Salesforce is the world’s leading CRM ecosystem, however, users who have come from other systems (e.g. Airtable, Excel, etc.) sometimes find the interface to be too focused on a single record screen with related records available for edit in new screens.
Salesforce grid solutions allow users to interact with large amounts of records from many different objects in a single Salesforce interface. They enable users to stay in a single interface to view, edit, create, filter, and sort the data they need.
There are many areas where grids can help Salesforce users, some examples would be:
- Displaying all Quotes Lines/Opportunities lines on an Opportunity page where they can be inline edited or created.
- Constructing record pages with many editable related lists, e.g. for a project object having editable related lists for Team Members, Key Dates, Key Deliverables, etc.
- Editable grids of “My Accounts” with the ability to drill down into related records such as Opportunities or Cases.
What Functionality Do Grid Solution Apps Provide?
The list of features is vast, but some of the main areas cover:
- Presentation of multi-object grid views.
- Inline edit of data in these views.
- Complex and pre-set filters.
- Ability to instigate flows from records.
- Conditional formatting.
- Drilling down into child records.
- Highly customized features such as bespoke column widths and decimal places.
- Ability to pull data from other Salesforce orgs or third-party systems.
The functionality they provide might be described as the bridge between Salesforce and some spreadsheet-database hybrid solutions like AirTable. Delivered in the correct way, it can add a huge amount of value for teams who are required to view and manage many records – this is generally most users.
AppExchange Grid Solution Options
There are several options when it comes to selecting an AppExchange grid solution. Here are some of the most popular:
Price: Starting at $24 USD per user per month (minimum 10 users).
- GridBuddy was created by Validity and was the original Grid solution with the first listing way back in 2010.
- The App has gone through many iterations since then, with the latest being GridBuddy Cloud, which has a wealth of grid features such as inline editing, multi-object views, cross filtering, expandable grids, and many more.
- What really sets GridBuddy apart is the ability to connect to multiple Salesforce orgs and external data sources such as ERP systems.
- If you are looking for a single place to view all your Salesforce and ERP data, this solution is for you.
Price: Starting at $18 USD per user per month (minimum 10 users).
- Conga Grid by Conga has been on the AppExchange since 2014 and shows years of development.
- A custom interface allows users to view large amounts of records, and it has features such as filter by column, conditional format, group data, collaborate on sheets, mass edit, mass chatter post, mass approval, and much more.
- The tool has been custom built and this allows a great degree of flexibility, although it does lose some of the look and feel of Salesforce Lightning.
- Grids can be built using a wizard or you can use the pre-built grids to get you started.
- If you’re looking for a full grid solution powered by the Conga ecosystem, this is the app for you.
Grids by RavenApps
Price: 2x free grids then $8 USD per user per month.
- Grids is a newcomer to this space having been founded in 2020, and uses the latest Salesforce LWC technology resulting in the Grids UI resembling Salesforce very closely.
- Grids comes with a large range of features, including inline edit, conditional formatting, mass update, mass delete, multi filtering, multi sorting, and much more.
- The starter grids provided and the build wizard make it easy to create and maintain your own grids.
- A great app if you’re looking to quickly build your own grids that seamlessly match the Salesforce UI.
CMTD Enhanced Related List
- This Salesforce Labs product was first released in 2018 and has been providing users with a free alternative ever since.
- As the name suggests, it is more of an enhanced related list with filters and sorting available. Creation and edit is not possible in this solution.
- A perfect app if you want to have more flexibility with your list views.
You may have a particularly bespoke requirement for grids which means that a custom solution may be more beneficial. You can build your own grids using the Salesforce DataTable LWC or otherwise, but after factoring in the costs to develop (plus the maintenance), it is always advisable to review the AppExchange Grid solutions in detail first.
Salesforce’s Development Roadmaps
Salesforce has recently brought in some cool new features, including inline report editing, dynamic related lists, and datatables within flows. These features have helped Salesforce Admins empower their users, but they have only scratched the surface of what the grid solutions above can do.
Salesforce’s roadmap will likely include more features in the future, but with so many areas of Salesforce to focus on, the AppExchange grid solutions may always be years ahead of Salesforce with the features they offer and the ease of use to set up and maintain.
The Future of Grid Solutions
As more development efforts are put towards grid solutions, we will see the setup and maintenance streamlined to more align to low-code and no-code approaches. The grid functionalities will also be enhanced with improved visual aspects, personalized grid views, and custom functionality per users.
Salesforce grid solutions allow users to stay in a single interface to view, edit, create, filter, and sort the data they need. They can help Salesforce users in many ways, and there are multiple options available. I hope this article has helped you decide if a grid solution would be beneficial to you, and if so, which to choose.