What is Salesforce

Salesforce is a very powerful cloud computing technology. It runs on the force.com platform. It is one of the most flexible and powerful web based databases available on the market. Salesforce is a centralized place where we can track everything we need to run our organisation. To get started with Salesforce, all you need is a computer and internet connection as it runs on the cloud. It requires no hardware other than computer. Users of salesforce.com can develop their own applications or if they need any application on demand, they can buy it from AppExchange where large number of free applications are available.


It is important to understand the basics of how are our Salesforce works. So, we will look at some important terms often used in Salesforce.

Salesforce Terminology

1. An App in Salesforce is a container for all the objects, tabs and other functionalities. It consists of a name, logo and a set of ordered tabs.
2. An Object is a heart of any app and is very much similar to a database table. It not only provides a structure for storing data but also power the interface elements like tab, fields or records that allow users to interact with the data.
Objects are of two types Custom objects and Standard objects where Standard objects are present by default in Salesforce instance such as Accounts, Contacts, or Opportunities but you can create your own Custom objects. Standard object Account represents a Household Account in NPSP.
3. A Tab corresponds to a single object. It act as the starting point for viewing, editing and entering information for a particular object.
4. Fields are the properties that define the object. A field is like a database column and can be different datatype like text, number, picklist, addresses etc.
5. Opportunities are the sales and pending deals that you want to track. In NPSP, it represents a donation received by a Non-Profit.
6. Record Types are a feature of Salesforce CRM. It is a set of types defined for a specific object. For example, Opportunity object has record types like Donation, Grant etc.
7. Page Layouts for an object determines how the page looks. So, we can move the fields around and present it to user in a way that is relevant to the business.

Following video helps you to understand basic concepts of Salesforce.