Extensions are pre-built software components that can either add a set of custom features to Zoho CRM, or integrate Zoho CRM with a third-party service. Zoho CRM's flexible approach to business management means it can support a wide range of industry-specific requirements, but no two businesses are exactly alike. For more unique user scenarios, extensions can deliver robust functionality without requiring complicated manual customizations. For example, not every business will need built-in sms functionality, but some sales models require SMS to identify, cultivate, and maintain new customers. Depending on need, users can pick and choose which functionality they want, then simply download an extension instead of creating a new, built-in feature.
To help create new Zoho CRM extensions, we've launched the Zoho Developer Console. With it, developers can build powerful extensions and third-party integrations, then sell them to the larger community of Zoho CRM users through the Zoho Marketplace . The Zoho Maketplace makes it easy and profitable for even non-Zoho users and independent developers to begin designing and selling their own extensions.
The extensions you can create using the Zoho Developer Console fall into one of two categories:
Native extensions extend Zoho CRM's functionality by adding bundles of custom features to your system. Native extensions can be used to add one or more of the following components:
- Custom modules and fields
- Workflow automations
- Related lists
- Web tabs
- Custom buttons and links
- Email and inventory templates
Suppose a CRM user has a large number of unconverted leads. To identify which leads should be contacted first, it would be helpful to assign a score to each lead, based on a set criteria. To address this market need, a developer can design a native extension that creates new module and a simple workflow rule that scores a lead based on region, industry, lead source, and purchase history. Once build and bundled, these time-saving customizations can be sold to other CRM users as an extension.
Third-party integration extensions allow users to link their Zoho CRM accounts with outside services such as Pandadoc, Google, Zendesk,etc. With an integration enabled, Zoho CRM is able to push data to or from a third-party application, either through OAuth 2.0 or SAML. While OAuth facilitates data transfer between Zoho CRM and the third-party service, SAML enables Single Sign On with third-party services, where Zoho acts as the identity provider. To create a third-party integration extension, you'll need to include connectors , custom variables , and connected apps . Depending on how the data will be handled within Zoho CRM, you may also need to add basic CRM components, such as fields or modules.