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How Zapier's apps make your workflows even more powerful

Automation inspiration

6 min read

How Zapier's apps make your workflows even more powerful

By Justin Pot · April 7, 2020
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With Zapier, you can connect thousands of apps to create customized workflows. But when you go to connect your favorite apps, you might run into a few things those apps can't do. That's why we built a collection of our own tools that let you customize your workflows even more. There are tools for sending out email or SMS notifications, parsing and creating RSS feeds, and manipulating incoming data so that it works better in the app you're sending it to.

These apps do all kinds of things and are hard to summarize, so let's explore some examples.

Email by Zapier

Email isn't dead, despite predictions to the contrary. And it doesn't seem like it's going to die anytime soon. Email by Zapier is a tool you can use to make your inbox even more powerful. Using this you can set up automated emails from your favorite apps, keeping you up-to-date.

For example, with a Zap—our word for Zapier's automated workflows—you can instantly see survey and form responses in your inbox.

You can create your own email newsletters for any RSS feed or Twitter account, helping you keep informed without the need to check those websites a million times a day. (We're not saying this is the cure for social media addiction, but it might be).

But Email by Zapier doesn't just send you emails—you can also use it to send information to other apps. For example, you can forward emails to a custom Zapier email address to upload attachments to cloud storage services.

You could also forward emails to a particular address in order to share them with your team on Slack.

You could even set up email notifications for new jobs here at Zapier, assuming you'd like to work with me (I personally wouldn't like to work with me but whatever makes you happy).

Note: With Email by Zapier, you can create a custom email address that can take information from an app and send it to another one with an email. It's important to note that any emails sent with Email by Zapier will be from a no-reply email address and you won't have an email inbox. If you want readers to reply to you from these emails or be able to manage them from an inbox, you'll need to use a transactional email app. Check out our Email by Zapier guide to learn how to set it up or review our help documentation.

SMS by Zapier

SMS may be old-fashioned, but it works. Notably, it works even if you don't have an internet connection. With Zapier you can get SMS notifications with information from the apps you use every day, keeping you connected when 5G, 4G, and even 3G signals are scarce.

You can, for example, set up a workflow that sends you a text message every time a potential customer fills out a lead form. This allows you to call back quickly, even when you're away from your computer.

And there are plenty of other uses. You can get weather updates by SMS every day or just find out if it's going to rain.

You can also use this to bring back SMS notifications from apps that dropped them. Google used to offer SMS alerts for Google Calendar events, for example. With this Zap, you can recreate that feature yourself.

Or you could use Twitter like it's 2007. Set this up and you'll get a text message whenever a particular user sends a tweet.

These are just a few ideas. Check out our SMS by Zapier integration to learn more and review our help documentation for assistance setting it up.

RSS by Zapier

RSS feeds are a great way to keep up with your favorite websites. Combined with RSS by Zapier, these feeds can be used to push information to thousands of apps, all without you having to do much of anything.

These Zaps let you automatically post articles from your blog or website to social networks.

Or, if there's a website offering notifications you need to keep track of, you can set up your own SMS notifications.

You can even save every article from a website into a bookmark app like Pocket, which is perfect if there's a writer whose articles you never want to miss.

RSS by Zapier also works the other way, allowing you to create RSS feeds using content from thousands of apps. Make an RSS feed of social media content, which lets you keep track of it without creating an account.

These are just a few ideas. Check out other popular ways to use RSS by Zapier.

Schedule by Zapier

Your Zaps, for the most part, kick off when something happens in an app, but sometimes you might want to schedule your workflow to run at a very specific time. That's what Schedule by Zapier is for. This simple app lets you pick a time for your Zap to run, allowing you to make things happen on a routine basis. You could, for example, send an email at the same time every day or every week.

If you manage projects using a to-do app like Trello and have a recurring task you need to be reminded of, you can set up an automation that will create cards regularly.

Or you could set something up for the fun of it. Maybe schedule a random GIF to show up in Slack once a day?

These are just a few examples. Check out our Schedule by Zapier integration to learn more.

Learn more about using Schedule by Zapier to manage recurring tasks or review our help documentation for assistance getting started.

Formatter

With Formatter, you can add a step to your Zap to make sure that information like text, dates, numbers, and phone numbers are correctly formatted from one step to the next. You can split text, change date formats, extract email addresses or links, change capitalization, convert from markdown to HTML, and more. Learn more in our guide to Formatter and keep all your information usable, no matter the start or end point.

For more assistance using Formatter, review our help documentation.

Paths

Zapier's Paths tool is for anyone who needs a Zap to do more than one job. Paths allow you to create conditional workflows based on the information it receives.

Think of it as a choose-your-own-adventure for automation. For example, let's say you use a form to collect leads for your business. If someone is interested in a particular product, you can use Paths to alert the correct team in Slack, depending on what the product is.

That's just one example. The sky's the limit when it comes to Paths. Check out our guide to Paths to learn how to use it.

URL Shortener

Zapier's built-in URL shortener allows you to create simplified links in the middle of a Zap. You can take links from a bookmarking app, RSS feed, or cloud storage platform, pass them through the URL shortener, then send them to social media, spreadsheets, or any other app on the Zapier platform. Learn more about using URL Shortener by Zapier in our help documentation.

Zapier Chrome extension

You can use the Zapier Chrome extension to launch workflows from your browser. When you install the extension, you're able to click a button to send information about any website—including its title, the URL, and custom fields you create—to a spreadsheet, task management program, CRM, or any other type of app that works with Zapier. Learn more in our help documentation.

Lead score

Use Lead Score by Zapier to find information about people and companies based on their email address, using MadKudu.com. You can use this integration to enrich leads, subscribers, and more. Learn about how to use Lead Score by Zapier in our help documentation.

Delay

Delay by Zapier can be inserted in the middle of a multi-step Zap so you can pause the rest of the workflow for a predetermined time. For example, say you want to send a follow-up email one day or one week after someone fills out a form—Delay allows you to do that from within the same Zap. Learn more about setting up Delay in our help documentation.

Translate

Use Translate by Zapier when you need to translate text from one language to another. You can choose from more than 100 languages, and set up the Zap to translate between known languages, or to have Zapier guess the original language of the source material. Learn more about how to use Translate in our help documentation.

Zapier Manager

Use Zapier Manager to stay on top of things happening in your Zapier account. You can use it to track Zap errors, invite team members, create folders, know when you reach your task limit, to find apps, and more. Learn more about how to get started with Zapier Manager in our help documentation.

But wait, there's more

We've outlined some of the most popular built-in apps above, but it's really just the beginning.

Want to learn more? Check out all of the Zapier-built tools.

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Justin Pot picture

Justin Pot

Justin Pot is a staff writer at Zapier based in Hillsboro, Oregon. He loves technology, people, and nature, not necessarily in that order. You can follow Justin on Twitter: @jhpot. You don't have to. But you can.

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