Synonym Groups is another productivity feature in Salesforce that allows  you to define synonyms for specific keywords so that your users can search inside Salesforce using any of these synonyms. For example, your users can search for the keywords like “espresso”, “expresso” or even “coffee” and Salesforce will return the same reults. 

In other words, synonym groups have words or phrases that are treated equally in searches. A search for one term in a synonym group returns results for all terms in the group.

You can use Standard Synonym Groups provided by Salesforce or create custom ones. Standard Synonyms are common English language synonym groups made available in all the orgs. In a custom Synonym Group, you can include up to 6 terms in one group which more or less have the same meaning. Once created, a search for one of the term returns results for all the terms included in the group. However, the caveat is that currently only following Objects are supported during search:

  • Case
  • Chatter Feed
  • File
  • Knowledge Article
  • Idea
  • Question
  • Service Appointment
  • Service Resource
  • Service Territory
  • Work Order
  • Work Order Line Item

So let’s learn how to create and use Synonym Groups.

Create a Custom Synonym Group

Login as an admin to your Salesforce org -> go to Setup-> type “Synonym” in Quick Find Box -> Click “Synonyms”. 

search Synonym in quick find box

Click “New” besides Custom Synonym Groups.

click new

Enter the synonym terms (You can specify up to 6 terms in one synonym group) -> Select a language -> “Click Save”.

enter synonym terms

A Synonym Group is created. Now let’s see it in action. 

custom synonym group

Enhanced Search using Synonym Groups

We are taking an example of a coffee machine to explain and we have already created a Knowledge article for the same. 

knowledge article

Now let’s assume that a customer service agent gets a call from a customer who has bought their Espresso Coffee machine. He has used the machine for a while and now he is seeking guidance in descaling the coffee machine. Service rep quickly creates a case with appropriate subject line. Upon Case creation, he sees suggested Knowledge article on right side under Knowledge tab. If you notice, rep has entered the term “Espresso” in Case Subject. Still he gets a suggested article with term “Coffee” which is one of the term in Synonym group configured. Now that’s called a Smart Search 🙂    

suggested knowledge article

Rep can now quickly attach this article to Case and send an email to customer providing him steps to descale a coffee machine. 

Within no time rep was able to assist customer in an effective manner. This leads to increased customer satisfaction, first call resolution and reduced average handle time for Cases. 

References:

  1. Help Article – Configure Synonym Groups – https://help.salesforce.com/articleView?id=search_synonyms.htm&type=5