First Look at the Pardot Lightning App: highlights, changes & improvements

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It’s no secret now that Pardot is moving into the Salesforce Sales Cloud, becoming one unified and optimised user experience, consistent to Salesforce Lightning – hence the name: Pardot Lightning App*. You can read the introduction piece here.

I was itching to take a look around and assess how the product development team have chosen to structure the native experience, and by making direct comparisons, see how the change could impact users (spoiler: they are all positive changes).

Are you still deciding whether it’s worth migrating across? Do you want to find out what you may have to prepare to migrate other users over?

In this post, I will talk first about the navigation high-level, then dive into my commentary on each section.

*At the time of writing, this version of the Pardot application is displayed as ‘Pardot Beta’ in the Salesforce App Launcher (not to be confused with the pre-existing Pardot app, an iframe-based version – it’s all explained here.

Comments on Navigation

Straight away, you see the UI has been cleaned up, making it much easier to navigate. Items can be accessed from the top navigation bar, and within each of these, additional sections are displayed in a sidebar with collapsible menus.

The top navigation bar.

This does away with Pardot’s hover menus, which went a few levels deep; sometimes, I even forgot where to find something within Pardot’s many sections! I can already see that this new approach will lead to better productivity.


Within the sections themselves, those from the Pardot side still keep their original Pardot look and feel eg. Prospect list. This isn’t a big deal.

In true Lightning style, you are able to add, remove and reorder the items on the navigation bar. The app comes with 10 as standard, with the ability to add any Salesforce object.

Marketers that live in the Pardot application won’t have to jump out to access their frequently used tabs, such as Dashboards – they can add them to Pardot. Chatter is another nice addition if your team are heavy users (or desperately need a better way to collaborate), make this accessible through the Lightning Utility Bar.

Marketable People

The first section on the top navigation bar is ‘Marketable People’. This brings the ‘people’ objects across Salesforce and Pardot closer together:

  • Leads (Salesforce)
  • Contacts (Salesforce)
  • Prospects (Pardot)
  • Visitors (Pardot)

Although the records for these objects are not being merged together, even just having them in one view is an improvement compared to how separate they were previously.

You can utilise the Lightning Actions on yourSalesforce List Views, such as ‘Add to Campaign’.

Pardot Campaigns / Salesforce Campaigns

Now that Salesforce & Pardot Campaigns are connected, we need to be working with them in sync. It’s handy they can be accessed side-by-side now.


Finally, we can view different types of automations together! The many types of automations available in Pardot often caused confusion with newbies, and training people had an added complexity – not just what each did and when to use them, but where to find them, hidden away in sections of Pardot with less footfall.

The sidebar contains:

  • Engagement Programs
  • Rules (ie. Automation Rules)
  • Page Actions
  • Segmentation Rules
  • Tags
  • Profiles


This section redefines the ‘Marketing’ tab in the former Pardot, which contained a jumble of marketing assets and automations. Now these are separated out:

How the Marketing Tab housed everything in Pardot.

Social + Search

Typically the less appreciated and utilised Pardot features, these now earn their place on the navigation bar.

  • Social
  • Keywords
  • Competitors
  • Paid Search
  • Site Search

Pardot Settings

Settings for Pardot still remain in the app, and are not joining the rest of Salesforce setup yet. Even so, this brings together 3 previously disparate sections of Pardot into 1 section.

How Pardot Settings were spread across 3 different areas. 


Overall, I think that this will improve Pardot adoption immensely.
Not only that, but a clearer navigation will encourage users to move away from mass mail shots, to building out longer, impactful lead nurture flows using automation and content cleverly. Also, businesses may find they get more value out of Pardot by discovering and leverage features that are famously under-utilised.


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