Branded communities are a powerful way to increase engagement with employees, partners and customers. And Salesforce Community Cloud is one of the best platforms in the business.
But can you customize it for your business? Absolutely.
Real-World Example: The Wish List
What are you looking for? Recently one of our clients felt they had outgrown their existing community. While it was useful for general CRM purposes, they wanted more customizability for:
- User experience
Since their users had to deal with multiple systems, our client wanted to make their Salesforce Community a central application for their partners. Plus, their partners weren’t exactly sitting in the office using desktop computers all day. They’re out in the field – and needed tools that work seamlessly in the field, too.
Our job? The list was pretty clear:
- Create a one-stop shop for partners to use for sales activities, product information, news and supporting applications.
- Deliver a branded look and feel.
- Implement responsive design for partners out in the field, using devices of all sizes (and sometimes unpredictable data speeds).
- Support changing growth and security.
The Results, Tools & Tech
That’s exactly what we delivered. To ensure the best results for our clients, our team developed a custom community solution with responsive design, more customization and more control.
Here’s a closer look at the tools and tech:
- Bootstrap for Responsive Design: We leveraged a mobile-first, front-end framework called Bootstrap for proven consistency and predictable results across a full spectrum of browser and device combinations. We also built out the site design within a Visualforce template. Using a template allowed us to support existing Visualforce pages in both standard UI and our custom community design. Plus, it created the proper separation between design and body content to maintain the design cleanly in one place.
- New Content Management System (CMS): We developed the right CMS to organize the site from the ground up, support dynamically maintained menus and SEO-friendly pages, and support standards within Salesforce – such as list views, page layouts and more.
We leveraged Visualforce dynamic components at the core for our CMS pages. From an administration perspective, the user dynamically creates pages in the CMS as records in Salesforce. The admin then selects a pre-built responsive layout for the page body and dynamically places Visualforce components in the layout.
- Security & Publishing Systems: We created a smarter structure for a site that’s constantly growing and changing, secured with groups to give our client complete control over when and where information appears on the site – and who can see it.
By using groups, we secured access not only to pages, but to the individual components, menu items and content within them. Groups allow for this granularity to be achieved and easily maintained.
- Custom CKEditor Integrated with Salesforce: And we developed a custom implementation of CKEditor, allowing the client to author and integrate Salesforce files into their web content – including images, videos and documents.
CKEditor is the content editor you have already used in Salesforce if you’ve ever used a rich text area custom field within a page layout. But Salesforce uses a very stripped down version of the editor that limits the actual html markup tags you can use and has no way to control and track what assets are included in your content. We customized the editor to track usage of all images, videos and documents back to their Salesforce Files.
That means you can look at a file in Salesforce and know exactly where it is in use in the CMS. Our customizations also allow links to other CMS pages to dynamically resolve at runtime. So as you change your site structure and page urls, the links in your content never break.
Put it all together, and it creates a whole world of new possibilities for today’s devices. Remember, Salesforce Community Cloud has a lot to offer. But if you’re looking for ways to tailor it specifically to your organization, just ask. We’d love to help.
– See more at: https://www.sundoginteractive.com/blog/how-to-customize-salesforce-communities#sthash.MvJ0ELye.dpuf