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Ryan Plourde, Crowe Horwath

The Fine Print On Dynamics CRM Online Data Storage Costs

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There are plenty of calculations out there to show you how much money you will save by moving your CRM system to the cloud. No more hardware, lower IT costs, free upgrades and more.

But I bet there is something that wasn’t calculated:  data storage costs.

The Fine Print

If you read the fine print you will see that Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online includes 5 gigabytes of data storage. (You get an extra 2.5 gigabytes each time you add 20 Professional users, up to a max of 50 gigabytes). You can buy additional storage space for $9.99 per gigabyte per month.

Does 5 gigabytes sound like a lot? Maybe it does until you realize that this amount is for your entire organization, not just for you.

There are two things that can literally suck away your storage space.

  • Outlook Integration

How large is your Outlook database? Probably much bigger than you realize.

If you track an Outlook email in Dynamics CRM Online all attachments get stored in CRM. Depending on the type of business, the number of attachments and how diligent people are about tracking Outlook emails into CRM will determine how quickly you exceed that 5 gigabyte limit.

Also read: Microsoft Dynamics CRM vs Salesforce: Using Microsoft Outlook

  • Document Storage

Dynamics CRM allows for document management, so that people have easy access to the information they need. That could be proposals, invoices, knowledge base articles, marketing presentations and more. All of them take up space. Let's say you are an architectural firm that wants to store plans and blueprints. 5 gigabytes will not last long.

Alternative Data Storage Options

If you think you need more storage space, adding a subscription to SharePoint Online would be a good solution. Because you are already “in the cloud”, adding this subscription, connected to Dynamics CRM Online, is easy. There is no “implementation”, just set up. The storage limits are much higher and the price is much lower than buying additional gigabytes for CRM.

However, SharePoint Online will not solve the problem of tracking email and attachments. That goes right into the CRM database. Fast.

Hard Drive Space

We have some companies using Dynamics CRM on-premise that have an 80 gigabyte database. You can do the math, 75 x $9.99 per month, and see that this would be a pretty major additional expense. With an on-premise system you are only limited by the amount of hard drive space you have. And hard drives are cheap.

Know Your Options

Just to be clear, we are not saying that this data storage issue negates all the other benefits of using a cloud based system. In fact, having a large, bloated database can cause other issues and it is better to keep the size under control.

But this cost is something that should be talked about, planned for, and calculated into the total cost of Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online.

Working with an honest Dynamics CRM Partner, in cooperation with your own IT team, will help you to make the best decision for your company.

If you would like assistance in comparing Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online vs On-Premise, contact AbleBridge. [email protected]

By AbleBridge, Microsoft Dynamics Gold Partner in Massachusetts, www.ablebridge.com

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One Response to “The Fine Print On Dynamics CRM Online Data Storage Costs”

  1. Joe says:

    FYI this pricing has changed with Dynamics 365 announcement. I am not sure what the official $$. I completely agree that CRM Only pricing model for storage is out of balance with other cloud storage.

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