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Salesforce Lightning and Classic – What’s the difference?

Note that this is an overview comparing Lightning and Classic, it is NOT comprehensive of all differences.

Objectives for this Resource:

Salesforce Lightning Experience is the new user interface redesign, launched in 2015.  Almost all new Salesforce environments will have this interface as the default.

Salesforce Classic is the user interface that predates Lightning Experience, and many customers still utilize this interface.

Salesforce Lightning uses a component framework, which allows for much more variation and flexibility in how records are displayed (notice the difference between an account and an opportunity).  Salesforce Classic tends to follow a similar layout for all pages (notice the similarity between an account and an opportunity).

Switch to Classic from Lightning by clicking your profile picture in the top right, then Switch to Salesforce Classic.  Lightning Experience must be enabled.

Switch to Lightning from Classic by clicking your name, then Switch to Lightning Experience.  Menu navigation may very slightly based on other configuration.  Classic must not be disabled.


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