cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Seven Missing Features

Valued Developer

Seven Missing Features

One of our developers went through the API with a specific list of functionality to look for, and he came up surprisingly short. Our end goal is to be able to use the API to create and send a mailing from scratch, and then check the results.

It may be that he missed some of the documentation, but if anyone could confirm this list or speak to the feasibility of getting these features finished, I would appreciate it (these are all API-related):

1. Creating / uploading content for a mailing: Need to be able to put new e-mail content into the system via the API.

2. Severe limitations with field names: Our mailing lists have custom-named fields, like FirstName, State, Email, Job_Title, Favorite Color, etc... it sounds like we are limited to a maximum of 15 custom fields, and every field would need to be renamed to "CustomField#". This also means that e-mail content would look like Dear %CustomField1% (or whatever the syntax is for merging data in).

3. Limitations in mailing configuration: It sounds like we cannot set the "From Name", "From Email", and other mailing configuration settings via the API.

4. Scheduling / sending a mailing: Apparently there is no way to either send a mailing immediately, nor schedule a mailing to be sent later. We can deal with not being able to send immediately, but at the very least, scheduling should be in there.

5. No clickthrough stats available: It sounds like clickthrough stats are not available via the API. I'm not sure if this includes stats like "Opened" as well.

6. Limitations on URL lengths: Many of our URLs look like http://www.domain.com/pageName/code/firstName_lastName. One of our customers, who uses Constant Contact, was complaining that you do not support tracking URLs over 50 characters long, and so it was hard to send out mailings using the URLs that we created for him, because many of them were in the 50-70 character range. Maybe consider upping the limit to 100 characters?

7. Interaction with opt-out lists: We have our own internal opt-out lists, as do many of our customers. We need to be able to upload / merge opt-out lists into whatever opt-out list is maintained on your end. Likewise, if a customer opts out using CC's opt-out mechanism, we need to be able to download the opt-out list from you so we can update our own CRM system(s) so that we can comply with the opt-out request on other mailings that may not go out from your servers.

Please let me know if any of these points are incorrect. It sounds like some of them are echoed by other forum topics (right now I see a link on the right under Active form topics called "Any plans to add the ability to create campaigns?"), so it might be a good step to give your API users some idea of where development is going.

Otherwise, many people may just leave and go to a system that has the necessary APIs. (e.g. We have a spreadsheet of ESPs and their API capabilities, and nobody has 100% of the features, but three-quarters of them have between 75% and 95% of the features we're looking for. I will not disclose their names on a public forum for the sake of professionalism / courtesy.)

Thank you!

- Jonathan
Tom M
Group Product Manager – Content Editing
Constant Contact
1 REPLY 1
Valued Developer

re: Seven (?) Missing Features

Thanks for the feedback Jonathan. I moved this post into a freshly created "Feature Requests" forum to encourage and collect just this kind of feedback. We can only share information only on existing functionality - but be assured, we are watching, listening and responding to requests like these to drive our expanding API offering. Responding to your specific comments:

1. Creating / uploading content for a mailing: -> An oft requested, but not yet available, API feature. We plan to provide email campaign scheduling and content modification incrementally.


2. Severe limitations with field names: ->This may be a misunderstanding of our offering. The Constant Contact Contact includes about 20 base fields (including First Name, Last Name, State, Job Title...) in addition to the 15 Custom_Fields (which you could use for Favorite Color and/or anything else).


3. Limitations in mailing configuration: -> The API does not currently support modifying the From Name/From Email Address. This is related to item 1 (Campaign Content Creation and Scheduling) and will be considered as part of that API effort.


4. Scheduling / sending a mailing: -> The API does not currently support scheduling an email campaign. This is related to item 1 (Campaign Content Creation and Scheduling) and will be considered as part of that API effort.


5. No clickthrough stats available: -> Clickthrough stats are accessible in several ways. First, summary statistics are available for each sent Campaign as part Individual Campaign Results (See this reference). Clickthrough details associated with a specific Contact are of the for a Contact are available as part of the Contact Events Service (See this reference ).


6. Limitations on URL lengths: -> While there are no specific URL length limitations, our general recommendation is that URL lengths be kept reasonably short both because long URLs can cause occasional problems and because very long URLs are very awkward in non-HTML and mobile renderings. TinyURL and similar solutions can be used to shorten long URLs.


7. Interaction with opt-out lists: ->The APIs provide several options for managing Opt-out lists. The Activities resource can be used to bulk export the contacts in the do-no-mail (Opt-out) list. The Contacts resource can be used to query if an individual contact is on the do-no-mail list or to move a contact to that list.


Thanks,
Tom M
Group Product Manager – Content Editing
Constant Contact