Welcome to the IFTTT Platform! As a Platform user, you’ll have access to an ecosystem of over 600 world-class services, thousands of active developers and millions of consumers. You’ll also be able to gain insights into how people connect and use your products so you can further personalize their experiences.
In order to build the best possible service on IFTTT, you should get acclimated with our IFTTT terminology. If you haven’t already, we provided a quick overview to help you get started below. If you’re ready to get started, you can skip ahead and learn how to either create an example service or build your own service.
Think of triggers as events on your service. Some example triggers are “Any new post” or “New photo added to album” or “Any new motion.”
Trigger fields allow for users to input filters or modifiers for a given trigger. For example, when a user selects the trigger “New photo added to album,” they will be asked for the album name.
The attributes emitted from a given trigger are called ingredients. For the trigger “New photo added to album,” there would be ingredients for “PhotoURL” and “TakenAt.”
A query provides a way to request additional data that a trigger does not include. For example, when the Google Calendar service’s trigger “New event added” occurs you may need information about the event’s attendees. The “List Attendees” query returns that desired data.
Query fields are like form fields, and they are often populated with ingredients from a trigger. For example, the “List Attendees” query contains fields for “Calendar id” and “Event id”.
Conversely, think of actions as sending data or creating resources on your service. Some example actions include “Create post” or “Upload photo” or “Turn on lights.”
When creating an Applet, a user assembles these ingredients in the action’s action fields. Action fields are like form fields. For the action “Create post,” there would be an action field for “Title” and another for “Post body.”
IFTTT defines a clear and concise protocol which your service’s API will implement. Each trigger and action for your service will map 1-to-1 to an API endpoint on your service built specifically for IFTTT. Trigger endpoints will be event streams that IFTTT will poll for new data. Conversely, action endpoints will be writable endpoints that IFTTT will send data to. For services that use OAuth, IFTTT is fully compatible with a couple of the common flavors of OAuth 2.0.
This document will guide you through the ideal workflow for swiftly adding your service to IFTTT.
1. Set up your environment
You will be creating IFTTT-specific endpoints that correspond to each trigger and action in your service.
If you already have an API that you would like to build on top of, there are a couple common strategies to add an IFTTT compatibility layer:
- Deploy a “shim app” that sits between your API and IFTTT. This app will translate resources from your API into responses IFTTT can understand.
- Add endpoints to your API service. These endpoints can source data from your existing API and serve them in responses IFTTT can understand.
If you do not have an API, IFTTT’s protocol will guide its development with its straightforward requirements.
In order to enable rapid iteration, you might consider using a tool like ngrok or Forward to forward IFTTT’s request to a local development environment while you are in the early stages of service development.
2. Create your service and connect to IFTTT
IFTTT provides a testing tool which you will be using soon to build out your endpoints. The first endpoint you’ll build is
/status, which will help you verify IFTTT can reach your service.
Navigate to your service dashboard and create a new service. You can leave many of the details for later, but be sure to fill out the API URL Prefix.
You can export the service in our protocol defined by the OpenAPI 2.0 specification. To do this, navigate to the “Service” tab and go to the “Tools” section to export your service. With the OpenAPI definitions, you can use the Swagger Codegen to bootstrap your service.
Build the status endpoint. When it’s ready, navigate to the “Test” tab, and run the “Endpoint Test.” A passing
status spec indicates that IFTTT was able to reach you!
3. Describe your queries, triggers, and actions
Fill out the details of your service, describing the queries, triggers, and actions.
While there’s a bit of art to choosing the right query, trigger, and action functionality for your service, the following principles are quite helpful:
Start with a handful of the most obvious queries, triggers, and actions and expand later. Triggers like “Any new photo” or “New post by you” tend to get broader use than ones like “Any new photo with tag” or “New post by you in category.” At least one query is required in every new service since almost any trigger or action can be translated into a relevant query.
Less fields are better. Instead of one trigger “Ignition turned on or off” with a field for “On or off?”, it’s much more powerful to have two triggers: “Ignition turned on” and “Ignition turned off.”
Remember, you can easily make changes before launching–consider this first pass a rough draft. Your main goal is to communicate to IFTTT what resources you will need to implement.
4. Use IFTTT’s endpoint testing tool
IFTTT’s endpoint testing tool will enable you to rapidly develop your endpoints with the peace of mind that they are compatible with IFTTT.
The workflow of the testing tool is straightforward:
- IFTTT makes a request to
- This endpoint’s response provides a valid access token for a user (if applicable) as well as valid sample values for each trigger and action field in your service.
- IFTTT uses the access token (if applicable) and sample values to make test requests against your API.
You can find the endpoint testing tool under the “Test” tab on your service’s dashboard.
See our documentation for more details on setting up testing with your API.
Use this tool to build out the endpoints for your triggers and actions, referring to our protocol reference as needed.
5. Set up OAuth integration
IFTTT is fully compatible with a couple of the common flavors of OAuth 2.0. For more details on our implementation, see the authentication section of our protocol reference.
When you’re ready, use the authentication testing tool under the “Test” tab on your service’s dashboard to ensure the integration is working properly.
6. Implement the Realtime API
With IFTTT’s Realtime API, you can have Applets involving user-oriented triggers from your service run near-instantly. See our documentation for instructions on implementing Realtime.
Note: To ensure a great Applet experience for your users, triggers are required to use the Realtime API if a user would expect its Applets to run in realtime.
7. Test your service end to end
It’s advisable that you create Applets using each query, trigger, and action from your service on IFTTT to ensure that things work as expected. Your user will have special preview access to use the service on IFTTT.
8. Add service administrators
If we need to contact you about the service, we’ll use the information you provide us under the Service Administrators section.
9. Submit your service for review
Once you’re confident your service is going to delight users, submit it! You can find the submit link underneath the “Publish” tab on your service’s dashboard.
10. Create connections
Connections power integrations between your service and another service. Begin with our Getting Started guide.