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Collecting complex data? Here's how to automate it with Zapier

By Krystina Martinez · October 23, 2020
Hero image with an icon of a spreadsheet, database, or list

Whenever you need to handle complex information, such as payment information or signatures, a data collection tool will get the job done better than traditional form builders.

Even so, sometimes you need to move the info you're collecting to other places, such as your billing app or appointment scheduler.

Instead of downloading and importing CSV files, or worse—copying and pasting information—Zapier can automate your information between web apps. Our automatic workflows, which we call Zaps, send information from one app to another, so you can reduce repetitive data entry, and focus on more meaningful work.

We've rounded up a few Zap templates—what we call our pre-made workflows—to help you optimize your data collection and get more done.

You'll need a Zapier account to use the workflows in this piece. If you don't have an account yet, it's free to get started.

Save data to a spreadsheet or database

With all the data you're collecting, you'll need a place to store and analyze that information to make key decisions. You'll likely need to use a database or spreadsheet app to make sense of everything. Use one of these Zaps to automatically save new data in an app like Google Sheets, so you can skip the CSV files and go straight to the analysis.

Add rows to Google Sheets when new Fulcrum records change status

Add rows to Google Sheets when new Fulcrum records change status
  • Fulcrum logo
  • Google Sheets logo
Fulcrum + Google Sheets

If you need something more robust than a spreadsheet, Airtable or MySQL could suit your needs.

Discover more ways to automate Airtable and MySQL with Zapier.

You can also log form data as notes or documents, if individual submissions require a more in-depth review.

Add context to CRM records

If you're also using a customer relationship management (CRM) app to track data about your customers and suppliers, connecting data with their records will help you make better decisions. Keeping CRMs updated is already a herculean task—try an automatic workflow to add or update a contact when you enter new information in an app like Device Magic or a customer fills out a form.

Stay in touch

Once you've completed a project or job for a customer, it's important to stay in touch so you can continue to earn their business. Email marketing lists are an easy way to ensure customers continue to remember your company and keep you in mind for the next job.

These Zaps will automatically add a customer to your email marketing list or marketing automation app whenever you collect the customer's email in your mobile form.

Log your work

If you need to submit records of services rendered or time spent on tasks in order to get paid for your work, it's important to keep an accurate log. But if you're out in the field, it can be difficult to juggle time-tracking or invoicing on top of capturing geolocation info. Or if you're surveying the condition of a customer's roof—the last thing you're thinking about is filling in your timesheet.

You can use a Zap to automatically create a timesheet when you create a new entry in Fulcrum or JobNimbus. You can focus on the important things—like not falling off of a roof—and your timesheet will be waiting for you at the end of the job.

Send notifications

If work needs to be delegated among a few people, one of the simplest ways to accomplish that is to set up notifications whenever a form is filled out or a job is completed.

Use an automatic workflow to send a text, email, or message in a chat app whenever specific actions occur, so your team can thank a customer for their business or follow up on an inquiry.

With a filter step—available on our paid plans—you can also limit notifications to specific conditions.

Connect data with where you do business

These workflows can help you integrate your data collection with other processes, so you don't have to worry about manual data entry or duplicating efforts. It'll keep you and your team on task, minimize errors, and make sure you've got all the important information you need right where you need it.

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A Zap with the trigger 'When I get a new lead from Facebook,' and the action 'Notify my team in Slack'