Salesforce is a great CRM tool for business processes and is surrounding both Sales and Support, and Chatter is responsible for making Salesforce a great collaboration platform.
But, the question remains same, where exactly can we store files inside the Salesforce?
The answer is given depending on where you store your files, and will it be easy for your Sales and Support people to access and share the files, which they need daily.
Let us have a look at a list of what you need to be aware of when deciding upon the storage of your documents in Salesforce.
- The Salesforce Files (formerly Chatter Files)
Before Salesforce Files there were the Chatter Files. The Chatter is majorly focused around allowing people to collaborate more and more easily. This is also done to enable much easier cooperation through a social enterprise environment.
Files are an intrinsic part of collaboration, and hence, it makes sense to integrate them with the social side of things, which results in turbo-charging your organization. Salesforce Files does the similar thing by integrating Chatter with Salesforce CRM Content and thereby, allowing everyone to access and share the files stored there. This is also done if they have the right permission.
Using the Salesforce Files, individuals can actually upload files privately until they have decided upon sharing them. They can as well subscribe to files, getting notified at any time a file has been updated.
The process of Sharing can be done in the following ways:
- Sharing with an individual
- Sharing with the existing Groups of people inside Salesforce
- Sharing with link
- By indirectly, attaching a Salesforce file to the Chatter Feed of a record, as mentioned previously
The Salesforce Documentation
It is true that you also have control over the access permissions. Files in the Chatter can be:
- Completely private – No Access at all
- Shared with viewer permissions – Viewer permission to access
- Editable by collaborators – Collaborator
- Fully shared – With the Owner
- Salesforce CRM Content
This is an option, which is mostly used to store all the marketing collateral or at times even support-related documents. You can indeed store templates and the standard marketing collateral, publishing the official corporate files, which are to be used by Sales or Support when dealing with customers. In fact, the co-workers can then clone and customize document template and use it later as per needs and requirements.
You can also be one of the member of multiple Libraries and will be able to see them in the Libraries tab. This is not it, you can as well see them under the Salesforce Files tab. You can also attach a file stored in a Library, directly to the Chatter Feed of a record.
However, one drawback that can be registered here, is that you cannot have nested folders. Each Library will be acting like a flat folder in which you are not allowed to have any kind of sub-folders.
- The Salesforce Attachments
One more traditional ways with which you can indeed store files is the Salesforce Attachment. This is the one that allows you to attach files and documents to individual records.
However, this works well, when short sales cycles are being generated, with small number of files per record. The file size is also limited to 25 MB per file. In fact, posting a file in the Chatter feed will automatically show the file in the notes and attachment section of that specific record, just that the type being feed attachment.
The Limitations of Salesforce Attachments includes the following:
- Lack of sharing via links
- The lack of version control
- Absence of sharing permissions
- The Documents
This is where you can indeed store the web resources like logos, the HTML banners and also the Visualforce materials. These are generally such resources, which you plan on using for email campaigns and also for any images that are to be used in a template.
- The Alternatives
If at any point of time you find that storing files in Salesforce is too expensive, or that your needs are not collaborating with what Salesforce provides in terms of file storage and usage, you can always look at cloud storage alternatives that are available; like Google Drive, Box.com, Huddle or Dropbox.