. It should handle different types of data in large volumes.

Data integration is one of the main components of data management processes. Hence companies use it to share and analyze big data for many reasons, such as informed decision making.

Data integration developers make software tools to facilitate an automated integration process. The tools help connect and route data from its source to target systems.

Data integration is a prerequisite to other processes such as analysis, reporting, and forecasting. Ultimately, data integration enables analytics tools to produce actionable business intelligence.

There are two types of data integration:

  • Enterprise Data Integration (EDI) refers to technological instructions that help organizations utilize data. Usually, it involves acquiring data from different enterprise systems and analyzing it to create business intelligence reports and perform other management activities.
  • Customer Data Integration (CDI) aims to sift through customer data to make it accessible and usable by different departments. It also makes the data available to all authorized organization members dealing with customers.

Related: Best Practices for a Seamless HubSpot/Salesforce Integration

How Does Data Integration Work?

Before getting to the specifics of data integration for Salesforce, let’s go over data integration in general. In a nutshell, a typical data integration process involves a client sending a data request to the master server, which then pulls the required data from external and internal sources. Once it extracts the data from its sources, it consolidates it into a single, cohesive set and returns it to the requesting client for use.

Sometimes, data integration moves actual data to a target system (such as a central server). Other times, the system moves dataset copies from the source into a target. For example, when an organization consolidates its transactional data in a server for analysis.

From a more technical perspective, developers create software programs to automate and manage integrating data sets. Some forms of data integration are straightforward, such as copying data between two systems.

However, usually, organizations need to sync their databases and data sources. For these cases, a common approach would be creating a central system that merges local data sources into a single global one. The organization would then use data mapping to match data elements and bridge the differences between them.

To do this, it would need a target system (such as a data warehouse) to create a unified data view from different systems without physically loading it into a new repository.

Why Is Data Integration Essential?

Today, businesses collect data from various sources daily, which they store in large datasets that grow over time. Given how valuable data is for everyday business processes and operations, it is critical to analyze and use it to make operational and management decisions.

Data gives a complete view of customers and provides insights that can help sales and marketing departments better target those customers to close more deals.

As organizations increasingly rely on data in their daily activities, they need to find an efficient way to do it. However, the problem many companies face today lies in analyzing and utilizing their extensive data.

Data integration solves this issue by enabling real-time view and analysis of data, leading to the following benefits:

  • Reduces data complexity
  • Increases data value crunched through unified systems
  • Centralizes data, making it easy to use, accessible, and more valuable
  • Allows organizational collaboration among various business systems
  • Allows management to make informed business decisions
  • Improves communication between multiple departments
  • Enables better customer experience
  • Secures data live and keeps it timely up-to-date

Let’s look at the data integration tools for Salesforce and how they help with customer relationship management (CRM).

Salesforce Data Integration

Data integration allows on-demand and fast information exchange between different systems. It also ensures consistency in data application, helping business systems remain in sync and improving efficiency. For data integration, organizations need proper data information management expertise, for example, data flow design.

The data integration tools Salesforce uses enable fast data analysis. It also allows organizations to transfer data quickly between the CRM and the central storage.

Additionally, Salesforce integration tools in the data warehouse allow organizations to streamline their daily business processes, increasing efficiency.

The Salesforce data integration system implements APIs like REST (Representational State Transfer) and SOAP (Simplified Objects Access Protocol). As a result, they deliver information between systems effectively, update salesforce objects regularly, maintain passwords, and perform searches.

The benefits of data integration tools for Salesforce are seen when organizations use their CRM-specific data in management and decision making. Some of these benefits include:

  • Automating data processes: Enterprises working with large data volumes should automate their processes to improve efficiency. For example, integration solutions allow organizations to make custom data processes to resolve internal conflicts.
  • Fostering more sales prospects: Integrating sales data with marketing, financial, inventory, or service records means salespeople have enough information to convert leads. For example, buying preferences allow salespeople to tailor their sales pitches and convert leads by offering customized solutions.
  • Improving client communication: Companies can remain up-to-date on their leads, demographics, engagement levels, and interests. CRM allows them to send relevant emails and make informed sales calls.
  • Delivering a connected digital experience: Integrating Salesforce with other cloud applications through REST API allows organizations to improve customer experiences.

Related: When Native Marketo/Salesforce Integrations Fail

Limitations of Salesforce Data Integrations

Salesforce has built-in integrations with selected business systems. However, since it only integrates with some platforms, it has a limited range of use and user control. Consequently, IT support and coding are necessary to integrate it with more systems and increase user control.

Hence, it is important to consider solutions offering more value than the data integration tools Salesforce has built-in its platform. In addition, organizations need data standardization and control of their data movement.

These easy-to-use solutions have intelligent data automation capability, enabling sales and marketing alignment throughout the buying process.

The platforms also enable organizations to sync their teams and data. This creates a connected customer environment without technical resources or additional coding. Additionally, they give organizations complete control of their systems.

Therefore it does not matter which CRM and marketing automation tools an organization uses. They enjoy access to standardized data, central storage, and a complete view of the customer.

Vertify allows you to integrate on your terms and gives you control over data standardization and flow. It also connects your data and teams seamlessly using Vertify RevConnect. Request a demo today.

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Author: Matt Klepac | CEO | Vertify