November 27, 2019

Created a Zapier integration for Gleebeam

Viesturs Marnauza @viestursm

I've wanted Gleebeam to have a Zapier integration ever since I came up with the idea around 6 months ago. I'm happy to announce I've finally built it!

The integration significantly improves the ease of connecting different apps to Gleebeam. It took around two days to build including the research I had to do to understand how to make it authenticate with and securely get user data from Firebase. The Zapier platform also had some bugs which slowed things down for me - since then they've reported to me that the bugs have been fixed though!

There are two ways to build a Zapier integration:

  1. Using the Zapier CLI. This sets up a Node project for you and allows you to push updates to the Zapier platform. You get more control over your code, better version control and the ability to include third-party packages.
  2. Using their visual builder. Here all set-up happens in their web integration builder. You define your authentication endpoints, triggers and actions right in the browser. For most of these things, you can also switch to editing code snippets that make and parse the HTTP requests the integration will have to make to your API.

I started with the CLI, but, because of a nasty bug that prevented me from pushing any code to the platform, I switched to the visual builder. In general, it works fine but it was not always clear to me by reading their docs how it all holds together - i.e. how the integration's state is saved and how can different input fields dynamically interact with one another. So I went through a pretty brutal trial & error process but, in the end, it seems to have turned out well!

Are you using Firebase and want to build a Zapier integration? I have a tip for you. Implement all authentication and data fetching using Firebase's REST API. This was not obvious to me at first as I had been used to only using the Firebase SDK to make all my auth and database requests. Knowing this initially could've saved me a few hours.

Are you a Zapier user eager to test out new automation possibilities? Use the link below to try out the Gleebeam integration! You'll need a Gleebeam account with a created notification template.

To check out Gleebeam, visit https://gleebeam.com
To check out the Zapier integration, visit https://zapier.com/developer/public-invite/73037/128ec7cdebf34117e0f135b701383a15/

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