said on Tuesday it plans to introduce a Web-based version of its sales and marketing software in 2007 as it targets rivals like Salesforce.com, Oracle Corp. and SAP AG in a fast-growing market. Microsoft said the service initially would target small businesses. Analysts said it showed that the world's biggest software maker is serious about meeting growing demand for applications delivered over the Internet.
Microsoft's other CRM products have been feeling the pinch of SalesForce.com's seemingly every growing market share. For a lot of companies this makes a good deal of sense. Would you rather buy an entire server and deal with the infrastructure and administration costs? Not every company has their own server room and IT department. Online services can make a lot of sense for applications like this.