The Complete Guide to ConvertKit Automation

How To Set Up Automations In ConvertKit

ConvertKit automations are simple, and their trigger-then-action functionality is highly intuitive. When set correctly, automations will free you from menial tasks, so you can continue doing your true work. Following is our guide to ConvertKit Automation, and what that can look like for your account! 

Jump to:

The Automation Page

Automation Rules

Triggers

Actions

Creating a new Automation

Blueprints

RSS Feeds

Automation FAQ

The Automation Page

First up: the Automation page! This is what you will see when you click on the Automation tab, within your account: 

You'll notice that you start on the "Automations" tab, under Automations. 

Automation Rules

The next tab is Rules. This is where all of your Automation Rules live! An Automation rule uses "If This Then That" logic. You set up a trigger, such as "clicks a link" or "makes a purchase," and an action, such as "add a tag" or "add to a Sequence." The link trigger causes the action to fire. 

Screenshot 2016-06-28 15.01.51

RSS Feeds

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RSS Feeds are the second third tab, within your Automations page. Here is where you can feed your blog posts directly into Broadcasts! Scroll down to learn more about how they work.

Integrations

The last tab, under Automations, is our internal Integrations page, which has instructions for connecting to some of our most popular integrations. For a complete list of integrations and instructions, you can also visit our  Integrations page

Screenshot 2016-05-24 13.36.41

Triggers

Here is where your automation begins. Triggers are the event that starts the rule... or triggers it. (See what we did there.) This event must occur for the following Action to occur. 

ConvertKit Hint: It is important to note that these triggers must be automated--Actions won't be taken if you add a tag manually, for example. They will not fire retroactively. 

To get started, you'll simply choose your trigger from the dropdown list, like we've pictured here: 

Screenshot 2016-06-28 15.04.55

Here's a bit more about each trigger: 

Subscribes to a Sequence

When a user subscribes to a  Sequence.

They would need to be added to the sequence via automation first. 

When you select this trigger, choose your sequence from the dropdown menu.

Subscribes to a Form

When a user subscribes to a  Form.

This can be their initial opt-in, or subscribed via other automation.

When you select this trigger, choose your form from the dropdown menu.

Completes a Sequence

When a user completes a sequence.

This happens immediately after the last published email in a sequence is sent.

When you select this trigger, choose your sequence from the dropdown menu.

Clicks a link

When a user clicks a link inside a sequence or a  Broadcast.

When you select this trigger, you will enter your URL, and name your link. This name is internal only, so you can choose from a list of your Link Triggers.

Tag Added

When a tag is added to a subscriber.

This must happen via automation for it to trigger another automation.

When you select this trigger, choose a tag from the dropdown menu or  create new tag.

Tag Removed

When a tag is removed from a subscriber.

This must happen via automation for it to trigger another automation.

When you select this trigger, choose a tag from the dropdown menu or create new tag.

Purchases a Product

When a  user makes a purchase via one of our direct integrations:

Gumroad

Teachable

Shopify

Squarespace Commerce

Stripe

JustUno

Recart

Privy

SendOwl

Thinkific

Poda

SamCart

You will need to connect these integrations before they will show up as options in the Automations page.

Once connected, choose your platform, and then choose the product you would like to attach to an Automation.

Actions

This is like Step 2 after setting up your trigger. Actions are what happens after the trigger, like this: once the trigger occurs, the action occurs. You'll see Actions on the right hand side of the rule page, opposite the Trigger field: 

Screenshot 2016-06-28 15.05.00

Subscribe to a Sequence

This will subscribe a  user to a sequence after any one of the events above.

When you select this action, choose your sequence from the drop-down menu.

Unsubscribe from a Sequence

This will  unsubscribe a user from a sequence after any one of the events above.

When you select this action, choose your sequence from the drop-down menu.

Subscribe to a Form

This will subscribe a user to a form after any one of the events above.

When you select this action, choose your form from the drop-down menu.

Unsubscribe from a Form

This will unsubscribe a user from a form after any one of the events above.

When you select this action, choose your form from the drop-down menu.

Add Tag

This will add a tag after any one of the events above.

When you select this action, choose your tag from the drop-down menu.

Remove Tag

This will  remove a tag after any one of the events above.

When you select this action, choose your tag from the drop-down menu.

Creating a new Automation

Now you're ready to create a new Automation Rule! To do this, click "Add New Rule" on the Automation page. You must select at least one trigger and at least one action. You may select more than one trigger or action, using the little "+" button, but keep in mind:

  • If you select more than one trigger, this is an "OR" rule. Either trigger must occur to receive the action, but both triggers do not need to occur.
  • If you select more than one action, this is an "AND" rule. All actions will be applied if any trigger occurs.

Once you save, your automation rule is enabled, and will run if the trigger occurs. Automation rules only start once they have been enabled, so they will not run retroactively.

You can disable your automation without deleting it by clicking "disable" at the top of the page.

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You can see the history of your automation at the bottom of your Automation Rules page:

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Blueprints

Here are some popular uses for Automations:

Link trigger interest

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Trigger: Clicks a Link Trigger "Product Interest-convertkit.com/pricing" > Action: Add a tag, "Convertkit-Interested."

If you share a link to your product, you want to know exactly who is clicking that link. They are likely highly interested, and you can re-target them later on.

Exclude customers from pitch

Screenshot 2016-05-24 14.20.45

Trigger: Purchases a product "Cake" > Add a tag, "Cake-Customer."

This automation requires one extra step, though, and that's to exclude this tag from your pitch sequence. You can do this in your Sequence Settings:

Screenshot 2016-05-24 14.23.31

See more blueprints here >>

RSS Feeds

If you don't have any connected feeds, you will see this message:

Screenshot 2016-06-28 15.06.54

Add a new feed

rss-broadcast

Click "Add Feed." Paste the URL of your feed into the feed input. This will check to make sure your feed is valid. ( Note: If you're not sure what the URL to your feed is, try yourdomain.com/feed.)

If your feed validates, it will appear below as a message, the Single post option by default.

Settings

Single

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This will create a new Broadcast every time a new blog post appears on your feed. Depending on your feed settings, it will bring in the entire post, including images and links.

Digest

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This will create a "round up" email of recent blog posts, that you can run on a specific schedule.

Recipients

Select your recipients just like you would a regular broadcast.

Sending

You can now send your blog posts automatically! Check the box to turn this on, or leave it unchecked to create drafts instead.

Screenshot 2016-06-28 15.17.13

ConvertKit Hint: RSS broadcasts must be customized on an individual basis. So if you would like to change the subject or any content before sending, it's best to save as a draft, then send after editing. 

Automations FAQ

If I create an Automation rule, will it affect subscribers that have already met the trigger?

Automation rules don't apply retroactively, they will only apply to triggers going forward.

Why isn't my commerce integration showing up under purchases?

We have a brand new Purchases feature, with several Ecommerce integrations! You can find those  here. All other purchase integrations will be handled through their own app, or with Zapier.

Can I send an RSS Broadcast automatically?

You sure can! Follow the instructions above to set this up!

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