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You Asked, We Answered: Formstack for Salesforce AMA

Emma Douglas
March 18, 2024
Min Read

On February 28, Formstack hosted a Formstack for Salesforce webinar as a part of our ‘Ask Me Anything’ series. The webinar answered your most burning Forms for Salesforce questions while also providing personalized guidance and inspiration that you can apply to your projects instantly. 

Today, we’re taking the questions asked during the Formstack for Salesforce AMA webinar and sharing the answers with you! If you missed the webinar, no worries, we’ve got you covered! Check out the recording on our website here

Also - did you know Formstack has a partner community of certified Formstack and Salesforce partners? If you need assistance with any of these use cases, please contact our partner team at partners@formstack.com and they can recommend a partner based on vertical expertise and geography. 

Forms for Salesforce Native-to-Salesforce Functionality 

Question: Can you give some insight into the benefits and considerations of using Formstack Forms with Salesforce integration versus the native Formstack Forms for Salesforce? We currently use the integration and would be interested in moving to the native version.

Answer: The Salesforce integration available on Formstack's Core product allows you to build forms in Formstack and then connect them to your Salesforce instance to create/update records in Salesforce, in addition to the submission data being stored directly within Formstack. The Forms for Salesforce native product on the AppExchange allows users to build forms while logged into Salesforce. This lets you build forms via drag-and-drop from your Salesforce data model - building forms that incorporate more Salesforce objects per form, quickly. You can also use information already stored in Salesforce to prefill forms and most effectively use existing data on your forms. 

It’s also worth noting that many customers use both products, using Formstack Forms to serve users outside of Salesforce, and Forms for Salesforce for use cases more tightly bound to the Salesforce data model. A good way to think about it is that Formstack Forms are strong at a variety of data collection use cases, while selectively bringing specific data into Salesforce; and Forms for Salesforce specializes in use cases further down the funnel - any data collection that leverages existing data including recurring data collection processes from customers. More details can be found in our Comparative Guide.

Question: Does Formstack support old data to be sent to Salesforce or just new after the integration is set up? 

Answer: This sounds like it’s about Formstack Forms, not Forms for Salesforce (F4SF). If you have collected data in your Formstack Forms account, you can set up the integration and send old data through. There may be limitations on how much data you can send through at once, so we recommend doing it in batches.

Question: Is there a direct-to-SFMC integration and does it support actions to transform data?

Answer: F4SF does not integrate with Salesforce Marketing Cloud, but our standalone Forms product + Salesforce core integration does! There is more information on this integration here. Also, it’s typical for Forms for Salesforce to be used by Marketing Cloud customers, by using Forms for Salesforce native to Sales Cloud and leveraging the standard Sales Cloud & Marketing Cloud integration. 

Question: Does Forms for Salesforce integrate with Data Cloud?

Answer: Forms for Salesforce is native to Salesforce, and all data is saved back to your Salesforce org either in Sales Cloud, Service Cloud or in the vertical cloud you are using (Health Cloud, Financial Services Cloud, Education Cloud, Non-Profit Cloud, etc). Data can then be brought into the Data Cloud for any analytics or AI use cases, from those clouds. 

Question: How do we buy more licenses from Formstack? Our org is exploring buying one more license.

Answer: To purchase additional licenses, please reach out to your dedicated account manager or book some time with a sales agent here.

Question: Does the Formstack Workflows product work with Forms for Salesforce?

Answer: Yes! Forms for Salesforce can be used as the first step in Formstack Workflows (formerly Copilot). This means you can set up a workflow that uses filling out a Forms for Salesforce form as the first step. 

Forms for Salesforce Prefill Functionality

Dynamic prefill is Forms for Salesforce functionality that allows you to prefill data from existing records and deliver a prefilled form through email or Salesforce Digital Experience Cloud. The email delivery of a prefilled form is a great way to delight a customer. Using prefill functionality ensures that a customer never has to fill out the same information twice. You can also hide prefill forms if you want to drive any rules on a form off of that pre-filled information to create a more personalized form experience for your users. 

Question: We're creating a new form to assess course instructors. We want to make the link available to our staff to share with external participants so that it can be completed after their course. Is there an easy way to autofill the link (url) into a custom field on an object? OR do we need to create a button? If we create a button do staff require a Formstack license to generate the link?

Answer: You can do this using Forms for Salesforce’s dynamic prefill capabilities. Follow these steps in order to generate a unique prefill link.  

Question: Where can we find the link to send to a user so that the form is prefilled?

Answer: Here's the support article for generating and finding those links. 

Question: Can I send a prefilled link to a customer that contains the data I already have about them?

Answer: You can send a prefilled link to a customer using Dynamic Prefill. This is an out-of-the-box feature of Forms for Salesforce.

Upsert Functionality and Managing Duplicates 

Question: Which strategies do you have to avoid duplicates? We find our Salesforce data has more duplicates than expected. A name with extra space is considered a new record. Checking each record coming from a form to Salesforce and records merging are taking us lots of time. What strategies do you recommend to prevent duplicate entries in Formstack submissions, particularly when minor variations such as extra spaces in names create new records? Our data flow to Salesforce is generating more duplicates than expected, and manually verifying and merging records is time-consuming.

Answer: A lot of what you are describing is human error. While you can avoid some of that by creating strict validation with phone numbers and email addresses, it’s more difficult with names. Some ideas you can implement are to: 1. Have two different forms (one for new customers and one for existing customers and consider a Community for existing users). 2. Set up description boxes to ask customers to read their information carefully and avoid spaces/periods after their names and/or 3. Have users type inputs in twice, with validation, to avoid variations like spaces. 

Question: Is there a way to create a new contact whenever a form is filled out?

Answer: With Forms for Salesforce, every time a form is submitted with the contact object, a new Contact will be created. 

Question: Is there a way to avoid duplicating a contact other than having the user log in to fill out a form?

Answer: Forms for Salesforce has an out-of-the-box option to update existing Salesforce records matching this field value. This allows the system to check for the same value before creating a new record. If the value is not found, it will create new value. Here is a support article to review further. 

Question: We want to use a Payment form but don't want it to be behind a log-in screen (so not a Digital Experience / Community form). How would you recommend collecting a payment - and matching it to a specific record - without having the payer log-in via a Community portal?

Answer: You can achieve this using our standard out-of-the-box functionality with our payment fields. Find more information on the payment processor here. For matching to specific records, you can automatically match to Salesforce records post form submission using the upsert functionality.

Forms for Salesforce and Digital Experience Cloud  

Forms for Salesforce is frequently paired with Digital Experience Cloud to give you a great way to create and manage forms within Digital Experience Cloud. Forms can be further personalized based on information in Salesforce about your users. 

Question: We want to expose a form to a bunch of users. Is there a way to validate that a user is part of the account that they are selecting when filling out the form? They are filling out an opportunity in the form linked to an account.

Answer: The best way to do this is to use a form within Salesforce’s Digital  Experience Cloud. Experience Cloud provides the level of access control you need, and along with Formstack, it will provide the right level of prefill capabilities for this use case. Other alternatives would include using our Advanced Prefill capabilities with an external portal.

Question: Is there a way to validate a user who is filling out the form? (Only wanting a user who is a contact to complete an opportunity)

Answer: You can use a Salesforce Community to validate your users before they're able to complete forms.

Managing Submissions and Data 

Question: Is there a way to change the owner when a Salesforce record is created using Form for Salesforce under a specific integration user?

Answer: Yes. You can add the record owner field in the form and set a default value. Just be sure to mark the field as NOT "read-only."

Question: Is there a way to find out what contact record type is created by each form?

Answer: Likely default unless you specifically have the record type field added to the form. If you do have the record type field on the form, make sure it is not marked as read-only.

Question: When viewing submissions, is there a way to add a name or email field to help search, instead of just an incremental ID name?

Answer: Yes! You can use the ‘content’ filter in your submission dashboard

Question: Is there an easy way to export data entered into general fields in a Forms for Salesforce form? We are using both Forms for Salesforce and Formstack Forms because when we do program evaluations we cannot easily get data out of Salesforce by exporting forms submissions.

Answer: Using general fields should only be for helping create a dynamic form in Forms for Salesforce. If you have a lot of fields that you're looking to report on, we recommend either using your Forms core product or building out a custom object/custom fields to collect the data you're wanting to report on.

Question: We are using Forms both inside and outside of Salesforce. Is there a way to redirect the direct Formstack form to the URL for the Salesforce Form?

Answer: In Formstack Forms, under Submission messages (under settings), you can put logic to redirect to a new URL upon submission vs showing a submission message. Find additional instructions here

Question: Is there a way Formstack can send a confirmation email to the user once they submit a report?

Answer: Yes, you can either use the alerts in-app or you can use a flow to trigger an email when a record is updated.

Repeatable Objects using Forms for Salesforce  

Question: When I use repeatable objects in Forms for Salesforce, is there a way to uniquely identify each repeatable field and use that in a conditional logic?

Answer: Rules work in the following two ways within repeatable sections: 1 - A condition on a field in a non-repeating object can trigger an action on a repeating field (example - If account type = household), then populate contact record type with a family member. This will set all repeatable contact records with the family member record type. 2 - A condition on a field within a repeating record can trigger an action on that record only (for example -  If contact record type = family member then show contact role). This will show the role field for any repeating contact records that have the record type set to family members. Rules with a condition in one record of a repeating object cannot have an action on another field in another record.

Forms for Salesforce Field Capabilities 

Question: Can you provide guidance on configuring dependent combo boxes in a Master-Detail relationship, so that changes in the master combo box automatically update the options in the detail combo box? If possible, could you share a practical example of how to implement this?

Answer: Absolutely! Please find this support article with step-by-step instructions. 

Question: I know that {{TDAY()}} will fill in today's date to a form field, but I want the current date AND TIME. Is there a way to fill that?

Answer: Yes, please refer to our Javascript Recipes to set the date and time of a date/time field automatically. 

Question: Is there a way to ensure the length of a field and throw an error immediately for Salesforce forms?

Answer: Here is a support article on character limits in Forms for Salesforce. 

Documents for Salesforce 

Formstack Documents & Formstack Sign are frequently paired with Forms for Salesforce to give customers a single solution for data collection, document automation and digital signature with Salesforce. 

Question: Is there a way to avoid creating sections/pages in the resulting PDF if those sections/pages were hidden from the user?

Answer: In this instance, we recommend using Formstack Documents for Salesforce and building within our native Document Builder. Formstack Documents provides complete flexibility around generating and delivering document outputs that can be built from a form-fill, Salesforce data or other data sources. 

Question: E-Sign question - Is the signed doc saved as a file to the related Salesforce record?

Answer: Once you set up Salesforce as a delivery in documents, you have the option to choose where your signed document is saved in Salesforce. Simply enter your Record ID information, select whether to save the document in either attachments or files, and enter an optional description for the Salesforce document delivery. See how to set this up here.

Question: Where can I access the help documents on adding reports into formstack documents?

Answer: Formstack Documents has reporting under the “Reports” tab. If you’re looking for how to merge a document from a Salesforce report, here is a support article that may be helpful.

Question: Can multiple Formstack Documents be merged into a single document? For instance, if I have 3 separate documents, can they be combined into one when I click a button?

Answer: Yes! This can be done with the data routing feature in Formstack Documents. 

Question: Am I able to add a table to the Formstack Document that is pulling from a report within Salesforce?

Answer: You can map a Salesforce Report to Formstack Documents and create a document with a table/looping section or have each row on the report generate a unique document. More information here

Question: Is there a limit to how many Documents we can create?

Answer: If you are creating Documents using the simple PDF within F4SF, the limit is equal to the number of submissions. Under Admin Settings in the right-hand corner, you should be able to see usage and how many submissions are allotted to your account. If you are referring to Documents for Salesforce (Formstack's Document product), that will be equal to your merge limit (found on the Document's Home page).

Question: Is there a way to get two people to consent to the same form?

Answer: There are a couple ways to approach this.  For document signing, you can generate a document using Formstack Documents and route for signature/consent by multiple signers using Formstack Sign. This is how Formstack Documents and Sign are configured with Salesforce. If you are specifically wanting to capture form data from multiple individuals, you can set up a Salesforce Flow with a prefilled Forms for Salesforce form. Use a stage/status field to control which level of approval is being done. Want to try Forms for Salesforce or Documents for Salesforce? You can get started with either product in the AppExchange right here:

Ready to elevate your processes? Start by exploring our Formstack Help Center, or contact our support team for personalized assistance. Let's transform the way you work with Formstack today!


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Emma Douglas
Emma is a Product Marketing Manager at Formstack who is is committed to crafting content that highlights the Formstack Platform's capabilities and impact. When she’s not creating Formstack Builders tutorials, she can be found hiking with her dog, running, or spending time on the ski hill.
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