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This page contains the list of resources about certification for each role:

Job Roles

Since multiple certifications are a “thing” among Saleforce practioners, here is a list of how many exams there, by job title:

Seq. #exams Position Avg. Salary
1. 1 Sales professional (user)$90,275
- - Business Analyst$85,529
2. 3 Marketing$85,627
3. 2 Administrator$88,230
4. 4 Developer$112,620
5. 7 Solution Consultant
6. 2 Specialist (CPQ)
7. 7 Designer
8. 1 Technical Architect$136,819
27 total

The Average salary are from Career Pathways from an unknown point back in time. Use it as relative comparisons.

Partner valued certifications

The most “valuable” certifications to hold are those which Salesforce requires its Partners to employ people holding these certifications:

Sequence of certifications


@SantanuBoral on 5 Oct 2018 analyzed overlaps among certs to come up with solid lines linking his recommended sequence to certification:
sf-cert-seq-1600x879-165387.jpgClick image to pop it up full screen

Dashed lines represent optionals. Orange boxes highlight Application Architect certifications. Green boxes highlight System Architect certifications.

Blue boxes highlight Platform Developer I as the pre-requisite cert. However, by contrast, Mike Wheeler and David Liu advise Developers to first pass the Administrator certification.

Exam Lifecycle

  1. PROTIP: Consider your career objectives and personal lifestyle to see how to fit in certification preparation. It takes perseverance and sacrifice, such as taking time away from movies, sports, going out, or other diversions. Are you willing to watch certification videos instead of watching TV?

    PROTIP: Bone-conducting headphones enable you to listen without disturbing others while you drive or walk around.

  2. Register to take certification tests.

  3. Prepare to take exams remotely on your own computer by downloading and installing Kryterion’s Sentinel Secure software.

  4. Register at webassessor.com (SU18)

    PROTIP: You need to use a different email address than what you used to register for ASQTB or any other exams also offered by Webassessor. Crazy, I know, but that’s what they’re doing.

    PROTIP: Exams fees are half-off at Dreamforce conferences. For example, pay $99 instead of $200. Be sure to sign up under the Dreamforce category rather than the normal item. Retake fees are $100.

  5. Link your Trailhead and Webassessor accounts.

    BLAH: Different emails must be used in Trailhead and Webassessor accounts.

  6. PROTIP: When selecting a day to take the exam, consider https://www.biorhythm-calculator.net to pick positive days and not days when a line crosses over 0 or at the bottom.

  7. If you use a test center, pick a Kryterion test center near you. Bring 2 forms of ID (drivers license and credit card)

    PROTIP: Write down the code generated on the exam confirmation email in a card in your wallet because you may not be able to retrieve your email at the testing center (due to bad internet service, battery running out, etc.).

    PROTIP: If you select remote, select the Time Zone. Don’t wait for the spinner icon.

  8. Sign up for the Cert Status Request to receive an email that provides you with a list of all credentials you hold, your required release exams, and due dates.

  9. After passing the first exam, ask to join the Salesforce Certified Professionals community private group.

  10. When it’s time, prepare for and take Recertification exams to maintain each of your certs.

    PROTIP: Effective with the Summer ‘18 release cycle, the Administrator, Platform App Builder and Platform Developer I maintenance exams join Marketing Cloud Email and Social Specialist maintenance exams on Trailhead. They will then be free.

    Other maintenance exams will migrate to Trailhead by Feburary, 2019. See Exam FAQ.

Exam Results

After the exam I got an email from certification@salesforce.com with subject “Your Salesforce Certification Exam Results”. Strangely, the email does not present a total grade, just percentage of each section.

To calculate my summary score at the Administrator exam, I created this Google spreadsheet:

The summary score calculation is at the lower-right corner. I manually changed font color to red for sections which I need to study further.

PROTIP: If you want to calculate your own score, in the email you got, highlight and copy the lines under “Section-Level Scoring:”, open this Google spreadsheet, and paste in cell A2, replacing the sample.

NOTE: To extract the percentage number from text in column A into a number in the “Score” column, I used formula =REGEXEXTRACT(A2,"[^ ]+$") in each row of column B.

Salespeople (user) certification

Official PDF - Salesforce Accredited Sales Professional

Marketing certification

Salesforce Certified Marketing Cloud Consultant

Salesforce Certified Marketing Cloud Social Specialist

Salesforce Certified Marketing Cloud Email Specialist

Administrator certification

For $200 each, answer 65% of 60 multiple-choice/multiple-select questions in 105 minutes.

Basic Administrator

Official PDF - Salesforce Administrator Certification


The score emailed to you is summarized at the lower-right corner.

PROTIP: If you want to calculate your own score, in the email you got, highlight and copy the lines under “Section-Level Scoring:” and paste in cell A2, replacing the sample.

To prepare for the first Administrator exam:

Platform App Builder

Official PDF - Salesforce Certified Platform App Builder does not require programming.

Advanced Administrator

Official PDF - Advanced Administrator Certification

  • Security and Access 20%
  • Extending custom objects and apps 8%
  • Auditing and monitoring 6%
  • Sales cloud applications 10%
  • Service cloud applications 10%
  • Data management 10%
  • Content management 3%
  • Change management 10% [module]
  • Analytics, reports, and dashboards 10%
  • Process automation 13%

To prepare:


Administrator Certification Maintenance exam:

Many resources address content for both courses:

Follow on Twitter:

Developer certification

(which includes database administrators):

Official PDF - Certified Salesforce Platform Developer I (PD1) was previously the “DEV401” exam called “Certified Force.com Developer”.

Official PDF - Certified Salesforce Platform Developer II (PD2)

Official PDF - Salesforce Certified Commerce Cloud Digital Developer

Some exam resources address content for both courses:

  • https://developer.salesforce.com

  • http://certification.salesforce.com/developers focuses on declarative configuration rather than programming.

  • Lightning Platform Fundamentals is the “Bible” for Salesforce developer certification questions. It has “Try it” hands-on exercises to develop a Recruitment app. Its January 2015 version 9 online contained 402 pages, and was called “Force.com” instead of “Lightning”.

Salesforce offers classes:


Trailmix for Developers consists of several Trailhead modules.

  • https://trailhead.salesforce.com/trails/force_com_dev_beginner

Other exam prep. offerings:

Solution Consultant certification

These are $200 each, addressing each product line (except Knowledge Cloud, Marketing Cloud, and Service Cloud):

Resources addressing the above exams:

Designer certification

These are $400 each addressing specific aspects of architecture:


Technical Architect

The highest level of certification costs $6,000 plus travel to a Salesforce office to sit in front review board for 4 hours, with 45 minutes to present.


PROTIP: The format of what is presented are useful as mental models for newbies to keep in mind as they get an understanding of key aspects of Salesforce systems. VIDEO: Mock CTA Presentation - Laptops for Schools with Gemma Emmett

  • Actor, License, Objects/Functionality
  • [4:11] Role Hierarchy (internal and external)
  • [5:23] System Landscape
  • [8:15] Org. Strategy
  • [8:33] SSO
  • [11:12] Data Model (of objects), archival
  • [20:47] Integrations
  • [29:39] Functionality Customer Onboarding (schools, corporations, 3rd parties)
  • [30:00] Functionality Transactions

Social media


PROTIP: Beware of the age of each resource, the version each training class was created. Salesforce is undergoing rapid change in branding (to Lightning and DX plus Einstein).

More about Salesforce

This is one of a series about Salesforce

  1. Salesforce index

  2. Salesforce Ohana (about the Salesforce company, offices, mascots, emojis, and store)
  3. Salesforce Glossary (of acronyms)
  4. Salesforce Events (Conferences, local Meetups, ) to meet people face-to-face
  5. Salesforce Exhibitors (at Dreamforce)
  6. Salesforce Onboarding (Trailhead and IDEs)
  7. Salesforce Rock Stars (and influencers)

  8. Salesforce Offerings (Clouds, Industries, Domains, GitHub, editions, pricing, features, versions)
  9. Salesforce Certifications (training and exams)
  10. Salesforce Projects, Superbadges, and Sample Apps
  11. Salesforce myTrailhead for custom Trailhead content

  12. Salesforce Project Plans
  13. Salesforce Jobs (within Salesforce, with partners, etc.)
  14. Salesforce User Roles and Personas

  15. Salesforce Apps (in AppExchange)
  16. Salesforce Alexa
  17. Salesforce Heroku (external apps)
  18. Salesforce DX (Developer eXperience)

  19. Salesforce Non-Profit support
  20. Salesforce NPSP (Non-Profit Success Pack) performance (with Gatling)

  21. Salesforce Data Management
  22. Salesforce Einstein
  23. Salesforce Selenium (test automation)