Magazine article CRM Magazine

Midmarket Suite CRM

Magazine article CRM Magazine

Midmarket Suite CRM

Article excerpt

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The Market

Last year's blurring of the lines between midmarket and enterprise CRM offerings has not cleared much. The likely trailblazers in the midmarket are those vendors that account for the surge in cloud, social, and mobile computing.

Expect to see SaaS growth continue, as Gartner predicts revenues in the United States will total $9.1 billion in 2012, up from $7.8 billion last year. That uptick carried out across the globe, with Asia-Pacific, Japan, and Latin America's growing adoption of CRM or ERP deployments.

The Leaders

Microsoft's release of Dynamics CRM 2011 continued to shake out with a Q2 2012 update, which included native support for mobile devices and planned upgrades in social customer care. "Microsoft showed some very interesting visions at [Convergence 2012] and they're kind of percolating," says Martin Schneider, CRM analyst for 451 Research. But he added that "it's interesting what [Microsoft] can do with all of its components to really create an experience-driven CRM." Laurie McCabe, a partner with SMB Group, says Microsoft "has hung in there [against competitor Salesforce.com] and that tenacity seems to be paying off. It's coming on strong." But the general word among analysts was that this vendor needs to juice up its analytics.

NetSuite took a solid 3.9 for company direction, a slight dip from its 4.1 last year, but analysts seemed pleased with this vendor's overall performance. Steve King, partner at Emergent Research, calls NetSuite "a great midmarket choice." While Paul Greenberg, president of The 56 Group, notes that "social components in the CRM component of its suite" are lacking, he did point out NetSuite's inherent nature as an ERP company.

NetSuite continued to pad its midmarket and enterprise partner network this year, introducing the cloud-based SuiteCommerce platform as a way for companies to manage customers across numerous touch points. "In terms of the bigger picture... it should be the way people think [about CRM]," McCabe says.

Oracle scored strong in functionality, nabbing a 4.1, a drop from last year's 4.4. A 3.7 in company direction--among the lowest on our leaderboard--justifies analysts' "wait and see" sentiment, especially with Oracle's recent acquisitions. …

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