Salesforce integration: common options,
types, steps & considerations

Salesforce integration: common options, types, steps & considerations

Salesforce integration involves connecting Salesforce with other software through API integrations, middleware, or pre-built connectors. We can create a seamless integration between Salesforce and other systems to improve companies’ efficiency, data accuracy, and collaboration across teams.

Why Itransition

10+ years as a Salesforce services provider

In-house Salesforce Center of Excellence

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98 Salesforce certifications

Expertise in Sales Cloud, Service Cloud, Marketing Cloud, CPQ, and other Salesforce solutions

Apps and systems commonly integrated with Salesforce

Highly integrable by design, Salesforce can connect with cloud-based or on-premises business software from various departments and third-party applications for seamless data synchronization.


By integrating Salesforce with accounting software, companies can sync actual financial data into CRM and help sales teams create more detailed customer profiles. The integration also contributes to more accurate handling of invoices and business transactions and simplifies budget planning and sales forecasting. 

Common integration options:


Salesforce and ERP integration is essential for companies wanting to synergize their customer-facing divisions and the back office. With order and shipment statuses and real-time data about inventory availability in CRM, sales representatives can easily keep existing clients up-to-date and come up with more relevant offers for potential customers. At the same time, data uploaded into the ERP system can help production departments tap into demand and plan out the manufacturing process and volume more wisely.  

Common integration options:

Marketing automation tools

The connection between CRM and marketing automation tools can simplify the collaboration between the sales and marketing departments through automated data exchange. The availability of marketing data enables sales managers to better track new leads and improve their product pricing, customer outreach, lead nurturing, and prospect engagement strategies.

Common integration options:

Ecommerce platforms

Ecommerce integration with Salesforce can provide retailers with a deeper view into customer-facing operations. By analyzing customer relationships and ecommerce data together, companies can pinpoint opportunities for improvement in their upselling and cross-selling strategies, marketing campaigns, and customer service capabilities and create more personalized and satisfactory experiences. 

Common integration options:

Computer telephony

By connecting call center software with their Salesforce CRM, companies can increase the speed and quality of the sales department’s work. This integration brings phone system features into Salesforce, allowing sales agents to quickly recognize and properly route incoming calls, personalize conversations on the fly, and then record them for further analysis and use.

Common integration options:

Social media

Through this integration, sales agents can get seamless access to customers’ social media activity and get valuable insights into their interests and needs, as well as general trends. Based on this information, sales departments can tweak their customer engagement strategies to meet the target audience’s expectations and preferences.

Common integration options:

Collaboration tools

Storing customer-related documents in siloed CRM and collaboration software can result in data duplication and complicate sales agents’ work. Through Salesforce-collaboration tools integration, companies can create a single source of truth with functionality familiar to sales agents where they can conveniently work, collaborate, and share documents. For example, Itransition has significantly streamlined our sales teams’ workflows by turning SharePoint into a document library for Salesforce.

Common integration options:

Email & calendar

By synchronizing contacts, emails, tasks, and calendars between Salesforce CRM and work mail and calendar apps, companies can simplify workday planning and customer communication for their sales agents, increasing their coordination and productivity.

Common integration options:

Project & IT service management software

The integration between Salesforce and IT support solutions can streamline ticket creation and collaboration between sales and service agents and tech teams, ensuring more transparent and efficient resolution of customer issues.

Common integration options:

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Salesforce integration options

By approach

Business logic integration

Through this integration, companies can unify business logic across Salesforce and other business software to create smooth and automated business processes. Business logic integration requires the use of Apex Web Services for Inbound and Apex Callouts for Outbound.

User interface integration

This integration enables users to access different business applications through a single unified Salesforce platform. Companies rely on this type of integration to harmonize user experiences for employees, allowing them to perform disparate tasks in the same user interface. 

Data integration

This integration allows companies to synchronize data between Salesforce and two or more data sources, making sure all applications involved have real-time information. SOAP or REST APIs are commonly used to establish Salesforce data integration.

By method of implementation

App-based integration

This type includes Salesforce integrations that are established with dedicated ready-to-install applications synchronizing data between two systems. The most popular choices are proprietary MuleSoft Composer and third-party platforms like Zapier, Jitterbit, and Workato, which provide templates for point-and-click integrations with multiple applications to choose from. While prized for business user-friendliness, since the integrations can be set up by Salesforce admins or employees themselves, these platforms don’t allow for complex integrations.   

Code-based integration

These integrations are developed from scratch, commonly using Apex, Salesforce’s proprietary programming language with Java-like syntax. Code-based integrations require comparably more effort and technical knowledge, but they are the only way to realize more complex and challenging integration use cases.

By pattern

Remote call-in

The data is stored in Salesforce, while an external system can manipulate it in different ways, retrieving, creating, updating, or deleting it, by sending requests through Salesforce API. This integration pattern is useful for automatic information retrieval or record update (for example, order statuses) and requires careful data mapping and strong security to prevent unauthorized data manipulations. 

Request & reply

Salesforce requests an external system to do a certain action and, once it’s complete, updates information based on the action’s response. For example, when integrated with an external payment system, Salesforce sends it a payment processing request, receives back the payment confirmation number, date, and time, and updates the payment status. 

Fire & forget

Similar to the request and reply pattern, Salesforce sends a request to an external system but, once it’s accepted, doesn’t wait for its successful completion. This pattern is used when Salesforce calls on an email server to send notifications about the order shipment and provides it with the customer’s email address and other details but doesn’t check on the sent email.  

Batch data synchronization

Salesforce and an external data source exchange updates with each other in big batches and on an established schedule. Thus, Salesforce CRM and a company’s on-premise ERP can exchange customer and order data, keeping each other up-to-date.

UI update based on data changes

The Salesforce user interface is updated in real-time to accommodate the modifications in Salesforce data. This pattern is useful when a value in an external system changes and the UI is updated instantaneously, without a manual refresh.

Data virtualization

Users can access real-time information from multiple data sources through Salesforce on demand, but the data doesn’t remain there permanently. This integration pattern helps prevent data duplication and facilitates fast decisions based on heterogeneous data.

Salesforce integration roadmap

Here’s how Itransition’s experts approach and carry out a typical integration project to seamlessly connect Salesforce with any kind of business or third-party software. 


Business analysis

We begin with a comprehensive analysis of your business needs and objectives as well as the existing IT infrastructure and determine your Salesforce integration requirements.



Next, we choose the integration approach, selecting the business apps to integrate with, patterns, and methods of implementation. We also decide on the project’s responsibilities, timeline, and integration tools needed.



If we’ve decided upon a custom Salesforce integration solution, our team designs and develops a custom Salesforce connector app or API in line with your needs.



We set up the integration process between Salesforce and the target business software using an off-the-shelf or custom-built solution. If necessary, we can customize the integration to make sure it works as intended.



We perform a range of QA activities to validate the integration and locate any errors and security vulnerabilities and make sure it sustains the expected data exchange load.



Having validated the established integration, we launch it to the production environment for business users to access.


User training & support

We offer hands-on training sessions for employees and Salesforce admins to show them Salesforce integration’s capabilities and can provide long-term maintenance services upon request.

Benefits of Salesforce integration

Overall, Salesforce integration with other software can help get better returns on CRM investment. Here are its key benefits:

Processes automation

Integrating Salesforce with other apps can streamline data management tasks and eliminate the need for manual data entry.

Improved data accuracy

Salesforce integration can eliminate data duplicates, inconsistencies, and human errors, thus improving data accuracy and consistency across systems.

Personalized customer experiences

Integrated with other data sources, Salesforce can deliver a 360-degree view of customer data and help companies deliver more personalized services and customer experiences.

Better decisions

Seamless data flow between Salesforce and other systems can provide a comprehensive and real-time view of business data, enabling better decision-making through improved data accuracy, timeliness, and accessibility.

Increased employee productivity

By integrating Salesforce with different business systems, companies can eliminate manual data entry and create a single source of truth for all business data, helping sales and support agents work more efficiently.

Streamlined collaboration

Salesforce integration with other business apps simplifies data sharing and improves cross-team and cross-department communication and collaboration.

Salesforce integration considerations

Here are four aspects that organizations should take into account when integrating Salesforce with other systems:

Salesforce integration considerations

Before the integration, map the data properly to ensure it’s accurately and consistently transferred between systems. This will help you maintain data integrity and maximize the benefits of Salesforce integration.

Salesforce can be integrated with systems containing sensitive information, so it’s critical to ensure that the data is protected in transit and at rest with proper security measures, such as encryption and access controls.

By designing proper integration architecture, you ensure that data is shared efficiently and securely between Salesforce and other systems while minimizing the risk of errors or data loss.

Salesforce integrations should be monitored and maintained to meet the organization’s evolving needs. You should also be ready to resolve any arising issues.

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Common Salesforce integration challenges

While Salesforce integration can provide many benefits, there are also some common challenges that organizations should overcome themselves or with the help of Salesforce integration consulting to see positive results.



Data quality issues


Since data from Salesforce and different systems isn’t always consistent and of the same quality, its synchronization can fail to bring any value to users.



Before the integration, companies can establish data governance policies and use data quality tools to clean and standardize data. Post-integration, they can create rules and validations to enforce data consistency in Salesforce.

Data rate limits


Salesforce limits the amount of data that can be transferred in and out of the system within a certain period for the sake of the system’s stability and performance. These restrictions can pose a challenge for companies dealing with large volumes of data or performing frequent transfers.



One way to overcome this problem is to optimize data transfer by reducing the amount of data, compressing it, or using incremental updates instead of full data transfers. Another option is to apply third-party integration tools or middleware to help manage data transfer and ensure compliance with Salesforce's limits. Additionally, an experienced integration partner can help companies optimize data transfer in line with Salesforce's restrictions.

Prioritizing real-time integration


Companies can quickly opt for a real-time Salesforce integration as the best solution for their needs but fail to realize it is way more complex to set up and manage.



Real-time integrations are not necessary for every business scenario. To make the right decision, companies should carefully evaluate the integration needs and requirements, including the volume of data transferred, the frequency of data updates, and the necessity of data accuracy and timeliness. Only then they can make an informed decision for or against real-time Salesforce integration. 

Different tech stacks


If the technology stacks of Salesforce and integrated apps are not compatible, this can lead to data mapping, code migration, or testing difficulties, as well as increase the integration project’s timeline and cost.



The best solution is to use middleware or integration platforms that support different technology stacks and provide a layer of abstraction between the integrated systems. Companies are also advised to hire an integration provider to help navigate the challenges of different technology stacks throughout the integration project, like correct data mapping or satisfactory data quality.

FAQs about Salesforce integration

Can Salesforce integrate with legacy systems?

Yes, it can. To achieve seamless data exchange between Salesforce and legacy systems, companies typically have to rely on middleware solutions or develop custom integrations using APIs and web services.

How can I check if the integration I need has already been developed?

There are thousands of integrations and connectors with external systems available on AppExchange, the official Salesforce marketplace. If you can’t find what you are looking for, then you should consider building a custom integration solution for your specific needs.

How long does it take to integrate Salesforce?

The Salesforce integration timeline depends on the complexity of the integration and the systems involved. A simple integration can be completed within a few weeks, while a more complex integration can take several months. To learn precise time estimates for your Salesforce integration project, reach out to our experts.

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