Workflows and organizations will only getting larger and harder to manage as a business grows. Fortunately, you don’t have to be the one to deal with this problem! With our Zapier beginner’s guide, you can automate your organization and efficiently move information between webapps instantly, so you can focus on what you value most!
Today, we’re gonna take you through a Zapier beginner’s guide so you can hit the ground running and simplify your work. We’ll go over what automations are and what they can do, how to create an automation, and pricing plans so you know what to look for when scaling to meet your needs.
What is automation?
Automation just means that things happen automatically. You can do one thing, and have that automatically transfer into other actions without the need to do it yourself. It’s like a personal assistant – but faster!
Automation can be split into two different phases: When, and Then. Two variables you get to determine.
- When this happens.
- Then do this.
For example, when I send an email on Outlook to my team, then add a reminder to follow up in 1 day.
What is Zapier?
So how does Zapier come into this? Zapier lets you skip the coding involved with automation, and just get to the automation itself. Zapier sorts out the code, so you just need to tell it what to do and it will carry it out.
What can I use Zapier for?
- Frequent Tasks: Sending a weekly reminder to fill out an employee feedback form.
- Moving Data from One App to Another: Adding tasks on a project management app to your personal calendar.
- Tasks That Don’t Need Much Thinking: Copying a list of emails to a spreadsheet.
These tasks don’t need human comprehension to do, and that’s exactly what Zapier is for. Anything that can be done without much thought, but which takes time can be automated, and thus, can be solved with Zapier.
How do I automate with Zapier?
Our Zapier beginner’s guide will show you step by step! Zapier has a unique system for automation, called a Zap. Each Zap has a When, and one or more Then that dictates what happens. The trigger will tell Zapier what the conditions are to trigger the Zap, and the action is what is performed afterwards. Zapier integrations makes sure that you can use it with thousands of apps.
Creating Your First Zap:
Start by figuring out what you want your Zap to do. What applications do I want to use Zapier with? What do I want to trigger the Zap? What will my Zap do after being triggered? What do I want my Zap to interact with?
For this example, we’ll say that you want to move information from a Google Forms feedback questionnaire to Microsoft Excel. Zapier integration means that this example can apply to almost any app you want to use with Zapier! When there’s a new submission to the questionnaire, you want Zap to add the form information into an existing workbook in Excel.
Before you start:
Enter a sample submission into your questionnaire. This way, you know what the information will look like when setting up. Use an obviously false name in the form, so you can check to make sure the Zap works without risking the answers are confused to be legitimate. Create your workbook, and make sure to name the columns. Zap needs named columns to work.
Set up a trigger:
Use the Zap Editor to create new Zaps and edit ones already created. Select the app you want your trigger to be tied to. In this case, we will choose Google Forms.
Then, choose a trigger event. Once you’ve synced Zapier to the trigger app, you can select the specific form we want to be the trigger.
Test to see if the trigger works by inputting that example response from earlier, and clicking “Test Trigger”.
Set up an action:
Just like before, select your action app. This time, we will choose Excel.
Then, choose your action event. Select your spreadsheet, then choose the event that will create a new row. This means that the information submitted will be inputted into a new row for your review.
When you’re done, click “Continue”. You’ve be prompted to login, and after things are synced you’re ready for the next step.
Customizing the action:
This part is critical. Your Zap can now read information, but still doesn’t know where to put it. Zapier separates the data that is found into its various fields automatically, but still needs to be taught where to put that information. This is called “mapping”.
Zapier will see the different labeled columns in the Excel you’ve prepared before. Then, you need to match the inputs from your form to the columns. Once this is done, the Zap is ready to go!
Testing your Zap:
Enter the example input and make sure everything looks right. Once you’re done, you can hit “Turn on Zap” to turn it on!
Zapier Pricing (/mo):
Free: 5 Zaps, 15 minute Update Time,100 Task runs, and 2 users makes this ideal for those looking to test out Zapier. It offers Single-step Zaps only, so getting the most out of it will be easy.
Starter (19.99USD): 20 Zaps, 15 minute Update Time, 750 Task runs, and 2 users makes this great for small businesses with a need for small-scale automation. WIth multi-step Zap and 3 Premium App allowances, you unlock a lot of super powerful features at this tier.
Professional (49.00USD): Unlimited Zaps, 2 min Update Time, 2,000 Task runs, and 5 users makes this great for small businesses with larger-scale automation. With unlimited Premium App allowances, custom logic paths, and auto-replay, this tier offers almost all of Zapier’s features.
Team (299.00USD): Unlimited Zaps, 1 minute Update Time, 50,000 Task runs, and unlimited users means this tier is ideal for larger teams with a large demand for Tasks. Unlocking premier support also means that help is always available for newer members or for new features.
Company (599.00USD): Unlimited Zaps, 1 minute Update Time, 100,000 Task runs, and unlimited users means this tier will satisfy even the largest company. With upgradable capacity to 2 million Task runs, and SCIM, Apps Control, SSO, and custom data retention, this tier unlocks administration tools to give managers extended control over Zapier.
We hope this Zapier beginner’s guide helps you get started with Zapier, and automate your workspace!
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