Salesforce enters the Content Management market.

What is Salesforce CMS?

Salesforce – the leader in customer relationship management software – has recently unveiled their CMS called “hybrid CMS”. With this, they have taken an important step into the CMS industry that will help maintain their leadership as well as enable them to compete with other digital experience software providers. With the hybrid CMS, content is now created in a central location. The company says that this allows marketers to deliver content to any channel or device, including email, as well as to ensure consistency.

Authors: Nemanja Milanovic and Tamara Zimonjić

“Legacy CMS are designed for a single touchpoint, not an ever-evolving, omni-channel, customer journey,” writes Adi Kuruganti, GM, Salesforce Community Cloud and SVP, products B2B Commerce, in a blog post.

What can it do?

The main purpose of the CMS is to provide tools that enable you to communicate with your customers through content such as images, videos, text, etc. A Hybrid CMS makes it possible to create and publish content without changing the platform. Furthermore, it provides the option that a hybrid CMS can be used in conjunction with a legacy CMS.

Further practical applications are: 

  • The use of one of two WYSISYG (what-you-see-is-what-you-get) tools: With the  Experience Builder or Commerce Page Designer the user can build an experience by dragging and dropping components to the website, portal, forum or commerce storefront. These tools are also developer friendly so they easily can be and customized  to build an even more powerful experience.The use of Salesforce’s headless API so that users can deliver content on various third-party sites, experience or mobile apps.
  • The possibility to turn your data into content in order to take a more personalized approach.

What is on the roadmap?

Of course Salesforce CMS was a big topic at this year’s Dreamforce in San Francisco, where they announced the Salesforce roadmap for 2020:

  • In February the CMS will have APIs to support any channel. Their personalization API will be ready to programmatically create and manage audiences and assignments. 
  • The summer release will support further media types and an out-of-the-box integration with the Salesforce Marketing Cloud to enhance content personalization. 
  • In October Salesforce will release advanced content management functionalities around high-scale delivery, workflows, scheduling, roles and permissions. Furthermore, it will feature a seamless integration with Interaction Studio.

Many of the core functionalities are already available.

How does it compare?

Salesforce CMS enters a crowded market. From open source tools like Drupal and WordPress to enterprise products such as Sitecore and Adobe Experience Manager – there are content management systems in various sizes and flavours. 

Comparing the currently available features does not do Salesforce CMS justice. As a newcomer Salesforce CMS lacks features that are common with its competitors. What makes it stand out is is technology and integration in the Salesforce environment. 

Salesforce is building a CMS on its core platform. This means that Salesforce can allow companies to use custom objects, fields and process automation tools to tailor CMS to individual requirements. However, Salesforce has not yet fully integrated their CMS objects into process and data modelling tools such as Process Builder and the Object.  This, however, does not fully limited custom development. Content can be accessed and modified, like any other Salesforce object, with the REST and SOAP API. 

Despite its limited features and not yet fully implemented integration in the Salesforce core platform, the Salesforce CMS will be a big step forward for Salesforce customers. The lack of a central content hub is one of the major weaknesses of the Salesforce ecosystem. Commerce Cloud, Marketing Cloud and Community Cloud all have a built-in CMS that does not share content with other clouds. Salesforce CMS will fill the gap and serve as one central CMS for the whole Salesforce ecosystem. 

Summary.

Experience and content management was still an open field on the Salesforce map.

However, Salesforce understands that customer engagement requires content and their CMS approach shows that a central content repository is necessary in order to integrate the different customer touch points that the various Salesforce Clouds relate to.It is great that marketeers now have one single platform where they can now edit their content.

Still, this is just the first step. For now it doesn’t live up to large experience platforms that have huge amount of content. Nevertheless, Salesforce has a great roadmap for its CMS and it is definitely worth considering Salesforce CMS for integrated customer journey experiences in the future.

Resources:

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