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Learn how to build a Salesforce app in 4 steps

Salesforce users can follow these steps to create sophisticated codeless apps that integrate the Next Best Action feature using the Lightning App Builder.

Just about anyone in an organization can learn how to build a Salesforce app and deploy it, as it requires no coding or IT development experience.

But it's more than just a matter of convenience. The speed and low cost of Salesforce apps is a strategic plus, as the need for process automation grows increasingly urgent.

The Lightning App Builder has evolved steadily to accommodate this need. Flow, its drag-and-drop toolbox for constructing process automation workflows, was a huge step forward. The introduction of Einstein -- the Salesforce analytics-machine learning suite -- was an even bigger step, enabling users to learn how to build a Salesforce app with sophisticated predictive features.

The app builder makes use of all these features and adds a new one: Next Best Action, a rules engine that takes enterprise data stored in Salesforce, combines it with external data and processes it in Einstein to generate the user's next step at optimal points in a workflow -- prompting a client call, recommending a meeting and so on. Users can learn how to build a Salesforce app that not only generates recommendations, but also embeds them in a business process to aid in decision-making at the moment when it's most needed.

Here's how building such an app works:

  1. Create a screen flow. This can be a process workflow that includes tasks that app users would perform under a particular set of circumstances -- such as schedule a consult, deploy a technician and update an offer. And commonly, more than one is needed. The criteria for invoking any particular flow can be added later.
  2. Create a recommendation. Part of the App Launcher, this component is a prompt to the user, to take one of several possible actions -- such as those mentioned above -- triggered by the app's business logic and tied to the flow. This is the visual prompt associated with a task to be performed. The idea is to time its display, via the logic, to the point in the business process when the user most needs to see it.
  3. Create a strategy. This is where the business logic lives. The Strategy Builder looks very much like Flow Builder, and its components are similar. A drag-and-drop interface enables users to build out a business logic workflow that supports the target strategy using intuitive workflow components that allow for contingency responses and what-if scenarios. Once assembled, users can test this strategic workflow immediately.
  4. Add Next Best Action. Now that the Next Best Action component has been built, users can deploy it in the Lightning App Builder. This will place it wherever the user needs to see it in the UI, such as a record page, a community page or a Visualforce page.

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