Yes. And, you should determine if you also want to keep it in your own environment as well as there are benefits to both. There are lots of great benefits to doing so – you can access it via your browser on any computer, you can use your smart phone or tablet. By having it in the cloud, you also have someone else backing it up for you so in the event of a catastrophic event, your data is safe.
This is a great question. The idea of having your data in the Cloud sounds so modern and since everything seems to be moving to the cloud, you may just assume that is what you need. And there are huge advantages to the Cloud – someone else is assuming the responsibility of the servers, the security around the servers, managing any installations/upgrades to the software, backing up your database, etc. But there are also advantages to having your data on your own server where you can use a CRM that is Windows based, like Act! Any application that you put on your computer will have more functionality than a browser solution and that can improve performance and make you more efficient. Act! is also a great solution as you can have Act! in the Cloud AND Act! on your server, which gives you the best of both worlds. You can also have remote databases so if you want to still access it via the desktop application, you can do that too.
What I mean by this question is – do you just need some/all of your contacts from your database to sync to your native Contacts on your phone? And same question for calendar – is that all I need? Just to see this information. Or, do I want more of a “mini-database” on my smart device? So, I can clear activities on my phone, add notes from the meeting and that will sync back to my database. Or, when I make a call or send an email from my phone, do I want to have that information in the database? Each CRM can manage this differently so understanding exactly what you need is important.
Off-line means no Internet connection. So, that would be times like when you are on a plane or in an area without Internet. If you need this, Act! is a great solution as you can have an off-line syncing remote database. Ok, that was a lot of words – break it down for me. Off-line: so you can get into the database without Internet because there is a copy of the database on your computer. Syncing: that means this copy of the database would sync with the main database to give/receive any changes made. Remote: ok, so that’s kinda obvious right?
Currently, there are no CRM’s that have software that you can install on your Mac. Having said that, you can still use any CRM on your Mac but it has to be browser based. Almost all CRM’s work with Safari or Chrome. But there are limitations to that – one of the key features most people want is to integrate their CRM into Outlook so you can attach emails, create contacts or activities from an email and that will automatically show up in your database. There are no CRM’s that natively provide a solution for Mac’s.