Experience Cloud + Document Generation: Remove Friction Between Customers and Documents

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These days, good websites are everywhere. Most businesses make it easy, more or less, to get what you need from them online. But great digital experiences tend to be a little harder to come by. They’re set apart by that “something extra” – the online store that remembers your tastes; the search bar that expertly anticipates your query, and so on. 

According to Salesforce’s State of the Connected Customer report, 88% of customers say the experience a company provides is as important as its product or services. With many business interactions now driven via clicks or taps on a screen, companies going the extra digital mile have a big competitive edge. And for many of them, Salesforce plays a key role in elevating their digital experiences into real differentiators.

Salesforce Experience Cloud

While there are many ways to stand out in the digital experience economy, Salesforce has been offering up a platform to help for years in the form of Experience Cloud (formerly Community Cloud).

For those unfamiliar, Experience Cloud lets you build sites that give your customers or partners a secure window into your org through branded partner portals, help centers, storefronts, and more.

Experience Cloud sites are like regular websites, except they run on top of your Salesforce org, with your data and processes built into them. Users can view and interact with their data – such as checking the status of an order – and their experience can be personalized using that same data, like getting products recommended based on past purchases. 

On its own, Experience Cloud leverages your source of truth to deliver that personalized, “something extra” to your audience. But it’s also a platform upon which you can stack specific functionality to create digital journeys more closely aligned to your audience’s goals.

This article explores combining Experience Cloud with document generation and e-signature solutions to remove friction from the digital interactions you serve up, while making your audience feel more connected to your brand – and more likely to continue taking actions that are valuable to your business. 

Enhancing Experience Cloud with Document Generation

So why does document generation functionality fit perfectly into the average Experience Cloud site?

To start, let’s look at some of the benefits these solutions typically provide to internal Salesforce users.

  1. Save time and increase productivity: The ability to transform complex data into formatted documents via clicks or record updates frees time for more important tasks.
  2. Reduce errors: Documents generated via apps like S-Docs always contain the most up-to-date information from your source of truth.
  3. Ensure brand consistency: Standardized, formatted templates create brand recognition.

These benefits don’t just apply to the back office. They can also apply to the student filling out an enrollment application, the online shopper expecting an invoice, or the partner requiring a summary of Opportunities submitted through a portal. 

In short, site visitors want to accomplish tasks efficiently, and they expect no disconnection from other interactions with your company. If submitting, signing, or receiving data-driven documents or emails naturally fits into a digital journey, a document generation app with Experience Cloud can help deliver the full experience and meet customer expectations.

Let’s get a little more detailed by looking at some real-world examples.

Experience Cloud + Document Generation (For Partners)

Partner portals provide tools that simplify the work partners have to do to achieve success.

In many cases, steps on the path to partner success depend on access to data-driven documents. If a portal doesn’t support the path of least resistance toward closing deals, partners may be inclined to devote more time to other (competing) solutions that are easier to market and sell.

Luckily, partner portals built on Experience Cloud – which already allow partners to view and modify their data – offer the ability to instantly transform data into the documents required to keep business moving, via native apps like S-Docs. 

S-Docs customers using Experience Cloud for partner relationship management commonly integrate document generation functionality into their portals in a few different ways:

  • Proposal/Quote Generation: Throwing static pricing sheets at partners is the path of most resistance. However, allowing them to visit your portal and instantly create custom proposals or quotes (with just a few clicks) can seriously bump up how easy it is for channel reps to sell your products. As a bonus, you can also integrate CPQ functionality into your portals to support reps who need to configure proposals or quotes for different deal scenarios.
  • Partner Contract Execution: As hubs for partner activity, partner portals can also facilitate renewing the partnership itself. When the time comes, the renewal contract can be automatically generated and made available online – where the partner can access and sign it right from the portal, with no email threads needed.
  • Reports: Partners may need to provide detailed deal summaries to their own leadership teams. Allowing them to routinely click a button and print custom reports may be just the “something extra” that gets your solutions picked for deals more often than not.

All in all, the easier it is for a partner to sell, the more deals you’ll find floating your way. Document generation and e-signature solutions work to turn good portals into great ones that keep partners coming back.

So how do these solutions support sites aimed at end customers?

Experience Cloud + Document Generation (For Customers)

Experience Cloud sites built for end customers take on a number of different names: help centers, account portals, storefronts, etc. But no matter their intended functionality, they’re all focused on providing the best possible customer experience.

Part of a great experience is easily getting stuff done – that is, accomplishing what you came for, whether it be submitting a case or buying a product. Document generation can help remove any dead ends from your customers’ digital journeys and enhance their experience.

To get a better grasp, let’s look at the following three examples coming from real customers using S-Docs with Experience Cloud.

  1. Applications for University Admission: When prospective students submit a college application via a Screen Flow, S-Docs generates a branded PDF version of the application and emails it to the student (via an equally branded email template). Other backend processes are kicked off that generate additional emails if an application is left unfinished, telling the student exactly where they left off. And acceptance/rejection letters lean on S-Docs too, since counselors bulk generate them from one dynamic template after decisions have been made.
  2. Support Portal Case Summaries: When a customer opens a case on their portal, S-Docs again acts in the background to automatically send an email confirming case creation, and dynamically includes potential resolution instructions based on the case topics selected by the customer. This allows for possible self-resolution and keeps the customer informed.
  3. E-Commerce Receipts: After buying an array of complex business products on an E-Commerce Experience Cloud site, the customer receives a detailed, custom-branded receipt PDF in their inbox. They can also return to the site to download a summary of past orders – keeping the detail-oriented buyer organized. 

Document generation combined with sites oriented toward end customers may be less obvious – unlike with partner portals, the functionality typically works in the background and isn’t directly invoked by the site user – but it can be just as impactful, serving to provide users with the content they need, increase brand recognition, and maintain unbroken, connected experiences.

Benefits of Using a Salesforce-Native Solution

There are many different ways to go about providing document generation functionality to your Experience Cloud sites. But choosing the wrong path can be difficult and expensive to rectify further down the line.

That’s why we recommend going with native-built apps like S-Docs as you extend Experience Cloud’s capabilities. As native extensions of your org themselves, Experience Cloud sites with native apps integrated provide you and your audience with several important benefits, namely:

  1. Speed: Since native apps aren’t sending data to different servers for processing, there’s less latency and faster performance, resulting in better customer experiences.
  2. Security: Though Experience Cloud sites are generally secure, they still expose data from Salesforce to external users, which opens up a degree of risk. Using native apps with your sites limits additional risk since those apps only process your data within Salesforce.
  3. Speed to Go-Live: Native applications like S-Docs are purpose-built for Salesforce and natively designed to work with its many features and products, meaning the implementation process is typically easier and faster than with non-native alternatives.

Overall, native document generation gives you fast processing, increased security, speedy implementations, and a higher degree of flexibility when it comes to designing digital experiences that wow your customers and partners.


Experience Cloud promises to help differentiate your brand as a digital leader. Providing document generation and e-signature functionality where necessary to fill gaps in your digital journeys helps deliver on that promise.

Want to see for yourself? Watch S-Docs and Experience Cloud in action by registering for our upcoming webinar!

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