If you are serious about taking your business to the next level, you cannot overlook Salesforce. The unique combination of both SaaS and PaaS services offering from a single vendor formed a new level of flexibility of websites & apps development, where minimum prior coding is required. Cloud computing is dominating the current market, with Salesforce being featured as one of the largest platforms for business software development.
Before we dive into the advantages of using this technology as your website platform, let’s figure out what we are talking about.
What is Salesforce?
Salesforce is the world’s leader in the cloud services industry that specializes in CRM. It is a SaaS (Software as a Service) company, which hosts the applications on its servers and makes them available to clients over the Internet from any device. The provider offers various products for users and developers to build and distribute custom software via a subscription model.
What is Force.com?
Force.com is a PaaS (Platform as a Service) product, which is owned by Salesforce.com. This platform allows developing and deploying websites easier, faster, smoother to its multi-tenant servers. It also enables you to customize applications, business logic, and user interface with a point and click environment for features like workflows and object creation along with programming languages Apex, Visualforce for custom coding.
SaaS and a highly configurable PaaS with a decent feature set is a truly innovative way of creating high performing sites. So, what are those key advantages that make Salesforce.com a great solution to go with?
Benefits of building branded sites and web apps on Salesforce
Building a site in the cloud ecosystem provides notable savings. Foremost, cloud adoption eliminates the need for acquiring and maintaining your own servers, databases, and operating systems. Instead of spending large amounts of money on hardware installation, dynamic web pages created on the Force.com platform can be easily deployed and maintained.
1. The versatility of options and opportunities
With Salesforce services, you can build anything from a simple single-page brochure website to a dynamic and complex E-commerce store. Corporate sites containing static pages are the easiest ones to create, even with limited HTML knowledge. Pre-built components and free apps available on AppExchange can help you create web pages within an hour. More interactive websites such as product catalogs that catch and push information to your visitors require custom development and knowledge of Salesforce programming language — Apex code. Alternatively, you can create high-performing sites with any popular framework using Salesforce’s Heroku platform.
Tapping into this cloud environment gives you much more than a convenient development platform with drag-and-drop features, seamless deployment, hassle-free hosting, and maintenance. The platform offers an opportunity to create a state-of-the-art business website and merge it with powerful CRM technology. It makes Salesforce a perfect space for data unification and automated business processes. All the information from your site, including email signups, customer data, leads will be automatically synced with a CRM system.
2. Development without Code
Salesforce is an especially advantageous solution for small businesses as the company provides access to high-powered software, low-code development environments, tools that once upon a time were reserved for big business. It allows you to design stellar web apps as well as custom pages by adopting Force.com capabilities such as analytics, programmable logic, workflow, and approvals that otherwise would be highly expensive to develop.
The platform has a handy tool called Schema Builder so you can see your object database table in action. Both coders and non-technical users can visualize and configure the data model easier with the tool. Automating business processes is not a big deal for non-developers likewise. Updating or creating new records, tasks, or submitting approval requests is easy with the point-and-click Process Builder tool.
The built-in Web-to-Lead feature allows you to build HTML form and paste into your site to have all lead information directly into Salesforce. Social media integration with options to embed feeds, share buttons, and other social widgets to your web pages is seamless and effortless.
Add to these tools the ability to embed analytics capabilities directly into your website for getting insights on your customer data. All this is possible to build without any coding experience. Additionally, you can browse through hundreds of ready-made apps and third-party extensions on the AppExchange marketplace to add extra features painlessly.
Still not enough to cover your requirements? You can design robust, visually appealing pages with Visualforce and develop functionality as per your needs through Apex code or Heroku tool.
3. Custom website development
Salesforce provides several options for designing custom sites.
Force.com is the perfect fit for developing web applications and sites that tightly integrates with Salesforce instance. Beyond the aforementioned no-code builders, you are provided with pro-code tools and Apex language for custom solutions. Apex is an object-oriented framework used to create web & email services as well as perform complex validation. With Apex, developers can build transactional logic, insert business logic to Visualforce pages and system events. It’s worth mentioning that Force.com also contains features that simplify and accelerate the custom development process:
- It has its own Database, which is configurable with the built-in customization tools, so there is no need for an external database.
- Visualforce markup language for creating dynamic UI.
- APIs (Application Programming Interface) allowing the interactions between your site and other applications.
Heroku is a code-based PaaS solution that makes the process of building and deploying scalable websites & web apps fast, easy, and effortless. For example, in order to keep an app running at scale on the platform, it only takes knowledge of a few commands on the Heroku CLI and Dashboard. Heroku’s infrastructure and a rich library of add-ons significantly reduce time to market and development budget. Since the platform takes care of hardware and servers, developers can focus on perfecting their code.
Heroku is focused more on customer-facing software development, but creating simple web pages is either possible. Furthermore, you can benefit from a free service model for small projects, and for more complex needs, there are tiered service packages. With Heroku, developers are empowered to build websites and portals, responsive web apps & mobile apps in an open-language they prefer. The platform is so easy to use that it’s a top choice for many development projects. If you require a robust backend with minimum investment, Heroku is exactly what you are looking for.
Salesforce DX is a modern developer experience that provides you with an end-to-end lifecycle for agile development. It’s a code-heavy environment used primarily by professional programmers to build and manage applications & web pages in a more efficient way. DX combines the functionality of Force.com and Heroku Flow along with new improvements to facilitate automated testing and enable source-driven development.
Creating a code without being familiar with Salesforce technology can result in security threats, usability issues, or low search engine optimization. Hiring a certified development team who is well-versed in the technology and has experience creating cloud-based sites is the best way to mitigate the risks and get a quality-built, well-functioning website.
4. High scalability & security you can count on
Scale up or down as per your needs
Fantastic flexibility and numerous options are other great features of SaaS solutions. The platform automatically scales based on the user licenses acquired. Salesforce offers various subscription plans, but they also offer the option of changing settings and functionalities to more accurately meet your needs. Well-created sites support several millions of users performing billions of transactions. So, it’s the perfect fit for custom web development requiring global deployments or large numbers of users.
Data security best practices
The websites built natively on the Salesforce platform ensure robust security infrastructure for privacy controls, data security, and operational reliability on all levels. All customer financial and personal information is protected within their data centers certified to the highest standards. You are free to choose which pages, data you would like to be public as the vendor’s security model gives you centralized control of access and visibility to data for certain users and groups.
5. Mobile-first experience is a necessity
We live in a mobile world.
In 2020, 51.53% of all worldwide online traffic was generated through mobile phones. People use smartphones to do anything from simple internet searches to ordering food or buying big-ticket items. Besides, Google gives priority to websites that are mobile-optimized, ranking them better. That’s why responsive design and mobile landing pages are worthwhile investments.
Salesforce gives you a simple and cost-effective approach to create a web application, online store, or a marketing site with dynamic pages that will seamlessly run on all devices. Lightning Design System & Lightning Experience tools help developers to design a User Interface (UI) that adapts to the device characteristics without heavy coding.
Mobile-friendly sites ensure you don’t deliver broken experiences for customers on a desktop or visiting on mobile. Thus, your website will look and function equally well on tablets, laptops, and smartphones, helping you to reach more clients faster.
The Force.com platform is an effective tool that allows you to exploit key functionalities of the platform by capturing lead data using web-to-lead forms on your site, providing customer support to visitors, and much more. Salesforce has a lot to offer. If you use it properly, it can help you save money, time, as well as human resources. As a qualified development company, we will be glad to help you boost your business productivity by leveraging cloud computing technology capabilities.
The increasing number of companies switch to SaaS due to the versatile pricing policy, rapidly scaling solutions, shorter implementation, and high mobility. As follows from Gartner surveys, the demand for cloud products will only rise in the coming years. Salesforce company is a market leader that will continue to grow as a choice for organizations looking to develop new websites and business applications due to its customer-centric approach. With unique PaaS & SaaS offerings available under one roof, the cloud software provider outperforms traditional programming frameworks in all parameters.
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