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Connect Your WordPress Website to Airtable with Automator

There are times when running a WordPress website can get a little messy. Between your spreadsheets, your image galleries, your client or member lists, your content calendar, your contributor and affiliate lists, your… you get the idea. Fortunately, you can consolidate all of your WordPress website data into a single, easy-to-use database.

Connect your WordPress website to Airtable with Automator and make data-entry a thing of the past. The best part is that, with Automator and Airtable, you can start building bigger and better databases without spending any money!

What is Airtable?

For the tech-enthusiasts in the crowd who enjoy using industry jargon, Airtable is a cloud-based collaborative relational database management system (RDBMS) service. Try saying that five times fast. For everyone else in the crowd (myself included) who might find all those techy-words a little tongue-twisting, there is an easier definition. Simply put, Airtable is a database that allows you and your team to store information, create relationships between that information and organize and view it however you’d like.

Airtable Homepage

In spite of its sophistication, Airtable offers an intuitive, familiar and user-friendly interface that puts the power of relational databases right at your fingertips—no SQL fluency required. With Airtable, you can consolidate your Excel spreadsheets, synchronize your Google Calendars and centralize your image galleries. There really is no limit to what you can accomplish with Airtable.

All of this doesn’t come cheaply however—it comes totally freely! You can get started with the free version of Airtable and still enjoy the best this relational database has to offer. As your database—and business—grows, upgrading to Airtable Plus, Pro or Enterprise won’t break the bank either.

Click here for Airtable’s full pricing schedule.

How Does Airtable Work?

Airtable has a simple, hierarchical structure that makes storing, sharing and analyzing data easy and—luckily for your data entry clerk—actually quite enjoyable. The basic components of Airtable are:

  • Workspaces
  • Bases
  • Tables
  • Fields
  • Records
  • Views

Workspaces

Workspaces house collections of bases and can each have their own unique set of workspace collaborators. It’s easiest to think of workspaces as different departments within a company. In the picture below, we have two workspaces; Marketing & Media and HR & Legal.

Airtable Workspaces

Bases

Bases are the individual databases where you’ll store all of your data. Databases generally start out in a familiar spreadsheet format called a “Grid” but they are infinitely customizable once you start to populate them with data.

Airtable Bases

Tables

Each base can contain an infinite number of tables. Tables are similar to worksheets in a spreadsheet. You can use them to store various types of related data. For example, in our Event Planning base, we can have various tables to store data such as event schedules, speakers, attendees and budgets.

Airtable Tables

Fields

In Airtable, fields are the individual columns within tables. Fields store a specific type of data, from simple text to images and formulas. Fields are designed and intended to keep your data consistent and organized across the database.

Airtable Fields

Records

Records are the fundamental building block of your Airtable database. They are similar to rows in a spreadsheet where each “cell” that intersects with a field (or column) represents a data point for that record. In our Event Planning base, each activity is a record with data stored in various fields.

Airtable Records

Views

Views is just one of the many ways that Airtable sets itself apart from other organizational and collaborative tools. Once you’ve populated your base with data, you can change the way you view that information with just a click. Select the calendar view for events, the timeline view for sequential information, the gallery view for products or switch between them all—whatever catches your fancy!

Airtable Views

What is Uncanny Automator?

Uncanny Automator is the #1 automation plugin for WordPress websites. With Automator, you can create combinations of triggers and actions to connect your favorite apps and plugins, automate your workflows and, most importantly, save yourself loads of time and money. 

Uncanny Automator Homepage

With Automator, you can sync data from your WordPress website to your Airtable databases without having to write a single line of code or manually enter the information. Pair the most powerful automation plugin with the most powerful database tool to create seamless workflows.

Click here to download the FREE Uncanny Automator plugin or click here for Automator’s full pricing schedule.

Connect Your WordPress Website to Airtable

Now that you’ve signed up for Airtable and installed the Automator plugin on your WordPress website, you’re just a few clicks away from creating a fully automated database. Automator will connect your WordPress website to Airtable using a webhook. We promise, it’s not nearly as techy-techy as it sounds. If you can copy and paste, you can use Automator’s webhook feature.

Step 1: Open Your Airtable Base

From your Airtable account page, select the base you’d like to have connected to your WordPress website. We’ve selected the base Event Planning from our Marketing & Media workspace as pictured above. In this example, we’ll show you how to automatically add attendees to your Airtable Event Planning base using WPForms and Automator.

Step 2: Add Your Airtable Automation Trigger

From the base, click Automations in the top left-hand corner of your screen.

Airtable Automations

From the Automations screen, click Add trigger then select When webhook received from the drop-down list that appears.

Airtable Triggers When Webhook Received

Step 3: Copy Your Webhook URL

Under the Properties panel, click Copy next to your webhook URL. In one of the following steps, we’re going to paste this URL into an Automator recipe. This is how Automator knows where, in the whole world wide web, to send your valuable WordPress data.

Airtable Webhook URL

Step 4: Create a New Recipe

Now, from your WordPress Admin Sidebar, navigate to Automator > Add New. In the pop-up window that appears, select Logged-in users.

Automator Recipe Type Selector Logged-in users

Step 5: Name Your Recipe

We’ll be navigating between your WordPress Admin screen and your Airtable account screen so it’s a good idea to name your recipe before you forget. We’ve named this recipe WPForms to Airtable: Event Planning so we know what this recipe does at a glance.

Step 6: Configure Your Trigger

In the Triggers panel, select WPForms.

Automator Trigger Selector WPForms

From the drop-down list that appears, select A user submits a form.

Automator Triggers WPForms A user submits a form

Automator will then prompt you to select one of your forms. We’ve selected our Event Registration Form. Once you’ve selected the correct one, click Save. Your trigger should look like this:

Automator Trigger WPForms Live

Step 7: Paste Your Webhook URL Into Automator

In the Actions panel, click Add action and select Airtable.

Automator Actions Menu Airtable

From the drop-down list that appears, select Send data to Airtable webhook. The next thing you’ll want to do is to paste the URL from your Airtable Automations screen into the field labeled URL. If you need to copy it again, return to the Airtable Automations screen and click Copy.

Automator Actions Airtable Webhook URL

*Note that anyone with your Airtable webhook URL can trigger your Airtable automations. Only share the webhook URL with people who should have access to your Airtable base.

Step 8: Finish Configuring Your Action

Automator will already have auto-filled the techy-techy fields that Airtable will use to interpret the incoming data so you don’t have to fill it in yourself. See, no code!

Scroll down to the bottom of the Actions panel to the Body section. This is where you get to specify the data that you want to send to Airtable. This section consists of two fields: one labeled Key and the other labeled Value. In simple terms, data in webhooks is stored and organized in key/value pairs. Keys describe values—that’s it.

You can name your keys whatever you’d like—but static names are always best—and set the values to anything. However, it’s best to keep it simple because the keys will tell you later on what the value represents. For our example, we have created key/value pairs that correspond to the input fields in our event registration form as well as the records in our Airtable base so that we never get confused.

In the first empty Key field, for example, we have typed “name”. In the corresponding Value field, we’ve selected Name from the drop-down list that appears when you click the token symbol.

Automator Actions Airtable Key/Value Pairs

To send more data to Airtable, click Add pair. You can add as many pairs of keys and values as you’d like but, once again, we’ve only selected the pairs that correspond to the fields within our event registration form as well as the records in our Airtable base. It should look something like this:

Automator Actions Airtable Key/Value Pairs

Once you’ve added all of your pairs, click Send test. This will ensure that all of the data is formatted correctly and inform Airtable on the data sets that the webhook will receive when the automation is activated. If all has gone well, you should receive this message:

Automator Actions Webhook Send test Success

Double-check that the test was successful by navigating to your Airtable Automations screen. At the bottom of the Properties panel, you should see a Results section that looks similar to this:

Airtable Webhook Test Results

After you’ve double-checked that Automator and Airtable and talking “techy” to each other, return to your WordPress Admin Sidebar and click Save.

Step 9: Go Live on Automator

Toggle your recipe from Draft to Live. It should look something like this:

Automator to Airtable Webhook Recipe

Step 10: Configure Your Airtable Automation

Now that you’ve sliced, diced, flambéed and plated your Automator recipe, it will automatically send the paired data you selected to your Airtable base. But Airtable still has to know what to do with this delicious data once it arrives. Fortunately, much like with Automator recipes, configuring your Airtable automations doesn’t require any coding skill—just a love for saving time.

In your Airtable Automations screen, click Add action and select Create record.

Airtable Create Record

In the Configuration section on the right-hand side, select the table you’d like to receive the new data. In our example, that would be the Attendees table.

Airtable Table Drop-Down List

Under Fields click Choose field then select the field from the Attendees table that you would like to sync with your Automator recipe. For example, we’ve selected Name.

Airtable Field Drop-Down List

In the Name field, click on the plus sign then click body under Insert value from field.

Airtable Field Data Selector

You may recognize the drop-down list that appears—these are the key/value pairs that we put into Automator! Select the corresponding data for the field. In our example, that would be the name/{{850:WPFORMS:840|1}} pair where name is the key and {{850:WPFORMS:840|1}} is the dynamic value pulled from our registration form.

Airtable Webhook Data Selector

When you’re done setting up your fields, you can test your automation without even having to fill out your registration form. In the Test Step section, simply click Run as configured then Run test.

Aitable Automation Run Test

If the test was successful, Airtable will show you a report indicating that a record has been created.

Airtable Automation Run Test Results

Don’t forget to toggle your Airtable automation to On so you can sit back and watch as your database populates itself!

Bigger, Better Bases with Automator

Now that you know how to connect your WordPress website to Airtable, you’re going to be dancing digital circles around those tech enthusiasts! Use Airtable to manage your events, keep track of your WooCommerce inventory or plan your LearnDash courses—or do all three!

How do you use your WordPress website data? What are some of the ways that you use Automator and Airtable to improve your workflows? Let us know in the comments section below.

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