2. Development#

Building#

Building an app on Zapier necessitates having one eye on the technical bits and one eye on the user experience.

Some of the best apps on Zapier are built when pairing an engineer and a product manager together but it's certainly not a requirement! If you adhere to the Planning guide and Style guide anyone can build a great app on Zapier.

The best place to start is our Getting Started guide.

Testing#

While you're building your app, it's best to have a separate tab open in your browser to the user-facing Zap editor. As you're adding triggers and actions you can hard-refresh the page to see the changes live immediately.

Note: you might have to refresh a few times for new triggers and actions to appear.

After you're done building, you will want to invite users to try your App before making it available to a wider audience.

Invite-Only#

As you're getting close to finishing development, you’ll want others to try out your app using Zapier. You can invite co-workers or your users to provide feedback. Invitees must have a Zapier account, which they can create for free during the invite process.

Keep in mind when your app is in Invite-Only mode, you won’t be able to make edits. It’s best to clone your app and make your cloned version Invite-Only.

App visibility: private

To switch an app to Invite-Only, scroll down to the Visibility section of the app builder. Click the “Invite Users to App” button.

App visibility: invite-only

Then you can click the “Invite Users to App” link to pre-populate an email to a user. Alternatively, you can copy the invite URL (which is unique to your app, but not to each user).

Invite screen

Users will see a page that explains that you have invited them to your app, covers some common questions about Zapier, and explains that you will support your app while in beta.

After accepting the invite, users will land in the Zapier editor, where they are prompted to build a Zap using your app.

It's a good idea to reach out to the users you invited and check in on their experience using your app with Zapier so that you can identify any problematic usability issues before making your app Public.

App management and status#

A common pattern is to have several versions of the same app in your account. You can generate a copy of an app by cloning it.

There are several status' your app can be in.

Private is the most common status and is the default. A private app is only available for your user account and can only be seen by you. Only Private apps can be edited and deleted. A Private app can only be deleted if there are no Zaps which depend on it.

Invite-Only is used when you want to share the app with another user. This will give you a shareable URL other users can click on to enable the app in their Zapier account. Invite-Only apps cannot be edited. If you'd like to delete an Invite-Only app please contact us.

You can begin creating Zap templates as an Invite-Only app but they won’t be published or shareable until your app is in beta or Public.

Public is status your app will be in if you choose to go through the activation process. Public apps are available for all users. Public apps cannot be edited or deleted. Beta apps are also Public

Another important concept is migration. If you want to make changes to an Invite-Only or Public app, please follow our Deploy process.

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