We sell monthly/annual memberships to our after-school teaching service. So a B2C service. I signed up with Salesforce and we realized that the accounts are businesses. To allow Person Accounts, we have to upgrade to the enterprise edition at $1500/user/year or higher. That is significant for us at this stage in our business.

Are there better B2C alternatives to Salesforce enterprise edition for our situation (less expensive)?

  • Your post says that you have to upgrade to enterprise edition, leading me to think you don't want to upgrade, and then asks about alternatives on Enterprise Edition. Which is it? – greenstork Jun 11 '14 at 18:10
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    Why not just create an Account for your customers and assign them to this Account? For example, an Account named "Customers". – Ray Dehler Jun 11 '14 at 18:11
  • @greenstork - I edited the question to be more clear. We need something as good as Salesforce, without all the enterprise features and less expensive. – at. Jun 11 '14 at 18:19
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    @RayDehler's suggestion of 1 account for all customers will break down at ~100k child records. – Jonathan Hersh Jun 11 '14 at 19:35

Are you not eligible for nonprofit/education pricing?

And even if you are, I would advise you avoid Person Accounts if at all possible. There be dragons.

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If you want to stay on Salesforce here are some options:

  1. One Account to bucket all of your customers, as Ray mentioned
  2. One Account per household, then your customers are the Contacts
  3. Try the Non-Profit Starter Pack, which has implementations for both of the above
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  • 1 Account for all customers will break down at around ~100k child records. – Jonathan Hersh Jun 11 '14 at 19:32
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    It actually starts degrading at around 10K children per parent, depending on sharing, but you can "bucket" people into multiple accounts of the same name. – greenstork Jun 11 '14 at 19:36
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    I know this is an old thread but - How do you know when it starts degrading - And what about the user experience? – Claus Machholdt Nov 12 '15 at 13:05
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    @ClausMachholdt, performance will start dragging. Pages will take longer to load, reports longer to run, etc . . . – Mike Chale Nov 16 '15 at 21:47
  • Thanks - Currently no problem - with around 50k. – Claus Machholdt Nov 18 '15 at 8:39

Person accounts are definitely the way to go on this and have been purposely designed for this B2C model (also works great with B2B).

Here are a couple blogs I wrote on the subject:

It should be noted that a lot of the concerns / issues with Person Accounts are no longer an issue and are an artifact from when the model was first released. Salesforce is still improving Person Accounts including an update in Summer 16.

We have been using them for years without issues / limitations.

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