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Customize Navigation

Learning Objectives

After completing this unit, you'll be able to:
  • Describe the elements that display in the mobile navigation menu.
  • Explain how Smart Search Items affect mobile users.
  • Customize the mobile navigation menu.

Point Users in the Right Direction

If you’ve ever been at an airport, you’ve likely seen large signposts that help you get your bearings and find your way to certain locations, like baggage claim or a specific gate number.

Well, we need visual cues to find our way in apps, too. And that’s what the mobile navigation menu is: a signpost. Your users rely on it to get from place to place in the Salesforce mobile app as efficiently as possible.

So let’s take a look at the elements in the navigation menu and talk about how you can customize them to meet your users’ needs. Because after all, a signpost is only effective if it points people to places they actually want to go.

The Mobile Navigation Menu

Before we jump into the customization options, let’s get familiar with the navigation menu itself. By default, what your users see in the menu is determined by what’s available in your org and which tabs they’re allowed to access (based on their user permissions).

While working in the Salesforce app, you probably noticed that there are quite a few items in the menu. We won’t define every single one here. If you’re confused about any of the menu items that show up in the mobile app, see this help article.

You probably also noticed that the items in the menu are grouped into sections. We do need to discuss the different sections because they have a big influence on the way you customize the menu. So let’s break down each section and what’s in it.

A diagram that calls out the three sections of the navigation menu

  1. Menu Items: Any items you place above the Smart Search Items element when you customize the navigation menu.
  2. Smart Search Items: Includes a set of the user’s recently accessed objects. When expanded, it shows all tabs to which the user has access. Although you can control where in the menu these recent items appear, each user’s list is specific to their own usage history.
  3. Apps Section: Contains any items you place below the Smart Search Items element.

What You Can Change

One easy way to improve the mobile experience for your users is to fine-tune the navigation menu so they can get around faster. When you customize the navigation, you can add, remove, or reorder the items in the mobile menu. (Hey, maybe we could call this a navigation layout. Ha! Just kidding. No more layouts, we promise.)

Keep in mind that the Recent section of the menu is dynamic. It changes based on what a user has recently accessed in the mobile app. So although you can move the Recent section to a different spot in the menu, you don’t have any control over the items that appear in it.

Notes About Mobile Navigation

As you customize the mobile navigation menu, here are some important things to keep in mind.

  • You can’t set different menu configurations for different types of users.
  • If you want to include Visualforce pages, Lightning Pages, or Lightning components in the mobile navigation menu, you have to create tabs for them.
  • Before adding a Visualforce page to the Salesforce app, make sure the page is enabled for mobile. Thoroughly test your Visualforce pages in the Salesforce app because they don’t always work the same in the mobile app. See the resources section for more information.

Customize the Navigation Menu

OK, enough preamble! Roll up your sleeves and get ready to help DreamHouse brokers zip around in the mobile app like seasoned pros.

D’Angelo wants to customize the navigation menu so that the most important items are at the top. He also wants the mobile landing page to be the Events tab so that brokers can immediately see their schedule of showings and other meetings.

  1. From Setup, enter Navigation in the Quick Find box, then select Salesforce Navigation.
  2. Rearrange the selected items so that the top five are in the following order: Events, Chatter, Tasks, Dashboards, and Smart Search Items. The order determines how the items display in the navigation menu.


    The first item in the list becomes the mobile landing page for your users. Choose the first item wisely.

    Remember, anything you put below the Smart Search Items element appears in the Apps section of the navigation menu.

  3. Now let’s remove a few items the brokers don’t need to see: Approvals and Paused Flow Interviews.

    A screenshot of the selected items for the navigation menu

    If any of your users have Android devices, don’t remove the Smart Search Items from the menu. They won’t be able to get search results in the Salesforce for Android app.

  4. Click Save.

Test Your Changes in the Salesforce App

You know the drill! Let’s see how the improved navigation menu looks in the mobile app.

  1. Open Salesforce on your mobile device.
  2. Tap Navigation Menu Icon to open the navigation menu.
  3. Pull down to refresh.

All of our little adjustments are reflected in the menu. And with that final piece of customization, we’ve completed our mobile mission! D’Angelo can confidently roll out the Salesforce app to the DreamHouse brokers, and soon they’ll be enjoying all the productivity gains that mobility has to offer.

Next Steps

Well, that’s good news for D’Angelo. But what about your org? How do you translate your newfound knowledge into action? Now that you’re comfortable with the mobile customization tools, here’s what to do next.

  1. Check out the Salesforce Mobile App Rollout module. Start developing your mobile use cases and planning your mobile launch.
  2. Read about Salesforce Mobile App Security and Compliance so you can make sure your company’s data is safe when accessed from mobile devices.
  3. Roll out the Salesforce app to your users.
  4. Learn how you can do more with the mobile app. The Salesforce Mobile App Developer Guide is a good place to start.
  5. Get your Mobile Strategy Development badge to find out how Salesforce fits into your company’s overall mobile strategy.

That’s enough mobile goodness to keep you busy for a while. Now go forth and implement your own awesome use cases in the Salesforce app. Happy customizing!