This article provides a comprehensive guide on sending emails in Knack. We will explore various areas where you can effectively incorporate emails into your workflow.
Incorporating email alerts into your Knack apps offers a seamless solution to streamline your workflow and ensure your users stay informed with timely reminders and notifications. This comprehensive article will guide you through the various types of emails that can be sent from Knack, providing step-by-step instructions on creating and customizing email rules.
Additionally, we will explore the different areas where you can incorporate emails.
There are usually two types of emails that you might want to send to your users: group emails and transactional emails.
Note: Emails are not an available feature with Trial accounts. To learn more about our plans and pricing see this page here.
Group emails are commonly associated with newsletters and email blasts. Users have willingly subscribed to your list or signed up for a service, providing you with permission to send them emails.
Knack is not optimized for effectively managing group or bulk emails. To ensure proper delivery, it is essential to have features such as unsubscribe links, spam prevention, and delivery optimization in place when sending group emails.
If you would like to send bulk or group emails to your Knack users, it is recommended that you utilize a third-party service such as MailChimp. You can refer to this guide for assistance in setting up an integration between MailChimp and Knack: Using MailChimp.
Alternatively, you can follow a similar process of exporting records to use with another group email service of your preference.
Transactional emails are utilized to send single-instance emails to a restricted number of recipients. These emails are commonly triggered by a specific action within your application or database.
A receipt is emailed to the customer and warehouse when an order is submitted.
An employee is emailed when a job has been assigned to them by a manager.
A manager is emailed when a project has exceeded a due date.
Knack offers four powerful features for sending transactional emails like this:
Form Email Rules: Create rules within a form to generate personalized email notifications based on the criteria you specify.
Grid Inline Editing Record Rules: Configure rules for grid columns to send customized emails when records are updated by inline editing.
Action Links: Include links to views that will initiate the sending of emails.
Scheduled Tasks: You have the option to schedule emails to be sent daily, weekly, or monthly. With a scheduled email task, a custom email will be sent for each record that meets your specified criteria.
Managing Email Rules in Forms
To trigger an email when a user submits a Form, you can add an Email Rule to the Form view.
Here are a few instances where you might consider sending an email after a form submission:
When an order form is submitted, email the customer with order details.
When a project’s budget status is changed to approved, email the project manager.
When a sales rep submits a new lead, email their sales manager.
Adding an Email Rule
From the Pages section of the Builder, locate a Form view. Hover over the view and click on the pencil icon to edit the view.
Next, navigate to the "Emails" tab in the left panel and click on the "Add Rule" button to create your first rule.
Editing Email Rules
By selecting the "Send a custom email" action, you will have access to all the email rule customizations described in the "Email Settings" section below. This allows you to send a custom email for each record, which can be easily configured in the email editor.
Alternatively, you can choose to "Send a basic email notification". This option will send a straightforward email containing all the form data that was recently submitted. There are no additional customization features available, apart from the criteria and custom recipient.
To modify an existing Email Rule, navigate to the Form view editor, make the necessary changes within the Email Rule editor, and save them by clicking on the "Save Changes" button.
Deleting Email Rules
To remove an email rule from a Form view, simply open the form view editor and click on the trashcan icon located at the top-right corner of the rule. Don't forget to save your changes by clicking on "Save Changes" at the bottom.
Tip: Another option is to choose the "copy" icon located to the left of the trashcan icon. This will generate a new Email Rule below the original one, containing the same content for you to modify as needed.
Managing Email Rules in Grids
For instance, if a status is modified in a grid view, a Manager can receive an email alerting them of the change.
Note: Emails are not available for Trial accounts. See our Plans & Pricing page here.
You can enable inline editing from the Settings section of the view editor.
Once inline editing is enabled, record rules can be added to specific grid columns by editing the column properties:
Tip: Along with Email Rules, you can also select to copy Record Rules as well by choosing the "copy" icon located to the left of the trashcan icon. This will generate a new Record Rule below the original one, containing the same content for you to modify as needed.
Managing Emails Using Action Links
Action Links are a type of link that can be added to details, grids, lists, maps, or calendar views. They empower Live App users to trigger specific actions behind the scenes simply by clicking a link on the view.
These links offer the ability to update a record, update a connected record, insert a connected record, or send a custom email.
Action Links can be found when editing the view, under the "Add Columns" section by selecting the "Actions" tab:
To send an email using an Action link, simply choose the "Trigger an Action" option, and then click on the "Add Action" button:
Next, you'll want to select the "Send a custom email" option from the dropdown menu:
To customize subjects and messages, simply click on the ellipses symbol (when available) and select the field from the menu to use record values:
Tip: To learn more about using action links, see our article here.
Managing Email Rules in Tasks
To trigger an email automatically on a scheduled basis, add an email rule to your table's scheduled tasks section.
A few examples of when you may want to send an email on a scheduled basis:
Email an employee connected to a deliverable when the due date is in a week.
Email a customer to renew a warranty when the product’s warranty is out.
Email a tenant a reminder to renew their lease when the lease expiration is 30 days out.
Note: Tasks are not available with Trial or Starter plan accounts. To learn more, see our Plans & Pricing page here.
Adding a Task
Navigate to the Tasks section of the Builder and locate the table that contains the records for which you want to send email notifications. Then, click on the "Add Task" button.
Provide a name for your new task and select the schedule that suits your needs. Afterwards, click on the "Next" button to continue.
By default, the task is set to "Update this Record". However, you can change this action to "Send a custom email" instead.
Tip: To learn more about scheduling tasks, see this article here.
Editing Email Rules in Tasks
You have full control over the customization options for Email Rules. In the "When" section, you can add criteria to specifically target certain records.
You also have the option to keep the "When" section as it is by default, which will execute the task for every record.
Tip: To add more criteria, simply click on the plus sign icon on the right. To remove criteria, click on the minus sign icon.
Deleting the Email Rule in Tasks
To remove an email rule triggered by a scheduled task, navigate to the Tasks section of the table and click on the ellipsis icon for the scheduled task. From the dropdown menu, select the "Delete" option.
Email rules can be utilized in both forms and scheduled tasks. Regardless of the location where you incorporate them, email rules offer consistent functionality, including criteria, from name, from email, subject, and message.
By default, email rules in Knack will trigger every time. However, if you want to ensure that the email is only sent when specific conditions are met, you can click on the "add criteria" link to add a filter.
If you add multiple criteria, all of them must be met for the email to be sent.
To ensure successful delivery, it is important to include at least one recipient for every email. Additionally, you have the flexibility to add multiple recipients for CC, BCC, and Reply-To fields as needed.
If you include a "Reply-To" recipient, they will receive any email responses directly in their email inbox.
Recipients can be either custom email addresses or values from an email field.
Custom Email Address
To specify the recipient of the email, simply enter a valid email address where you would like to send it. You have the option to add multiple recipients on a single line by separating the addresses with a comma (,).
An Email Field
Knack has the capability to send an email to an email address that is stored in your record. You have the flexibility to use any email field that is located in the source table, as well as access any email field that is located in a connected table, such as the connected user record.
If you select an email field from a connected table and the connection is of a many-to-one or many-to-many type, Knack will send an email to each of the connected records individually.
The from email is the email address being used to send the email, and it will be visible to your recipients.
Due to the increasing problem of SPAM and email spoofing, companies are implementing stricter rules for accepting emails. It is crucial to use an email address that you have access to, as Knack sends the emails on behalf of the specified email address.
Note: You can verify your domain as a sending domain, meaning emails will be sent directly from your email address as opposed to "on behalf of" Knack. Click here to verify your domain.
Now that you have added recipients, it is a good idea to provide a subject for the email. You can include field values in the subject to make it more informative.
To add a field value to your subject, click the “Add Field” button next to the subject input:
You can utilize the message editor to compose the content of your email. This editor provides a rich text field that offers various formatting options for fonts, as well as the ability to include images or links.
On the left side of the message editor, you'll see a list of fields from the source table. Simply click on a field and it will be added to the current location of your cursor- the fields will automatically fill in with the form's field values when the email is sent.
The list includes certain special fields like Record ID. In addition, emails in form views contain the Page URL/Parent Page URL field.
These special fields can be utilized to generate dynamic URLs that direct the user to the record mentioned in the email.
Notes & Troubleshooting
Blank Email Address Fields
In the event that an email is sent to a record with an empty email address field or if the email address does not exist, the email will be redirected back to the form's "From" email address. This workflow is designed to notify the owner of the app that the intended recipient did not receive the email.
If the email is redirected to the app's email address, it will include a header stating: "Returned to sender, no valid email recipient found. We recommend that the app administrator reviews the settings on this form."
Deliverability and Spam Folders
If you are having issues with the deliverability of emails or are finding that emails sent through your Knack app are ending up in customer's spam folders, you may need to get your domain on our email whitelist; please contact our support team by using the chat widget in the Builder or by submitting this form for instructions on how to get this set up.
This request enables us to add your domain to our list of approved domains. We will then verify your domain as a sending domain, which means that emails will be sent directly from your email address instead of being sent on behalf of Knack.
After submitting the request, you will receive an email from us containing three CNAME records that require updating in your domain's DNS settings. This will enable Knack, through SendGrid, to send emails on your behalf and be recognized as "approved".
We don't have access to your CNAME records; our purpose is to approve Knack to send emails generated through actions in the Knack app.
Once emails have been sent from a task or a form, unfortunately, it is not possible to stop their delivery to recipients. We kindly remind you to carefully review the "When" criteria before scheduling or manually initiating email sends from tasks and saving a form's configuration.
There is currently no email delivery history available for record rules that are configured to send a custom email.