Salesforce.com has cloud in its Sites

Customers can build and run their external Web sites using vendor's Force.com Sites cloud platform as well as use other functionality such as analytics, programmable logic and workflow.
Written by Tim Ferguson, Contributor

Businesses can now build and run their external Web sites using technology from software-as-a-service company Salesforce.com.

Launched Monday, Force.com Sites essentially uses the Force.com cloud platform to support customer Web sites and online applications.

As well as building Web sites, customers can also use other Force.com functionality such as analytics, programmable logic and workflow.

The analytics technology means businesses can monitor the performance of the Web site and quickly make changes.

Force.com Sites can also be used to run internal business processes.

As Sites runs on Force.com, the applications and Web sites can be linked to CRM data already hosted on the platform.

Tim Barker, Salesforce.com's EMEA senior product director, told ZDNet Asia's sister site Silicon.com: "The ability for data to flow from Web to internal [systems] simply is something that companies have really struggled with."

"Those things have traditionally been really hard to do and require a lot of integration of different applications but with Force.com if you want it you've got your CRM information ready to hand when you're building your website or Web application," he added.

Prior to this week's launch, 85 companies including Starbucks and Dell were able to use Force.com as part of a customer preview program, creating sites for a wide range of uses including e-commerce, recruitment, ticketing and social networking.

Force.com Sites is available for free to customers for up to 500,000 page views per month on the Enterprise Edition of Force.com and one million pages views for Unlimited Edition customers.

Customer can pay £700 (US$1,140) per month for an additional one million page views.

Tim Ferguson of Silicon.com reported from London.

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