Salesforce Spring ’21: Best New Features

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Let’s leave 2020 behind us and start off 2021 with a bang! Salesforce has been busy improving the platform and adding new features that you’ll surely find exciting. Let’s take a look at what’s coming in the Spring ’21 release.

GENERAL FEATURES

New user protections when using Google Chrome browser

Recent updates to the Chrome browser have the potential to affect Salesforce features. Goole is now protecting users by blocking mixed-content downloads. This includes links on a secure website (HTTPS) that may point to an insecure downloads (HTTP)

Users will see warnings first, but eventually Chrome will block these mixed-content downloads.

For information about affected features in Salesforce, see the Knowledge article, Google protecting users from insecure downloads in Google Chrome.

Change record owners to Portal Users

Are you running a partner portal or communities instance? If you do, you will now have a more convenient way to assign records to these users. This new filter allows you to search for portal and partner users very conveniently. 

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Now add Images to In-App Guidance

In-App guidance has been a tremendous success for helping salesforce users maximize their productivity and efficiency. With the Spring ’21 release, you can now improve your In-App guidance by adding rich images to your guidance. Supported formats are .jpg .jpeg .png or .gif. Oh, yes that means you can even add animated Gifs as well!

SERVICECLOUD FEATURES

Einstein Bots Upgrades

Einstein bots continue to receive meaningful upgrades. With the Spring ’21 release, it is much easier to be transparent about errors during a customer interaction by using the Error Handler system dialog. This pre-built system includes friendly guidance and will attempt to transfer the conversation to an agent, so that the customer continues to have a great service experience.

Find Answers Fast with Article Answers (Pilot)

Do you have customers asking questions through your bot? What if the bot is unable to match the question for a defined intent? You will now be able to deliver recommended answers that are derived from your Knowledge articles to enhance the customer experience. 

Now deliver record data with Object Search

When activating Object Search, your bots will be able to read objects in Salesforce, to the delight of your customer. You can even use merge field syntax, which will allow you to deliver up to three records in your conversation. Examples could be showing recent orders, updating an appointment, or submitting a survey. The possibilities are endless!

KNOWLEDGE

Favorite Articles to eliminate searching for the latest version

Did you find searching for the most recent version of an article annoying? Then here’s good news; Simply mark your article as a ‘favorite’. When the article is updated with a new revision, you will automatically be redirected to the most recent version. Voila! 

Insert Article in to email now respects attached file

Previously, when you inserted an article in to an email, the already existing attachments were over-written. No more. Your existing attachments will now persist, and if your inserted article contains files, they will simply be appended to the existing files. Yay!

SALESCLOUD FEATURES

More Productive Conversations with the Meeting Digest

Do you have a Salesforce Meetings license for your sales users? Then rejoice with these impressive meeting digest features. 

This new meeting digest gives your reps a single page where they can collect and share information prior to a meeting. This includes insights in to attendees, invite responses and details, and of course related records activities. Nifty!

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More details from salesforce on Meeting Studio:

Supercharge Virtual Events with Meeting Studio. Share a meeting experience like no other with Meeting Studio, keeping prospects and customers engaged during virtual events. Reps can show their camera view and presentation in the same window to save time and bypass awkward transitions when switching the content to share next. 

Reps can adapt their presentation approach based on visual cues from their participants. Reps see key information from the Meeting Digest that helps them lead and guide the meeting conversation. And they get a place to take notes, document next steps, and collaborate with their team. 

Meeting Studio isn’t a replacement for web conferencing applications such as Zoom, Google Meet, or Cisco Webex. Instead, Meeting Studio is a way to provide a unique experience within your existing video conferencing applications and give sales reps an easier presenter experience

Einstein Opportunity Scoring with Less Data

Previously, Einstein Opportunity scoring required a larger data set to provide proper scoring. Good news, you can now take advantage of Opportunity scoring with a smaller data set. Einstein uses a global scoring model that uses anonymous aggregated data to allow customers with smaller data sets to score their opportunities. The scoring model switches to built-in only once you have enough data in your own instance.

Opportunity Products get an upgrade

Have your reps requested to track more information on opportunity products? Maybe they want to track multiple deliver locations or delivery dates, or have requirements for other custom product tracking? 

Tell them the good news. We can now create object relationships with Opportunity Products and even customize page layouts to make these custom requirements happen.

Below is an example of how such a custom relationship might look for an Opportunity Product.

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Track Accounts as Campaign Members (Beta)

Campaign membership has received an upgrade with Spring ’21. In addition to Leads and Contacts, you can now add Accounts as campaign members to your marketing campaigns. 

ANNOUNCEMENT:  Original Territory Management Is Being Retired

Please note that the original territory management is scheduled for retirement as of Summer ’21, which will be the next release. Make sure you have migrated to Enterprise Territory Management!

Email Bounce Upgrades

In addition to showing email hard bounces, salesforce will also now show you when an email has soft bounced.

Send Later email feature with threaded emails

You can now schedule emails to be sent at a later time when replying to an email, not just when sending a new one. You will need a Salesforce Inbox or High Velocity Sales license for this feature.

Zoom Meeting Links in Events

You can now connect your Zoom account and automatically add a Zoom meeting link to invites created using the “Insert Availability” feature. Here too, you will need a Salesforce Inbox license.

Lightning Email Templates & Process Automations

Rejoice! While you were only able to utilize classic email templates with the various automation tools, with the Spring ’21 release you will now be able to use Lightning Email Templates as well! Go forth and spruce up your automation emails for Flow, Workflow, Process Builder and Approvals!

Salesforce Inbox Integration News for Gmail and Outlook

From Salesforce:

Integration with Google Legacy versions of the Inbox Chrome extension, which includes Inbox features such as Email Tracking and Insert Availability, are being retired March 31, 2021. Inbox features are available in the Gmail integration with Inbox. Reps can add Zoom links to meetings generated using the Insert Availability feature in the Gmail integration with Inbox.

Outlook® Integration Legacy versions of the Inbox Outlook add-in, which includes Inbox features such as email tracking and Insert Availability, are being retired March 31, 2021. Inbox features are available in the Outlook integration with Inbox. Sales reps see related user records sorted in a different order. And reps can add Zoom links to meetings generated using the Inbox Insert Availability feature.

Authentication Change for Exchange Online Inbox Users

Microsoft is retiring Basic Authentication for Exchange Online in the second half of 2021. If you use Exchange Online and your users authenticate with Basic Authentication, work with your IT professional to update the authentication to use OAuth 2.0. After retirement, Office 365 users must authenticate using OAuth 2.0 to access Inbox features. OAuth 2.0 is the default authentication method for Exchange Online.

COMMUNITIES (now Experience Cloud)

Hello Experience Cloud, Farewell Community Cloud

Community Cloud has been renamed to Experience Cloud. This change was made to better reflect the multitude of digital experiences you can create, such as websites, forums, service centers, mobile apps, and so on. 

Add Multiple Files to Records in the Experience Cloud Sites on Mobile

Have you heard from your customers that adding files to a community via mobile is a chore? If so, hurry and let them know that starting with the Spring ’21 release, they now will be able to attach multiple files to records on mobile!

Merge Customer-Enabled Person Accounts

Here’s a great new admin-related feature. Admins can now merge person accounts that are community-enabled. No more duplicates!

MOBILE

Find records using everyday words (Beta)

While using the salesforce mobile app, you can now search using common words and phrases to find the perfect results.

Examples include “my closed cases this week”, or “my open opportunities this month”, and so on. The natural search supports the following objects: Accounts, Cases, Contacts, Leads, Opportunities”. Don’t be shy give it a try! (This feature is available for Salesforce for IOS at this time).

Get Comfortable in Mobile Home (Beta)

The salesforce mobile “home” screen is receiving a significant upgrade. Check out the new customizable, dynamic cards that can now show personalized information. This includes viewing reports, events and recent records, to name a few. These cards can be rearranged and you can add & remove cards right there in the app. This Mobile Home will need to be enabled by your admin, and is will be available for IOS users at this time.

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Please note Changes to Apple’s Privacy Policy

From Salesforce:

In the most recent version of iOS, Apple placed additional tracking restrictions on third-party applications. This affects the Spring 2021 version of the Salesforce mobile app, which goes live on February 15, 2021. These new restrictions can prevent your custom web content from appearing in the Salesforce mobile app for iPhone and iPad. Test the Spring 2021 beta version of the Salesforce app before it goes out to your users.

ANALYTICS

Streamline Report Creation with Multi-Field Selection

Major productivity alert! No more fighting with field selections when creating a report. With Spring ’21, the productivity gods have smiled upon us, and given us the ability to drag multiple fields on to your report canvas. 

If that wasn’t fantastic enough, you can also add/remove fields and columns from your reports and get instant preview results, without delay.

Get Report Details Emailed in .xlsx Format

Last but certainly not least, there’s been a much-requested upgrade to report exports. In addition to exporting reports in .csv and .xls formats, you will now be able to also export in the popular .xlsx format. 

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