What is the eTapestry API? Integrations, Web Forms, Custom Apps
Do any of these scenarios ring true for you?
- Entering the same data twice in multiple software systems
- Managing external spreadsheets for data you can’t or don’t want to track in eTapestry
- Updating import files for transfer between eTapestry and two or more other systems
- Wondering why eTapestry doesn’t have a seemingly simple feature
- Looking for solutions in eTapestry that save you time, money, and stress
If you are familiar with any one of these scenarios, turn to the eTapestry API for potential solutions.
The eTapestry API is a toolkit that can expand the capability and functionality of your eTapestry database.
What is the eTapestry API?
The Blackbaud® eTapestry® API is a connector to the back-end of your eTapestry database.
API stands for “Application Programming Interface.” When you connect another application or software to your database via the eTapestry API, you can pull data out of eTapestry or write data into eTapestry.
The eTapestry API is a library of calls and scripts for various eTapestry functions, like create an account, create a gift, and find an account. When you build an application that accurately uses these calls and scripts, you can connect external apps and software to your eTapestry database.
Setting up an integration, connection, or application with the eTapestry API isn’t for everyone. You will need someone to program (write code) an application for your eTapestry database using the eTapestry API. But even though you need a programmer to do the heavy lifting, don’t let that keep you from using the eTapestry API.
Here are three solutions you might consider building with the Blackbaud eTapestry API.
1. Integrations with other software
Many eTapestry users also use separate email marketing software and one or more payment processors that aren’t Blackbaud Merchant Services (BBMS). In addition, there are a variety of other software systems, applications, and databases you use that probably aren’t connected to eTapestry. But they should be!
With the eTapestry API, you can create integrations that…
- Migrate names and email addresses between MailChimp, Constant Contact, or another email marketing platform and your eTapestry database;
- Sync transactions processed in PayPal, Stripe, or another payment processor as eTapestry accounts and gifts;
- Reconcile transactions created in eTapestry with transactions in QuickBooks Online accounting and bookkeeping software;
- Keep track of products sold through your online store or event registration system in Shopify, WooCommerce, or Eventbrite in eTapestry; and
- Automate your processes with follow-up reminders, notifications, and tasks from eTapestry via email, SMS text, Slack, Asana, Trello, or another task management system.
The eTapestry API provides the functions necessary to integrate the apps you’re already using with your eTapestry database.
2. Web forms
Online web forms integrated with your Blackbaud® eTapestry® database collect donations, email newsletter subscriptions, contact us inquiries, event registrations, volunteer registrations, surveys, and other types of information from website visitors.
The flexibility and efficiency of integrated eTapestry web forms make them powerful fundraising tools because they streamline data collection and save your organization time. But there are multiple ways to integrate online web forms with your eTapestry database.
DIY forms are the simplest tools for online web forms, but you can also use the eTapestry API to design a custom form. Custom forms are better than DIY forms in situations where you want to apply custom styling and formatting that matches your brand. You can also customize the functionality of a custom form with logic, preferences, and workflow.
Learn more about online web forms that use the eTapestry API in this post.
3. Custom app (like a dashboard)
Dashboards are the Holy Grail for managers and decision makers. Dashboards visualize complex data, making it accessible and actionable. Your eTapestry database comes with a simple dashboard tool out of the box, but what happens if you want to visualize more data in your eTapestry system?
Unfortunately, you cannot create custom dashboards in eTapestry so you need to look outside of eTapestry for dashboard solutions. Use the eTapestry API to extract data from eTapestry and populate it into a dashboard.
Here are two more custom applications you might consider building with the eTapestry API.
- Public directory or recognition list – Set up an application that lives on your website where visitors can view a list of active members to your organization. You might also consider a dynamic donor recognition wall that is hosted on your website. In both scenarios, donors and members that do not want to be recognized publicly could be removed from the application.
- Campaign dashboard – Some fundraising strategies require public engagement to promote support and rally enthusiasm for a cause. Displaying progress toward a campaign goal is one way to generate excitement for a campaign especially if social media and online engagement are a component of the strategy. Build a query in eTapestry for the transactions associated with the campaign and connect the API to a website dashboard that displays real-time progress toward your goal (like a fundraising thermometer).
Expand functionality with the eTapestry API
If you run into a limitation with your eTapestry database, look to the eTapestry API for solutions. The eTapestry API is a freely accessible toolkit that you can use to connect eTapestry to other applications and software. Talk with an API developer about building an application and then request activation of the eTapestry API for your database from Blackbaud (contact your account manager for activation).
Ready to use the eTapestry API?
Sidekick Solutions develops software and applications for the eTapestry API. If you’re interested in learning more about what you can do with the eTapestry API, send us a message and we will see if your project is a good fit.
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