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      Migrating from Support Portals to Communities

      Sep 18, 2014

      3 minute read

      Salesforce launched online communities in Summer’13 release to help companies become customer-centric. Since then, many companies like Marketo, Alteryx and Ping Identity have migrated from their existing support portals to feature rich Salesforce Communities.

      Ping Identity Salesforce Community

      With Portals already into function, the question that arises is-Why and how to migrate to Communities from already set Portals?

      Why Communities are better than Portals?

      Apart from what’s already there on Partner Portals and Customer Portals, Communities include many added features like:

      • Customer focused: Unlike portals, your community can be easily accessed by your customers, as well as partners. You can also decide to create an open community or a closed one.
      • Mobile-friendly: You can navigate the community-interface through smart-phones and tabs as Communities are touch enabled.
      • Integrated Platform: There can be a single community for customers, partners and employees.
      • Chatter Customization: Communities are Chatter™ enabled and you can rename the Chatter™ tab to a customized label of your choice.
      • Knowledge Sharing: Customers and partners may even have access to Q&A tab, Ideas, and Knowledge.
      • Rich user profiles: Your user can create rich user profiles, closely integrated with social profiles.
      • In-depth Insights: Beside reports, you can share dashboard with partners and customers.

      Why you should migrate from Portals to Communities?

      Here are the benefits of switching:

      • Improve Customer Experience: Users get a feed based experience which they relate to better, since there is more social interaction.
      • Streamline Organizational Experience: Partners as well as customers come along to connect, associate on common goals and form groups for common concerns.
      • Save Time and Capital: Customers have the access to the overall knowledge base, including the opinions of other customers, employees, and partners. It therefore becomes easier to combine these resources with crowd sourcing tips for quicker customer services. This avoids calls and live agent costs too.
      • Integrate Business Processes: With easier sharing of ideas, members can associate on customer support cases, new ideas, campaigns, etc. within the community.
      • Leverage Social Intelligence: Strong user-connection lets you know more about the potential customers- their past and future needs and providing them the targeted information with suitable solutions. Deals close often this way.
      • Offer Single Sign-On (SSO): A particular Salesforce®organization can have multiple communities easily accessible through one Salesforce®login.

      Believe as there are Examples!

      Various organizations have migrated from portals to communities, and are enjoying yielding results. Here are some examples-

      • GE Capital, an example of building and supporting growth is too, aiding its customers as well as partners through its community. Sigal Zarmi, CIO of GE Capital, America, says, “We’re connecting customers to GE Capital-and to each other-quickly, efficiently, and socially, building deeper relationships with important clients; that’s the power of the social network.”
      • Cornell University is using Communities to improve the student experience in the world of feeds like those on Facebook, Twitter, etc.
      • British Sky Broadcasting is even using its Community for buying and selling of various sport events tickets.
      • Retailer Home Depot created community site via Salesforce Communities for customer support and even for inter-organizational communication for employees across its 2200 stores around the U.S., Mexico and Canada.

      Steps to Migrate

      Setting up your community is custom-made, but to migrate from portals to communities, these quick steps would help you:

      • Analyze: Review your current portal scope and complete the detailed migration checklist.
      • Build: Develop custom UI, and imply new communities’ functionality.
      • Test: After migrating existing portal assets to the community, test and validate the migrated built.
      • Deploy: After final QC, go live with detailed adoption reporting and development roadmap of the community.

      Here’s a Success Story of Portal to Salesforce Communities Migration

      Alteryx, the leader in advanced analytics, is an example of Grazitti’s dexterity in Salesforce Communities™ services. Their Community now lets users post questions, login tickets, browse best practice recommendations, share expertise, and post product enhancement ideas. As a result, their stats have seen a prominent rise with 147% total user rise, the number of active users increase by 133%, an average of 52% increase in idea votes, and much more.

      Now that you have the answers for why and how to migrate, what is important is a smooth transition from the Support Portal to Community, and with Grazitti, it will be quick and easy.

      Grazitti offers creative, customized and strategically rich Quick Start Community Packages, with features like:

      • Engaging Responsive Design
      • Gamification
      • Full Text Search
      • Custom Salesforce® Objects
      • Custom Dashboard & Reporting
      • 3rd Party Integration

      Hence, for your portal migration to community, Grazitti has all the solutions!

      Disclaimer: Salesforce, Service Cloud, Sales Cloud, Salesforce Communities are trademarks of Inc.


      1. Alteryx Partner Community Success StoryPing Identity Customer Community Success Story

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