What is the difference between Act! Hosted and Self-Hosted products?

Act! Hosted or Self-Hosted, the terminology can be confusing but all it really means is who will be housing your central database.  Are you going to have Act! host your data on one of their servers or are you going to host your own data on your server or computer?

Act! Hosted products include Act! Growth Suite Cloud and Act! CRM Cloud.  Act! has the required infrastructure to host your central database and provides the secure online access to your data via web or mobile.  You can also have an offline Windows client that will synchronize with the cloud database.  Also, they provide access to the Web API platform that allows users to connect Act! to other business productivity tools.  Act! will perform the backups, maintenance and upgrades so you don’t have to.

Self-Hosted products include Act! Growth Suite CRM and Act! CRM subscriptions.  You will need to host your own central database on a server or computer that meet the current system requirements.  If you want to have Web and Mobile access you will need to have the infrastructure necessary to run web services, a public access point (domain or IP address) and an SSL certificate – see the Web Administrator’s Guide for more information.  You will also need to install and host your own Act! Web API for access to additional Act! CRM features. Let’s not forget the important stuff like you will need to perform your own backups, maintenance and upgrades.

Act! Pro is a self-hosted only product. You must host your own data and it is installed on a local server or computer. With Act! Pro there are no subscription only features (Act! Technical Support, Act! Software Upgrades, WebAPI integration tools) and is a Windows only software that does not have Web or Mobile deployment options. See our article on the Act! CRM vs. Act! Pro features.

Whether Act! Hosted or Self-Hosted – the Act! Growth Suite and Act! CRM Subscription costs are the same. The questions to consider are:  Do you have the infrastructure to Self-Host? Do you have the IT personnel in place to support your Self-hosting? What would the additional costs be to put these into place?

Save time and money with Act! Hosted products.  You get instant online access to Act! in a modern, secure Cloud environment – no IT needed, no hardware required, just an affordable subscription.

You can purchase the latest Act! Hosted and Self-Hosted products with current discounts and promotions from our Act! CRM eStore at www.actplatinum.com and if you have any additional questions please send us a Contact Us form.

Act! CRM vs. Act! PRO – Things to Know Before You Buy Act!

Act! CRM vs. Act! Pro

Act! Software has 2 product editions; Act! CRM and Act! PRO. We are always asked by potential customers which product is right for their business.

Act! has previously published the below image to outline the general product differences (NOTE: Act! Premium has been renamed to Act! CRM), but we want to provide more information to compare and contrast the products and features for Act’s latest version.
Buy Act! Pro or Act! Premium at www.actplatinum.com

Comparing Act! CRM vs Act! Pro in order to assist in selecting the right product for your business, below are 10 things to know before you buy:

1. The number of active users is a determining factor, the Pro product has a limitation of 10 active users in a database. This means if you have more than 10 users you will need the Act! CRM product. If you purchase the Pro product and need to add the 11th user or more you will need to purchase Act! CRM subscriptions for the existing Pro licenses. Therefore, if your business is growing it would make sense to purchase the Act! CRM product over the Act! Pro at the on-set.

2. The Pro product has Windows only software, Act! CRM has dual functionality for both Windows & Web (including Web Mobile) access that can be hosted by Act! or self-hosted.  Act! CRM allows you to do your own web hosting (without the monthly fees of other competing products) where you can deploy the web product with database access through your intranet or internet. With Act! CRM Mobile you can travel light and stay connected by accessing your Act! CRM contact, calendar and opportunity details from your iPhone®, iPad® or Android™ device.

3. The Act! CRM product has Field Level Security that allows you to limit the access to certain Contact, Opportunity, Group and Company fields by users and teams. You can grant full access to those that need to update the field information, read only to those that need to see the information but cannot change the data, or no access to a field which means they cannot see the field within the database or reports. This is a valuable feature if your business works with social security numbers, credit card information or other sensitive data.

4. The Act! CRM product has Record Level Security that allows you to limit the access to Contact, Opportunity, Group and Company records by users and teams. This is a powerful feature if you want your salespeople to see only their records, sales managers being able to see the records for their direct reports, by territories or if you want to divide the records by different departments or job responsibilities.

5. Both the Act! CRM and Pro products have the database synchronization feature in which you can create remote databases that synchronize to your master database for disconnected/offline data access. The Pro Product only allows Application Synchronization which means that when a remote synchronizes to the master the Act! program needs to be open and logged into master database – this is not ideal if the master database is hosted on a server or an unattended machine. The Act! CRM product comes with Synchronization Services (network and internet) which allow the synchronization to occur without the Act! program being open, the service runs on a host machine/server and listens for the synchronization connection.

6. The Dashboard is available in both products but the Pro version has a limitation of being only able to view the current user activity and opportunity information, filtering for a different user or multiple users is not an option. With the Act! CRM product you can create Dashboard with multi-user, team, territory, region, and/or department views.

7. With the Act! CRM product, network users have an additional feature of being able to include other users and resources in their activity scheduling and checking on their availability. This is a helpful feature if your business has meetings or calls with your customers or prospects that involves more than one of your users of Act!.

8. The Act! CRM product has the Web API platform that allows users to connect Act! to other business productivity tools to increase productivity and streamline aspects of your business. The Web API platform provides users with the ability to develop new applications and is only available to Act! CRM deployments with an Active Subscription. With the Web API you can take advantage of some cool features:

  • Act! Companion – a native mobile app designed for iPhone®, iPad®, and Android™
  • Act! Insight – interactive, graphical dashboards where you can see dynamic, visual snapshots of real-time metrics
  • Ask Act!™ With Amazon Alexa – interact with Act! through simple, verbal requests
  • Act! Connect – simple integrations with hundreds of popular business apps
  • Act! CRM  Contact Link – streamline your workflow between Act! and Outlook®

9. Act! CRM Subscription includes Act! Software Updates and Act! Technical Support for your subscription term. Act! Pro does not include software updates or Act! Technical Support, Pro customers have the ability of purchasing software upgrades with any new release and there is a 30 Day Act! Tech Support Package available for $40 per license on your account.

10. Act! CRM Subscription has Custom Tables as an available Add-on, this allows you to create additional tables in your database to capture information that is unique to your business.  Act! CRM Subscribers can easily add the Custom Tables feature to their Act! CRM Subscription.  This feature is not available in Act! Pro.

Compare Act! CRM Products

Act! Pro Act! CRM Act! Growth Suite
CRM features & benefits
Contact management
Groups & companies
Activity tracking & alerts
Sales process automation
Opportunity tracking
Unlimited customizations
Act! Insight
Act! Companion mobile app
Act! Web Mobile
Act! Connect
Integration with Office, Outlook®, & more
Ask Act!™ with Amazon Alexa
Act! Contact Link
eCommerce Connections
Act! API
Team sharing
Advanced security
Instant online access
w/ Cloud w/ Cloud
Automatic nightly backups & recovery
w/ Cloud w/ Cloud
Secure Cloud hosting
4GB storage w/ Cloud 4GB storage w/ Cloud
Private Cloud hosting
20GB storage w/ private Cloud 20GB storage w/ private Cloud
Custom Tables Manager Add-On

Learn more
Additional Cost Additional Cost
Industry Template Library Add-On

Learn more
Additional Cost Additional Cost

Act! CRM vs. Act! Pro – You can purchase the latest Act! CRM Software products with current discounts and promotions from our Act! CRM eStore at www.actplatinum.com and if you have any additional questions please send us a Contact Us form.

Check Out Act! Insight Dashboard Reporting

Act! Insight Dashboard ReportingAct! Insight Dashboard Reporting - Dynamic Visual Reporting for Act!

Act! Insight Dashboard Reporting – Dynamic Visual Reporting for Act!

Act! Insight is a dashboard reporting feature available to active Act! Growth Suite Cloud, Act! CRM Cloud, Act! Growth Suite Self-Hosted and Act! CRM Self-Hosted subscribers. This feature provides dynamic, visual snapshots of real-time metrics covering sales productivity and performance, sales pipeline health, top performing products, win/loss analysis, and more with interactive, graphical dashboards. And with the 20.1 release Act! Insight dashboards now include rich customization capabilities, so you can pull in data from Act! entities, reporting-based fields, and custom fields, making it easier to measure your business, team and user performance.

Additional capabilities include the ability to apply filters to customize your date range, activity types, products, and users displayed. Drill-through to Act! list views from dashboard widgets to learn more about a particular opportunity or activity. PDF any dashboard chart with just one-click. Tool Tips are available to give you a general description of the insights presented in each dashboard chart.

Act! Insight Dashboard Reporting Elements – Views and Charts
A view is a separate dashboard, a chart is a panel within the view and a view can contain many charts.

The following 3 default dashboard views with associated charts are available with Act! Insight:

(1) Key Insights View – Provides valuable insight to users across a range of performance, financial, and operational metrics. Included Charts:

Business Health – helps illustrate the effectiveness of your company’s sales by comparing actual sales with forecasted sales. Projected sales are included to illustrate expected future sales within the context of past performance.
Revenue vs. Cost – analyzes a company’s products by comparing the revenue they have produced to their associated costs over a given time frame.
Competitive Advantage – provides a count of the number of deals that were closed (won or lost) by the reason the deals were won or lost.
Average Days in Stage – how long opportunities are staying in a particular sales stage to help illustrate how opportunities are making their way through the sales process.

(2) Sales View – Allows you to see dynamic, visual snapshots of sales productivity and performance, sales pipeline health, top performing products, win/loss analysis, and more with out-of-the-box dashboards.  Included Charts:

Sales by Product – allows business owners and managers to analyze how their products are performing by calculating the portion of revenue from Closed-Won opportunities attributable to individual products over a given time frame.
Sales by Rep – allows sales managers to analyze how their sales representatives or account managers are performing based on the value of the opportunities they have closed and won within a given time frame.
Won Vs. Lost Sales – compares the value of opportunities in Closed-Won vs. Closed-Lost status for a given time frame.
Forecasted Sales by Product – provides business owners and managers the ability to analyze the projected value of open opportunities based on their associated products.
Forecasted Sales by Sales Rep – allows sales managers to evaluate opportunities in the sales pipeline for a given user or account manager.

(3) Customer Interactions View – provides details on activities by rep.  Included Chart:

Activities by Sales Rep – provides information about how productive users are being with their time (i.e. how many meetings, calls or to-do’s they schedule and complete).

The Power of Act! Insight is Creating Custom Views – you can create your own views and charts to personalize dashboards to display insights most relevant to your business or role.  Bring your History List to life with graphical displays of your contact interactions including custom history types, for example how many on-site visits did each of your sales reps have last month.  Or if you have a custom contact field with a drop-down list build a chart and it will tell you how many Contacts for each value within the drop-down.  To get started here is the Act! Insight video training library:  http://training-act.com/act/act-lib-prem/?courseId=act_insight&

Built on Act!’s Web API, we expect the capabilities of Act! Insight to keep expanding with each release and replace the original dashboard feature.  If you have an active Growth Suite or CRM Subscription and are unable to access the feature please see this useful knowledgebase article for Act! Insight troubleshooting: http://kb.act.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/38883
If the suggestions in the article do not solve the issue you can contact Act! Technical Support included with your active Act! CRM Subscription.

Not an active Act! CRM Subscriber?  You can purchase your subscription with additional savings at our Act! Software Online Store where we have the latest promotions, discounts, and coupons or call us at 877-228-7528 for a quote.