2021 saw the aftermath of Salesforce's acquisition of Slack, its largest buy to date. The following acquisitions show how Salesforce aims to connect its services in one ecosystem.
When Salesforce acquired Slack in 2020, it planned to make the platform its operational backbone. The subsequent acquisitions in 2021 were steps to make that plan work.
Over the years, Salesforce has collected various pieces -- through big and small acquisitions -- to create a single CX ecosystem. The finalized Slack acquisition aims to underpin how sales, marketing and customer service, and past acquisitions like Tableau and Datorama, all work together. Salesforce's other 2021 acquisitions of Servicetrace, LevelJump and Narrative Science aim to create a well-rounded CX ecosystem, said Liz Miller, vice president and principal analyst at Constellation Research.
Salesforce's slow purchasing year in 2020 enabled the company to step back and evaluate how it should approach integrations to make past acquisitions work for customer needs. For example, the company has integrated Slack with Datorama, bought in 2018, which integrates with Tableau, bought in 2019, which will integrate with newly acquired Narrative Science.
"Now, they're focusing on the operations of experience as opposed to the delivery of experience. And that's an important next pivot because their acquisitions are aligning with their internal innovation," Miller said.
The company's internal users -- its employees -- directly influence Salesforce's offerings and potential acquisitions. If Salesforce can ensure its employees have positive experiences with its products, its customers are more likely to have positive experiences.
In 2022, more acquisitions like Servicetrace, LevelJump and Narrative Science may occur, Miller said, to continue putting the pieces of a full CX environment together. However, another massive acquisition like Slack is unlikely.
"You bought the cool thing in Slack. Now you've got to go make it work," Miller said. "They may be pushed to do a big acquisition, but I don't think they're going to do something that's super risky. … I don't see any acquisition as big as Slack."