3 differences between Sales Cloud Professional And Enterprise You Need To Consider (part 1)

Over the years, a lot of organizations we’ve worked with have asked us “What are the differences between Sales Cloud Professional Edition and Sales Cloud Enterprise Edition?” If you don’t know, then this article series is for you. As always, we’ll be covering the topics in a non-technical manner as possible, so people unfamiliar with Salesforce and Sales Cloud, in this case, can get the gist. It’s the broad strokes stuff.

Salesforce itself publishes a feature comparison chart you can reference any time by clicking here. If you want to dive even deeper, you can download the full PDF of the chart.

But today, we are going to focus on 3 of what are the more common differences between Professional Edition and Enterprise Edition. If you are considering Essentials or Unlimited editions, we’re not covering those in this article. Sorry about that.

So what are we covering today?

  1. Automation limitations
  2. Reporting/Analytics
  3. Connecting 3rd party Apps (Apex Code & API)

So let’s dive into each one in a little more detail

1. Automation limitations:

For those of you unfamiliar with the automation capabilities in salesforce, we’ll sum it up in as non-technical manner as possible. Automation breaks down into two different primary types. Workflow Rules and Process Builder. It’s important to understand what the distinguishing characteristics are. We previously wrote about them in this article.

Process Builder and Flows are available in both Professional and Enterprise editions, but there is a slight catch. With Professional Edition, there are limits to how many of each type of processes you can have. 5 for each type specifically.

As to Workflows, they are only available in Enterprise Edition. If you are on Professional, then you don’t have access to them at all.

So what’s the big deal? Collectively, we feel that user adoption continued usage and the quality of reporting might be at stake. The more steps there are to manually take, the more chance that the users will make mistakes, or just not do certain tasks. Automation can cut down on the number of steps that a user has to take to complete those tasks, automation can automatically complete steps that might otherwise be manual, automation can improve accuracy in your internal workflow.

Be sure you evaluate and document how complex your sales or internal processes are. The size of your organization is not the deciding factor. You could be a super small company with a complex or very nuanced sales process that should then consider the value that the automation can provide.

2. Reporting/Analytics:

Everyone loves good reports that are insightful and actionable. It’s why we work so hard on software like Sales Cloud. With either Professional or Enterprise Edition, you get some great reporting on Leads, Accounts, Contacts, Opportunities, etc. You can customize reports easily with just clicks. You can build your own custom reports. There is a lot of possibility with just the standard reporting, so don’t think you won’t get amazing reporting capabilities with either edition. You will!

Now I told you that story to tell you this one… and that is the reporting capabilities in Enterprise Edition are significantly more feature-rich than Professional. Here are just a few brief examples.

Joined Reports

Joined reports allow you to have information from multiple report types in a single report where those types have a common object or objects. For example, if you have a joined report that contains the Opportunities report type, you can add the Cases report type as well because both have a relationship with the Accounts object. This cross-reference of data can add a lot of insight into your management and employees.

To give you a visual idea of joined reports, check out salesforce’s creating Joined Reports video below.

Bucketed Fields

Field Bucketing quickly categorizes report records without creating a formula or a custom field by bucketing them. When you create a bucket column, you define multiple categories (buckets) used to group report values. Like any other column in your report, you can sort, filter, and group by bucket columns.

For example, get a view of your accounts based on how many employees they have. Create a bucket column named Size based on the # Employees field. Then, create buckets that group records into Small, Medium, and Large ranges that you define. Small includes accounts with 5,000 or less employees. Medium includes accounts with 5,000 to 10,000 employees. Large includes accounts with more than 10,000 employees. Now you can sort, filter, or group records based on how they’re grouped in buckets. If one account grows or shrinks, it’ll automatically switch buckets. Make sense?

Cross-Filter Reports

Cross Filter reports Allow for exclusion reporting. Use cross filters to filter a report by an object’s child objects using both WITH and WITHOUT conditions. For example, filter a report to show accounts that have cases but don’t have activities.

When you are evaluating Salesforce, make sure you have a complete understanding of your organization’s reporting requirements. Be specific about all of the ways you want to dissect data to help you make better decisions. Then you can work with your Salesforce Rep and possibly your implementation partner to determine which edition will meet your reporting requirements.

3. Connecting 3rd party Apps (Apex Code & API):

You probably already know that Salesforce has their AppExchange where you can find literally thousands of free and fee based products, functions, templates, etc. that can be added to your Sales Cloud. Many products are available for both Professional and Enterprise edition. These apps can extend the capabilities of your Sales Cloud exponentially.

But in the increasingly rare chance your organization needs functionality and integrations with back-end systems that are not supported in the point and click functions of Sales Cloud or on through the AppExchange, then you might need them to be custom built. This is where Apex Code and API’s come in and they are only available on Enterprise Edition.

Apex Code

Salesforce created its own scripting language called Apex. For experienced programmers, it’s a straight forward coding language that adds the nearly unlimited possibility to what you can do in Sales Cloud.

For Example, if your organization needs to send emails based on project dates. This can be achieved with workflows. But what happens if the project dates change? Once a record is saved and the workflow has begun, there is no action to check the individual records and see if that date changed. And your business process makes it clear that rechecking and making adjustments is important. To solve this dilemma, you can implement Apex code to repeatedly check the project dates to see if they’ve changed. If they’ve changed, the email is sent at a different date. In theory, you could also do this using flow, but it has a higher probability of throwing errors and/or not firing the emails since the flow would be based off a trigger that involves a user or user data input to create the email send action.


Do you need to connect to a 3rd party software or application that isn’t listed on the AppExchange? If so, you’ll need access to the API and of course, you won’t have access to it with Professional Edition.

Very simply, keep in mind what you want to connect your sales cloud to and then evaluate whether 1) the application is in the AppExchange, 2) That it supports Professional Edition and 3) The out of the box functionality of the app will meet your needs.

The Bottom Line

When your organization is evaluating Professional and Enterprise Editions to see which is a better fit, there are a lot of considerations. The most important thing is to really look at what your business requirements are for your sales process, reporting, integration and make some concrete requirements.

Don’t forget to ask your implementation partner for advice and suggestions. If you need help, we offer Business Process Reviews (BPR) that will evaluate your organization’s requirements and document them for you to help determine your full requirements. That way you can rest assured that you will be choosing the right edition that meets your requirements.

Please let us know in the comments what else you would like us to cover.

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