Pardot User Migration: What you need to know

by Zoe Fisher - November 24, 2020
Pardot User Migration: What you need to know

You may have already heard that Pardot’s user authentication system will be discontinued in February 2021. This is a major update and critical for Pardot-only Users. Find out more below. 

What is this change for Pardot-only Users?

Pardot’s user authentication system will soon be discontinued. And all users will be required to use Salesforce single sign-on (SSO). All Pardot users without Salesforce SSO will lose the ability to log into Pardot until they are connected to a Salesforce user. You’ll still be able to log into and use Pardot at The login process is simply changing to Log in via Salesforce

When is this happening?

February 15, 2021 – which is also the date of the Spring ’21 release.

Why is this changing?

As Salesforce states, the reason for the change is:

Security is the primary driver of this change. Trust is Salesforce’s number value and user security is a key part of that. By requiring that all users access Pardot via Salesforce SSO, Pardot can eliminate its own user authentication system and consolidate all customers onto Salesforce’s robust and extensible user security system.

What if you have several Pardot-only Users, who don’t have access to Salesforce?

Don’t panic! To support customers with Pardot-only users who can not obtain full Salesforce licenses, 100 Salesforce Identity licenses have been added to all customers orgs. Use these Identity licenses as a no-cost way of transitioning Pardot-only users to Salesforce. 

Available Identity User licences: 100


Do you or any of your 3rd party applications use the Pardot API?

Beginning with the Summer ’20 release, Pardot supports leveraging Salesforce Connected Apps & OAuth flows to authenticate to the Pardot API. This means that any integrations using the Pardot API will need to be updated to use a Salesforce user instead of a Pardot user. Get in touch for help with this.

Will Pardot-only Users on an Identity License be able to access the Pardot Lightning App?

No. Identity licenses are only intended to provide access to systems outside of Sales Cloud/Service Cloud. Therefore they provide limited access to certain functionalities, including the Pardot Lightning App. Users with an Identity license will need to access the standalone Pardot org at 

If you don’t have Salesforce

Your Account Executive should reach out to you shortly regarding the next steps, including a new Salesforce org setup. This Salesforce org will be free of charge. But it will have several restrictions placed on it. Reach out to your AE if you have not yet been contacted.

What you should be doing now

We recommend to start preparing before the end of 2020. This will ensure that your Pardot Users have all migrated over ahead of the deadline. Meaning there won’t be anyone locked out of Pardot by February 15th! We can help with the User migration to set up your Pardot-only Users on Salesforce with Identity licenses. And ensure that the Pardot User roles are kept in place for individuals.

  1. Review Pardot-only Users from Pardot (this is also a good time to clean up any old Users who may have left your company or don’t work with Pardot anymore).
  2. Create Pardot-only Users in Salesforce, so they can log in to Pardot using Salesforce SSO. 
  3. Review and update your API integrations to authenticate using Salesforce user credentials.


We also recommend enabling User Sync for a complete alignment. However it is not mandatory for this change. Salesforce also has a handy User Migration Planning Guide. You can read it here.

For expert assistance with your Pardot User migration, contact us here.

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