According to Salesforce, 81 percent of customers prefer self-service in an online portal over calling a service desk. But businesses can often struggle to adapt to these ever-rising customer expectations. Luckily, Salesforce is here to help us with that.
First of all, legacy portal applications weren’t built for customer relationships; they were built for transactions. So they’re not best-equipped to deliver a modern user experience, and have a hard time integrating with our complex business processes. Unfortunately, these outdated portals affect everyone involved:
- Customers get annoyed because they have to call a service desk for tasks they’d usually expect to be able to do online.
- Businesses fail to deliver the online functionality that customers want and expect.
- IT teams are stuck between a rock and a hard place; maintaining legacy portals that are hard to integrate, update and customise, while also trying to keep up with ever-rising business and customer needs.
The solution: Lightning Customer Portal
Salesforce have thrown in a pretty great solution; a Lightning Customer Portal. This nifty product is built on the Salesforce platform and allows Community Cloud customers to extend Salesforce data and process in an engaging, mobile-responsive portal. It allows customers to access their account info, update their profile, order products or access any custom business process or app that’s been built on the Salesforce platform!
In fact, it bands together the needs of your customer, your business and your IT team into one modern solution:
- Customers get personalised access to their information at any time, and can effortlessly complete their desired actions in the portal.
- Businesses are able to give customers the online tools, apps and self-service experience they want.
- IT teams can quickly and easily deliver an engaging, mobile portal that’s seamlessly integrated with Salesforce CRM and other third-party systems.
Here are some of the out-of-the-box components and intuitive design tools you can get with the new portal:
1. Lightning Customer Portal Template
This new, mobile-responsive Salesforce Lightning Template is designed with the customer account portal use case in mind, and comes with a brand new layout and user-friendly drag-and-drop Lightning components. This means you can easily customise and brand the template with a simple click in the Lightning Community Builder! It includes:
- Tile Menu Lightning Component, which gives you a lovely, intuitive navigation experience. It’s also fully-integrated with the new Process Launcher (details below).
- Streamlined Profile, which is simplified to help customers easily update their profile and set preferences.
- Help Center, which uses Salesforce Knowledge to give your customers the answers to any questions they have about a product or service.
2. Process Launcher
This allows you to easily embed your business process into the portal with just a few mouse-clicks. In the Lightning Community Builder, all you need to do is choose any global action, community page, record or external site you’ve configured in Salesforce from the drop-down menu, and instantly integrate that action into the portal.
3. Community 360
This empowers call centre agents to see what knowledge articles, cases and records a contact last viewed in the portal. It’s embedded directly in Lightning Service Console, so agents can make suggestions based on portal activity, and customers get the personalised service they want.
Salesforce tell us that Lightning Customer Portals become available with the Winter ’18 release, and are accessible to Community Cloud customers. Let us know if you want to learn more about the new features!