Successful email marketing is never accomplished in a single stroke. By integrating your systems, you can get the most out of Spotler and your email marketing activities. Linking systems allows you to combine the strong points of Spotler and a CRM system, an online store, ERP, or any other system. To enable this integration, Spotler offers a powerful REST API. In this section of our Knowledge Base you can read all about our API and find tips on how to establish system integration.
In addition to the description featured in the Knowledge Base, Spotler also offers the Interactive API Documentation. In this environment, developers will find a complete overview of all Spotler API methods and the accompanying technical documentation. Each method is prefaced by a short explanation, and it provides an opportunity to test the relevant methods as well. Throughout the following sections of the Knowledge Base we will regularly refer to specific sections of the technical documentation.
All options collected in a single overview
The options offered by system integration can generally be grouped by the following applications:
✓ Synchronizing contacts
✓ Synchronizing products (Spotler eCommerce)
✓ Synchronizing orders (Spotler eCommerce)
✓ Triggering automatic campaigns
✓ Integrating Spotler forms
✓ Passing conversion for the purpose of reports (Spotler eCommerce)
✓ Retrieving reports of email marketing activities
The general set-up of the connection
Four elements play a crucial role in effecting integration via the Spotler REST API: an external system, a connector, a Spotler account, and the Spotler API.
To allow an external system to communicate with Spotler, you will need a piece of software on the side of the external system. We call this a connector. On the Spotler end we have the API, with which the connector can communicate. Together, the connector and the Spotler API enable two-way communication between both systems. This allows the above-mentioned applications to be carried out, synchronizing contacts for example, or retrieving reports.
To successfully use the Spotler API, authentication takes place for every call. This is done so that the service can verify whether a call is coming from the correct source (the linked system). Every API call must be accompanied by a so-called Key and Secret which the API-service can use to determine whether the call is authentic. Keys and Secrets are always linked to one Spotler account. They will become available as soon as the REST API is activated within that account and a new authentication is made. In Spotler eCommerce this is already done for you.
Various integrations have already been established using the Spotler API. These integrations have revealed two important best practices:
Use a queue
There is always a possibility that an issue may arise with the connection between the external system and Spotler. Issues may occur for various reasons. Using a queue helps make the connection more reliable under adverse circumstances. How does queuing work? When an API call fails – because there is an issue with the connection – the call is automatically stored in a queue. This allows the connector to make new attempts using the same call. We advise limiting the number of renewed attempts and setting an increasing interval. For instance, the first attempt could occur after 1 minute, the next after 5 minutes, then 10 minutes, an hour, et cetera. The queue should be processed in chronological order. In addition, we also recommend displaying failed calls in an overview in the backend of the external system.
Use a 10 minute margin
Some methods require the external system to include a start time and end time for the period that has elapsed since the previous retrieval. When retrieving bounced or updated contacts, for example. To ensure that no changes are omitted, we recommend preserving a margin of at least 10 minutes between the moment of retrieval and the end time of this period.