From a Developers POV: How the Salesforce API Can Make an Impact on Development

By Brandi Hererra in GET/technical Posted Nov 7, 2016

Salesforce is a powerful software tool that streamlines companies' interactions with potential and future customers. With Salesforce, you can view analytics, automate email and social media marketing, manage customer service interactions, and close sales.Salesforce API

As you might imagine, Salesforce's diverse functionality means there are many exciting opportunities for API integration. You might choose to integrate Salesforce's marketing capabilities with a new social media platform, for instance, or to take a wholly new set of analytics.

The Salesforce API draws a broad range of third-party developers who work to expand the functionality of various Salesforce products. You'll need to register to become a developer on Salesforce's website, but the signup is free and after that you'll have access to a wide range of development materials.

The Developer Community

Salesforce is very friendly toward its developers. It hosts discussion forums where developers of many backgrounds and experience levels share tips for developing on various Salesforce products.

Salesforce's best developer documentation is for its Mobile SDK suite, which is available for free to Database.com and Force.com developers, and includes familiar tools like REST API and Bulk API. As you might imagine, Salesforce Mobile SDK is designed primarily for iOS and Android development; the support for desktop developers is not nearly so extensive.

Streamlined JSON Serialization and Deserialization

One of the most exciting developments for Salesforce developers has been the ability to serialize and deserialize JSON, which greatly streamlines JSON parsing. Many developers aren't aware of this functionality, but you can greatly streamline your code with this technique. Just cast each parameter in JSON onto an attribute in an Apex object.

public class SonomaJSON {

  String name;

  String company;

}

 

String body = '{"name" : "Michael", "company" : "Sonoma Partners"}';

SonomaJSON myObject = (SonomaJSON)JSON.deserialize(body, SonomaJSON.class); 

You can use comparable techniques to do the inverse: create an Apex object, or an sObject, and then serialize it to create a JSON string.

Overview

Like a lot of marketing software, Salesforce operates across many channels and has a large variety of functions it can perform. Because there's so much room for new functionality, Salesforce is a great place to create third-party apps and other tools. And the company's friendly attitude toward developers, along with support for webhooks and other vital tools, makes developing for Salesforce a pleasant experience.

Listen to our API Integration Leaders Talk Show series featuring CRM integration expert, Kris Chant, Developer Relations at Salesforce, to learn more.

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