Migrating from Salesforce to HubSpot - you know you want to

By Ralph Vugts on Oct 1, 2020
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Why do so many people want to switch from Salesforce to HubSpot? To sum it up in one word: frustration.

There’s a whole lot of over-promise and under-delivery going on and it leaves businesses with an expensive mess that no one really knows how to use.  

But once you start talking about switching CRM platforms, that’s when the feet go cold.

Better to go with the devil you know, eh? 

Migrating data from one CRM to another is a big undertaking, absolutely. But if done with the guidance of expert partners who understand your business needs, the pros far outweigh the cons...

In fact, we can help demystify the whole process by breaking it down into seven steps...


Step 1. Appoint an internal project champion pre-implementation 

Migrating your CRM to a new platform can cause a lot of discomfort for your people. That’s why it’s important to appoint an internal project champion - typically someone at mid-senior level. This person will be in charge of communicating change and keeping the rest of the team motivated. In order to make the migration successful, you’ll need to have everyone on board and contributing ideas.


Step 2. Map and audit existing process 

You don’t want to copy-paste your current processes to the new CRM, otherwise you’re just going to get the same pain points in a new system. You’ll need to review all your existing technology platforms and the cleanliness of the data to determine whether it’s worth transitioning (or not). Conducting workshops with key working groups to get an understanding of what works and what doesn’t is an essential step. When it comes to old processes and data the old adage is true: “crap in: crap out”.


Step 3. Map new processes and systems

Now that you’ve vetted your old processes, you can start to craft new processes and fix your big pain points. You can really be creative in this step. Most CRMs these days will support whatever functionality you want (limited by budget, of course), but ultimately you’ll want to ensure you’re developing something that’s going to have a measurable impact on your business. Your new systems need to support your business objectives.


Step 4. Migrate, ewwwww…...

Give yourself plenty of time to extract your data before your license’s final day - data extraction can take time and be difficult. Trust us, you do not want to lose data because your portal was shut off before you could get it all out. 

Tip: Don’t give platforms such as Salesforce a heads up that you’re leaving - they’re unforgiving once they learn you’re migrating off their platform...


Step 5. Development and configuration 

You’ll now be able to ‘feel’ your new system and see your new processes in action. Your new maps and exchange of data will get built into your new CRM and may involve integrations and bespoke synchronisation of data across systems (for example, your CRM and your finance platform). Be careful when considering ‘off-the-shelf’ integration platforms, as your data requirements may be outside their remit.


Step 6. Process rollout and testing

It’s important to have those who are going to use your CRM the most - your marketing, sales and customer service teams - singing from the same rock song book. Creating a robust SLA will help them work together (when does a lead transition from Marketing’s responsibility to Sales’?). During the testing phase, you’ll want to collect feedback from these teams and fine-tune processes as needed. Be sure to dedicate enough time to test your new system before you officially set it live so there are no surprises. 


Step 7. Go-live!

Most of the bugs will have been ironed out (but going live is the true test), there’s only one thing left to do… GO LIVE! Pop the bubbly - you did it! 

Tip: Don’t just let your CRM sit there. Your business, your people and your processes will change over time, and so should your CRM. So set aside time once a quarter to review the effectiveness of your CRM and make adjustments as necessary.


The secret to a successful CRM migration

There’s a lot of work that goes into each of those seven steps. That’s why it’s not just important to pick the right platform, but also the right migration partner. 

Finding an agency that can help you through the auditing and mapping workshops as well as the migration itself is your best bet at a smooth transition. Don’t settle for a yes-agency - you want them to be as transparent as possible to help you get exactly what you need. Use their experience of best-practice business processes to take the opportunity to improve your own.

We’ve done a CRM migration or two in our day, taking a wholistic approach to learn about your business and adapt the HubSpot model from there. Want to learn more? Get in touch!

Ralph has been developing websites and systems for nearly 20 years. Passionate and curious, he’s an a-typical developer who understands how users interact with the systems he builds. He understands that systems need to be human-friendly. Ralph loves working in an industry that is constantly changing and disrupting itself.

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