Salesforce contacts sync

Overview

Front’s Salesforce sync feature allows you to automatically sync contacts from Salesforce into Front. After you’ve synced contacts into Front, your team will be able to:

  • Access helpful contact information in your inboxes
  • Associate contacts with accounts inside Front
  • Automatically tag, assign and route conversations in Front using contacts data from Salesforce
  • Leverage contact auto-suggestion when composing in your inboxes

How it works

  • Contacts are synced one-way from Salesforce to Front
  • Synced contacts will appear under “Company Contacts” in the “Contacts” section
  • Contacts are automatically synced every 24 hours to keep data up to date, but you can manually trigger a re-sync at any time by opening the Salesforce sync page in Front
  • You can sync contacts from the accounts you’ve synced, or pick a list view from Salesforce that contains the contacts you want to sync
  • Field mapping allows you to control which contact fields will be synced from Salesforce to Front
  • You must be a team or company admin in Front to set up the contacts sync

Instructions

Step 1

Click the Contacts icon on the top left corner and select Company Contacts in the left sidebar to access the Contact Manager in Front.

Step 2

Click the Import button at the top right, then select from Salesforce to open the Salesforce sync page.

Step 3

Click Login to Salesforce to connect Salesforce to Front.

Step 4

You can choose to enable either accounts sync, contacts sync, or both by clicking on the toggle. Sections to set up the sync will be displayed.  

Step 5

For the accounts sync, please see here for details about the Salesforce accounts sync. 

For the contacts sync, you can first choose which contacts to sync from two options:

  • From synced accounts: this will sync contacts belonging to accounts that have been synced to Front. You can only select this option if you have enabled the Salesforce accounts sync. 
  • From a list: you can select a Salesforce contact list to sync.

Note: Front supports syncing a maximum of 1M contacts.

Step 6

Select the contact fields you’d like to sync from Salesforce. Then choose the Front fields they should be mapped to.

Step 7

Click Sync to start the contacts sync. You can edit or pause the sync at any time from the sync settings.

Step 8

After you’ve set up the sync, you’ll see contacts from Salesforce appear under “Company contacts” in the Contacts Manager. If you click on a contact you’ve synced from Salesforce, you’ll see a banner indicating when the last sync occurred.

If you hover over contact fields synced from Salesforce, you’ll see an option to Edit in Salesforce. This ensures your data remains consistent between Front and Salesforce.


Contact sync logic

When a contact from Salesforce is synced to a contact in Front, a link is established between the externalId property on the Front contact and the Salesforce contact ID.

When a contact from Salesforce is being synced to Front, we first try to find a matching contact by the following logic:

  • If an existing Front contact is found with the externalId property equal to this Salesforce contact’s ID, the existing Front contact is updated
  • If the Salesforce contact has not yet been linked to an existing contact in Front, Front will search for an existing contact with at least one of the same handles (e.g. email domains, phone) as the Salesforce contact. This search is only performed if the user has mapped a handle field in the sync settings.
    • If an existing Front contact is found and that contact is not already linked to a Salesforce contact, the Front contact is updated and linked to the Salesforce contact
    • If an existing Front contact is found but it’s already linked to an existing Salesforce contact A, we skip syncing Salesforce contact B and log an error. 
  • If no existing contact is found, Front will create a new contact and link it to the Salesforce contact

 

Note that if a contact is deleted in Salesforce, the contact will stop syncing to Front but the Front contact will not be deleted.


Handling sync errors

If Front encounters errors while syncing contact data, the user that triggered the sync will receive an email notification. Errors can be viewed from the Salesforce sync settings page.

Common error types and how to resolve them:

Error type

How to resolve

Contacts do not include an email or phone number and were not synced

For each affected contacts, include at least one handle (e.g. email or phone) to sync to Front

Emails were already taken by other contacts and were not synced

For each affected contact, check the email property in Salesforce and replace it with a unique email.

Phone numbers were already taken by other contacts and were not synced

For each affected contact, check the phone property in Salesforce and replace it with a unique phone.

Contacts were not synced because accounts sync failed

View and fix account sync errors and restart the contact sync.

Salesforce field not found

If one of the fields you mapped from Salesforce is deleted in Salesforce, Front will stop syncing that field and you’ll have to choose a new field from Salesforce.

In sync settings in Front, choose a new Salesforce field to sync to Front. 

Salesforce list view not found

If the list view you were syncing from Salesforce is deleted, Front will stop syncing all contacts and you’ll have to choose a new list view to restart the sync.

In sync settings in Front, choose a new Salesforce list view to sync to Front.


Using Salesforce sync alongside the API

Contacts synced through the Salesforce sync in Front are accessible through the Front API. Each synced contacts will have the externalId property set to the ID of the Salesforce contact it’s linked to.


Troubleshooting

I encountered an error while connecting a Salesforce account

Check that API Permissions are enabled for your account

The Salesforce user account you're connecting to Front must have the API Enabled permission. To enable API Permissions as a Salesforce admin:

  1. Click Setup.
  2. Click Manage Users, then Profiles.
  3. Click Edit against the specific Profile.
  4. Scroll down to Administrative Permissions and check the API Enabled box.
  5. Click Save.

Ensure that the Front connected app is not blocked

As a Salesforce admin, you'll need to ensure that the Front connected app isn't being blocked by your settings in Salesforce. Learn more about access policies for connected apps here.


Pricing

This feature is available on the Growth plan or above.

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