Answers to your most frequently asked questions about Zapier

  • 8 September 2020
  • 3 replies

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Hey there! I’m Laurie and I’m a Support Trainer here at Zapier. I spend much of my day helping our customers learn Zapier — one of the fun parts of my role here is getting to hang out in the Q&A section during our webinars. 

Over the past few months, I’ve noticed a number of questions that get asked in each webinar, so I’ve compiled all of the answers to these questions plus some helpful resources for our Community members to have all in one place. I hope you find this useful!

Helpful Resources


Commonly Asked Questions


Where can I learn more about the basics of Zapier?

We have a number of resources for you! Start with our Getting Started with Zapier manual. You can also watch our Zapier 101 videos, or view our other how-to videos


What is a Zap?

A Zap is an automated workflow that connects your apps and services together. Every Zap consists of a trigger step (“when this happens…”) and one or more action steps (“then do this…”). After you turn your Zap on, it will run the action steps every time the trigger event occurs. We have a quick video explaining this.


What is the Zap Editor?

The Zap editor is the tool you can use in our dashboard to set up the trigger and action(s) in your workflow.


What is an app?

An app is a web service or application. You can see all of the apps Zapier integrates with in our App Directory.


How can I see what apps Zapier integrates with?

You can see all of the apps Zapier integrates with in our Zapier App Directory.


What is a premium app?

Our Premium apps are available exclusively to users on our paid plans. If you are on a Starter plan, you can use up to 3 Premium apps across all of your Zaps. If you are on a Professional or higher plan, you can use an unlimited number of Premium apps.


My app isn't listed in the app directory — how can I get it on Zapier?

There are a few ways to get an app added to Zapier. Your best bet is to contact the app developer directly and let them know you'd like to see them on Zapier.

If the app has an API, you may be able to use one of our existing apps to still be able to connect to the app and add it to a Zap. Tools like Webhooks by Zapier and the Email Parser can help you work with your information. Read more about these options on our blog.


What is a Task?

Whenever your Zap completes an action successfully, this counts as a Task. Note that a trigger step is not an action, so it will not count towards your Task usage. You can read more about Task limits and pricing in our help docs.


What is a trigger?

A trigger is the event that starts a Zap. After you’ve turned on your Zap, Zapier will watch for that event to happen in the app you specify.

Zapier has two types of triggers: an instant trigger and a polling trigger.

An instant trigger happens as soon as the event happens in your app and the app sends it to Zapier.

A polling trigger means that we will reach out to the app on a scheduled basis to look for new information. If new information is found, the Zap will trigger. If no new information exists, we’ll check back later. How frequently we check for that new information depends on the Zapier plan that you are on. You can see the update time (how often we reach out) for each of our plans on our Pricing page.


How do I know if my trigger is an instant or polling trigger?

Instant triggers display an 'instant' label on both the list of triggers in our app directory and on the Zap itself on your Zaps page in your dashboard. If there is no label, the Zap is using a polling trigger.


How do I make my trigger an instant trigger?

There is currently no way to switch a trigger from polling to instant or from instant to polling. The only way to change how a trigger behaves is for the app developer to re-code that trigger in the app itself.


What is an action?

An action is the job your Zap performs after your trigger event occurs. A Zap can have only one action or multiple actions (up to 100).

If you add more than one action step to your Zap, this becomes a multi-step Zap. At this time, multi-step Zaps are only available on our paid plans.


Is there a limit to the number of steps that can be added to a Zap?

Yes, there is currently a limit of 101 steps in a Zap - one trigger step and up to 100 action steps.


What is a multi-step Zap?

Every Zap must have at least one trigger step and one action step. A multi-step Zap is any Zap with two or more action steps. Note that you must be on a paid plan to create and use a multi-step Zap.


How do I map fields?

Mapping fields is our way of saying 'choose the field you want to add from the dropdown'. For each field in your action step(s), you can send information from previous steps by adding the field where that information arrives into the corresponding input field.

For example, if you have a lead that sends the customer's name, email address, and phone number, you would map the name field in the name input, the email address in the email address input, and the phone number in the phone number input. This will allow each new lead's information to be sent to the app in your action step.

You can read more about mapping fields in our help docs


What is the Task History?

Your Task History is a log of all of the activity that has happened in your Zaps, including all of the data that has gone in and out of each Zap step. On this page, you can review that information, download it, or delete it. You can read more about how to manage your Task History in our Help docs.


What is Autoreplay?

The autoreplay function will allow Zapier to attempt to retry any failed Tasks if they failed due to a temporary error or downtime. Autoreplay will attempt rerunning the Task up to five additional times. Note that this function is available in our Professional and higher plans. If you are on a Free or Starter plan, you can replay your Tasks manually using the Replay button on the Task in your history.


What is a filter?

A filter step can be added to any Zap to set a condition that must be met before the Zap continues to the next step. This allows you to choose which Tasks continue on to your action step. You can read more about how to use a filter in our help docs. You can also create multiple Zaps to create multiple workflows based on different conditions.

What are paths?

Paths allow you to build multiple workflows into one Zap by setting multiple conditions. Paths use if/then logic, allowing your Zap to do something different based on what happens in a previous step, for example if A condition exists, perform one action, and if B condition exists, perform a different action. You can read more about how to use paths in our help docs.

What is a Zap Loop?

A Zap loop happens when the trigger and action steps do the same thing. For example, a Zap that triggers when a lead is updated and then updates the same lead. What will happen is once the action completes, it will then retrigger the Zap, adding another action, which retriggers the Zap and continues in a loop until all of your Tasks are used up. We have tips to help you avoid Zap Loops.

What is a Webhook?

A webhook is a way to send or receive information to another app using their API. Some apps will have the webhook built into their app, or you could use our Webhooks by Zapier app to further control what information is sent to or received by that app. You can read more about webhooks in our help docs.


Do I need to know how to code?

Only if you want to! Zapier lets you integrate with over 2000 apps without needing to know any code — you can build your workflow in our Zap editor and the Zap will run all the code for you.

If you are an advanced coder, we also offer our Code by Zapier app, which lets you write your own Python or JavaScript, and our Webhooks by Zapier app, which lets you connect to an app’s API even if they don’t have a Zapier integration, but neither of these are necessary for most workflows.


Can I still use Zapier even if I don't need it for business uses?

Absolutely! While our app directory has many business-focused apps, you can use Zapier to automate all parts of your life, from meal planning, to controlling the lights and temperature in your home, to organizing your grocery lists and the media you've consumed.


Does it cost more to use Zapier if I add more apps or more steps to my Zaps?

Our plans are based on the number of Zaps you have live and the number of Tasks that run each month. As long as you stay within the limits of your plan, you can use as many of our apps as you like. And, if you are on a paid plan, you can add up to 100 action steps to your Zap. You can see what's included in each of our plans on our Pricing page.


How can I call you to get help? It would be a lot easier if I could share my screen with you.

At this time, we do not offer phone or screen-sharing support. This is to allow us to spend more time troubleshooting your Zaps and to be able to send screenshots and videos to help you get your Zaps up and running. To get help from Zapier Support, please contact us through our contact form.


Can anyone build a Zap or should we hire someone specifically for our IT department to do this?

Zaps can be made by anyone! Everyone is encouraged to try making Zaps so you can see just how it can help automate your life. It can be a little addictive and you'll want to start automating everything! If you find you need more help with your workflows or you have a more complex project, we have a number of Zapier Experts who would be happy to work with you.


Is there a blog article or list of top recommended Zaps to help me get started?

We have a number of example Zaps to help you get started, no matter what kind of Zap you're looking to build.


Can I try out your premium features before I pay for a plan?

You can indeed! We offer a 14-day free trial to give you a chance to test things out. It takes a few seconds to sign up, it’s free, and you can do it here.


Which plan should I choose?

The best plan for you depends on what kind of usage you need for your workflows. Our plans are based on the number of live Zaps you have running and the number of Tasks you run each month. We recommend signing up for our free trial so you can see what kind of usage you'll have. From there, you'll be able to determine which plan suits your needs.


Do you offer any discount or coupon codes?

Currently, we offer a discount to non-profit organizations. You can read more about this and apply for the discount here.


I want to start recommending Zapier to my customers, do you have an affiliate program?

Zapier does not currently have an affiliate program, but you can still help your customers automate their own lives by sharing Zapier with them!


Is Zapier HIPAA compliant?

Currently, Zapier is not HIPAA compliant, so if you need your data to be protected by these rules, we do not advise sending this through Zapier.


How does Zapier handle my data?

We take the security of your data seriously at Zapier. Credentials for all connected accounts are protected with bank-level encryption. Raw requests made to other apps on your behalf are stored for 7 days for troubleshooting purposes and then purged. User-facing Task History is stored for approximately one to three months, allowing you to monitor your Zapier activity. Our Data Privacy page provides more detail about how we handle your data.


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3 replies

Userlevel 7
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This is a fantastic resource - thank you for compiling it :smiley:

Userlevel 7
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Hey @Wemakefuture!

That’s a good question (and thanks for asking it). I guess as long as it’s between yourself and clients, and not reproduced somewhere publicly where you’re claiming it’s your own, it’s fine. If sending this information to someone can help them succeed with using Zapier, then I’d say it’s win-win-win :)

Userlevel 6
Badge +7

Amazing! @laurie can we use parts of it for zapier-expert-client Support?