Digital Experiences Sites
Digital Experiences Sites in Salesforce are web-based platforms that allow businesses to create customized and engaging websites for their customers, partners, and employees. The site can be branded and designed to align with the company’s look and feel and can be accessed on any device.
Salesforce provides a wide range of tools to create and manage these sites, including drag-and-drop builders, templates, and pre-built components, making it easy for non-technical users to create compelling experiences.
With Digital Experiences Sites, businesses can create personalized experiences for each user, providing relevant content, products, and services based on their profile, preferences, and behavior.
The site can be used for a variety of purposes, including customer self-service portals, partner portals, employee onboarding portals, and event registration sites. Furthermore, the sites can be integrated with other Salesforce products, such as Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, and Marketing Cloud, to provide a seamless experience across all touchpoints.
Salesforce ensures the security and compliance of Digital Experiences Sites by providing robust security features, such as SSL encryption, user authentication, and permission-based access controls.
The Experience Site users have the ability to interact with the Salesforce data and content, look for help articles, create cases, and opportunities, see dashboards, and reports, collaborate with other users, and so on; all the community configuration and architecture depends on this kind of activities, that is why is so important to consider the following points:
1. What kind of Community will be created?
Depending on the group of users who will have access to the community and the kind of work that they are going to do, it is important to define the kind of community that will be used, the main communities on Salesforce are:
- 1. Customer community: This kind of community lets customers to find important information about your business, find support, interact with other customers, and have access to FAQs, documentation, and any other resources to enhance customer experience and engagement.
- 2. Employee community: Lets employees find relevant information to achieve their daily tasks as well as provides a channel to share announcements, training materials, knowledge base, internal documentation, and so on.
- 3. Partner community: One of the most important kinds of community, this one is a channel for B2B that allows partners to collaborate and have real-time access to Salesforce data. In this kind of community partners can also find support, and knowledge articles, and interact with employees in a secure environment.
For all kind of Experience Sites above, there is also the possibility to enabled a Guest User profile, this is an special user access which enable public access to certain information and objects as needed.
Now that there is a better understanding of the kinds of communities, it is important to know that each community needs a specific kind of license to work, each license has its own features, and depending on the kind of org some licenses could be available.
The following chart from Salesforce Ben summarizes the major features and differences between the five types of licenses for Experience Cloud:
To get detailed information about Experience Cloud licenses, visit the following resource: Experience Cloud User Licenses
2. Which theme will be used?
Depending on the kind of community selected, there are many out-of-the-box theme available to use, each one has its own features and limitations and it is also important to check the restrictions related to the kind of license being used.
There is also the possibility to create a custom template from scratch, but this has to be analyzed to get the limitations and the estimated time to complete it.
To see detailed information about the templates available for Digital Experience Cloud, see the following: Digital Experience Cloud Templates
3. How will the users login into the Community?
Remember that there are two types of access to Experience Cloud sites: Authenticated and unauthenticated access. Unauthenticated users are considered guest users, in most cases, it is not necessary to buy licenses for this kind of user.
For authenticated users, it can be used the default Salesforce login method as well as the SAML SSO. Depending on the requirements for the Experience Cloud site this step could take a considerable amount of time to be achieved, even more, if a customized solution is required for more than one app.
4. Will it use a custom domain?
To mask the original Experience site URL a custom domain can be added to Salesforce as it is explained in the following article: Add a Domain
To do this, it will be necessary to work with the IT team in charge of the DNS server to add some records and validate the domain ownership.
5. Use a Brand Book
Providing a Brand Book is the best way to ensure the Experience Cloud Site will have the desired appearance according to the company branding.
Some of the most important elements to provide in the Brand Book are:
- 1. Logos and icons.
- 2. Typography.
- 3. Color pallet.
- 4. How to use logos.
- 5. How not use the logos.
See some examples here: Brand Book examples
By providing a Brand Book, the development process will be faster and the result will be more accurate.
What about the mobile version?
If the mobile version will be accessible, it will be necessary to define the Mobile Experience, customization, performance, and functionality as well.
There are many other considerations and scenarios that you will find on your way, the more you find the more you learn and collect your own experience. Keep an eye on our blog to know more about Experience Cloud and other Salesforce products, and remember, keep growing!
Adonay Palacios is a Salesforce Developer with several projects in Sales Cloud and Service Cloud. His specialty is Knowledge or Experience Cloud. He enjoys his free time with his family and watching soccer games.