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Here to Help: Essentials Guide to Formstack’s Salesforce Integration

“Here to Help” is a support column written especially for Formstack’s awesome, loyal customers.

Combining an easy-to-use form builder like Formstack with a robust customer relationship manager (CRM) like Salesforce allows you to create a powerful data management machine. But constructing this machine can be more than a little complicated.

Working with Salesforce requires knowledge of object mapping, email rules, upsert functionality, and more. To demystify the Formstack Salesforce integration, I’ve broken down all the essential information for you.

Ready to dive in? Here’s what you need to know to seamlessly connect Formstack and Salesforce:

Why Formstack?

You might be wondering why you need Formstack when Salesforce offers options for creating Web-to-Lead, Web-to-Case, or Web-to-Anything forms. The reasons are simple. Replacing your Salesforce forms with Formstack forms gives you more control over your forms, prevents spam, and uses client-side validation. It also gives you access to helpful Formstack functionality, such as Routing Logic, customized messages, and multiple redirect URLs.

Salesforce Integration Basic Setup

To integrate a Formstack form with Salesforce, follow these quick steps:

1. Once in the chosen form, go to Settings > Integration Hub > Customer Relationship Management, and click the “Add” button below Salesforce.

2. This will create a Salesforce tab under the Integration Hub tab, and you will immediately be directed there to copy your Salesforce credentials from another integrated form or manually enter your username, password, and security token.

Introduction to Objects

Once your credentials have been added, a dropdown list of objects from your Salesforce account will populate.

Objects represent Salesforce database tables that contain your organization’s information. Objects already created for you by Salesforce are called standard objects while objects you create are called custom objects. Once an object exists or has been created in Salesforce, it can be added to the Formstack Salesforce integration settings for mapping from the form. You can add multiple objects to your integration settings and remove them at any time.

Mapping Objects

When you choose an object from the dropdown list in the Formstack Salesforce integration settings, the fields for that object will appear, and you can map the fields on your form to the fields in Salesforce.

There are four options available for mapping form fields to Salesforce objects: Field, Value, Lookup, and Link.

1. Field. This option is used strictly for mapping fields from the Formstack form to the objects in Salesforce. Once “Field” has been selected, the dropdown list on the right will show all fields on the form that can be linked to the object. Currently, there is no option to map multiple form fields to a single object in Salesforce.

2. Value. This option is used to link a Salesforce object to a specific value, such as an account ID. Once “Value” has been selected, you can enter a specific object value in the available box. The value must exist within Salesforce and be an exact match to the Salesforce value, so it’s best to copy and paste to avoid any unintentional typos that will result in errors. When the Formstack form is submitted, the object will be linked to the value entered.

3. Lookup. Given a parameter to look for and a mapped field to send data to, this option will attempt to find an already-existing Salesforce object to associate a relationship field (Owner ID, for example) into. The first dropdown list that appears contains the types of Salesforce objects that can be looked up along with the specific object field to attempt the look up. The secondary dropdown list contains the form fields that the lookup value data can be mapped into.

4. Link. This option is strictly for connecting one upserted/created object to another upserted/created object. Both objects must be modified or created when the integration runs (on submission) in order for Link to be an option; otherwise, you will need to use the Lookup option. Additionally, links can only be made in one direction, and you can’t use triangle links (e.g., links from lead to campaign to account and back to lead).

Updating (Upserting) Records

If you integrate your Formstack form with Salesforce, you can update existing records via Saleforce’s upsert feature. This feature allows you to avoid unwanted duplicates when data is submitted to Salesforce from a Formstack form. For example, if you include an Email Address field on your form and check the “Upsert” option in the Salesforce integration settings, any record already linked to that email address will be updated. If you don’t check upsert, a new record will be created upon each submission.

Note: Not all fields use the upsert feature in the Formstack integration settings. This option is determined by Salesforce, and there is currently no way to force an object to upsert through the Formstack app.

Email Options

The Formstack Salesforce integration includes a series of email options that can be enabled depending on how you want to automate your organization’s processes for object generation and support.

Here is what the various options provide:

Additional Information

Want to learn more about connecting your forms to Salesforce? Click below to check out our quick-click glossary on all things Formstack + Salesforce.