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Integrating Salesforce Communities and Lightning Web Components into Your Organization

The application of both the Salesforce Community Cloud and the Lightning Web Components enables businesses to significantly improve efficiencies and organization within the context of their unique operational frameworks. A particular example highlighted in this article is the Inspira Coffee Communities, a project designed specifically for the Inspira Royalty Coffee company. This company acts as an intermediary between coffee buyers and producers, and specializes in purchasing coffee productions from Colombian farmers and then finding foreign buyers for export. Within the context of this business, two Salesforce Communities were designed and implemented to serve as a bridge between the coffee producers and the coffee buyers interacting with Inspira. With the integration of these services, Inspira gained a holistic overview of its business and was able to better connect its producers with the specific needs and requests of its buyers.

As we continue through this article, we will learn about the development of this project, gain an overview of the custom solutions created using Lightning Web Components, and see how the community users interact and submit live data through these Salesforce applications.

Quick Overview of Salesforce Communities

Salesforce Community Cloud is an online social platform designed to connect and facilitate communication amongst an organization’s employees, partners, and customers. The platform provides all users with the necessary data and information to effectively collaborate and stay informed on new updates and current projects.

If you would like to learn more about Salesforce Communities and how these applications can help improve efficiencies within the context of your business, click here.

Quick Overview of Lightning Web Components

As the new Salesforce standard, Lightning Web Components create custom frameworks and elements that can extend beyond the basic functionality of Salesforce to fit the specific needs of particular businesses. The development using LWC works in a modular way, meaning that big, complex solutions can be built by combining smaller, less complex components. Like building blocks, these elements syngergize and come together to create a bigger structure tailored to the exact needs and requirements defined in the solution.

If you would like to learn more about how LWC helps efficiently develop Salesforce solutions, click here.

Architecture Overview

As previously highlighted, the Inspira Royalty Coffee Company implemented two Salesforce Communities to better connect and interact with both the coffee producers and the buyers in the market. The diagram below provides a strong overview of the relationships and interactions developed within Inspira’s Salesforce solutions.

The concept, simple yet powerful, allows users within the two communities to seamlessly integrate data and information directly to the Salesforce org of Inspira. That information is then managed by Inspira staff and enables the organization to make more informed decisions and stay connected with both suppliers and buyers in real-time. Below we will dive into each community directly and see how Inspira benefits from these Salesforce solutions.

Coffee Producer Community

The Coffee Producer Community enables producers to directly register and review their coffee productions within the portal, giving them ease of access and consolidating information all onto one platform. Producers can easily enter information and details pertaining to the variety, quality, and any other characteristics of the new coffee produced. Once integrated, the products will then be shown in the buyer’s community for review and availability.

Coffee Buyer Community

The Coffee Buyer Community is a portal intended to display all of Inspira’s coffee products to its customers. One of the most important pages, the product catalog, enables users to filter and easily select desired products based on specific keywords and characteristics demanded. Once the product of interest is identified, customers can send a ‘Product Requrest’ to Inspira and finally proceed with the purchasing process driven by the staff of the company.

Pressing the ‘Details’ button will display a window showing the unique information and characteristics of each product.

Another important part of this community is the ‘Interests List’ page, where customers can review products and change the amount desired. Once the user is content with the product demanded, they can click the ‘Submit Request’ button on the right side to begin the purchasing process.

The dialog box pictured above enables customers to send further information related to their purchase requests. Customers can request more detail on specific orders, inquire about new products, and add additional comments to their transaction. Once content with the order, the customer will click the ‘Send Request’ button to conclude the purchase.

As we can see, both the Coffee Producer and Cofee Buyer Communities provide ease and accessibility for Inspira’s main business partners. By integrating these Salesforce communities into its operational framework, Inspira can oversee and conduct its business processes all under one roof.

Lightning Web Components in Communities

As highlighted earlier in this article, Lightning Web Components is the new Salesforce standard that allows developers to extend the basic functionalities of the application and integrate custom solutions to satisfy specific business needs. In the context of Inspira Royalty, the company needed to develop a custom product catalog and interest list, both of which are not provided by Salesforce itself. By using LWC, Inspira opted to create these platforms using components rather than complex codes, thus making the development process far more simplified and efficient.

We can see that the product catalog is entirely built using these components. The first component, highlighted below in yellow, is the ‘filter element’. The filter element applies product specifications and then searches the records in the database that correspond to the specified demands of the user.

The second component, highlighted above in green, is the ‘product card’ and is designed to display the name, price, and image of the each product. This component is developed continuously until all products are correctly loaded and available to the user.

Finally, the last component displayed above is a window projecting the specific details of each product. This component is shown when the user clicks on ‘Details’ to gain further information on the product selected.

These three distinct components are constructed and merged to create one single, complex solution that provides a one-stop shop for all of Inspira’s business needs. The synergies amongst these different components are made possible thanks to communication amongst the components. This communication is established through something known as ‘events’.

In the LWC architecture, an event is very similar to a message. The information inside the message can be emitted by one component and then sent to another. This is what is happening between these three components. Just like the metal marbles pictured above, each component is interacting and passing along information when necessary. As one component sends an action, so does another react to it.

In this case, the first component, the ‘filter controls,’ sends the information collected to the second component called ‘product card’ to display the information of every product that meets the specified characteristics demanded by the user. When the ‘Details’ button of this second component is pressed, an event is sent to the third component, the ‘modal window’, to be opened and to provide the remaining details and information requested by the user. Finally, once the ‘Close’ button of the window is clicked, a new event is sent to close the modal window and enable the user to continue navigating the catalog.

Conclusion

This article reviews how, with the power of Salesforce Communities and LWC customizations, it is possible to create a centralized environment that helps bridge the gap between the unique necessities of the customers and producers.

Salesforce has become one of the biggest platforms to help grow your business, offering a set of the most robust and complete technologies that support all business processes. However, there are times where a business need is not specifically included within a Salesforce application, and thus LWC development may be necessary. This is why LWC is a powerful tool that should be in the belt of every developer. It extends Salesforce functionality to satisfy whatever unique requirement is needed within the context of your specific business. No matter how complex the project, the possibilities are endless and there is always a component that can do the job.

Now it is your turn to take advantage of all the functionality that Salesforce can offer you! Give us a call, and we’ll start exploring the ways in which we can help increase your sales and production capacity just as the Inspira Company did. Let us help you, and leave your organization in the trusted hands of Salesforce professionals at Tengo.

Post Author: Emmanuel Martinez

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