Sir Francis Bacon once said, “Knowledge Is Power.” If applied to a salesforce.com AppExchange Partner’s world, one could say “Knowledge is power to building a successful AppExchange app.” To go from idea to booming business, you need to know the right information at the right time. Salesforce.com provides many resources to empower app builders to build and deliver successful apps on the AppExchange.
Here is what the lifecycle looks like for a salesforce.com app builder:
- Upload to AppExchange
- Technical Review
- Security Review
- List on AppExchange
Each of these steps is important to build trusted and secure apps. Some steps have very specific requirements that must be meet. The following set of resources is important to making each of these steps successful.
The Most Important Document
The ISVForce Guide is the most important guide for an ISV to read and understand. This guide covers such important topics as:
- ISV Application Architecture and Development
- Packaging and Testing your Application
- Security Guidelines for Partners (hint: great for security review)
- Publishing your Application on the AppExchange
- Managing Licenses and Supporting Your Application
- Pushing Out Application Upgrades
Hint #1: Read the ISVForce Guide. It’s the most important document you’ll need as an AppExchange Partner. It will answer many questions that you will have. Read it, learn it and love it!
All applications will go through a security review at least once in its lifetime. A security review assesses the security posture of partner offerings, ensures that applications published on the AppExchange follow industry best practices for security, and promotes trust. First check out the “Passing the Security Review” in the ISVForce guide. Next, check out the Salesforce Developer website security section. It has a wealth of information to help you pass the security review the first time. Lastly understand the process that the Security Review follows.
Hint #2: The key to successfully passing the security review is to understand what is being tested and how.
All Things Technical
The Salesforce Developer website is the best resource for all developer information. This website contains:
- Information on the technical aspects of Force.com including API’s, mobile, database, security, and many others.
- Blogs that explain and show examples of many of the technical features of the Force.com platform. Some example topics are:
- Message boards where Salesforce developers can collaborate, share ideas and share code.
Hint #3: Bookmark Developerforce.
For in-depth technical knowledge about how Force.com works underneath the covers or to gain insight on more advanced topics, the Architects Core Resources page is the best place to go.
You can find information on such topics as:
- The Force.com Multitenant Architecture, Under the Hood
- Performance Tuning for Visualforce and Apex
- Visualforce Performance: Best Practices
- A Guide to Sharing Architecture
- Designing Record Access for Enterprise Scale
- Extreme Salesforce Data Volumes
There’s some great info on the Architects page that helps build enterprise-scale applications on the Salesforce Platform.
Knowledge is the Key
For app builders, Salesforce provides a vast collection of information that can guide a partner through development best practices, passing the security review, getting it listed on the AppExchange and providing stellar customer support to their users. You just need to know where to look!