By nearly any metric, Salesforce is one of the top providers of cloud customer relationship management (CRM) software. IT research and advisory firm IDC has named the Salesforce platform the #1 CRM provider for six years in a row and counting. Forbes magazine estimates that Salesforce now has 20 percent of the global CRM market share, more than twice as much as its nearest competitor. Salesforce is a popular CRM platform for a variety of reasons.

A Salesforce “organization” (called org for short) is an identifier that corresponds to a customer’s particular version of the Salesforce software and its associated data. There may be multiple Salesforce orgs within a single enterprise, with specific orgs designated for purposes such as production, development, testing, and training.

(Curious about how Salesforce stores data within its software platform? Check out Xplenty’s article on the Salesforce database for all the juicy technical details.)

While Salesforce has many benefits in itself, much of the platform’s usefulness comes from being able to share Salesforce data with the people and software who need it. Very often, that includes sharing data between two different Salesforce organizations.

For more information on our native Salesforce connector, visit our Integration page.

In this article, we’ll discuss everything you need to know about Salesforce to Salesforce integration. After discussing why you might want to perform Salesforce to Salesforce integration, we’ll go over all the options and best practices for sharing data.

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Table of Contents:

  1. Why Share Data from Salesforce to Salesforce?
  2. 4 Steps to Transfer Data in the Salesforce Platform 
  3. 3 Best Practices for Salesforce to Salesforce Integration
  4. Salesforce to Salesforce with Xplenty
  5. Conclusion

Why Share Data from Salesforce to Salesforce?

There are a variety of reasons why Salesforce customers use Salesforce as either a data source or destination.

In many cases, Salesforce users pull data from the platform and transfer it to an external data warehouse such as Amazon Redshift. This offers you more freedom and control over your own data. Once the data is inside this external data warehouse, your options are virtually unlimited: you can perform analytics using a business intelligence tool like Tableau, or combine your Salesforce data with other enterprise data sources.

Another common reason to use Salesforce as a data source is to back up the data stored within your Salesforce platform. There are multiple Salesforce data integration tools available, both from Salesforce and from third parties. Salesforce itself offers tools such as the Data Loader and Salesforce APIs, but you can also use third-party data integration software such as Xplenty.

Conversely, it’s also very common to use Salesforce as a destination for your enterprise data. Whenever your business generates relevant CRM data outside the Salesforce platform—for example, a phone conversation with a prospective customer—you can easily save that data to the appropriate lead or account within Salesforce. To streamline the process, tools like Xplenty can save data into Salesforce from any service that has a REST API.

But what if you want to transfer data not just from Salesforce or to Salesforce, but between two different Salesforce organizations?

As mentioned above, sharing data between two different internal Salesforce orgs is an important use case, such as moving information from development to testing to production. But you might also want to share data between your internal Salesforce org and an external Salesforce org—such as one owned by a vendor or partner.

Externally transferring data from Salesforce to Salesforce could be useful in the following situations:

  • Your company is undergoing a merger or acquisition, and you need to integrate Salesforce data from both parties.
  • You want to share your sales and marketing data with prospective buyers or investors.
  • You’re working with a distributor or supplier who needs access to sales data.

4 Steps to Transfer Data and Share Records in the Salesforce Platform 

1. Enable Salesforce to Salesforce (S2S)

For starters, you’ll need to configure Salesforce to accept Salesforce to Salesforce (S2S) connections. To do so, follow these steps:

  1. Enter “Salesforce to Salesforce Settings” in Salesforce’s Quick Find box.
  2. Select “Salesforce to Salesforce Settings.”
  3. Click “Edit.”
  4. Select “Enable.”
  5. Click “Save.”

Note that S2S needs to be enabled by both organizations before you can start sharing data.

Enabling S2S will make the connection's tab available in Salesforce. You’ll start working with this tab in the next step.

2. Create an S2S Connection

Before creating an S2S connection, the two Salesforce organizations need to add each other as contacts. To do so, follow the steps below:

  1. Click on the “Contacts” tab in Salesforce.
  2. Click on “New Contact.”
  3. Create a new contact for the Salesforce organization, making sure to add a valid email address.

After creating this new contact:

  1. Click on the “Customize My Tabs” button in the Salesforce interface, and add “Connections” to your available tabs.
  2. Go to the “Connections” tab and click on “New Connection.”
  3. To send an invitation to your new contact, select the correct organization under Contact. Next, select the Connection Owner (i.e. your organization) and the option Account or Template.
  4. Send the invitation.

3. Publish Objects and Fields

Once you’ve established an S2S connection, you need to publish the objects and fields you want to share. To publish a Salesforce object, follow the steps below:

  1. Click on the “Connections” tab in Salesforce.
  2. Select the relevant S2S connection.
  3. In the Published Objects related list, click on Publish/Unpublish.
  4. Select the objects you wish to publish and click “Save.”

Only certain Salesforce objects can be published for S2S connections. The list of publishable S2S objects includes:

  • Accounts
  • Attachments (unencrypted)
  • Cases
  • Case Comments
  • Contacts
  • Leads
  • Opportunities
  • Opportunity Products
  • Products
  • Tasks
  • Custom Objects

When you publish a Salesforce object, your S2S contact will be notified via email.

For more fine-grained control, you can also select which of a Salesforce object’s fields to publish. To publish fields of a Salesforce object, follow the steps below:

  1. Click on the Connection's tab in Salesforce.
  2. Select the relevant S2S connection.
  3. In the Published Objects related list, click “Edit” next to the published object.
  4. Select and/or deselect the Salesforce fields that you want to publish. You can only publish fields that you have permission to edit.
  5. Click “Save.”

Salesforce publishes the following fields by default: 

  • Account: Account Name, Last Name
  • Attachment: Body, Content Type, File Name
  • Case: Subject
  • Case Comment: Body, Published
  • Contact: Last Name
  • Lead: Last Name, Company
  • Opportunity: Name, Closed Date, Stage
  • Opportunity Product: Quantity, Sales Price
  • Product: Product Name
  • Task: Subject
  • Custom Object: Name

4. Subscribe to Objects and Fields

S2S connections aren’t a one-way street. If you want to receive data from your Salesforce partner, follow the steps below to subscribe to Salesforce objects:

  1. Click on the “Connections” tab in Salesforce.
  2. Select the relevant S2S connection.
  3. In the Subscribed Objects related list, click “Subscribe/Unsubscribe.”
  4. To subscribe to an object, select the object within your Salesforce organization that you want to map to.
  5. Click “Save.”

Once you’ve connected to an object, the process is very similar for connecting to one or more of the object’s fields:

  1. Click on the “Connections” tab in Salesforce.
  2. Select the relevant S2S connection.
  3. In the Subscribed Objects related list, click “Edit” next to the relevant object.
  4. Select the appropriate fields in the drop-down list, and map them to the appropriate fields within your own Salesforce organization.
  5. Click “Save.”

3 Best Practices for Sharing Salesforce to Salesforce Data

Setting up S2S data integrations is one issue—but how do you do so in the most efficient and effective manner? In this section, we’ll discuss 3 best practices you need to know about sharing Salesforce to Salesforce data.

For the complete overview of Salesforce best practices, check out Salesforce’s articles “Best Practices for Mapping Fields in Salesforce to Salesforce” and “Guidelines for Using Salesforce to Salesforce.”

1. Prioritize Data Privacy and Security

Whenever you share Salesforce data, security and privacy must be paramount. Laws such as GDPR and CCPA place strict limits on how businesses can share customers’ personal information.

For example, the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation states that "personal data must be processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner in relation to individuals." In addition, GDPR requires businesses to process information “in a manner that ensures appropriate security of the personal data—including protection against unauthorized or unlawful access and accidental loss, destruction or damage.” All businesses who store the personal data of EU citizens and residents must comply with GDPR or risk strict financial penalties.

When sharing data from Salesforce to Salesforce, always make sure that you comply with all relevant data privacy and security laws and regulations—if not, you could be facing a costly fine or data breach. Xplenty is compliant with GDPR, CCPA & HIPAA data security and privacy regulations. 

2. Understand Sharing Permissions

Salesforce administrators are able to share any Salesforce object. However, most Salesforce users can only share objects that are owned by themselves or their subordinates.

If you want to stop sharing an object, click “Stop Sharing” in the object’s External Sharing related list. You can only perform this action for objects that are owned by you or your subordinates. Taking this action will stop propagating changes from your organization to your partner’s organization; however, the object itself will not be deleted from the other organization.

3. Take advantage of Auto-Accept

By default, Salesforce asks organizations to manually approve changes to each record being shared via S2S connections. However, this will be an extremely tedious task for large organizations that may be sharing hundreds or thousands of Salesforce records.

To avoid this manual drudgery, take advantage of Salesforce’s “Auto-Accept” option, which allows organizations to automatically accept changes to records without waiting for approval.

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Salesforce to Salesforce with Xplenty

You have multiple options at hand for performing Salesforce to Salesforce integrations, including both third-party data integration software tools and Salesforce internal tools. In most cases, choosing a third-party data integration tool such as Xplenty is simpler and more cost-effective than doing Salesforce integrations yourself.

Whether you’re just looking to integrate data from a single service or across your entire business, Xplenty lets you do more with your Salesforce connection. If your business needs to perform Salesforce to Salesforce integrations, Xplenty has two main advantages over other ETL providers:

  1. No-code: Without writing a single line of code, you can seamlessly bring customer data into the Xplenty platform, and push data back into Salesforce. Xplenty’s transformation layer allows you to edit, clean, aggregate, and modify the data however you need in order to fit your ETL processes.
  2. Fully automated: Xplenty enables you to fully automate the management of Salesforce, databases, data warehouses, file stores, and any available API.

Many other competitors will boast about their Salesforce integrations. But if you read between the lines, you’ll find out that their services have one or two crucial drawbacks:

  1. The service is limited to copying data from one place to another, which gives you no control over data transformations.
  2. The service only supports either pulling or pushing Salesforce data, but not both.

Even if you find a service that satisfies these two conditions, you’ll still have to deal with the question of flexibility. Does your chosen solution include support for all of your sources of data that you want to integrate with your CRM?

Xplenty is a flexible, scalable ETL data integration platform that can grow alongside your business. We offer you a static pricing model, based on the number of connectors used to support your integrations. This means:

  • Unlimited users for developing and working in Xplenty
  • Unlimited data (with no row or size limits)
  • Unlimited data processing times
  • Unlimited packages and workflows
  • Unlimited scheduling and automation

Anyone in your organization, from developers to non-technical business users, can enjoy Xplenty’s easy-to-use data pipeline toolkit. Xplenty’s features include:

  • No-code data transformations.
  • More than 150 functions to build expressions for field-level data transformations, ranging from the simple to the complex.
  • A straightforward user interface with drag-and-drop components for visualizing and building data pipelines.
  • Programmatic API access to Xplenty, allowing you to include Xplenty into your existing app or use scripts to automate your work.

Third-party integration tools like Xplenty makes it simpler and more cost-effective for you to transfer data. However, in the next section, we’ll discuss how to transfer data from Salesforce to Salesforce yourself using the Salesforce platform.

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In the sections above, we’ve provided various steps and best practices for performing S2S integrations from within the Salesforce platform. But setting up and configuring S2S connections yourself is just one way to transfer data from Salesforce to Salesforce. In most cases, choosing a third-party data integration tool such as Xplenty is simpler and more cost-effective than doing Salesforce integrations yourself.

Whether you configure the integration yourself or use a third-party data integration tool like Xplenty, make sure you choose the solution that fits best with your business needs and objectives. If you want to find out how Xplenty makes Salesforce to Salesforce integrations simple, contact us. Get in touch with the Xplenty team today for a risk-free trial of the platform.