What Is a Data Type in Salesforce?


Heather Bennett

What Is a Data Type in Salesforce?

When working with Salesforce, understanding data types is essential for managing and manipulating information effectively. Data types define the kind of data that can be stored in a field, such as text, numbers, dates, or even complex objects. In this article, we will explore the different data types available in Salesforce and how to utilize them.

Standard Data Types

Salesforce provides a set of standard data types that cover a wide range of information requirements. These include:

  • Text: The text data type is used to store alphanumeric characters within a specific length limit. It is commonly used for names, addresses, or any other textual information.
  • Number: The number data type is used to store numeric values such as integers or decimals.
  • Date: The date data type is used to store calendar dates without any time component.
  • Date/Time: The date/time data type is used to store both the calendar date and time information.
  • Picklist: The picklist data type allows users to select predefined values from a list. It is useful for fields with limited options like statuses or categories.

Advanced Data Types

In addition to the standard data types, Salesforce offers advanced options for handling more complex information requirements:


The SObject data type represents an object record in Salesforce. It allows you to reference another object within your custom object and establish relationships between them. This enables you to create powerful relationships and hierarchies within your org’s data structure.

Lookup Relationship

The lookup relationship data type is used to create relationships between objects. It allows you to associate a record from one object with a record in another object. This is useful for creating parent-child relationships or linking records together.


The formula data type is a calculated field that derives its value from a formula expression. It can be used to perform calculations, manipulate data, or create dynamic values based on other fields’ values within the same object.

Custom Data Types

Salesforce also allows you to create custom data types according to your specific business requirements. Custom data types can be created using point-and-click tools or through Apex code development.

In conclusion, understanding and correctly utilizing different data types in Salesforce is crucial for maintaining clean and organized data. By choosing the appropriate data type for each field, you can ensure accurate reporting, efficient searching, and effective automation in your Salesforce org.

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