Resources

If you’re new to Salesforce, I want this page to be the only resource guide you’ll ever need. If you’re a veteran, hopefully, you find one or two previously unknown goodies here! Last updated: 3/31/2019.

Free Resources

Blogs, Quizlet, and Salesforce Resources

SFDC99.com – Where it all started for me. I consider David one of the industry leaders. His articles are more responsible for any success I’ve had than anything else.

Ladies Be Architects – I stumbled across this gem while struggling through the Service Cloud Superbadge. Created by Gemma Emmett, a UK Based Solution Architect, the focus is on the Journey to becoming a CTA.

Automation Champion – I feel like any admin who’s been down in the trenches of dealing with the old Visual Workflow Designer or trying to figure out why that ONE process isn’t working has been here. Tons of great articles on declarative automation tools and the best way to use them.

Salesforce Ben – I’ve not spent much time here but definitely heard the name thrown around. The meta description on Google describes Salesforce Ben as “the leading Salesforce blog in the world.” Who am I to disagree?

Quizlet – Fantastic resource when studying for Certifications. If I could use one, and only one, resource on this list for certification prep it would be Quizlet.

Trailhead – The Salesforce-built hands-on learning portal. When it comes to ACTUALLY LEARNING SALESFORCE, this is by far and away the biggest bang for your buck.

Salesforce Trailblazer Community – Sometimes I wonder how much of my job is simply Googling things in the Trailblazer Community… Real world Salesforce users post Questions here and other, expert, “power” users answer them. Has saved my life numerous times in the depths of some thorny problem.

Chrome Extensions

Change Set Helper – Makes uploading Change Sets from Sandbox to production 2x – 3x faster. Includes search functionality, name and date sorting, and the ability to add multiple items to a changeset at once.

Salesforce API Field Names – With the click of an Icon, this extension converts all the fields displayed on a page layout to display with their API names instead of their labels.

Quick Login As – Creates a searchable menu and login in as another user capability from your browser window. Doesn’t appear to work in LEX, but works great in Classic.

Paid Resources

Udemy

Udemy courses cost around $9.99 – interestingly every time I visit the site there is a special “can’t miss” sale. It’s ok if you miss it, it’s just marketing!

Mike Wheeler – One of the first courses I ever bought was Mike Wheeler’s Admin Course. Fair warning: his voice will put you to sleep. With that being said, his tonality improves after each course and his insight is valuable. The courses excel at navigating through the Salesforce UI to show you many of the relevant features we work with on a day-to-day basis.

Deepika Khanna – I credit any talent I have at building Visual Workflows and using the Cloud Flow Designer to Deepika. Her courses are concise, grounded in a real-world problem, and fully explore all the relevant technical details. I learned APEX, Visual Workflow, and Process Builder from 3 of her courses as well as using two of them to pass the Platform Developer I exam.

Walid El Horr – Walid’s course was strictly on the knowledge needed to pass the Platform Developer I exam and I found it to be excellent.

PluralSight

A PluralSight subscription costs $35/mo. It’s well worth the investment.

David Liu – David has a few courses on PluralSight, most notably the Apex Academy Series. This course is pure gold for turning an admin with no coding background into a developer.

Dan Appleman – I love Dan Appleman. He literally wrote the book on Apex and I consider him to be at the forefront of Salesforce development. He has over 20 courses published and though I can’t claim to have seen them all, every one I have watched has been fantastic. Personal favorite so far is: Force.com and Apex Fundamentals for Developers

Don Robbins – Another “giant” on PluralSight. Don hosts the popular “Play-by-Play” series which features Don presenting a real-world scenario to an expert in the Salesforce community, which we watch them tackle together. Topics range from Data Architecture to Apex Design Patterns to Diagramming Salesforce Solutions to Lightning Experience to Salesforce Communities and everywhere in between. Highly recommend.

Sara Morgan Nettles – Sara created the Customizing Salesforce with Lightning Components: Getting Started course and it is spectacular. She has a follow-up course in Lightning Component Best Practices that I’ve not yet gotten too, but considering Lightning Components are the future of Salesforce I couldn’t be more grateful she will be my teacher.

Scott Lee – Scott has some of the best material on Salesforce foundations. From Salesforce Administration: The Big Picture to Salesforce Workflow: Getting Started to Salesforce Process Builder: Getting Starting to Salesforce Sharing and Security Fundamentals – if you’re completely new Scott will take you by the hand and show you the ropes.

Mike Topalovich – I like Mike’s beard and thought his Play by Play: Denormalize Your Thinking About Salesforce Data Modeling with Don Robins was great.

There are a number of other exceedingly talented people producing content for PluralSight, including many of our industries cutting edge experts. You’d be remiss to skip this one.

Focus on Force

Focus on Force has the best certification material on the internet, period. It’s not a coincidence that every certification I possess is available as a study guide from Focus on Force. You will not find better-sourced information, written in a more concise format (including countless images), targeted specifically for certification exams, with actual links to Salesforce reference material.

Additionally, the practice exams are HARD – and that’s WONDERFUL. We want our practice exams to be tough so that when we sit for the actual exam we pass easily. The practice exams are perfect for full out test practice giving you over 3, timed, full-length tests with section scoring and the ability to target specific areas of weakness. If I could use one, and only one, paid resource to pass exams, it would be Focus on Force – hands down.

Admin Certification Study Guide – First
Admin Certification Practice Exams – Second

Advanced Admin Study Guide – Third
Advanced Admin Practice Exams – Fourth

Platform App Builder Study Guide – Fifth
Platform App Builder Practice Exams – Sixth

Sales Cloud Study Guide – Seventh
Sales Cloud Practice Exams – Eighth

Service Cloud Study Guide – Ninth
Service Cloud Practice Exams – Ninth

Community Cloud Study Guide – 10th
Community Cloud Practice Exams – 11th

Platform Dev I Study Guide – 12th
Platform Dev I Practice Exams – 13th

Platform Dev II Study Guide – 14th
Platform Dev II Practice Exams – 15th

Note: I found after having 3 certifications that I was able to skip the study guide and just grind out practice on the Practice Exams to internalize the material faster and pass the exams.

Books

You’ll notice Salesforce books are expensive. Be careful not to slip into the trap of believing they aren’t worth the cost. One idea from one $40 book could be the difference between a $15k increase in salary and getting nada.

I have a promise with myself that as long as it is possible to invest $40 in myself and turn it into $15k salary increases, I always will. Hopefully, you do the same! With that being said though, feel free to check out some of the other paid resources before the books 🙂

I’m noticing the books I listed are more geared towards Developers, and I think that’s because I started reading them for my Platform Dev I Certification. If you’re a book fan like me, don’t hesitate to check out Amazon for more Admin geared books – they do exist.

Advanced Apex Programming 4th Edition – Gospel work from Dan Appleman himself. I loved this book and have reread it twice. Dan took my Developer skills to the next level and I can’t claim to fully understand even half the book! Make sure to check out the GitHub repository with the code for the book too.

Apex Design Patterns – A review of common software development patterns applied to Apex. Helped me understand interfaces better. I might wait on this one in favor of Advanced Apex Programming or Beginning Salesforce Developer first.

Beginning Salesforce Developer – Amazing book to go from zero to baseline in Salesforce Development. If I recall, this will be part of a series.

Behind the Cloud: The Untold Story of How Salesforce.com Went from Idea to Billion-Dollar Company-and Revolutionized an Industry – Inside scoop on how Salesforce grew as a company. Salesforce-related but you won’t learn how to pass a certification inside.

Learning Salesforce Lightning Application Development: Build and test Lightning Components for Salesforce Lightning Experience using Salesforce DX – I’ll admit I’ve only made it one chapter into this one. I’m attracted to it because using Salesforce DX and Lightning Components is where the big bucks are.

Practical Guide to Salesforce Communities: Building, Enhancing, and Managing an Online Community with Salesforce Community Cloud – Helped me pass my Community Cloud Certification and build a slick internal Help Desk community for my Law Firm. What more can I say? The author, Phil Weinmeister, is also on PluralSight.