Salesforce has been helping organizations in handling their customer databases for over two decades. It provides users with the right mix of process automation and personalization to tailor their services based on the specific requirements of the clients.
However, if you are willing to extend the functionalities of the CRM giant and merge it with another suitable platform, you can do so with the help of Salesforce integration.
What Is Salesforce Integration?
Salesforce integration is the process of merging the data and functionality of Salesforce with another application to provide users with a single unified experience. It allows you to provide your team with an ideal mix of features pertaining to both platforms.
Salesforce users often face the issue of reconciling data between two platforms and switching between them while performing specific activities. Salesforce integration relieves them from this problem and provides them with a centralized platform to work on.
For example, Salesforce PayPal integration would allow you to use your Salesforce org as a payment gateway. Similarly, Salesforce Twilio integration would streamline your communication processes with your clients.
Salesforce Integration Processes
There are two major approaches to carry out the process of Salesforce integration – App-based and code-based.
App-based Salesforce Integration
As the name suggests, app-based Salesforce integration is carried out using dedicated applications. These apps allow users to integrate the data between two apps and develop a unified platform with a few simple clicks.
In order to integrate your Salesforce CRM with suitable applications, you would need a robust and smooth integration platform that facilitates the seamless transfer of data between the two applications.
Some popular third-party apps that facilitate effective Salesforce integration include Zapier and Jitterbit among others.
Code-based Salesforce Integration
Apart from using dedicated applications, Salesforce integration can also be carried out with the help of a programming language. The use of Apex is the most common example of code-based Salesforce integration. It is a proprietary programming language having a syntax that is similar to Java.
Some of the core benefits of carrying out code-based Salesforce integration using Apex include:
- Built-in support for Salesforce Lightning Platform
- Simple to use and easy to understand language
- Suited for different API versions
- The programming language can be hosted on the Lightning Platform and entirely controlled by the same
Different Ways To Integrate Salesforce
Salesforce integration can be carried out for different layers within your CRM platforms, such as data, user interface, and business logic.
Business Logic Integration
Business logic integration involves using Apex Web Services for Inbound and Apex Callouts for Outbound for handling business logic across different applications and accomplishing end-to-end business processes.
User Interface Integration
This integration revolves around permitting users to enter different applications from a single unified platform. The approach here is similar to that of Facebook, where multiple application vendors can post content on a single platform.
With data integration, you can use REST or SOAP APIs for allowing a centralized application in your organization to act as the key source of a specific business object. Such integration does not require any coding and cannot be used for implementing any custom logic.
Salesforce Integration Checklist
Before you go ahead with Salesforce integration, make sure you adhere to this checklist to ensure a smooth and effective integration process:
The most important aspect of Salesforce integration is developing an extensive implementation plan. Just like any other project, the integration process requires you to create a project timeline and clearly define the objectives you are willing to achieve.
Make sure you list down all the technical requirements for the integration along with the key goals to be achieved. Have a clear mission and vision before you start with the implementation. Make sure you identify the owner and data involved in the integrated application to be created. Also, make sure you have a complete understanding of integration standards and practices while charting out the plan.
Understanding Both The Applications
It is important for a developer to understand both the applications that they are willing to integrate, one of them being a Salesforce app. In order to be well-versed with the apps, it is advisable to spend more time preparing the data required for integration. This would help the developer in understanding the dependency of both the applications with each other.
It is also important to ensure that both applications have the same data architecture to undertake smooth and seamless integration. Lastly, it is important to make sure that APIs are enabled on both the applications and focus on API limits before going ahead with the integration process.
Understanding The Processes Involved
Along with the applications to be integrated, it is important to be well-versed with the processes you need to carry out using the integrated platform. This will help you provide your team with a platform that is tailor-made according to their needs and preferences.
In order to understand the processes involved, make sure that you identify the endpoints in both applications. Check the provision for effective connection to carry out custom integration and third-party integration tool. For each of the applications involved, determine the performance of data delivery to ensure smooth and hassle-free transfer of data.
Moreover, to make prevent unauthorized access of data and unwanted data breaches, it is advisable to use IP Whitelisting. This would limit the users allowed to access your data and allow only trusted users to make changes to your database.
Important Considerations Before Salesforce Integration
Reviewing API limits for both the applications
- Identifying the integration type (real-time or batch integration)
- Monitoring authentication of the system
- Creating custom API to call third-party APIs for necessary additional data
- Understanding configuration options available
- Being aware of the information not to be transferred between the two platforms
The Final Word
Salesforce integration allows developers to enhance the functionality of Salesforce and help users save their time and efforts in using tools pertaining to different platforms. Whenever you plan to go ahead with Salesforce integration, it is always advisable to take the help of integration experts to obtain the best results.