Salesforce, a leading CRM platform, facilitates extensive data management and business process capabilities through its comprehensive suite of APIs. Among these, the REST API stands as a pillar for developers, offering a versatile set of resources tailored to various integration needs. Key among these resources are the sObject, Query, and Composite resources, each serving distinct purposes and offering different benefits and limitations. Understanding the nuances of these resources can empower developers to make informed decisions, optimizing their Salesforce integrations for efficiency, performance, and scalability. Let’s dive into a comparative analysis of these REST API resources.

REST API sObject Resources

Functionality: sObject resources are the foundation of Salesforce data manipulation, allowing developers to perform CRUD (Create, Read, Update, Delete) operations on individual records of any standard or custom object within Salesforce. They provide a direct line to manipulate specific data points, making them indispensable for detailed data management tasks.

User Experience: The granularity of control sObject resources offer enhances the user experience by allowing precise data operations. Applications integrated using sObject resources can offer real-time data updates, direct record manipulation, and detailed information displays, leading to a responsive and intuitive user interface.

Behavior and Limits: sObject resources operate on a per-record basis, which can impact performance and API limits during bulk operations. Salesforce imposes API request limits, so heavy use of sObject operations in large-scale scenarios could necessitate careful planning and optimization to avoid exceeding these limits.

JavaScript Example for sObject Resource (Create a Contact)

This example uses the Fetch API, which is widely supported in modern browsers:

REST API Query Resource

Functionality: The Query resource leverages SOQL (Salesforce Object Query Language) to retrieve data from Salesforce. It’s designed to efficiently search and filter data across multiple objects, returning results in a structured format that can be easily parsed and utilized by applications. 

User Experience: By enabling complex queries that can span multiple objects and return aggregated or filtered data sets, the Query resource significantly enhances application capabilities. Users benefit from fast, dynamic data retrieval that can support complex application features like reporting, dashboards, and data analysis tools. 

Behavior and Limits: While the Query resource is powerful for data retrieval, it’s subject to SOQL query limitations and can be affected by large data volumes, potentially impacting performance. Optimizing query structure and being mindful of Salesforce’s governor limits on query rows are essential practices to maintain efficiency. 

JavaScript Example for Query Resource (Query Contacts) 

This example queries contacts with the last name “Doe”: 

REST API Composite Resources 

Functionality: Composite resources are designed for efficiency and reduced API usage. They allow developers to bundle multiple operations into a single API call, including combinations of sObject, Query, and other API interactions. This can range from creating or updating multiple records across different objects to executing a series of dependent operations in a transactional manner. 

User Experience: The primary benefit of Composite resources is the significant reduction in network latency and the optimization of API usage. This leads to faster application performance and a smoother user experience, especially in complex integration scenarios involving multiple Salesforce interactions. 

Behavior and Limits: Composite resources are a powerful way to streamline operations and minimize API calls, but they require careful planning and error handling due to their transactional nature. Understanding the composition of requests and managing the complexity of combined operations are key to leveraging Composite resources effectively. 

JavaScript Example for Composite Resource (Create an Account and Contact) 

This example demonstrates a composite request to create an account and a contact in a single call: 


Choosing the right Salesforce REST API resource depends on the specific needs of your integration or application. sObject resources are ideal for direct, record-specific operations, offering precision and control. The Query resource provides powerful data retrieval capabilities, perfect for applications requiring complex data searches. Composite resources offer a way to optimize API usage and improve performance, especially beneficial in complex integration scenarios requiring multiple API interactions. By understanding the strengths, limitations, and best use cases for each of these REST API resources, developers can design and implement Salesforce integrations that are not only efficient and scalable but also tailored to provide an optimal user experience.