At Uncanny Owl, our team works hard to understand what people are doing with Automator…
The Uncanny Automator Pro 5.3 release is all about loops. Back in August we introduced “User loops” in the Automator Pro 5.0 release, and they quickly became one of Automator’s most useful features. The capability to run actions on multiple users at once completely transformed what Automator could do, pushing it beyond the simple “integration tool” category by allowing complex batch automations.
There was only one problem: Loops could run batch operations on users only.
Enter Post loops
It took us a few months, but we’re thrilled to announce that support for post loops is now available. If you’re imagining user loops except for posts, well, you’re exactly right. When a post loop is included in a recipe, Automator loops through all posts matching whatever criteria you set and runs actions on those posts.
Adding a new post loop is as easy as you would expect:
Then choose which posts should be updated by the actions in the loop, like by post type, having a certain meta value, based on tag or category, etc.
Introducing Loop tokens
Yes, with post loops you can run regular actions, like maybe you want to take all Woo products in a certain category and populate a Google Sheet with the details. But in most cases you’re going to want to run actions on the posts you’re looping through, and to make that work, there’s a brand new category of tokens: “Loop” tokens (yes, we got really creative with this one). You’ll find them at the top of the token list in loops:
Let’s walk through an example of how you would use these new token types.
Suppose you want to update all courses in the “Northern” category and set a new price for all of those courses, where course price is stored in a meta key called “course_price”. This is what the post loop to do that might look like:
The post loop filter helps us target the correct category. Then we’re using a “Set post meta” action to set the course price, and so that we update the correct posts, we’re using the “Post ID” token from the new “Loop” token section. What this does is allow us to target the correct course to update in each loop iteration.
It can be a bit confusing, so make sure you try out post loop recipes on a Staging site or with a narrow range of posts first.
Introduced in the Uncanny Automator 5.3 release, the WooCommerce Bookings integration gets 2 new triggers in Pro:
- A booking is updated
- A booking status is changed to a specific status
Maybe when a booking is updated then Automator updates the original record in a Google Sheet, or perhaps when a booking is set to “Confirmed” status then the user is notified via WhatsApp.
New loop filters
Besides the new filters for post loops shown in the screenshot above, there are also many new filters for User loops:
- LearnDash: The user has or has not completed a course
- LearnDash: The user has or has not completed all courses in a group
- LearnDash: The user is or is not enrolled in a specific course
- LearnDash: The user is or is not enrolled in a specific group
- WooCommerce: The user has or has not purchased a specific product
- Woo Subscriptions: The user has or does not have an active subscription for a product
While conditions for actions can be used, the benefit of loop filters it that these run before the entire set of users is loaded, making loops run more efficiently.
BuddyBoss Link Previews
If you like sharing posts to BuddyBoss group activity streams, you’re in for a treat. As long as you have link previews enabled in BuddyBoss (from “Activity Settings” in BuddyBoss), you’ll see this new setting at the bottom of your action:
Just check that box and Automator will generate a preview of the URL in the activity stream post.
And that wraps up the Automator Pro 5.3 release. We hope you find the new additions useful!