“CRM remains a major focus for business executives, because the goals of acquiring, developing and retaining customers in a profitable manner are timeless,” said Ed Thompson, vice president and distinguished analyst at Gartner in a press release. “This trend is also confirmed by Gartner’s annual Executive Programs (EXP) survey of more than 1,500 CIOs worldwide that showed that CRM remained a top priority for CIOs who ranked CRM and other enterprise applications their No. 2 technology priority in 2009.”

CRM application pricing has changed dramatically during the past 10 years, with organizations commonly paying $1,000 to $1,500 per licensed user in 2009 compared with over $3,000 at its peak in 2000. The most common pricing model is still per user, but process-based pricing, fuelled by service-oriented architecture and software as a service will become commonplace by 2020, up from less than 1 percent of the time in 2009.

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