Are you looking to start building Salesforce apps? You probably have a comprehensive understanding of how Salesforce works and know that there are many things you can do to make the platform better for everyone. If you want to put yourself ahead of the competition, we’ve listed ways on how you can successfully develop Salesforce AppExchange Apps.
The Salesforce AppExchange is the leading enterprise for over 4,600 cloud-computing apps and other ready-to-install solutions. It is a place for Salesforce Partners to build and publish extensions to Salesforce.
Using Salesforce’s app marketplace, you can drive meaningful business results fast and extend Salesforce from anywhere. According to Salesforce, more than 88% of Fortune 100 companies use at least one Salesforce App, and 71% of Salesforce customers actively use apps from the AppExchange. It continues to grow by year because apps help companies adapt to the customers’ changing needs.
Apps have become a necessity, and customers turn to the Salesforce AppExchange to find the right apps to solve their challenges. So knowing how to build one can empower you to be part of Salesforce’s thriving economy to transform your business exponentially. Salesforce provides low-code app-building solutions, so whether you’re a professional or a beginner, you can wing your first Salesforce app.
Start by becoming an official Salesforce AppExchange partner because this will enable you to build, sell, and grow your business. Once you are an official partner, you can list your app on the leading marketplace for Salesforce apps and access resources to help you enhance your expertise.
There are six milestones you need to do for you to build a successful Salesforce app. Here’s a step-by-step on how to make sure your app development will be on track.
The first step you need to do to become a Salesforce AppExchange Partner is joining the Salesforce Partner Community. It’s the community hub for existing AppExchange Partners and those looking to join the AppExchange Partner Program. You can discover resources and collaboration forums, manage your listing and solutions, attend webinars, and learn best practices.
You can start the AppExchange onboarding process even if your development may be well underway or already complete. Whether your solution is in the early or advanced stages of development, you should be clear on the architecture because you will need to provide that information for the AppExchange team to review.
In the App Documentation, you will need to provide listing, pricing information, and insights into your solution’s go-to-market strategy and technology use cases.
The App Documentation process is made up of five key steps:
1. Start Initial AppExchange Listing Process
2. Submit Listing Price Information
3. Complete and submit the Business Plan
4. Enter Compliance Process
5. Solution Documentation Validation
The Partnership Agreement process looks different for every prospective partner and is influenced by technology use case and business go-to-market strategy. The AppExchange team will work with you individually to complete milestone four. Once you have a signed partnership agreement with AppExchange, you are a formal ISV partner.
Once your App Documentation and Compliance review have been approved, you are ready to submit your app for Security Review. The Security Review ensures that the solution you publish on the AppExchange meets Salesforce’s strict security requirements and provides the highest level of protection to customer data. This usually takes about four to six weeks from when the AppExchange team officially accepts your solution.
Once your solution passes the Security Review, you can now list your app on the AppExchange. It is essential to take the steps necessary to ensure your AppExchange listing is optimized for design and content to drive the highest level of engagement and conversion.
Like all projects, there are best practices that you can note when you are building a Salesforce app to make sure you will create something that meets what is needed.
Before ideating, identify the purpose of your app and what challenges you are trying to solve. Having a clear sense of your Salesforce app can drive you in the right direction of your entire app development process. Make sure it is unique from what others are already offering.
Now that you know the problem you want to focus on, the next thing you have to do is strategize on how you can solve it. Research other Salesforce apps close to what you want to do and see how they address the same problems as yours. Analyze your market needs and what Salesforce users would like to see in your app. After that, you need to design the app flow, build wireframes, and get feedback.
If you’re a beginner, Salesforce provides low-code development tools that can help you build a solid app quickly. The best example would be the Salesforce Platform Mobile, enabling you to create apps for employees or customers rapidly. It has a low-code mobile builder and a rich set of mobile services with drag and drop features.
Once you’ve found the right tools to build your Salesforce app, you can now start building it. Focus on the ease of use and user experience as you create your app because getting processes correctly and accurately is a vital step.
Before you launch your Salesforce app, you need to spend time doing different rounds of testing. Do a small group testing if you can and ask for feedback about functionality and bugs.
Businesses would want to know which app is the best before investing money. Having a free or trial version increases your chances of convincing prospects to go for the paid version. Ask for feedback also for trial users, as this will help you improve your app further.
Constantly improve your app performance, use customer feedback to fuel your development upgrades, and distribute the new version to your users.
The Salesforce Platform enables you to work smarter and not harder by equipping you with modern technology that builds apps faster. You’ll be able to access point-and-click tools for easy app configuration and customization to get your app running as quickly as possible.
For more complex customizations, Salesforce also provides programmatic tools for app development:
Chatbots can help increase the response rate of any business. It can help them answer frequently asked questions of their customers 24/7, which allows their service representatives to focus on the more advanced inquiries.
Make it easier for Salesforce users to sign contracts online securely and conveniently.
Every business needs their accounting processes, so they need Accounting apps that can connect seamlessly with their unified business data in Salesforce.
Today’s market focuses more on brand experience, and you can create better and faster ways for businesses to welcome their new customers.
Empower businesses to generate and automate rich format documents by using the data found in their Salesforce platform to create PDF or HTML documents. This app gives them access to multiple document templates, creates instant quotations, automates complex reports or schedules, and more.
Make organizing an event much faster with access to a set of tools that can help businesses plan, organize, and manage multiple events. It can automate workflows related to every step of their event organizations, such as attendee registration, schedule, budget and revenue management, and post-event needs.
Businesses that sell physical products will need to have their inventory updated to keep track of everything and meet the demands of their customers. This type of app enables them to track different inventory levels and recommend the optimal reorder quantities.
Help business plan and monitor projects from planning up to completion. This will help them ensure that every critical task is accomplished on time, optimizing workload for their team, and sharing essential documents so that critical deadlines are always met.
Through this type of app, companies can send messages faster to all their customers, employees, business partners, and leads worldwide via single or bulk SMS/MMS. You can also provide them access to features such as multiple SMS templates, message customization, link building, and more.
Empower your Salesforce users to create accessible web forms and surveys with user-friendly form builders. Give them control over the level of customization that suits their needs and quickly creates forms such as contact forms, registration forms, application forms, payment forms, and so much more.
You will need to purchase the Salesforce Platform, which is offered in three different editions: The Platform Starter Edition costs $25 per user, and per month, Platform Plus Edition costs $100 per user and per month, and the Platform Unlimited Edition requires you to contact the Salesforce team directly.
The length of the development period will always depend on the complexity of the Salesforce app that you will be creating. On average, it can take 4 to 8 months before launching a Salesforce app in the Salesforce AppExchange.
Start building apps today with the Salesforce Platform. With a few clicks, you can start making custom cloud apps now. Once you successfully placed your Salesforce app in AppExchange, you can also have your app listed as the featured app and category app leader at CRM Consulting. Send us a message at firstname.lastname@example.org to find out more.