Lightning Components in Salesforce

A Beginner’s Guide to Building Lightning Components in Salesforce

There’s a lot of buzz regarding SF Lightning Components usage for Salesforce App solutions among developers these days. What are Lightning Components, how they are used and why they should be used.

No matter if you are a first-time admin that is brand new to salesforce or a seasoned pro that is just finally making the switch from Salesforce Classic to Salesforce Lighting, there is a lot of buzz out there about Salesforce Lightning Components, how they are used and what all you can build with them.

The possibilities of what you can build with Salesforce Lightning are endless. But there seems to be a lot of misunderstanding about what a Lightning Component is and how complicated or simple they are to build.

Salesforce Lightning and Lightning Components were created as an answer to the rise in popularity of both mobile device use and responsive web development. In the past making Salesforce applications responsive and mobile ready could only be done via the Salesforce1 Platform. But with the addition of Salesforce Lightning, all that has changed.

Now whenever you build something using Salesforce Lightning Components, the end result is something that you can use on any device you want, including mobile devices, desktop computers and tablets.


Learning Salesforce Lightning Components Is Not Scary

When you first start learning about lightning components you will hear words like:

  • Component Events
  • Frameworks
  • Application Events
  • Apex Methods
  • Queued Action Services

All these scary words are first things you see when you log into the Trailhead training for Lightning Components Basics.

Don’t be scared. You don’t need to be a Salesforce Developer and you don’t need to deal with any of that stuff to build something with the Salesforce Lightning Components Builder.

What you do need is:

  • A mouse
  • An admin license of Salesforce
  • A business problem that you want to solve or process that you want to make better for your Salesforce users

While you do not need to be a skilled coder to build in Salesforce Lighting, there are some basic principles you need to understand about Lightning Components before you begin to build anything.

Need help with Salesforce Lightning Components Builder, or have something a little more complex that might require some advanced developer knowledge? We can help. Contact us and let us know about your project.

What are Salesforce Lightning Components?

To begin to understand how to build Salesforce Lightning Components you need to first, become familiar with the basic concepts and capabilities.

  • Lightning Components are the building blocks that make up salesforce itself
  • They are also part of the apps, or tools that you make with those blocks as well
  • You build Lightning Components within Salesforce itself through the Salesforce Lightning Components App Builder
  • There is no additional software needed to use the Salesforce Lightning Components App Builder
  • Whatever you build using Salesforce Lightning Components App Builder will be responsive and work on desktop, laptop, mobile and tablet devices


The 3 Types of Lightning Components

There are three different types of Lightning components you need to know about. Understanding each of these and what makes them different will help you with deciding what you are going to build and how you are going to build it.

  1. Standard Lighting Components
    These come pre-installed in your salesforce object page layouts. You can hide them, or choose not use them, but you can’t get rid of them. That’s why they are called Standard Lighting Components.
  2. Custom Developed Lighting Components
    Unless you want to become a developer, you don’t need to worry about these. If you need advanced lightning component built, or any Salesforce related development work, you can contact us for a free consultation.
  3. AppExchange Lighting Components
    Some of the things you might want to build may have already been built and are available for you in the AppExchange. Similar to the way you would install an app (like Notes Plus for Salesforce Classic), you can also search for and install pre-built Lightning Components from the Salesforce AppExchange. Just install them, then drag and drop them into wherever you want to use them. You can even deploy Lightning component apps from within the Lightning Component App Builder itself.

This screen shot of an Opportunity page layout explains how standard Lightning Components are used in Salesforce Lightning.

Standard Lightning Components on an Opportunity Page

If you’ve ever used Salesforce Lightning experience, then you have used Lightning Components.

The easiest way to start to understand components is to actually start to play with them.


DEMO VIDEO: How to Build a Lightning Component in Salesforce

Watch the video below for a demo that will show you how easy building Lightning Components in Salesforce can be.

If you are hesitant about doing this in your live Salesforce org then you should try it out in your sandbox or get a free developer account to play around in. You can also get some practice by working on this Lightning Components project in Trailhead.

If any of the steps described in this video are intimidating, or you just need help migrating over to Salesforce Lighting we can help: Contact us for a free lightning migration assessment.


Why Lightning Components Matter

Once you begin to understand Lightning Components you will begin to better understand Salesforce itself. Soon you will realize that you can pretty much do anything in Salesforce. So next time your boss comes to you with a problem related to Salesforce, and asks if it can or can’t be fixed, the answer isn’t “Yes” or “No”. The answer is, “Probably, let me see if I can use Salesforce Lightning Component Builder to figure out a solution.”

Post a comment below and let us know what Lightning Components you are going to build in Salesforce.